As a sales manager, you want to make sure your team has everything they need to succeed.
Your resources are limited though, so how do you make the most of what you’ve got?
The answer is resource management skills—a crucial but often overlooked skill in the sales manager’s toolkit.
Read on to learn more about resource management for sales and how to make the most of resources such as your budget, your tools—even your sales rep’s strengths.
What is resource management for sales?
Resource management for sales managers is the practice of planning and allocating resources for a sales department or campaign. Successful resource management ensures that resources are available when needed and helps the organization get the maximum value from its resources. Sales leaders may manage resources such as budget, tools, materials, and human resources.
Types of resources
In the context of resource management, you can break resources down into two main categories:
- Tangible resources, which include money, software, office space, office supplies, and personnel
- Intangible resources, which include things like skills, intellectual property, and ideas
Breaking these categories down further, here are three key types of resources for sales managers:
Managing your budget is a central part of resource management for sales. Sales managers need to plan their department’s budget, which involves determining expenses, setting spending limits, and allocating funds. Budget management also involves tracking expenses to ensure the team stays on budget.
Another essential element of resource management is managing human resources.
This includes ensuring you have enough team members with the right skills to meet your goals. Sales managers also need to assign team members to the right tasks to enable sales reps to use their strengths, balance the workload, and help team members develop their skills.
Material resources include everything from computers and software to pens and notebooks. Material resource management involves ensuring the team has the supplies and tools they need and choosing the materials that best fit the team’s needs while staying within budget constraints.
Why is resource management important for sales managers?
Why is it so important for sales managers to put time and effort into resource management? Here are some of the benefits of resource and budget management for sales teams:
You’ll set your team up for success
Good resource management sets your team up for success by ensuring your reps have what they need to hit their goals. Properly allocating resources also helps prevent burnout and increase employee satisfaction.
You’ll prevent future roadblocks
Resource management helps you prevent potential roadblocks to sales success due to not having the necessary resources. Good resource allocation keeps your sales process running smoothly.
You’ll increase productivity and efficiency
With resource management, you optimize your use of the resources you have, enabling you to get more done without spending more. You’ll also reduce waste and more easily stay on budget, helping your team run more efficiently.
Resource management techniques
So, how can you manage your team’s resources more effectively? Here are some common techniques used in sales resource management.
1. Resource allocation
Resource allocation is determining the optimal way to distribute your resources among projects, team members, leads, and more.
It involves assessing your available resources, evaluating how to use them most efficiently, and distributing them. Resource allocation enables you to maximize the value your team gets from the resources you have available.
2. Resource leveling
Resource leveling is a technique that helps you use your resources more efficiently. It involves assessing resource use to find underutilized or misallocated resources and then redistributing them.
For example, by assessing territory assignments for sales reps, a manager might find that some territories have too many reps assigned to them. The manager could then reassign some of the reps to areas with more opportunity.
3. Resource smoothing
Resource smoothing is a technique that helps teams use resources more evenly over time by adjusting the start and end dates of projects and activities. Resource smoothing reduces peaks and valleys in spending and resource use.
This technique helps you stay within quarterly budget constraints, avoid periods of overuse and underuse, and ensure that the team has consistent access to resources.
4. Resource forecasting
Resource forecasting is the practice of predicting future resource requirements, which allows you to accurately plan out your spending and resource use.
To forecast your resource needs, you need a clear view of your projects and goals and your business’s expected growth. You can use sales forecasting tools to predict future sales performance, which will help you determine the resources you need.
Tips for sales resource management
Here are a few more resource management tips for sales managers:
Use your sales strategy as a guide
When determining how to allocate resources, your sales strategy is one of the best guides you have. Your sales strategy should lay out your goals and priorities and the processes you’ll use to achieve them. Keeping these objectives in mind will help you prioritize spending and allocate resources appropriately.
Plan for uncertainty and allow for flexibility
The one thing that’s certain is change so allow for flexibility when you’re planning your resource use. Review your resource management plan regularly and adjust it if needed to ensure you’re keeping up with the latest developments.
Collaborate with others
While sales resource management is ultimately the sales manager’s responsibility, you shouldn’t go it alone.
Consult with others in your organization to ensure you have accurate data, work with company leadership to ensure you have adequate resources, and get feedback from your sales team on how they use resources. This will help you create an accurate and effective resource management plan.
Take your sales team management skills to the next level
Want more tips tailor-made for sales managers? Explore our guide to managing a sales team.
If you’re looking for a tool that can help your sales team work more efficiently and close more deals, consider Nutshell—our easy-to-use CRM complete with sales automation, pipeline management, reporting, and more. Start your free 14-day trial today.
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