SalesTechStar Interview with Jean-Marc Chanoine, Global VP of Sales & Account Management at Templafy
Jean-Marc Chanoine, Global VP of Sales & Account Management at Templafy comments on the importance of using the right automation and processes to drive business and sales output:
Welcome to this SalesTechStar chat Jean-Marc, tell is about yourself and your journey through the tech market; we’d love to hear more about Templafy too…
I haven’t had the most traditional path to SaaS sales, but I credit those experiences as a huge contributor to my success at Templafy. I’m a lawyer by trade, started as a Navy JAG defense attorney and was the General Counsel for the Naval Nuclear Power Training Command. Eventually, I transitioned into consulting at Accenture where I was leading procurement organizations through digital transformations and organizational redesigns. I started at Templafy in 2019 as a Strategic Account Executive and have since moved my way up in the organization to Global VP of Sales & Account Management.
Templafy is the next gen complete document generation platform – essentially, we’re striving to remove any & all manual document work for knowledge workers. Which is something that rarely makes the job description but is absolutely critical to getting work done. In sales for example – there’s no deal without a proposal, relevant product descriptions, ROI models and more. We take care of that document creation work so sellers can focus more on building rock solid business cases and the interpersonal components of the deal – the work they do best.
We’d love for you to highlight more about your observations surrounding automation and sales: how are leading sales teams improving the end to end sales cycle today with better automated processes at scale and what can sales teams looking to catch up with this do to move forward faster?
Automation is nonnegotiable for sales teams today. There’s too much at stake to stick to the status quo of allowing manual and repetitive tasks to take up time in a seller’s day. It’s all about creating revenue, and as much of it as possible.
The sales teams that are improving their cycles with automation are doing so by focusing on eliminating those manual, repetitive tasks and more specifically documents. Think about the components of a sales process that are given no matter what: proposal writing, product descriptions, ROI models, and baseline email templates. They’re all documents that are necessary to get the deal done but can take a lot of time. Ultimately, sellers are spending an exorbitant amount of time on these documents instead of doing the interpersonal pieces of sales, like business development, talking to customers and prospects and more.
Simply put automate as much as possible to enable your sellers to do more of what you hired them to do – source and close deals.
What are some of the core automation trends in sales that you feel will take center stage over the next few years?
The first trend that I think will continue to grow is the use of AI in business development. We’re already seeing such incredible work from generative AI technologies, it’s only a matter of time until it becomes the status quo for organizations to use it in their initial sourcing conversations. Especially those smaller organizations who can’t afford an expensive XDR function. I expect to see them turn toward AI tools very quickly.
Additionally, I expect the idea of more practical automation to explode. The most obvious, risk-free use case for automation in enterprise organizations today is around eliminating repetitive and manual tasks and there isn’t a better example of this than document automation. I expect proposals and content to be created using software tools linked directly to core data sources like Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics, and in home built systems – that way they can be produced quickly and accurately without using up the seller’s time.
Both practical automation and AI will allow for the majority of sellers’ time to be spent on human interaction and building value, which we all know is the true core of sales.
Seeing how AI is driving a different kind of change in the B2B tech and even sales space: how do you see it becoming more crucial to the overall sales process and tech stack?
AI will allow for fast cost reductions at organizations and will increase the quality of work expected from sellers. First, it will reduce cost because it will be able to streamline the basic XDR outreach function – especially as voice AI progresses – I can see a world where prospects don’t realize they’re interacting with AI and are only being passed on to a human seller after several interactions. And beyond that, AI will be another tool available to sellers to better understand and validate specific and complex use cases across a variety of industries. While the information should always be fact-checked, many generative AI tools can simply act as more powerful search engines.
Even further, I think AI will get rid of the lower-value tasks that are still taking up a lot of time in sellers’ days. It will force the industry to up level, and those that can navigate people and decision makers – the more intangible parts of sales – will be the ones that can succeed. But they’ll also be able to do their jobs better because they’ll be able to source and close more deals instead of splitting their days between that and creating the documents along the way.
Take us through some of the most influential salestech and martech that you feel marketing and sales should be paying more attention to, today?
Well first, I think the most important piece of tech a sales team can have today is something to automate their document creation process – which Templafy is known for. Beyond that, I think Highspot and Frontify are doing great work in their respective areas. Both of these platforms provide teams tools to stay aligned and move forward in one motion – which couldn’t be more important in an environment where you’re fighting for every dollar in every deal.
Can you highlight more about the future of the B2B tech market and in what ways you expect to see it grow?
Investors are going to expect B2B tech companies to show a path to profitability much earlier than before. The B2B tech market is just going to become more competitive in the coming years. We’re at a point where businesses are looking at investments extremely critically so there’s less money to go around and more competition in organizations vying to capture it. Knowing this I think that having a strong, focused sales team is more important than ever and to accomplish that teams need to lean on technology to replace the work that doesn’t ultimately lead to revenue creation.
Templafy is a next gen document generation platform that automates all business document creation across organizations to activate and protect brands, drive governance and enable better document creation at any complexity and scale.
Jean-Marc Chanoine is Global VP of Sales & Account Management at Templafy
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