Marketers periodically latch onto a new buzzword and use it so inconsistently that the term loses meaning in the minds of the target audience. The latest example of this phenomenon is the term "RevOps," which is soaring to stratospheric levels of hype. Below we'll explain what RevOps is, how it is often misused, and what it could contribute to your business.
RevOps is DevOps Applied to the Revenue Engine
RevOps is a variation of the term "DevOps," which emerged from the software industry. DevOps has been instrumental in shortening the software development lifecycle by breaking down the barriers between software development (Dev) and IT operations (Ops). Before DevOps, software teams took months (or years) to execute a software release. They would institute a freeze on all code changes and then enter a period of testing and qualification culminating in a high-risk, "big-bang" release. With DevOps, software integration, testing and deployment are automated so they can execute continuously. The team behind Amazon Web Services performs millions of code releases per year using DevOps. The iterative release approach delivers value faster, at higher quality and responds more effectively to rapidly evolving market conditions.
The complexity of IT systems and point tools necessary to run a modern sales and revenue generation operation has increased significantly over the past decade. In many organizations, sales and marketing operations spends more time dealing with IT systems and software tools than supporting sales reps. If you are a sales executive, you are probably familiar with IT projects that deliver late, over budget or with far less functionality than was initially promised. Fortunately, the same benefits that DevOps brought to software engineering can be realized by the revenue operations team using RevOps.
Automating Revenue Operations Workflows
Consider the vast array of workflows and processes (backed by software) that comprise your company's revenue generation processes. Workflows include customer-facing roles like marketing, sales and support, and back-office functions like order management and finance (pricing, commissions). Beyond a CRM, each of these functions has its own staff with specific computer systems and tools. The people in these various roles work in silos. The communication between groups is inconsistent and ad hoc, and the software systems and other tools have no interface with one another. The lack of integration between these groups creates inefficiencies that waste Ops and managerial time. RevOps eliminates this manual work and breaks down the barriers between sales, marketing, the customer success team, finance, and IT operations.
For example, if the sales VP decides to move aerospace & defense accounts from one sales rep to another, does anyone inform marketing to update the lead assignment flow? Does finance re-compute quotas and adjust commission payments? Often the job of managing updates and fixing errors falls to the already overburdened sales operations team, who spend an excessive amount of unproductive time configuring systems, interfacing with other departments, filing IT tickets and project managing IT operations on behalf of sales and marketing.
In short, RevOps aligns Sales, Marketing and Customer Success functions by integrating all of their systems and tools into one streamlined, coherent system. RevOps is all about using automation to minimize the number of keystrokes (or meetings) required to get a job done and to maximize efficiency across the revenue engine. In our example above, sales operations in a RevOps-enabled enterprise would update the assignment of aerospace & defense accounts, and the RevOps Platform would then synchronize updates with the CRM, lead routing, support ticket system, and finance systems. The changes would be made seamlessly, immediately and robustly. A job that might have taken hours or days is done in minutes. RevOps automation simplifies workflows to make the revenue team more productive so they can focus on high value-add or customer-facing activities.
RevOps Marketing Hype
Because RevOps is a hot term it is not surprising that many software companies are using this concept in their marketing to generate interest in their products (aka ‘halo effect’ marketing). However, RevOps is not a single benefit or a specific technology. Any vendor that simplifies sales and revenue-related workflows using automation could claim they provide a RevOps benefit. For example, some companies may contend that RevOps is limited to a specific benefit such as "conversation intelligence," but that's a narrow view of RevOps. True RevOps methods apply to the totality of functions and processes related to revenue generation and benefits could accrue anywhere along the value chain.
Making RevOps a Reality with a RevOps Platform
A "RevOps Platform" is a software solution that unifies the major operational systems of the revenue engine. It is an enterprise-level solution that cuts across functional silos, not a point solution that addresses a narrow aspect of the revenue generation function.
A GTM Planning and Management platform (sometimes called Territory Management Software) operationalizes RevOps principles. It integrates all of the revenue engine’s planning and operational activities into one seamless workflow. It automates and connects these activities across revenue silos and continuously syncs any plan changes with execution. For example, it ensures that both your sales and customer success teams have optimized territory plans with a coordinated handoff of accounts between them. When a sales rep leaves in the middle of the quarter, it ensures that new assignments are quickly made, holdouts are defined, and leads are properly routed. A GTM Planning platform, like Fullcast, helps to bridge the gap between all these important functions, making the entire revenue generation process more efficient and sales teams more productive.
To get started with RevOps, read this ebook, Building a Stronger RevOps Foundation: Actionable Insights for True Go-to-Market Agility.