A day in the life of a field Sales Rep (Manufacturing)
Disclaimer: This is relevant to the Indian audience, for the global version click HERE
At Outsell, it is our endeavour to get up, close and personal with our users and when the opportunity came to spend a day in the life of a Salesperson from the Building Materials industry, we jumped at the opportunity.
Sales Reps lead a hectic life, especially if one is an on-field sales rep. They lead the most hectic lives going from place to place, dealer shop to dealer shop, shuffle between various apps (for reporting orders, emails, enter expenses etc.).
Here are key components of the Salesperson’s day –
Here’s a potential timeline of how they spend their typical working day …
7:00 am – 8:30 am
Getting up and ready: Normally a sales rep would begin his day at 7 am, get ready and leave for work by 8:30. The target areas are given beforehand and he/she has a target of certain number of visits each day.
This is the Planning aspect.
Planning his/her meetings: Before leaving the house, the sales rep ideally looks at the meetings he/she has to attend and prepare himself/herself accordingly.
Documentation: Before he/she leaves, the rep has to check and recheck all their sales and marketing collateral. These can be catalogues, scheme posters, dealer scheme documents, pricelist etc.
This is critical as it presents his/her company at the establishments of their customers (dealers, distributors) where competitors also are fighting for shelf space and mindspace of eventual customers visiting.
10:00 am – 12:30 pm
TRAVEL & MEETINGS
Making visits: The rep then has to go from dealer shop to dealer shop asking for orders placed, which products are on demand, new players in market and extract market knowledge. (Dealers/sub-dealers/distributors are the best people who know about the market since they are selling it to the end customers.). Apart from that, the rep has to explain the dealer about schemes, new warranty terms, prices etc.
We saw the Salesrep opening the Outsell app at these outlets to showcase features and benefits of new products along with clearly explaining the end monetary benefit of selling such products.
Finally, the rep has to ensure his products are kept at display in the shop and they might also entertain any customer who comes to the dealer shop.
Helping a customer visiting a dealer/shop owner is a great way to build trust and salesreps are always keen to do this.
12:30 pm – 1:30 pm
MORE PLANNING & TRAVEL
Break and Further Planning: Sales reps always need to have high energy levels and when they need to travel from shop to shop every day, it is impossible to grab a quick bite. They have to take out some time (30-60 mins) for lunch and during that time they will go through their mails, social media or might even indulge in a game of Candy Crush!
This was a great insight into the minds of the salesperson who told us that gamification in Outsell always pushes them to score more at Knowledge Tests and regularly refer Product Documents.
BEATING THE FATIGUE, TIREDNESS AND GOING FOR MORE!
Lunch is a great time for introspection for Salesreps. First, they analyse the first half quickly and key in their orders/comments into their applications. Then, they start sending feelers to the representatives for pending visits that they will be visiting.
Sales reps who want to make it big, ALWAYS plan ahead. Post break, the reps make their plan of next visits and how much time they will have to spend at each stop to complete the target of 12-15 number of visits daily.
1:30 pm – 5:30 pm
Making Visits: Same routine as pre-lunch.
I was surprised how the energy did not drop at all despite being on the 2 wheeler through narrow lanes and the heat in the market area. It made me smile at my friends who keep telling Sales is easy. I wish we step into these Salespeople’s shoes even for a day to understand their rigmarole is extremely tough on the mind and body.
5:30 pm – 6:30 pm
The rep has to enter his/her daily work in a reporting app or send an email to his/her manager. They might also get on a call with their team, update them about the day and also give them feedback from the dealer about delay in orders, defective pieces etc.
At 6.30 I sat down for a chai with the salesperson and we made pointers about his day and how Outsell could potentially be of more use to him.
This was a glimpse into the life of a field sales rep, although it may vary from person to person and industry to industry. We, at Outsell, aim in making their lives easy by bridging the gap between sales and marketing and helping them to have better conversations with prospects.
Find out How!