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The Value of Operational Reporting for Sales and Marketing Teams

Learn what operational reporting is and how you can utilize it to maximize your sales and marketing success.

Owning a business means seeking a high return on investment, or ROI. However, this is not always easy to accomplish without the right business intelligence tools in place.

If you want to ensure that your business's day-to-day activities run smoothly so you can achieve a steady revenue stream, you need to utilize operational reporting. Understanding the value of having an operational reporting strategy in place is imperative for most businesses today, regardless of size and industry.

The use of real-time operational reporting is extremely beneficial when it comes to generating sales and capturing leads to ensure that an entire operation is running smoothly at all times. Operational reporting is used to streamline production, improve efficiency, and ultimately generate more sales/revenue while increasing ROI.

In this article, we'll go over what operational reporting is, operational reports examples, and more. Continue reading to learn more about operational reporting and how it can be used to improve your business processes.

Operational reporting is the process of creating reports that contain timely and detailed information on the day-to-day activities of a business.

What is operational reporting?

Operational reporting involves generating reports on day-to-day operations within a company. This can range from production efficiency and development to the overall workflow of particular areas in the workplace itself. Whether you are using a real-time operational report or a monthly operational reporting data solution, most reports include graphics and other visuals that are updated in real-time for the most accurate results.

Operational reports can be generated live, daily, weekly, monthly, or at specific intervals, depending on the type of reporting you are seeking.

While a financial operations report may be extremely in-depth, an internal operational report may be vague and requested more infrequently. Reports can be generated in a basic or advanced format, depending on the needs of your business and the tools utilized in order to gather the data collected.

Operational reports typically include engaging visuals, interactive presentations, GIFs, and video media. The use of an operational data report is advisable for day-to-day operations as well as for those who are interested in seeing more of the "bigger picture" of their business over time.

Examples of operational reporting

Operational reporting can be used for identifying trends, lead generation, employee retention, or even warehouse management. With daily visuals, graphics, charts, and other KPI data points being generated regularly, operational reports are extremely valuable.

Understanding the operational reporting meaning is much easier when you can see it applied in real-life scenarios, such as:


The use of an operational reporting strategy in the retail business is extremely beneficial. Leaders in retail understand how important operational reporting is for identifying and pinpointing useful trends in particular markets and niches.

Some of the most notable benefits of using operational reporting tools and solutions in retail include:

  • Optimizing productivity and efficiency: With operational reporting, you can monitor incoming sales and outgoing expenses while simultaneously managing efficiency and productivity in the workplace.
  • Improve sales: Operational reporting helps you monitor all areas of your retail business to determine which areas require additional focus for boosted growth opportunities.
  • Focus on customer satisfaction: You can spend more time focusing on what matters most with operational reporting, such as the overall satisfaction of your customers with the right operational report strategy in place.

Tracking daily metrics such as sales, returns, and overall profit margins can also be done in real time with the right operational report tool in place. Using tables and charts that have been fully integrated into your accessible dashboard makes it easier than ever to manage reports and incoming data as it arrives.


Warehousing is another industry that is extremely dependent on various programs and business intelligence tools, including generating everything from financial operations reports to traditional operations reports on a day-to-day basis.

Facilities such as warehouses require operational reporting for the processing of orders (including with eCommerce storefronts) as well as distribution and order fulfillment as a whole.

The use of operational reports for warehouse facilities can be extremely beneficial in identifying potential hidden costs, raised fees on products, and the most efficient areas of any niche or warehouse market.

Running reports on supplies, inventory on hand, and previous shipments to customers is all possible with the right data available.


Manufacturing is one of the biggest industries that utilizes operational reporting for production efficiency and overall management purposes. It is extremely critical for manufacturing businesses, plants, and corporations to integrate day-to-day operational reporting.

Ultimately, the goal of integrating operational reports into the manufacturing industry is to ensure employee efficiency while mitigating machine downtimes and lowering the overall costs of operation.

Data collected includes everything that is being produced on the production line, employee productivity, as well as resource usage and total costs. Operating reporting can help you mitigate potential issues in the supply chain, handle inventory, and manage equipment, which can improve the overall efficiency of the business.

Why is operational reporting important?

The data reporting provided by operational reports can help ensure a company's overall productivity and employee efficiency. With live visuals and dashboards that are updated in real-time, company leaders are able to demonstrate the following:

  • The ability to create both short and long-term business initiatives that align with current goals and objectives in place.
  • Identifying multiple ways to save both money and time, ultimately resulting in a higher profit margin.
  • The ability to make informed decisions on an ongoing basis with real-time operational reports being generated regularly and/or on demand.
  • Expand and enhance the internal structure of a company based on employee productivity rates, workplace tools, and machinery, as well as current systems in place.

When should you use operational reporting?

When it comes to choosing the right type of CRM software for your own operational reports, it's important to consider when it's best for your own company to use operational reporting for both internal and external purposes.

Before you can begin generating successful reports in real-time, take the following into consideration:

  • How can I identify what I want the operational reports that are generated to tell me?
  • What goals (internally and externally) does the business have based on its current business model and/or plan in place?
  • What data points are important to me and which KPIs am I interested in following in real-time as well as over time?
  • Is the business focused on customer satisfaction, employee production, inventory, shipping, service coverage, or all of the above?
Types of operational reporting: real-time operational reports; monthly operational reports

Types of operational reports

Whenever you are generating operational reports for any business or organization, big or small, it's important to keep in mind that there are different types of reports.

Reports may vary from including costs of production, deliverables, deficits, revenue, and even employee efficiency on an individual level. The most common types of operational reports that are likely to be used in a business setting include:

  • Existing data reports: These reports rely on information that is readily available in the workplace -- from manufacturing equipment warranty details to the current state of production. Labor, tools, and parts can also be included in existing data reports, so long as the data is available and accessible as needed.
  • Existing operations: In addition to utilizing data from existing tools and machines, it is also possible to generate operational reports based on existing operations as well as both short and long-term operations plans. From managing equipment schedules to handling employee attendance, these are all valuable data points to keep in mind when generating an operational report.
  • Historical trends: Keeping an eye on historical trends and work can also help with predictive analytics. Using predictive analytics can help you to forecast potential repairs, hiring needs, and even staffing interventions based on historical trends you have already recorded or monitored in the past.
  • Forecasting: Along the same lines of historical trends being used to predict future needs within a company, forecasting is also extremely useful. Forecasting, or the use of predictive analysis, is extremely important to help with calculating future requirements, repairs, and even employees that a business will require in any timeframe.

Real-time operational reports

Using a lead-scoring system can help you to determine if you need real-time operational reports or monthly operational reports generated for your business. Real-time operational reports can be extremely important for companies that are focused on shipping products, handling inventory, or scaling rapidly.

The use of real-time operational reports is optimal for those seeking live data analytics with visuals, graphs, charts, and even video media. Monitoring trends in real time can help with making decisions rapidly while remaining as adaptive and responsive as possible.

Monthly operational reports

For those who are considered top-level executives and/or stakeholders, generating monthly operational reports from the top down is highly advisable.

While monthly reports do not include live reporting available with real-time reports, they are extremely valuable for big-picture oversights and data collection purposes. The use of monthly operational reports can help those who are invested in a company or business to reevaluate and realign their goals as needed.

Benefits of operational reporting

Benefits of operational reporting for sales and marketing teams

Investing in operational reporting for sales and marketing teams can help to streamline the overall operations of any business or brand. The right operational reports can also help with ensuring you are on the right track with messaging, platforms, and the direction of any marketing campaign you have already deployed.

There are several benefits of using operational reports for sales and marketing efforts, such as:

Helps in decision making

Using an operational reporting strategy helps in decision-making as it provides accurate and predictable data sets that are most important for your company's strategy. When using operational reporting, both live and over time, make decisions in the following areas of any organization:

  • Sales and marketing: Consider how you will put your sales and marketing team to work based on current actions deployed and responses.
  • Customer relationships and customer acquisition: How do others view your business and what is the cost to acquire a new customer?
  • Customer service: What level of customer service are you providing to your existing and prospective customers?
  • Finances and accounting: Determine the best course to manage and plan with our existing and/or projected budget(s).

Improves visibility into sales performance

If you are looking to improve sales performance and increase your overall conversion rate optimization, you can do so with monthly operational reporting data as well as data in real time. Tracking data in real-time and with "big picture" reports can provide significant insights into the wants and needs of your existing and target customers.

Identifies areas of improvement

The use of operational reports also helps leaders and managers alike to identify potential areas of improvement. Whether you need to expedite shipping, streamline operations, or even let go of unproductive employees, the use of operational reporting in real-time and over time with monthly reports is extremely beneficial for numerous reasons.

Provides insight into customer behavior

An operational report is extremely valuable as it provides insight into customer behavior as well as their wants when it comes to your company's products and services.

You can learn more about how your customers use your website and business while simultaneously gauging what type of products or services your target audience needs most from you. You can use operational reports to determine if customers are satisfied with the level of customer service they've received.

Improves efficiency across departments

Lowering your customer acquisition cost requires more than an understanding of the products and services they require. In order to lower your customer acquisition cost while simultaneously streamlining operations, operational reporting must be considered a viable tool.

The use of operational reporting is extremely beneficial as it provides access to data otherwise unavailable, helping to drastically improve efficiency across all departments, not just one at a time.

KPIs for sales and marketing operational reporting

KPIs, or key performance indicators, are extremely important assets that are used to determine the course of any business over time. Using operational reports with KPIs provides valuable insights into key areas and facets of a business, saving time and ultimately, money.

Some KPIs that you should focus on for sales and marketing include:

  • Sales revenue: Manage sales revenue with generated operational reports to determine which areas of business are thriving and which require more attention. Monitor sales revenue based on individual SKUs, categories, or entire brands, depending on the setup of your business. Keep track of sales based on specific promotions, marketing coupon codes, and discounts that have been presented both locally as well as online. Depending on the business model you have in place, tracking sales revenue has never been easier than with operational reporting available at hand.
  • Lead generation: If lead generation is important to you, operational reports can help you to determine where most of your leads are coming from and can come from based on your target demographics. Discover which platforms are best to use to communicate with your audience and employees to ensure engagement and motivation at all times.
  • Conversion rates: If one of your priorities is to increase conversion rates, you can do so with operational reporting in real-time and with monthly Big Picture data reports. Using data regarding warehousing, product placement, inventory, communications, customer service, and other KPIs that are most important to your business can come in handy when increasing and improving overall conversion rates.
  • Customer acquisition cost (CAC): Reducing the overall customer acquisition cost, or CAC, for any business is not typically an overnight task. In fact, it often requires tracking of users and prospective customers over a set period of time. Rather than just tracking customers in real time while they are browsing your website, the use of an operational report extends well beyond one day. Tracking customers after they browse your website, make a purchase, or return in the future to shop again can all be done with long-term operational reporting systems in place.
  • Return on investment (ROI): Increase the ROI of your website with operational reporting that is available in both real-time and over time. Monthly operational reporting data is extremely valuable for those who are interested in boosting their ROI, especially if they are stakeholders or shareholders who are not as involved in the day-to-day operations of the company or organization.

Maximize your sales and marketing success with operational reporting

The use of operational reporting as your preferred data collection method is extremely beneficial for customer satisfaction and when connecting with business users across the board.

If your goal is to maximize sales and marketing success, doing so with real-time data is key. With the right business intelligence tools in place for operational reporting, take advantage of the opportunity to address present and immediate necessities with rapid decision-making abilities at hand.

To get started with an operational reporting strategy of your own, consider turning to Mailchimp for all of your marketing and sales needs today. Mailchimp has all the resources and tools you need to optimize your marketing and sales strategy so you can bring your business to a new level.

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