Mobile sales people meet customers where they are. Whether they’re introducing people to your products and/or services, providing in-person customer support, making deliveries or building strong customer relationships through engagement, they are always on the move. Mobile sales is a job that requires a lot of versatility, self-reliance and organizational skills. That’s why technology has come a long way in helping those fulfilling this role operate on a higher-level.
From lead management to pipeline management and managing customer relationships, there are a lot of tools to help mobile sales people handle the sales-related aspects of the job, but a key area has been neglected: travel expense management. You may believe that this is a minor part of successfully managing a team of sales reps; you’re way more focused on making sure leads are assigned to right people, and relationships are maintained between your company and its customers. Failing to manage mileage expenses will only make their job harder, though.
Travel expense management processes usually entail some method of tracking and documenting mileage traveled for work – whether it be manually recording odometer readings or using GPS – submitting expense reports for reimbursement, having these requests approved and then finally, having your accounting or finance departments issue payments. This is a tedious, cumbersome process, especially on top of everything else a mobile sales person is responsible for handling. With the implementation of a sales person tracking system, you can address an area of sales team management that has been ignored up until now.
A Mobile Sales Person Tracking System
The right system should not only track the progress of sales reps throughout a workday, but should also make documenting and reimbursing mileage an easy process. In order to fulfill this dual role, your sales person tracking system should be able to do a few things.
Find the Most Direct Route
Salespeople have to travel many places in a single day, so in order to best optimize your time, planning the best route is key. A GPS tracking app may help provide the location of sales reps throughout the day, and it may even recommend routes from one location to the next, but it won’t help your company streamline route planning. You need a system that was designed with the understanding that what you need is a tool that helps you better manage your time and schedule.
Being able to find the most direct route for your employees is also beneficial when it comes time to reimburse travel expenses. Would you rather reimburse the miles driven for a route that zigs and zags and backtracks on itself, or would you rather reimburse for a more efficient, and often shorter route?
Reporting travel as a mobile sales person usually involves more paperwork than it should. You have a mileage log recording odometer readings, periodic expense reports that may require supporting documentation, reimbursement requests and multiple approval stages before payment is actually issued. Then there’s reporting to managers: arrival and departure times from each location, visit information such as address and names and any additional notes. Something is bound to get lost along the way.
A centralized sales person tracking system brings all of this reporting into one accessible place. Employees will have the ability to check in at each location with the touch of a button. Then, each sales rep uses this information to assemble their trips at the end of the day and easily submits them to their supervisor directly from an app. There is no need to waste paper or even open up a laptop.
Software will also automate and streamline reporting of mileage by taking the onus off of managers to verify trips. Instead, the right tracking system will calculate the most direct route, the route that should be taken, and report this mileage for reimbursement. Then, regardless of any non work-related detours taken, you’ll be confident that the sales team has been reimbursed fairly.
Save Time Documenting Travel
Documenting and submitting information to managers can take hours out of a work week just gathering information, organizing it and sharing the correct reports. It’s even more important for a mobile sales person to get this right since they are constantly working out in the field away from direct supervision. With a mobile sales person tracking system, you can streamline these processes and reduce the time spent down to as little as 2 minutes a day. This means they’ll have more time to spend doing what they’re paid to do while giving supervisors more visibility than ever.
Make Mileage Reimbursement Easy
For both employees and employers, mileage reimbursement needs to be an easy process. After all, for the sales process to be successful, no one can be distracted by other administrative needs. Moreover, if sales people are traveling in their own vehicles, they should be fairly reimbursed for it.
A sales person tracking system makes mileage reimbursement straightforward and eliminates the problems that come with a manual process such as mileage rounding, estimates or misrepresenting personal travel as work-related. Your mileage reimbursement process is as simple as submitting trips from an app, having them automatically move through the approval workflow and then have your accounting department issue payment once they receive the request. Reimbursement payments will be received faster, and your mobile sales people will be much more satisfied with their jobs with the knowledge that their needs are being taken care of.
Sales reps want tools that let them stay focused on selling. SureMileage by CompanyMileage makes mileage reporting faster and easier for employees and gives employers more visibility into how their sales people are managing their time in the field. Our powerful SureMobile app combines convenience with security to handle all of your travel and expense needs. Point-to-point calculations, custom approval workflows and integration with your account or payroll system make mileage tracking and reimbursement a breeze.
CompanyMileage saves companies more than $1,000 a year per mobile employee. To take advantage of these savings, schedule a demo with us today and implement a sales person tracking system that benefits everybody.