Reports and Formats for better data analysis

When top notch strategies, knowledge and personnel is poured in to a business, it ought to be hitting the target. But how are we to measure it?

Data analysis holds a pivotal role in progress of a business. Proper analysis is ensured only with meticulously formatted reports and charts. Any software, for example – a CRM software must be capable of giving a formatted output which will provide detailed insights on the performance of the team, of the product and of the strategy.

Some major factors which a report should comprise:

  1. Flexibility to customize
  2. Category wise, period wise data formatting
  3. Cumulative and differentiative sum display
  4. User access and control
  5. Automation

Let’s deep dive –

Flexibility to customize

Variation in businesses and it’s performance measurability is wide beyond limit. Even though 2 businesses are exactly the same, there will be atleast a couple of parameters which differ in terms of analysis of the performance.

To get an insight on Sales done, Profit / Loss, customers acquired, category of products / services, etc. , reports must be flexible enough to allow the user to customize it as needed. What should be the format of data to be seen, the content in it, grouping, naming, etc. every datafield should be custom configurable. If a CRM software is being used, it should be ensured that custom report generation caters to the requirement.

Category wise, period wise data formatting

A report doesn’t mean ling, unending lists of data in form of a single table flowing till the world’s end.

There must be proper categorization- based on :

  • Source of Sales
  • Executives in charge
  • Category of product / Service
  • Time Period

This will help get a clear, simplified picture of the data under analysis. Simple representation is the best to comprehend when it comes to reports.

Cumulative and differentiative sum display

What does ‘report analysis and data insight’ term ultimately aim towards? Monetary gains – isn’t it right?

It’s unwittingly obvious that a report must display cumulative sum of the financial flow. And not stop only at this, it should also be able to show the ratios, proportions, fractions and differences as and when applicable.

Numerous report types demand data display in terms of percentages, sums, fractions, etc. Easily reports must be generated with these conditions.

It’s always recommended to use a for the purpose, since data can be pulled from the system with Sales, invoices and payments ready at disposal.

User access and Control

Now, wouldn’t it be useful if reports to be seen by the management are isolated from the common pool of reports which can be seen by all the team members? After all, data viewing and analytics is not recommended and not useful to each and every cog in the machine.

Generation of Administration level reports should not be open to everyone and only the concerned authority must be able to access them.
There must be a proper classification as to whom the report should be available, who can create, edit and who can only view it.

Even report downloading should be leashed. In the interest of data protection, it’s not recommended to give download permissions to every member of the team to have an access to entire data.


Reports must be automatically triggered at the set time. Daily, weekly, fortnightly, monthly, etc.- all should be made available automatically once set.

Also, reports must land in the concerned authorities’ mail inbox regularly. Only then is it said to be a properly configured and ‘Automated’ system. This automation will eliminate all the errors of manual report generation and can work by itself.

When we give so much effort and importance to improve the business, same importance has to be given to report generation too. Gaining clarity in data and insight on future prospects becomes a much easier task when you use a CRM software for Sales and Process management purpose.

5 Step guide to build a self-managed sales team

How using a CRM software and creating a proper workflow empowers the system

Maple CRM, workflow automation

There’s 1 thing common in wishlist of each business owner- Make the team run by itself, so that they could shift their efforts into business upscaling. Resonate with this?

It’s not only a wish, but need of every business, every organization to have a self organized and self managed team. No team can ever prosper in the pressure of a hovering manager who constantly notes and judges.

A good team is said to be when-

  • Team members responsibly undertake and execute tasks
  • Reporting managers get regular and clear reports
  • Business grows together with the team
  • Every team works in tandem
  • Clear communication

While it can be tardy and tedious to manage a team, their tasks and updates manually, it may also result into errors and misses in data. The best solution for handling this is- to use a CRM system which allows custom workflow defining and automation. A CRM system can have the potential of driving the entire team, channelising into proper workflows and updating in real time.

There’s a simple 5-step guide to build a self-dependent sales team with CRM as the plinth:

  1. Definition 📝

Defining a workflow is an art in itself!
It’s like breaking down a mammoth plan into tiny, measurable bits and collectively driven by a massive spur.

It’s easier done than imagined!

  • Make a list of the exact steps and tasks each team is supposed to handle.
  • Tag the executives related to each task
  • Create milestones
  • Set expectations- in the form of time and deliverables
  • Overall the system should define the process from point A to point Z, covering the entire workflow.

All these definitions can be done in a CRM system with customizable configurations. Tasks and related team can be set, TAT and deliverables can be defined and status of the progress can be charted for easy reference.

2. Tag and TAT  📍⌛️

This is similar to what we touched base in the earlier point.
Tag the team members and define the TAT.
Now this is a crucial configuration, which can be accurately done and handled with a CRM.

  • Each task defined can be tagged to team members
  • Team members will get notifications when the workflow moves forward and their task comes up to be taken ahead.
  • Chronological order of tasks can be defined.
  • Mandatory tasks, parallel tasks and priority tasks can be defined

Team members can update the status of their own task as they go ahead. These updates can be viewed / notified by the respective managers through their own CRM login.

3. Escalations ☝️

To err is human. And to escalate is CRM !

CRM can be configured in a way that every escalation automatically and instantly is notified to the concerned authority, Escalations can be in the form of:

  • Non-attendance of inquiries
  • Task delays
  • No change in status for quite a long time
  • No response from executive when clients call

A system which has the capacity for configuration of types of escalations and the action to be triggered helps maintain the workflow and TATs.

4. Actions 🙅🏻

CRM system has the power and flexibility of enabling automatic actions as configured. Actions can be triggered upon various conditions. Example:

  • Action: Automatic email send. Trigger: When new lead is added / lead status changes
  • Action: Notification to manager. Trigger: Escalations
  • Action: Automatic update of lead priority Trigger: Change of status as lead progresses

These are just some of very few examples. In practical sense, each and every business on the face of this earth can have their own way of setting actions and triggers.

CRM system must able to cater to these requirements. When appropriate configuration is done, it becomes a lot easier to manage the processes as compared to the manual way.

4. Analytics 📊

Now here’s where the weighing happens!

Performance analysis is as important as sales analysis. And so is having a configurable reports and analysis. Analytics provide a clear picture of how the team and concomitant sales are progressing. Analytics help

  • Getting a clear chart of target vs achievement comparison
  • Knowing exact points where there’s a need for improvisation
  • Knowing exact points which lead to better results
  • Representing the team’s performance
  • Individual / team wise data report

A CRM software should be flexible enough to fit in every possible combination for data viewing and deriving at analytics. Only then will it be of better use and yield productive results.

Curious on how to make all the above points happen??

Maple CRM and it’s flexibility to cater any kind of workflow is just the right solution. Automate and increase team’s productivity upto 5x ! Click here to know more.

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Automation in workflow will not only result into a better team, but also it’s proportionately party to growth of a business. It’s very, very important to choose a system (CRM software) wisely, as your whole business depends on it!