Business plans allow Channel Managers and Partners to document joint objectives or commitments to achieve their common goals. Business plans are all about setting objectives, logging activities, leads or opportunities against these objectives and measuring the business plan performance afterwards.
Business plans are a key method to organize the collaboration between an sales organization and their 3rd party partners.
Defining a Business Plan
First and for all, we need the business plan itself, as a container of whatever follows needs to be created. A business plan is created for a partner organization, and once all plan details have been collected, the plan can be submitted for approval. The Channel Manager and the Partner both need to agree on the plan before it can be activated.
Once a business plan has been defined a team can be added, and from then on the real work can start:
- Activities can be created against the business plan
- Notes can be logged against the plan
- A SWOT analysis can be executed.
Then one or more objectives for the business plan can be added.
Using Business Plans
Once a plan has been activated, marketing development fund requests can be logged against a plan, to further specify the scope of such requests.
But the most valuable feature is off course a reporting dashboard that tracks the plan’s performance, where the attainment can be compared against the targets. You can change the values for target or attainment manually by double clicking on the values and entering the values. Reports aggregating opportunity information can also be used to check attainment against targets.
And all of this is just the beginning; this is just the out-of-the-box functionality. We now can extend this functionality using App Composer to add whatever you need to support your partner business. I can easily imagine that you would want a business plan field on the partner opportunity page, so opportunities can be linked to business plans or objectives. This would allow for some creative reporting too !