By Toby Carrington
Senior Vice President – Head of Global Sales Operations
At Siemens Healthineers, we enable healthcare providers to increase value by expanding precision medicine, transforming care delivery, improving patient experience, and digitalizing healthcare.
Healthcare providers around the world have long relied upon our engineering excellence – leading-edge, high-quality medical technology across a broad portfolio.
Data is at the heart of what we do. We now consolidate the unprecedented volume of data and insights derived from our installed base of over 600,000 running systems worldwide and turn them into leading-edge enterprise and digital health services. This uniquely positions us to move the business of healthcare forward by helping our customers realize new opportunities.
Our direct sales people and channel partners service our customers all around the world. To ensure that they are performing at their peak, it is essential that we focus on the right investments in terms of our people, processes and technology – particularly with regard to the analytics and insights we can give them about our customers’ world. Sales, and sales enablement is undergoing a transformation at unprecedented speed. The digital transformation has been well underway for years with significant computing power in our pocket, however the next frontier in terms of truly advanced analytics, predictive insights and real sales intelligence driven by machine learning is also here.
The sales force of the future will be intelligent, efficient and connected. The combination of artificial intelligence together with higher levels of human insight and decision making will make a fundamental difference to how our sellers interact with our customers and the level of insights we are able to offer. Combining customer data, internal data and other external data together with creativity, deep customer connection and relevance of the partnership between our organization and that of our customers will generate the maximum mutual value.
Automating or making the sales force more efficient has been a well understood concept since the first CRM systems we introduced decades ago. Cloud computing and CRM systems being open for many different third party providers to connect into however changes the nature of the game – a CRM system is now a core “back-end” system that serves a critical function but is no longer the source of sales force automation itself. In fact applications that remove the need for sales people to engage heavily with the CRM system are now driving significant efficiency in the sales force. How organizations determine the appropriate technology stack that best suits their business requirements and is nimble enough to adapt will be a critical success factor. Virtual assistants, chatbots or such support applications are moving quickly from a vision to a mainstream reality driving enormous efficiency for those organizations with a fast enough ability to embrace them.
Sales people feeling connected to each other, our organization and of course important stakeholders could well be the thing which makes a difference in building a peak performing sales organization. In a digital world where things can become transactional or even anonymous, the value of interpersonal relationships, being able to disseminate important information from a lot of noise and building a sense of community and belonging is something that must be taken seriously. Sales staff are constantly travelling or working remotely, as now are the sales operations, marketing, finance or other teams that support them. Embracing digital tools that can help to cut through the quagmire of hundreds of emails and enable true collaboration, information sharing, recognition and the ability to remain connected on important topics even when physically separate is an investment worth making.
Hiring the ideal sales person is an impossible dream at the current pace of change of most industries. Therefore being able to invest in the ongoing skills development of the sales force as well as ensuring that the departments which support the sales team have the right capabilities is mission critical. Delivering excellent results for our most important customers is the result of a total team approach, and a team that is following simplified processes with the right tools and systems to enable it has the best chance of success. How effective we are at enabling our customers to achieve their outcomes and becoming more relevant to the key decision makers will ultimately be the judge of the success of our entire team. And a team wins or loses together.
A native Australian, Toby has lived and worked on a variety of assignments in the U.S.A., Singapore and Germany. Prior to moving to the United States in 2015, Toby was Chief Financial Officer of Siemens Healthineers in the Pacific Region, covering Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific islands.
Toby was previously a director on the board of Animal Aid Victoria, a not for profit charity for companion animal welfare as well as a board member of different Siemens operating companies in Asia and Australia. He is an accomplished speaker who has headlined at many medical technologies, leadership and sales operations/sales enablement conferences and events.