What Sales Coverage Policies Does RevOps Need?
As RevOps leaders in large organizations, you know that accurately managing shifts in headcount is no small feat. The needs of your organization and team will continually change, making it essential to stay ahead of these shifts with policies that provide clarity and direction for everyone involved. To make sure your organization stays in control amidst continuous changes to the go-to-market plan, here are three must-have automated coverage policies every RevOps leader should have as part of their operational playbook.
1. Effective Dating
One of the biggest negative impacts on profitability is over-crediting. This is typically due to the inability to accurately keep track of who was involved and in what capacity throughout the lifecycle of the deal. Particularly in organizations with long sales cycles, it is rare to have simple deals where there is only one rep who carried the deal from start to finish and reported to the same manager for the entire time. This happens not only in sales, but also in customer success.
In times where organizations are tightly managing capacity to optimize for efficiency, it’s essential to ensure you have tracking in place so that you realize the cost savings and don’t overpay on commissions. Here are three reasons why effective dating of changes is necessary for keeping rep productivity high during times of transition.
Accurate recording of dates
When a role is changed in Salesforce, there is no built-in way to record the history of role change dates. You simply know that a rep currently owns an account. By implementing effective dating, you create a log or record of the dates of when a rep was in a specific role. When planning for coverage changes, you can input future dates when you have upcoming coverage changes. This, then, makes it very simple to accurately calculate commissions, preventing overpayment.
Without effective dating, tracking role changes and commission payouts can become a time-consuming and manual process, especially as an organization scales. In some organizations, this looks like managers emailing Ops to state the date that a role changed or an opportunity was transferred. When it comes time to calculate credits, someone in Ops must go through all of those dates and try to reconcile them with the commission model to determine how much the rep gets paid. This is obviously very tedious and error prone. Automating this process streamlines it, saving time and increasing productivity.
Improved accountability and visibility
With automated effective dating, managers are held accountable for accurately entering role changes into the system, preventing confusion and errors. With this approach to effective dating, you gain visibility into when reps are starting and ending in a role. That record then becomes the single source of truth and can be made visible to reps and managers so that they can trust the payouts that they receive.
When accounts are transitioning, reps often get anxious about what will happen to opportunities in progress. Creating a policy that allows them to select opportunities that they can continue to work makes them less resistant to change. It also assuages fears that re-orgs or account changes are going to damage their ability to make a living. Holdouts are one the most tedious policies for an Ops team to manage, often it involves multiple spreadsheets and calendar reminders. When you have hundreds of reps and exponentially more opportunities, with different policies in different segments, this is a huge burden. Here are four reasons why you need to automate your holdout policies.
No more confusion around ownership transfer
By automating holdout policies, there will be no confusion around who owns the opportunity and when to hand it over. This ensures that the right rep is working on the right account at the right time.
More time for sales reps to sell
Automating holdouts assures reps that the time they have invested in certain opportunities won’t go to waste. This way they can focus on selling instead of managing ownership disputes.
Eliminate errors in ownership transfer
Account/opportunity ownership transfers often involve multiple people. For example: a manager submits a request, RevOps approves the request, then on the day of the transfer a CRM admin manually makes the change. Manual management of holdout policies can easily lead to errors. For something as critical as who is responsible for an opportunity, you can’t afford mistakes. With automation, you can eliminate human error and ensure that the process moves smoothly.
Faster time to close
When ownership changes happen, it can cause delays in the sales process. With automated holdout policies, sales reps can smoothly transition to the new account owner without any delays, allowing new reps to keep up momentum, and ultimately close deals faster.
3. Temporary Coverage
When a decision is made to cut or add roles, rarely is there time to immediately either fill the roles or determine who will take over. This is why temporary coverage is essential. Both to be hired (TBH) and to be replaced (TBR) policies are important to manage coverage changes. Here are four reasons you need to automate your temporary coverage policies:
Layoffs and Turnover
The reality is employees come and go. With To Be Replaced (TBR) policies in place, when a rep exits the company, their territory will be temporarily assigned to another rep, reducing workload disruptions and safeguarding revenue potential.
Seamless Territory Handoffs
When new hires or replacements are ready to take over a territory, they can immediately assume all account ownership. Compare this to weeks of manually re-assigning accounts in order to create a territory for a new rep. This smooth transfer ensures minimal downtime and maximizes productivity for your sales team
RevOps can utilize TBH and TBR assignments to accurately track capacity, making data-driven decisions to proactively manage team workload and ensure optimal performance.
As your company grows, it's crucial to carve out new territories for your sales reps. With To Be Hired (TBH) policies, you can assign these territories to other reps temporarily until a new hire is fully ramped up. This ensures smooth transitions and continuous revenue streams in growing markets. Particularly in times where your expansion plans may be changing, over-carving can give flexibility to accommodate fluctuation in your hiring plan. It’s better to assign a rep one permanent and one temporary territory than to assign a full territory and then take half of it away later.
Headcount is typically the biggest cost in a company. That said, people are also the primary resource a company has - especially in revenue-generating teams. In order to realize the intended benefits of strategy changes, RevOps needs to remain agile in manaing account and territory ownership.
But more than simply having a policy written down and living on a Wiki somewhere (which no one can find, let alone read) these policies need to be automated. For automation to be effective, it must be implemented in a flexible manner. This ensures that you will be able to continuously update and tweak without requiring additional IT or systems admin resources.
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