The time it takes to get a new hire out in the field making sales—known as the sales ramp up time—is the bane of any sales leader. Many sales managers believe that hiring great salespeople and putting them to work is the best way to accelerate their revenue. Unfortunately, the hiring period often takes longer than we’d like, and onboarding and training new sales staff can be even more time-consuming.
The delay before you can get a new salesperson out there generating revenue is inevitable, but there are ways to soften the blow. Discover how to improve your sales ramp up time by incorporating some proven techniques and adding a powerful new tool to your kit: AI-powered data analysis.
- What is sales ramp up time?
- How do you calculate sales ramp up time?
- How do you improve sales ramp up time?
- Learn more about AI-powered data analysis
What is sales ramp up time?
Sales ramp up time is traditionally defined as the period between a salesperson being hired and the date they are trained and fully productive. This period of time is different for every salesperson—those that are more junior or are new to the industry may take longer overall, while more experienced sellers can reach productivity in less time.
In general, companies have the most significant influence on their sellers’ ramp up time when they have more effective onboarding and training.
Typically, there are varying stages in the ramp up process. Some typical stages include:
- General company onboarding
- Product training
- Sales coaching
- Introduction to the sales cycle
How do you calculate sales ramp time?
There are a variety of methods that can be used to calculate sales ramp up time. These calculations depend on the industry, product or service being sold, and the overall sales cycle length. However, the most accurate calculation will always be customized to the individual organization and its needs.
Creating a more accurate sales ramp up time calculation for your business depends on whether or not you know your average sales cycle.
- Average sales cycle length + 90 days
By taking a look at your average sale cycle, many organizations extrapolate from there that it takes the average seller the length of one complete sales cycle plus 90 days as a buffer to get up to 100% productivity.
- Average time to meet 100% of quota
If you don’t have an average sales cycle, you can use this method to calculate sales ramp time. Simply look at the average time it takes your sellers to meet 100% of your sales quota. From there, you’ll have a good sense of how long it takes the majority of sales staff to reach full productivity.
How to improve your sales ramp up time?
Once you’ve determined your average ramp time, you can start to implement new policies and techniques that will help shorten this critical period.
Establish good communication from day one
If you aren’t able to communicate well with employees, it’s hard to know how they’re progressing in their training and determine what they need to succeed. Establishing good communications immediately encourages new hires to ask for help when they need it, setting the stage for great teamwork in the future.
Laying a solid foundation of communication during employee onboarding helps foster a positive corporate culture that values open dialogues between team members. Winning By Design has an excellent piece on improving sales ramp up time that explores how to convert a new hire into an effective team member from the get-go.
Set clear goals
When you aren’t clear about your goals for each new seller’s training process, how can you expect them to live up to your ideals? Setting clear goals and expectations helps your new hires focus and gives them a clear and measurable pathway to success.
Track your metrics
In addition to helping you calculate an accurate average ramp time, tracking metrics is the only way to determine if the changes you’ve implemented are actually working. Most sales managers suggest tracking key performance metrics like:
- Training cost
- Sales training methodology adoption
- Number of sellers reaching quota
- Rate of return
Use AI-powered data analysis
While human-powered data analysis does offer valuable insights into the efficacy of your employee training and onboarding, it cannot come close to matching the impact of AI-powered data analysis.
This is the biggest game changer when it comes to ways to improve your sales ramp up time. It has only become possible in the last few years thanks to advances in artificial intelligence technology.
AI-powered data analysis uses the information in your CMS to extrapolate patterns of behaviour among your team. This data analysis reveals the actions that propel top performers to their quota-smashing levels of success, guiding you towards ways of mapping that high performance across your team with revenue generating insights.
These insights will help you remove the guesswork from your training and onboarding process to better optimize performance and potential:
- Help your reps access and harness the organizations collective relationships, not just their own
- Recommend next best steps based on the activities that have historically led to successful outcomes, turning B players into A players.
- Help you identify activity and engaged levels are being met and maintained, and appropriate coverage across targets.
- Let reps hit the ground running and empower them to focus on deals, not data entry by automating CRM data entry
Learn more about accelerating sales ramp up time
Getting new hire training and onboarding right is essential because this introductory period often sets the tone for a seller’s career, either catapulting them to success if it’s productive or else slowing down their growth if they cannot be onboarded and trained effectively.
Fortunately, there are ways to shorten this ramp up time. Businesses looking to accelerate their growth and push forward their business goals should examine their current sales ramp up time and seek out ways to improve it.
Get in touch today to learn more about how Introhive’s AI-powered data analysis capabilities can be used to help your sales team accelerate their ramp time.