Forecasting allows us the ability to make informed, data-driven decisions. Financial and operational decisions are made based on current market conditions and predictions of how the future look. In forecasting, past data is aggregated and analyzed to find patterns used to predict future trends and changes. Forecasting allows your company to be proactive instead of reactive.
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The forecast in Zoho CRM provides real-time insight into tracking sales and helps your organization. Fine-tune the process and monitor the sales pipeline. It provides an overall picture of the company sales pipeline as well as the individual performance of the sales team. Before we get into every aspect of sales, let’s understand how forecasting helps in a real business scenario.
Our story is based on a medium-sized insurance company that sells various insurance types like life insurance, car, medical, etc.
For most insurance companies, sales achievements are based on a specific goal that salespeople achieve. For example, a car insurance sector has many car insurances, or a salesperson needs to close in a week or month. Forecast not only helps with justice, but it’s also an achievement tracking platform. It helps analyze achievements within this period and if there are any gaps involved.
The New Revamp
The medical insurance sector likes to do things a little differently. Sales achievements are based on the total value of medical insurance or what salespeople sell. You have one team that wants to set targets based on one field and another based on different criteria fields.
The new revamp brings multiple forecasts that allow the team to set forecasts based on criteria that work best for them. One major advantage to forecasting is that all this insight doesn’t just stop with sales, prediction, and targets. It helps predict the marketing and sales budget and estimate the capital that goes into developing our services. For manufacturing and product-based companies, it helps with inventory investment into the production, etc.
Using forecasting, you can set a target for the quarter or the month. Growth can be tracked, and you can forecast optimal deals at the right time.
You must define the start and end of your organization’s financial year before you create forecasts. You will need to create forecasts based on role hierarchy or territory hierarchy. In role hierarchy, you can create a forecast based on the role hierarchy in your organization’s CRM account.
Let’s take a quick recap on territory management in Zoho CRM. Territory management helps de-market and structure your sales process by grouping records based on product region, etc. You can create forecasts and set targets for territories and their users based on territory hierarchy only if territory management is enabled in your organization’s CRM account.
What Are the Three Requests to Get Started with Forecasting and Zoho CRM?
The details, you will need to create a sales forecast for the very first time. The forecast required that you see fit for your organization’s use case can either be monthly or quarterly. Define the financial year specific to your local, which field values based on which forecast target are set.
You can create one forecast for every quarter or a month. For any quarterly or monthly forecast, you can set targets for the following based on roles, territories, and users in the role or territory managers.
How to Plan Your Forecast?
Before creating a forecast, you have to define the purpose of the forecast. What do you want to estimate, whether it is based on region-wise revenue generation or units sold, increase or decrease in overall sales or team-wise sales growth or dip or performance of exclusive deals or commodities?
Based on the following decisions, you can choose whether you want to estimate an amount or quantity; you can forecast the space on revenue or number fields within your module.
For example, a deal amount expected revenue number of subscription units sold, etc. The data you want to forecast must be either in currency or number fields.
A forecast can be made based on the targets achieved by your team. In Zoho CRM, depending on your business model, you can either have a role reporting or territory-based hierarchy. You can set targets for one of the following hierarchies at a given time.
If your organization follows a certain role hierarchy, the target can be set among users in various roles and sub-roles. Forecast managers can create forecasts and set targets for themselves. If your organization follows a reporting hierarchy, the target can be distributed among individuals and their reporting managers. CRM administrators and users in the highest position in the hierarchy can create forecasts and set targets for all users in the entire organizational hierarchy.
If your organization has a different product line or region-based selling and thus abides territorial hierarchy, each territory, subcategory, and user within will be allotted certain target. Territory managers can create forecasts and set targets for their peers and users in sub-territories; they can also set targets for their territory and sub-territories.
How to Configure Forecast Settings?
Log into your CRM with administrator privileges and go to the forecast model. On the forecast home page, you have to click configure forecast. If you have already created a forecasted configuration, you can click on the more options and make changes. Click on edit forecast,
In the create forecast configuration page, you can choose the hierarchy, which you will also set based on rules. You can either choose based on roles or territory. Now, select deal revenue and choose the currency field from the drop-down. Select deal quantity and choose a number finger in the drop-down. If you want to have either of them, you can select both.
Select the number of purchases. Now you can select the months and the year your organization’s fiscal year begins. If you choose a month other than January, select the starting or ending year to indicate the quarterly forecast. Now the forecast configuration is all set.
Let’s See Who Can Create A Forecast and Set Targets.
CRM admins can set the forecast configuration while other users can perform different actions depending on their position in the hierarchy.
In role hierarchy, CRM admins and users in the highest roll can create forecasts and set targets for the entire organizational hierarchy. Forecast managers can create forecasts and set targets for themselves, their peers, and users. Under-reporting hierarchy, CRM administrators and users in the highest position in the hierarchy, can create forecasts and set targets for all users, which is the entire organizational hierarchy.
Under the territory hierarchy, data managers can create forecasts and set targets for their peers and users in sub-territories. They can also set targets for their territory and sub-territories.