In the past two years, work from home and hybrid working options have become the new normal. When 53% of job searchers expect to have a hybrid arrangement, offering hybrid work is the best way to ensure you’re still pulling in top talent. A key part of adapting to this new standard is ensuring that hybrid sales onboarding is still just as effective as the traditional onboarding methods being used before. The question is when you can’t observe reps in the office, how can you ensure the training is working?
Moving to a hybrid working environment offers a perfect opportunity to reevaluate your training and onboarding processes, making sure you’re giving reps the best starting point to become high-performers. Read on to discover how to ensure your hybrid sales onboarding equips your reps with all the information and tools they need to sell effectively.
1. Create a Standardized Sales Playbook and Onboarding Process
A standardized sales playbook and onboarding process are important in a traditional work setting, but it’s especially important for hybrid sales onboarding. When new hires aren’t face-to-face every day, established processes provide an accessible reference for best practices, operational standards, and more, that new hires (and seasoned reps!) can access at home. With a sales playbook, reps can quickly and easily understand precisely what the sales process should look like from start to finish, making onboarding that much easier.
Sales playbooks are also important far beyond training — companies with well-defined sales processes are 33% more likely to have high-performing sales reps. This is because sales playbooks:
- Define your sales process and methodology from start to finish, standardizing not only what reps need to do but how to do it
- Detail how your sales process maps to your customers’ buying journey
- Pinpoint best practices for how reps should be interacting with prospects
- Accelerate sales effectiveness and accuracy
A well-defined sales process is crucial to ensuring reps understand best practices and are able to implement those behaviors even when working independently at home. Introducing this standard during training aligns reps from day one, setting workplace expectations instantly.
2. Asynchronous Video is Key to Hybrid Sales Onboarding
Over the past two years as working remotely has become the new normal, video conferencing platforms like Zoom and Google Meet have grown rapidly, offering a way for team members to conduct meetings from anywhere. While these platforms work beautifully for most meetings, they can be difficult when training. Often, it’s difficult to schedule training sessions around existing meeting schedules, varying time zones, and calls with prospects. Offering pre-recorded, asynchronous video during your hybrid sales onboarding process allows reps to watch videos as it fits into their schedule.
This way, reps are able to view training videos when they have time, avoiding any disruptions to current employees’ schedules. Building out a library of training videos creates a single source of truth for all employees that can be referenced at any time. Reps can view the training videos and can revisit them later on for a refresher on a certain topic. For example, say a new hire has recently completed the onboarding process and has begun speaking with prospects. Their prospect has reached the consideration stage of their buyer’s journey. While the rep has an idea of best practices and has mastered buyer interaction in the awareness stage, they are still able to access the training library to ensure that their tactics for how to best facilitate the right conversation in the consideration stage are keeping up with company standards.
3. Monitor the New Sales Reps Performance by Tracking Onboarding KPIs
Even with all the technology solutions available, some sales leaders are understandably still concerned about managing a hybrid workforce — especially when it comes to ensuring reps are onboarded smoothly and quickly. In traditional work environments, sales leaders can visually observe reps to know how well they’re adjusting. While you can’t sit in an employee’s home and watch them onboard, you can make sure they’re on track by setting goals and tracking a few KPIs.
1. Track Progress Based on Knowledge Gained from Shadowing Discovery Calls Within the First 60 Days
Throughout the training process, new reps should frequently sit in on virtual sales calls with top performers. This is a great way for reps to see best practices in action, helping them to relate training materials to real-life interactions. The more calls new hires are able to observe, the better.
Determine how many calls you ideally want reps to shadow throughout the onboarding process, and set a goal for them to meet. Perhaps new hires are expected to shadow a certain number of calls per week, or they have a certain number to meet before making calls themselves. Making call shadowing mandatory and encouraging new hires to shadow as many of their peers as possible allows you to see just how well they’re internalizing training. Have new hires detail precisely what they’ve learned while shadowing and how they’ll use those lessons going forward.
2. The Number of Meetings Booked
Getting new hires to quickly set up meetings is incredibly difficult — but it’s also completely vital to getting reps ramped up to sell at the level you need. Booking and running the first few meetings helps reps overcome any anxiety they have early on and can highlight areas where they may be struggling in the onboarding process. This hands-on experience is incredibly important to ensure that reps are truly understanding the training and are implementing best practices in their work.
Tracking new hires’ progress in meetings indicates how well they can find and connect with new prospects. Set a quota for how many meetings you’d like new hires to set up within the first 30 days, and slowly increase the pace to be on par with current reps. This way, you can ensure they’re slowly increasing to the pace they should be at by the end of hybrid sales onboarding.
3. The Number of Coaching Sessions Attended
Sales coaching is essential to boosting sales performance. Training materials and videos give reps the foundation they need, but personal interaction can help tailor the onboarding process to each rep. Sales coaching can improve your sales team’s performance by 19% month after month. A successful sales coach will notice where a new hire may be struggling and can help them discover solutions to improve their skills.
Whether through a third-party training program, one-on-one mentoring within your team, or otherwise, tracking the number of sales coaching sessions a new hire attends throughout the hybrid sales onboarding process is crucial. Set a goal for the number of coaching sessions new hires should participate in during the onboarding process to ensure that they’re getting the personalized, one-on-one attention they need.
As companies adjust to the new normal of hybrid and remote work, it’s key to ensure your hybrid sales onboarding process gets reps ready to sell just as effectively as an in-person onboarding process. Simple steps, like creating a library of educational videos and setting goals for new hires to meet, help create a hybrid training process that builds high-performing employees.
Want to learn more about creating a high-quality hybrid sales onboarding process? Download Building a Team of Top Performers: A C-Level Look at Sales Enablement and Training, and get a more in-depth look at training best practices.