How does your sales rep performance compare with the rep performance of 1,500 other firms spanning numerous industries? CSO Insights conducts an annual study to assess the strength of the sales world and the 2012 report includes an analysis of the 10 key trends of Sales Rep Performance. Check out where you are and what you still need to do to increase your Rep Performance!

  1. Sales Force Turnover – Turnover remained at an all time low of 25.5%. Involuntary turnover (let-go or fired) represented 12.8% and voluntary turnover (rep leaves) 12.7%. At this time companies are spending less time filling those open positions. However, the 2004/2005 studies showed that when the economy recovered, voluntary turnover increased significantly. Prepare for the economic upturn. Your competitors will start hiring again, potentially poaching your reps. Now is the time to manage your exposure for voluntary turnover, as well as plan for your future growth.
  2. Time Spent on Lead Generation – The time reps need to invest in researching accounts and generating leads, has decreased from 24.1% to 19.4%. Salespeople can now find accurate and relevant information from sales intelligence information provided by their employer. The Internet also helps a great deal.
  3. Conversion of Leads to Opportunities – 48.8% of firms surveyed had leads convert to opportunity greater than 50% of the time, compared to 41.7% a year earlier. This increase in conversions correlates with the increased use of sales intelligence, resulting in better leads.
  4. Win Rates – For the first time in three years, win rates have increased. Actual rates of closed opportunities increased to 48.3%, compared to 46.4% a year prior. This increase occurred as both the rates of “losses” and “no decisions” decreased.
  5. Average Deal Size – 2011 did see a rise in the size of deals pitched, however the rise was minimal. It is anticipated that 2012 will see another increase in average deal size.
  6. Formal Process Adoption – More companies adopted formal sales process standards. Of the firms surveyed, 48.7% of the firms utilize a “Level 3, Formal Process” or “Level 4, Dynamic Process.” Sales can identify and adapt to change more quickly, when all reps are doing thing consistently.
  7. CRM Mobile Access – Having access to data quickly and easily is essential when closing deals, and 46.9% of firms surveyed support CRM applications on smart phones. In addition to the Smartphone technology, 40.4% report that tablets are being used by reps.
  8. CRM 2.0 Utilization – The use of Lead Generation Management, Sales Analytics, Sales Intelligence, Sales Collaboration, Sales Knowledge Management, and Incentive Management tools continue to increase.
  9. Ramp-Up Time – Ramp-up time for a new hire is more than 10 months, according to 39.3% of the firms surveyed. This extended length training time continues to be a concern for companies.
  10. Training – 50% of the firms believe that better training, and more of it, is needed in the areas of customer marketplace and purchase justification. Product training is a less critical category with 74.3% of respondents meeting or exceeding training expectations.

Overall these are positive indicators for the sales profession.


Eliot Burdett

CEO at Peak Sales Recruiting
Before Peak, Eliot spent more than 20 years building and leading companies, where he took the lead in recruiting and managing high performance sales teams. He co-founded Ventrada Systems (mobile applications) and GlobalX (e-commerce software). He was also Vice President of Sales for PointShot Wireless.

Eliot received his B. Comm. from Carleton University and has been honored as a Top 40 Under 40 Award winner.

He co-authored Sales Recruiting 2.0, How to Find Top Performing Sales People, Fast and provides regular insights on sales team management and hiring on the Peak Sales Recruiting Blog.

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