Artificial intelligence (AI) is giving sales managers and their teams the trusted data to significantly improve performance. Eclipsing last-generation sales automation, one example is the latest tool from Indian startup Datoin that delivers more than sales targets or even insights. This AI-based intelligence layer tracks and analyzes real-time sales performance trends – upward or downward – making teams and their managers accountable to act on the next best strategy.

Co-founded by CEO Monis Khan, Datoin’s AI-based sales intelligence tool automates sales planning, execution, and measurement. Khan understands the unique challenges sales managers face with employee churn, not to mention team frustrations with time-wasting technology.

“We provide a layer of consumable sales intelligence that gives both management and field reps data-driven information to help increase performance and revenues,” said Khan. “Instead of spending time updating systems, salespeople receive informed recommendations they can use to boost their personal productivity and meet sales objectives.”

Datoin has targeted the solution towards consumer packaged goods (CPG) manufacturers with direct-to-retail sales teams. One large paint manufacturer increased sales from 7% to 26% after its team began using Datoin’s automation tool. Salespeople using Datoin at another CPG manufacturer increased deal revenues by 19%. Generally speaking, sales teams average a 40% increase in visits.

Prepared Salespeople Sell More

At the start of every month, Datoin’s tool automatically generates a recommended sales plan, dynamically scheduling prospect and customer visits by location and frequency. Analyzing a series of parameters such as updated sales history against benchmarks, visit complaints, and collections data, the tool provides salespeople with the most relevant conversation points to move forward.

“Salespeople receive what’s essentially a script of what to talk about with their customers,” said Khan. “It might include which products to spotlight if uptake hasn’t panned out as expected or what customers need more frequent visits. Reps can edit the monthly plan, making adjustments as needed.”

Trusted, Trackable Data Increases Sales Team Accountability

As the month goes by, the intelligent tool constantly correlates performance-related data, sending alerts to the sales executive based on their individual KPIs against actual business outcomes. This data is also invaluable to managers who receive alerts on their version of the reporting dashboard.

“If a salesperson falls short of targeted customer visits, isn’t moving enough of certain products, or is falling short of meeting their goals in any way, their manager can quickly see what’s going on in the context of the health of the business,” said Khan. “With reliable data, managers can more effectively coach, train, and motivate each salesperson on steps to improve performance. Managers also have the data to back up their confidence in achieving sales targets.”

Democratization of AI

Khan and his co-founders have been at the forefront of the AI and machine learning market for over a decade. After earning an advanced degree in these technologies, Khan worked at multinational companies before co-founding an AI consultancy. He launched Datoin to fill a gap between traditional sales execution products and what salespeople in the field and their managers really needed.

“We met so many customers whose sales executives weren’t getting the support from operationally-based CRM technology that basically collected data for management,” said Khan. “Similar to other industries, we thought AI could help increase productivity across CPG sales teams, providing a tool that makes them more effective.”

Connected ERP Data Yields Actionable Sales Insights

Datoin’s evolution was backed by support from SAP Labs India, where Khan and his team worked with SAP Startup Studio, an accelerator for early- and growth-stage tech startups. Not surprisingly, connecting data from Datoin’s intelligence layer with SAP ERP and the SAP Customer Experience portfolio made perfect sense. Datoin’s intelligent sales assistant, built on top of SAP Business Technology Platform, integrates with SAP Customer Experience and SAP S/4HANA.

“SAP systems manage critical customer data, and we’re augmenting those solutions with intelligence to drive sales performance improvements,” said Khan. “We evolved our product based on input from SAP product and sales experts, along with SAP customers.”

From manufacturing to delivery, salespeople represent the last mile in meeting every organization’s customer promise. If intelligent data from AI can help sales teams continuously improve performance, that’s a bottom-line result with benefits for everyone.

“Newly hired sales reps can ramp up faster because the AI tool provides them with an immediate monthly plan,” said Khan. “Drawing from the data over time, sales managers can provide positive reinforcement for each individual. Managers are not just telling them to reach certain goals, but also sharing informed advice on how they can improve their sales performance.”

This blog also appeared on SAP BrandVoice on Forbes.