According to Sales Hacker, on average, today’s salespeople only stay on the job for 16.8 months. Sellers are exchanging the promises of future commissions for short-term salary increases, and perks, bypassing the slugfest of building a book of business, which is vital for an organization’s long-term success.

Typical factors, like competition and the economy, are contributing to salespeople leaving.  But the most significant change of surveyed sellers is the level of people reporting dissatisfaction as the primary reason for departure.  Not surprisingly, the organizations with the longest sales team tenure are the same as the salespeople expressing the highest level of job satisfaction — this IS a change from the standard concerns of compensation, lack of upward mobility, or change in life circumstances.

What was the primary difference between the sellers expressing high job satisfaction and those expressing dissatisfaction – the amount of time they are spending on administrative functions. Those expressing greatest job satisfaction are spending less than 3 hours a week (total) doing CRM and other administrative functions.  Most sales teams are spending more than three hours a day working in their CRM and doing administrative tasks like expense reports.

According to Pace Productivity, a salesperson spends:

22% of their week selling,

23% on administrative tasks

10% on planning and

12% on order processing.

Ironically, the administrative tools created to streamline processes have taken the salesperson away from selling. For those who have worked with me, you have heard me discuss the migration of the seller from an extrovert skill of presenting and pitching to an introvert skill of administrative tasks.  Every year sellers are spending less time selling, and more time on administrative duties.

It is simple, if your sales people are doing administrative tasks, they are not selling.  Most organizations have invested heavily in systems and processes to drive revenue.   However, rather than experiencing a return on this investment, these systems and processes have turned into massive, on-going expense. Having the appropriate tools to assist your team in tracking and managing leads and sales is essential.  The easiest way to fix this problem, have the CEO, COO and any other senior management login and use system.  Not just to see it, but to work with the system to as if they were driving a sale over the course of a week, or a month.  Remember, the less fields, the better data governance.  The more fields, the higher the likelihood of salespeople entering false data.