The question in everyone’s mind right now is what is the new normal going to be when we emerge from the safety of our isolation. The ‘new normal’ was something that came into business conversations during the financial crisis in 2007 and continued through the following global recession, and here we find ourselves again pondering the same question.
At sales-i, we believe the new normal is whatever you want to make it. The biggest disruption to business in a lifetime could actually present a massive opportunity to decide if the processes currently used are really fit for purpose for the next five to ten years not just if they will help your business survive until Christmas.
“The business landscape has changed fundamentally; tomorrow’s environment will be different, but no less rich in possibilities for those who are prepared.” McKinsey.com
One way to increase the odds of your business thriving in the post-COVID is to be well informed, ideally better informed than your competition. The most powerful currency is going to be data, as this will give you insights into how your business has changed. Realigning your business to become a data-driven organization will ensure you can act and react quickly to the opportunities as they arise. It will also futureproof your business by providing insight into industry trends so that you can identify upcoming changes and pivot to remain relevant in a quick-moving global economy.
To respond to the fast-pace of change of today’s markets, businesses need relevant, actionable insights on hand at all times, and from any location. Eliminate the costly delays associated with business analysis, and get straight to the insights you need in sales-i.
With easy to interrogate and data-driven insights specific to customers and business verticals, sales-i enables a quick, measured and data-driven response to turbulent market developments, giving sales-i customers an invaluable competitive edge.
The focus on the urgency to act in an unstable economy doesn’t have to come at the cost of relevancy. Just doing ‘something’, especially if that something is too general an action to drive sales across a diverse market, can be as damaging to the bottom line as doing nothing at all. The wrong messaging, offers or call to action can is as likely to impact negatively on reliable business streams as it is to entice new customers. The need to personalise and localise remains crucial to building a sales pipeline, even if you feel as if you don’t have the time right now.
sales-i has been designed to deliver focused data analysis as standard. Team users are free from the burden of data analysis or reporting, instead, insights specific to their customers, regions and industry verticals are generated for them.
“The ability to successfully manage remote teams will be a key skill in the arsenal of any modern manager.” Forbes.com
Managers have the ability to direct team members to precise opportunities and highlight changes in spend behaviours to be urgently investigated to mitigate churn risks and increase wallet share. All actions can be added straight into respective team members calendars, all updated and awaiting action within sales-i. Using sales-i to review and manage teams closes the gap currently being experienced by a dispersed workforce and allows for one shared resource for customer information.
sales-i delivers all three, sending up-to-date and easy to understand data analytics to your team no matter where or when you need to access it. Because sales-i analyses all the data in our user’s back-office system, it produces insights and alerts specific to each customer and the entire customer base. So, not only can you see if one customer has stopped buying a core product, you can see how this compares to all customers who buy this product. If there is a larger trend that requires action, your team can see it instantly and respond fast.
Latest world economic outlook growth projections from the IMF are promising a quick bounce back from the global COVID-19 induced recession. The global prediction has a swing from 2.9% GDP growth in 2019 to -3.0% decline in 2020 but a boost back to 5.8% growth in 2021. Good news to companies fighting to survive right now. However, the prediction has a steep decline to be faced before the climb back to growth as drastic as an annualised second-quarter decline in the US of as much as 40%.
“What follows will not be a return to pre-COVID business practices, but more likely a decade of the Never Normal, a new era defined by fast changing shifts in cultural norms, societal values and behaviors.” accenture.com
All of which underlines the importance of immediate action. The next few months are going to be crucial in deciding the future success of each and every business, but you can stack the deck in your favour with sales-i.
We have a unique insight into the fluctuations of many industries during the pandemic. Using data gathered from our client base worldwide we have been able to pick out some key trends highlighting what effect coronavirus has had on business and our advice on how to use this insight to kickstart your return to your new normal.
In May the figures processed through sales-i show that several sectors are already bouncing back from lockdown. Three sectors have recorded their biggest month of the year:
Slower out of the gate, sectors such as Automotive and Office Supplies, who posted big month on month increases May 2019 to April 2020, aren’t quite back at pre-COVID levels but are headed in the right direction.
Not unpredictably, Professional services have seen associated spend drop back to pre-COVID levels. This may be due to companies getting back to daily tasks rather than mitigating downsizing, working from home and back to work health and safety requirements.
In the UK, the May figures are showing similar results across sectors but at a slower recovery rate.
The standout story comes from the Household sector as it bucked the trend of a slowdown continued to deliver a 9% increase in sales above the monthly average for 2020 and even a year on year increase in sales revenue The Household sector was the only one to avoid a negative sales impact during the pandemic.
Following above-average months the UK’s Healthcare sector has dropped back to levels reflecting figures from the start of the year, as demand for medical consumables cools. Whilst Automotive, Tools and Distribution sectors have seen significant month-on-month increases similar to the US.
Office Supplies still looks to be showing effects of the UK’s office sector being impacted, with figures still way below pre-COVID levels at around 20% of a regular month. Hopes remain for another quick return to sector growth as offices begin to welcome back employees and demand for specific COVID workplace health and safety supplies is likely to give a welcome boost.
From the current data running through sales-i, we can identify a positive trend as the world starts to get back to normal. Whether that is the ‘new normal’ many industry commentators have heralded, we cannot be sure. The post-COVID outlooks for many sectors are already optimistic. It might be that the ‘new normal’ is really more of what we already know, but with less banked profits, staff and months left to make up the difference. It won’t be easy, and you need every tool you can to come back strong. Talk to sales- about how we can help you today.
Do you want a competitive advantage? Book a demo today.
We can help you get more out of sales-i, knowledge hub, ongoing webinars, bespoke training. Now is the time to maximize every asset you have to pull the insights from the data that you already possess. There will be opportunities, let us help you make sales-i work harder to find them.
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