Salesforce.com Inc. wants to help salespeople and their managers take the guesswork out of revenue forecasts.
This week the customer relationship management (CRM) giant announced three new features for its artificial intelligence (AI)-powered Sales Cloud Einstein platform: Einstein Forecasting, which produces AI-generated revenue forecasts based on a company’s sales data; Einstein Opportunity scoring, which identies a company’s most valuable deals; and Einstein Email Insights, which identifies a user’s most important emails and provides a suggested response.
According to Salesforce, the new features bring AI to every step of the sales cycle, “from building pipeline and closing deals, to growing the business.”
“With the new Einstein Forecasting, sales leaders gain visibility and intelligence to more accurately predict sales revenue at every stage in the sales cycle,” the company said in a Sept. 19 press release. “In addition, Einstein Opportunity Scoring automatically prioritizes high-value opportunities and Einstein Email Insights automatically identifies the most important emails, enabling sales reps to sell faster and smarter.”
All three features are currently in beta and expected to be added to Sales Cloud Einstein’s general release in the first half of 2018.
Einstein Forecasting is a fully automated solution that data mines a company’s historical CRM data and uses machine learning to analyze, process, and generate revenue forecasts based on factors such as seasonal sales and historical performance. According to Salesforce, the feature also uses “a unique mix” of self-learning algorithms to learn individual and team forecasting behaviours and analyze whether they are consistently optimistic, pessimistic, or on target, in order to synthesize a more unbiased analysis.
It also automatically translates the data behind each forecast into human language, so that sales leaders know not only what to expect, but why.
“With Einstein Forecasting, a regional manager for an insurance company, for example, can quickly view a dashboard to see if his team is on track to hit its sales numbers for the quarter or if any deals are in jeopardy,” the company says. “Additionally, if the CFO of the insurance company is looking to expand the business to a new region but unsure if the company can take on the development cost, she can quickly tap into Einstein Forecasting to predict whether the company will have enough funding that month or quarter to take on the new region.”
Einstein Opportunity Scoring identifies the most valuable deals for Sales Cloud users based on factors such as deal size and executive engagement, and has also been programmed to monitor deals in progress to identify any high-value deals that might be in jeopardy, allowing sales representatives to focus on the deals most likely to close, or add resources to deals that might be at risk.
Einstein Email Insights, meanwhile, provides sales representatives with an automated, personalized email assistant that uses natural language processing to identify a user’s most important emails and recommend a response, allowing sales representatives and their managers to address customer needs more quickly than they would otherwise.
If a sales rep is returning from a full day of customer meetings to an inbox full of emails, they no longer have to dig through their inbox to find the most important emails.
Salesforce did not reveal prices for the new features, but said pricing information would accompany their alpha release.