The sales teams should not only plan for the current environment, but also should be able to accurately forecast for the future, based on all these factors.
Since the industry is a consumer-facing one, external factors like weather, events, emerging local players etc. will also affect primary and secondary sales.
Taking into consideration all these factors, we can say the success of any FMCG sales executive depends on.
How fast he/she can take the most data-backed decisions which have the highest probability to yield the maximum buck per dollar spend.
In order for this to happen, the sales representative must be equipped with an intelligent Business Intelligence system which can detect, recommend and forecast the most accurate market trends.
However, most FMCG sales teams still rely on a traditional BI system which takes the historical/routine data from internal LOB systems, market research or syndicated data providers like Nielsen, IRI, SPINS etc.
In an industry in which sales is affected by a plethora of direct/indirect influencing factors, the use of such routine data results in a lot of missed opportunities.
In addition to this, in most cases the BI system won’t be a self-service one. Meaning, sales teams have to hover around the IT department/MIS teams/developers for getting new reports.
Since these reports can’t be updated, sales teams again have to check other unstructured data in the form of spreadsheets to take decisions.
This lack of real-time analytics, presentation of data in unstructured formats, the need to check multiple reports in a traditional BI also leads to poor usage of existing data and increase of intuition-based decisions and forecasting among sales teams.
Needless to say, most of these traditional BI systems suffer from low adoption rates too.