Sales operations is universal, but not common

Announcing the release of the 2018 Sales Operations Optimization Report.

Sales operations has been a staple within sales organizations for almost 30 years. It may be a dedicated person, a full team or perhaps the activities of forecasting, territory planning and the like are spread throughout the organization.

Yet for as long as sales operations has been part of the sales landscape, there is still not a universal view of exactly what sales operations is, what it does and where it is heading next. What we do know is that it is undergoing significant change in many organizations.

Sales operations is increasingly in the spotlight as it becomes the de facto buffer between sales and IT, the home for new analytics and AI tools, the keeper of the CRM platform, and the miner of data. It is becoming much more specialized in many organizations. Traditionally home to anything that involved a spreadsheet, today’s sales operations functions are expanding into predictive analytics, artificial intelligence and more.

In order to explore the changing state of sales operations, we reached out to over 300 sales operations leaders and sales executives. I am pleased to announce the publication of our 2018 Sales Operations Optimization Report.

Check out the report to hear how sales executives and operations leaders answered the questions:

  • What does a typical sales operations function do?
  • Which methods for setting functional goals are linked to the best results?
  • Which productivity tools are being deployed by sales functions now and in the future?
  • Which forecasting methods yield better results?
  • How are some organizations parlaying CRM investments into productivity?


At CSO Insights, we see increasing specialization of both sales enablement and sales operations within sales organizations. Increasingly, sales leaders are evolving both functions into strategic disciplines that will not just carry out the go-to-market strategy but will provide the insights to shape and drive it. With the release of the 2018 Sales Operations Optimization Study, we begin a more laser-focused view of sales ops to track this movement. Ultimately, we plan to map out a maturity model and a more modern definition of what operations means in a World-Class sales organization.

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