COVID-19 is changing society and affecting businesses too. In trade magazines you can read that COVID-19 is accelerating the digitization of companies and that the IT industry can earn a lot of money as a result. But how exactly does it change IT sales and what do you have to consider?
In my eyes, something happens from the following point of view:
- Customer: We thought for a long time whether we would introduce software and chose the service provider for a long time. Then there were long proof of concept phases and a long planned execution.
- Customer: We quickly need a software solution, ideally fully managed, which we can use productively very quickly. There is no time to compare, we take the service provider who can deliver quickly.
Purchase decisions are made quickly
While companies used to negotiate long deals in sales and pre-sales and were in tendering processes for up to a year, business has now become very fast. Whoever can offer fast and automated deployments, i.e. can provide software quickly with a click, wins. It not only brought about a change in sales, but also internally my company had to fully automate product provisioning.
Automation and fast delivery
This type of fast delivery requires new pricing models. Away from time and material, there is an exact billing per user or megabyte or rapid up and down scaling, which can help in a crisis. The following applies to the customer: If I have few orders, I use my IT less and also pay less. It’s a bit like short-time working just for technology.
Trust is built remotely
While salespeople were always at the customer’s site some time ago and were often with them in restaurants or at events, all of the acquisition now takes place virtually and by phone. I think TeleSales in particular is currently experiencing an upswing. It is important to fully exploit the remote channels. This can also be covered quickly by service providers. Personal contact is difficult in times of a virus pandemic and even for me to this day weird: A deal without the famous handshake, but it has to be.
Selling in times of COVID-19 is not easier, but it offers new opportunities and these can be just as successful as before. It is important to recognize and rethink these new opportunities. This is certainly not easy for sales and internal project management, but it is possible. It is now necessary to set the necessary course and to establish the “new normal” in the company as well. There are tips on this in my current book: Virtual teams and home office !
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