Did you know your sales people spend up to 80% of their week in spreadsheets?

A shocking statistic when you hired these people for their ability to build relationships, influence people and sell.  It’s a myth that it’s only finance managers who need to be good at Excel.

Do you test for Excel competency when you recruit?  Do you train all your new hires in Excel?  Predominantly the answers to both of these questions is ‘no’.  This is despite Excel being a tool that account managers report spending up to 80% of their working week using.  If it was an item of heavy machinery or a vehicle you wouldn’t let employees loose without adequate training would you?

However there is no perceived risk of not training people in spreadsheets, so why invest?

The benefits of training are vast in terms of increased productivity and accuracy, not to mention a satisfied workforce.  This is not something which ever reaches a senior managers agenda but you ask any member of your team and the majority will come back and identify an immediate need for Excel training.

In an online survey of FMCG account managers the primary reasons stated for choosing a career is sales are building collaborative relationships and growing a business.  Funnily enough, data analysis and number crunching feature at the bottom of the list.  Despite this, 50% of respondents are spending 2-6 hours a day in spreadsheets analysing EPOS data, forecasting, reconciling promotional spend and budgets.  This is up to 80% of the working week not building relationships and selling.

Less than a third of those surveyed have had any formal Excel training and over 25% had never even used the software before they started work.  The result of this is people working very ineffectively and spending hours completing tasks that can take minutes with the right skill.

Even those who consider their level of skill to be competent, still feel that there are weekly occurrences when a piece of work takes an unnecessarily long length of time to complete.

Worryingly, only 11% of respondents feel that they have the information they need about their business at their fingertips.  This should be a very concerning statistic for management given the level of investment companies make into buying data.  Again with the appropriate training this can be resolved.

A small investment into Excel training is worthwhile for a number of reasons:

  • A more efficient work force with increased capacity
  • A more satisfied work force as they have more time to do what they love – selling
  • A better return on the investment you make into data
  • Better insights and more accurate data analysis

Franklin John design the right training course for your business to maximise the returns listed above.  The main barrier is that people don’t know what they don’t know, they work through spreadsheets the only way they know how until someone shows them a quicker way to do so.  Every time we run training someone says “You’ve changed my life!”  We are very confident that without out training these individuals would have continued to spend hours, on tasks that should take minutes, indefinitely.

Can you afford to waste any more time when the demands on your team get greater every week?  Don’t delay, contact Franklin John today, and see how we can help liberate your sales people.

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