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Sales Analyst Job Description

Aastha Dogra
Want to become a sales analyst? If yes, the following article which brings forth the job description, education and skills required to get into this field as well as the salary that a sales analyst can expect to make, will be immensely useful to you.
A sales analyst is a professional, who collects data related to sales, analyzes it, and finally reports it to the management, in order to increase the sales of a company. While collecting and analyzing sales related information, a sales analyst takes into consideration the prevailing economic conditions.
A sales analyst predicts the market trends, on the basis of which, an organization plans its sales strategies. Developing quotas for the sales team, evaluating performance on the basis of this quota, forecasting sales, these are amongst the many duties that a sales analyst performs.

Duties of a Sales Analyst

A sales analyst assists the management in the preparation of sales forecasts as well as sales budget.
A sales analyst is involved in analyzing various business operations, which affect the productivity and sales of the business, so that if some changes are to be made, which enhance the overall sales, they can be incorporated into the way the operations are managed in the business.
This professional analyzes the performance of the sales team, compares it to the set goals, identifies the reasons why the performance was not up to the desired standards and then suggests solutions to enhance the same.
A sales analyst may suggest promotions, termination or change of personnel handling a particular job, in the sales department, if he feels that they are responsible for the under performance.
As sales is in a lot of ways dependent on the promotion techniques that a business uses, a sales analyst ensures that the promotional activities undertaken by a business are actually contributing towards enhancing its sales. 
A sales analyst might suggest the most appropriate promotional activities for a given business too. He not only assists the management, but may actually sit with the sales managers to analyze proposals and come up with response plans and the bidding schedule, in accordance with the client requirements.
A sales analyst studies the CRM (Customer relationship management) as well as ERP (Enterprise resource planning) tool, along with the administrators and business analysts, to discuss sales structures in the system. 
Some of the other duties which are an important part of the job description are - generating reports for sales, marketing, business planning and product management as well as making recommendations to the sales people, managers as well as the management, so that they can make informed business decisions, which affect the sales of the business.

Qualifications and Skills

The foremost requirement of a sales analyst is that he should know how to read, understand and interpret technical information. He should be well versed in computer usage and should ideally know how to use a forecasting software. He should also be an expert in SQL, Excel, VBA, FoxPro and MapInfo.
As a sales analyst prepares so many important reports, interprets and compares data, he should be very analytical. He should have the necessary skills to perform analysis like forecasting, regression, and cannibalization.
A sales business analyst should possess good communication skills, both written as well as oral. He should have the necessary expertise to study the market conditions. He should be creative enough to come up with innovative sales techniques and sales promotion methods.
A sales analyst should preferably be a degree holder in either business management, computer science or accounting, from a recognized institution.
The salary of a sales analyst can vary anywhere between $34,000 to $99,000, depending upon the number of years experience he has in the industry as well as the city/organization he is employed in.
A sales analyst can find employment in any organization which sells products or provides services, in short, there is a requirement and position for a sales analyst in most of the large organizations, in all kinds of industry. This makes it a lucrative career with bright employment prospects, for all the vying professionals.