Understanding the distinction: Sales Support vs Sales Enablement

Chloe TillmanResearch, insights & industry news

Understanding the Distinction: Sales Support vs. Sales Enablement

Understanding the distinction: Sales Support vs Sales Enablement

While both sales support and sales enablement play critical roles in supporting sales efforts, they differ in their scope, focus, and strategic approach.
The history of Financial Services has long been a cycle of growth, merger and acquisition. Within this, we have seen internal restructures and of course, the reallocation of roles, often new titles are formed. In the department of Business Development and Sales however, there are limited titles which are often restricted to company size. It has led the way to confusion around job function, and allowed titles to encompass a breadth of responsibilities. In the realm of sales strategy and operations, two terms often intermingle but hold distinct meanings and purposes: sales support and sales enablement. While both are critical components of a company's sales efforts, understanding the differences between the two is essential for crafting effective sales strategies and driving business success.

Sales Support:

Sales support encompasses the activities, resources, and tools provided to sales representatives to assist them in their day-to-day tasks of selling products or services. These resources are typically geared towards addressing immediate needs and challenges encountered by sales teams during the sales process. Sales support can take various forms, including:

  • Administrative Assistance
  • Client Service Technical Support
  • Sales Collateral
  • Diary Management
  • RFP & DDQ Assistance

In essence, sales support focuses on providing immediate assistance and resources to sales representatives to help them navigate the sales process and address customer needs efficiently.

Sales Enablement:

Sales enablement, on the other hand, takes a more strategic and holistic approach to supporting sales efforts by providing the tools, resources, and training necessary to empower sales teams to achieve their goals effectively. Unlike sales support, which tends to be reactive and focused on immediate needs, sales enablement is proactive and aims to equip sales reps with the knowledge, skills, and tools they need to succeed in the long term. Key components of sales enablement include:

  • Training and development
  • Content Management
  • Implementation of Technology and project work
  • Data analytics
  • Sales process optimization
  • Market Mapping and competitor screening.

In summary, while both sales support and sales enablement play critical roles in supporting sales efforts, they differ in their scope, focus, and strategic approach. Naturally, as companies start and grow, there will often be a role that spans across these terms. It is important to remember this and be clear about your recruitment strategy when reviewing candidates. Often you’ll find you need to invest in an experienced individual who has a breadth of experience in order to implement skills gap you need. Sales support provides immediate assistance and resources to address short-term needs, while sales enablement takes a more proactive and holistic approach to empower sales teams with the tools, training, and resources they need to succeed in the long term. By understanding the distinction between the two and leveraging both effectively, organizations can optimize their sales efforts and drive sustainable business growth.

About Fram Search

Established in 2010 by Simon Roderick, a recruiter with 20 years City recruitment experience, Fram Search is a specialist financial services recruitment consultancy. We focus on permanent and interim recruitment in the UK & internationally.

Our Sales & Marketing Practice provides high quality contingent and retained recruitment services to boutiques and global brands. We have long established relationships, outstanding market knowledge, and access to deep talent pools. Fram takes a highly consultative approach, combining outstanding tech with a human approach. We are proud that our contingent fill rate is nearly three the industry average and we augment our retained search methodology with rigorous psychometric testing.

We take ESG seriously, we are champions of diversity and all staff have undertaken unconscious bias training, we also carbon offset.

Please contact us on 01525 864 372 / [email protected] to learn more.

Share this Post