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Here’s the scenario: You’re a sales leader building out a team of solid reps. Let’s say you just sped through the interview process and hired an Account Executive (AE) faster than you ever have before. Time to start celebrating, right? Not so fast. That AE may have accepted your offer, but they’re not ramped and ready to actually start earning for your company yet – and won’t be until they get through employee onboarding.
In sales, employee onboarding and ramping can be a surprisingly time-consuming process. There’s a lot more to it than your run-of-the-mill new hire orientation. In our newly released eBook, Faster Hiring Means More Sales, developed in conjunction with Skaled Consulting, we note that 44% of company leaders we surveyed said their ramp time was typically as high as 3 or 4 months.
That simply won’t do. KPIs for sales teams consist of numbers and dates that won’t change just because you don’t expect your new rep to be ready to earn until next quarter. In this preview of Faster Hiring Means More Sales, we’re talking about how to get them ramped in time for your team to hit your number.
Best practices for efficient employee onboarding
Here are some guidelines and resources to help you significantly reduce your employee onboarding timeline. The eBook contains more complete descriptions of each of these points.
Before they start – Use the time between offer acceptance and Day 1 to clear as much of your work as possible, facilitate the paperwork, and set internal expectations. That includes building a sales training program and personal training plan. What skills should the new rep learn, and when? What skills do they probably not need to learn?
Weeks 1 – 6 – Establish what’s expected of them, and give them resources to track their own progress during these first weeks.
Role-playing with purpose – We’re firm believers that the best way to learn is to do. The eBook has tips for how to make role-playing exercises tough but fair.
Goal setting and expectations – Map out sales KPIs for your new hire. And do it based on historical team data, to make sure you keep it realistic.
Mentorship – It can take an average of 8-12 months for new hires to get acclimated to their role. With a thorough ramping process and mentorship program, that time can be cut down by 34%.
Goals and KPIs for sales are what they are. The board isn’t going to soften its revenue demands to account for unexpected delays in the process of filling open headcount and ramping new hires. Accelerating the employee onboarding process is an essential part of the greater effort to minimize the time it takes to get reps on the phone and chasing quota.
Faster Hiring Means More Sales covers every step in this effort, from identifying top reps, to streamlining the interview process, to faster ramping. It even includes a downloadable tool for calculating the cost of open headcount at your company. Think of it as a guidebook for achieving the urgency that smart hiring demands.