Sales Forecasting Improved by Forward-Leaning Analytics

Aberdeen has examined the forecasting accuracy pressures faced by sales and operations practitioners, the actions they consider to drive performance in their investments, and how Best-in-Class performers utilize predictive analytics and advanced forecasting methodologies.

The new report, "Sales Analytics: Hitting the Forecast Bulls-Eye," explains why Best-in-Class companies work smarter rather than harder, creating more focused and effective selling activity, as top-performing organizations deploy advanced sales analytics and forecasting solutions layered on CRM/SFA to produce a reliable and three-dimensional sales forecast that benefits all aspects of their business, beyond Sales.

Data acquired from over 275 enterprises reveals a number of impactful data points, according to Peter Ostrow, VP/Group Director, Customer Management at Aberdeen, the study's author. "Sales teams have long deployed CRM and SFA solutions to support a variety of chronologically-ordered questions within the organization: the past (what did the customer purchase?), present (what is in our pipeline?), and future (when is the deal likely to close, for how many dollars, and at what probability to 'seal the deal'?)," he explains. "Yet the elusive 'truth' about a company's revenue health, measured by a more accurate sales forecast, may more predictive analytics than CRM tools can provide, along with informing the sales team's data with intelligence from other silos within the enterprise."

The required actions for companies seeking to gain the most benefit from their sales forecasting and analytics solutions, according to Ostrow, include a commitment to establishing, measuring, publishing and managing to relevant forecasting KPIs; linking non-sales data to CRM/SFA intelligence to effectively weight and refine the revenue forecast in real-time; and deploying user-friendly tools for reps, managers, top executives and other lines of business with customized views of the forecast "truth."

A complimentary copy of this report is made available due in part to Business Objects and SugarCRM. To obtain a complimentary copy of the report, visit