Landed your dream sales role at your dream company? Congratulations!
If you thought you left behind all obstacles with your previous job, you're definitely in for a ride. As exciting as new jobs are, it can be equally overwhelming to nail your first few weeks with a great impression, too.
After all, it's a whole new bunch of sales managers, sales leaders, and new sales reps to match up to and show them that you're more than just your great CV!
No pressure, right?
Sometimes, amidst the excitement of a new job, it is easy to lose yourself in the chaos. A rocky start to a new sales job can cost you big.
20% of employee turnover actually happens in the first 45 days and the cost of each of those resignation letters ranges from one-half to twice the employee's annual salary.
The losses are immense but not unexpected, given that merely 12% of employees believe that their organizations effectively onboard new hires. The lesson to be learned here is that a robust employee onboarding program, along with a well-crafted onboarding template, can be incredibly valuable. This holds true for user onboarding as well.
Although there isn't a magic potion for new hires to drastically improve their productivity and be a superstar overnight, you can set up an effective onboarding process to ensure consistent growth of your company and your sales team.
What is Sales Onboarding?
In essence, sales onboarding refers to a systematic process set up by an organization and its sales leaders to assist new sales hires in welcoming, training, and engaging them in the company.
Sales onboarding is the process of integrating and training new sales employees into a company or organization.
It is a critical component of the overall sales strategy, as it enables new hires to learn about the company culture, sales processes, product or service offerings, and expectations for their role.
A poor onboarding process can lead to a high employee retention rate and disengaged employees. The average turnover costs approximately around $115,000 per sales rep.
Effective sales onboarding is essential to ensure that new sales employees are equipped with the knowledge and skills required to be successful in their roles, and to accelerate their productivity and performance.
Some of the synonyms of sales onboarding are -
- Sales Orientation: A process of introducing new sales employees to the company's sales culture, processes, and expectations to enable them to integrate and start their job effectively.
- Sales Induction: A formal process of welcoming new sales employees, familiarizing them with the company's sales policies, procedures, and products or services, and setting their expectations for their role in the company.
- Sales Training and Integration: A systematic process of training new sales employees on sales techniques, strategies, and skills, and integrating them into the sales team to become productive and successful in their roles.
- Sales Immersion: An intensive training program designed to provide new sales employees with a comprehensive understanding of the company's sales culture, products, and services, and develop the skills and knowledge necessary to succeed in their roles.
- Sales Acclimation: The process of adjusting to the company's sales environment, expectations, and culture to enable new sales employees to feel comfortable and confident in their new role.
- Sales Ramp-Up: The process of accelerating new sales employees' learning and productivity to ensure they become fully functional and productive members of the sales team as quickly as possible.
- Sales Integration: The process of incorporating new sales employees into the sales team, culture, and processes to ensure they feel connected and valued and can work collaboratively with other members of the team.
- Sales Assimilation: The process of learning the company's sales culture, processes, and values to become an integral part of the sales team and contribute to its overall success.
- Sales Adaptation: The process of adjusting to the company's sales environment and expectations to ensure new sales employees can adapt to changes and new challenges in their roles.
- Sales Familiarization: The process of introducing new sales employees to the company's sales policies, procedures, products, and services to ensure they have a basic understanding of the company's sales operations.
The Benefits of an Effective Sales Onboarding Process
Sales onboarding plays a critical role in the success of new sales hires.
Effective sales onboarding can have numerous benefits for organizations, ranging from improving new hire retention to accelerating the productivity of new sales employees.
In this section, we will discuss the benefits of sales onboarding in more detail, starting with its impact on new hire retention -
1. Improved New Hire Retention
New hire retention is a critical metric for any organization, and effective sales onboarding with customized sales coaching can help improve it.
When new sales employees feel welcomed, supported, and equipped with the necessary knowledge and skills to succeed in their roles, they are more likely to feel engaged and committed to the organization.
One of the key ways to improve new hire retention is to provide a comprehensive sales onboarding program that is tailored to the needs and expectations of new sales employees.
This includes providing them with clear expectations of their role, providing them with opportunities to learn about the company culture and values, and helping them understand the impact they will have on the company's success.
Additionally, it is essential to provide new sales employees with a clear understanding of the support systems available to them, such as mentorship programs, ongoing training opportunities, and access to tools and resources.
This will enable them to feel connected to the organization and their colleagues and reduce the likelihood of them leaving the company in the early stages of their employment.
2. Ensures that New Hires Receive a Consistent Onboarding Plan
Using a sales onboarding template provides a consistent and standardized onboarding experience that is critical for the success of a sales onboarding program. It ensures that all new sales employees receive the same training and are equipped with the same skills and knowledge required for their role.
Standardization also helps to ensure compliance with company policies, procedures, and regulations and improves time management for both new hires and onboarding trainers.
Consistency in Onboarding
Using a sales onboarding template ensures that all new sales employees receive the same training and are equipped with the same knowledge and skills required for their role. This consistency helps to eliminate variations in the onboarding process that may arise due to differences in the experience, expertise, or teaching style of the onboarding trainers.
A consistent onboarding experience also helps to ensure that all new sales employees are given equal opportunities to succeed. This is especially important in sales, where the training and development of new hires can significantly impact their success and the success of the sales team.
Using a sales onboarding template also ensures that the onboarding process is standardized across the organization. This means that all new sales employees, regardless of location or department, receive the same training and are equipped with the same skills and knowledge.
Standardization is critical for ensuring that the onboarding process is efficient and effective. It also ensures that all new hires are onboarded in compliance with company policies, procedures, and regulations.
This is especially important in industries such as healthcare or finance, where compliance is critical and non-compliance can result in significant consequences.
Improved Time Management
Using a sales onboarding template can also save time for both the new sales employees and the onboarding trainers. With a standardized and consistent onboarding process, the trainers can efficiently deliver the necessary training without the need for extensive customization or adjustments to the onboarding process.
New sales employees can also benefit from improved time management, as they can receive the necessary training without delays or interruptions.
This helps them to start contributing to the sales team's success more quickly, as they can focus on learning the necessary skills and knowledge instead of navigating an unfamiliar onboarding process.
3. Speeds Up the Onboarding Process
Using a sales onboarding template can speed up the onboarding process by providing a clear roadmap, reducing variability in the onboarding process, and improving retention and productivity.
Companies that use a sales onboarding template can achieve greater efficiency, effectiveness, and consistency in their onboarding processes, giving them a competitive advantage in the marketplace.
Provides a Clear Roadmap
A sales onboarding template provides a clear roadmap for the onboarding process, outlining the key steps and milestones required for new sales employees to become fully onboarded. By providing a clear path for onboarding, the template can help new hires to understand what is expected of them and what they need to do to succeed in their new role.
The template can also help onboarding trainers stay on track and ensure that all necessary training is completed within a specific timeframe.
This helps to prevent delays or missed training opportunities, ensuring that new sales employees are fully onboarded as quickly and efficiently as possible.
Reduces Variability in Onboarding
Using a sales onboarding template can also reduce variability in the onboarding process.
By providing a standardized set of training materials, the template ensures that all new sales employees receive the same training and are equipped with the same skills and knowledge.
Reducing variability in the onboarding process can help to speed up the process by eliminating the need for customization or adjustments to the onboarding process for each new hire. This helps to save time and increase the efficiency of the onboarding process.
Improves Retention and Productivity
By speeding up the onboarding process, a sales onboarding template can also help to improve retention and productivity.
New sales employees who are onboarded quickly and efficiently are more likely to feel confident in their roles and less likely to become overwhelmed or frustrated. This can lead to higher retention rates and increased productivity, as new hires are able to start contributing to the sales team's success more quickly.
By using a sales onboarding template, companies can help new sales employees to become productive members of the team as soon as possible, maximizing their potential and the success of the sales team.
4. Improves Employee Retention Rates
Employee retention is a critical concern for companies, particularly in competitive industries where it can be challenging to attract and retain top talent.
Creates a positive onboarding experience
Using a sales onboarding template can help create a positive onboarding experience for new sales employees. A well-designed onboarding template can help new hires feel welcome and valued, providing them with the necessary tools and resources to succeed in their new role.
A positive onboarding experience can have a significant impact on retention rates, as new employees who feel valued and supported are more likely to remain with the company long-term.
On the other hand, employees who have a negative onboarding experience may become disengaged or disillusioned, leading to higher turnover rates.
Provides a structured learning experience
A sales onboarding template can also provide a structured learning experience for new sales employees. The template can outline the specific training modules, materials, and activities that new hires need to complete to become fully onboarded.
A structured learning experience can help new employees feel more confident in their roles, as they have a clear understanding of what is expected of them and what they need to do to succeed.
This can lead to higher retention rates, as employees who feel confident and competent in their roles are more likely to remain with the company long-term.
Helps new hires feel supported
Finally, using a sales onboarding template can help new hires feel supported during the onboarding process. The template can provide a clear roadmap for onboarding, outlining the specific steps that new hires need to take to become fully integrated into the sales team.
Additionally, the template should include references to resources and support systems that new hires can use to address any questions or concerns they may have during the onboarding process.
By providing this support, companies can help new employees feel valued and supported, which can have a significant impact on retention rates.
Key Components of a Sales Onboarding Template
Here are the key components of a sales onboarding template -
1. Pre-Onboarding Planning
Pre-Onboarding Planning is an important component of a sales onboarding template. It helps ensure that the onboarding process is well-organized and effective.
The following are the key components of pre-onboarding planning -
- Determine the desired outcomes of the onboarding process: This involves setting clear goals and objectives for the onboarding process. What skills and knowledge should new hires possess by the end of the onboarding process? What specific outcomes do you want to achieve?
- Identify the necessary resources: This involves identifying the resources needed for the onboarding process, such as training materials, equipment, and personnel. Who will be responsible for providing training and support? What resources will be required to ensure the success of the onboarding process?
- Plan the logistics of the onboarding process: This involves planning the logistics of the onboarding process, such as scheduling, location, and agenda. When will the onboarding process take place? How long will it last? What topics will be covered during the onboarding process?
By taking the time to plan the onboarding process thoroughly, you can help ensure that it is effective and achieves the desired outcomes. Additionally, it can help new hires feel more comfortable and confident during the onboarding process, which can lead to greater retention and success in their new role.
2. Orientation and Introduction
Having a solid orientation and introduction program as part of the sales onboarding process for new sales team members is crucial to help new hires get to know the company, the team, and the product or service they will be selling.
Here are the key components of the orientation and introduction section -
- Introduction to the company: This involves providing new hires with an overview of the company's history, mission, vision, and values. It is important to help new hires understand the purpose of the company and what makes it unique.
- Introduction to the team: This involves introducing new hires to their sales team members and other key stakeholders they will be working with. It is important to help new hires feel welcome and comfortable with their new colleagues.
- Introduction to the product or service: This involves providing new hires with a comprehensive overview of the product or service they will be selling. It is important to help new hires understand the features and benefits of the product or service, as well as any unique selling points.
By including these three key components in the orientation and introduction section of the sales onboarding template, you can help new hires feel more comfortable and confident in their new role. This can lead to greater engagement and success in their sales position, ultimately benefiting both the new hire and the company as a whole.
3. Sales Training
Sales training is critical in helping new hires understand the sales process and acquire the necessary skills to be successful in their role.
Here are the key components of the sales training section -
- Sales methodology: This involves providing new hires with an overview of the company's sales process and methodology. It is important to help new hires understand the key stages of the sales process and the best practices for each stage.
- Product or service training: This involves providing new hires with in-depth knowledge of the product or service they will be selling. It is important to help new hires understand the features, benefits, and unique selling points of the product or service, as well as any technical information they may need to know.
- Sales tools and technology training: This involves providing new hires with training on any sales tools and technology they will be using, such as customer relationship management (CRM) software, sales enablement tools, sales intelligence tools, and communication platforms. It is important to ensure that new hires understand how to use these tools effectively to support their sales activities.
By including these three key components in the sales training section of the sales onboarding template, you can help new hires develop the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in their role.
This can lead to more effective and efficient sales processes, higher close rates, and ultimately, increased revenue for the company.
4. Role-Specific Training
Role-specific training focuses on providing new hires with the knowledge and skills they need to excel in their specific sales role.
Here are the key components of the role-specific training section -
- Overview of the sales role: This involves providing new hires with a clear understanding of their specific sales role, including their responsibilities, performance expectations, and key metrics they will be evaluated on.
- Explanation of the sales process: This involves providing new hires with an in-depth understanding of the company's sales process and how it applies to their specific role. It is important to help new hires understand how their role fits into the larger sales process and how they can contribute to the overall success of the sales team.
- Customer persona and industry-specific training: This involves providing new hires with training on the specific customer personas they will be selling to, as well as any industry-specific knowledge they may need to be successful in their role. It is important to help new hires understand the unique challenges and opportunities of the industry and the customers they will be working with.
By including these three key components in the role-specific training section of the sales onboarding template, you can help new hires develop the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in their specific sales role.
This can lead to more effective and efficient sales processes, higher close rates, and ultimately, increased revenue for the company.
5. Ongoing Coaching and Support
The fifth key component of a sales onboarding template is ongoing coaching and support, which is essential to ensure the success of the newly hired sales reps.
Here's a breakdown of what it entails -
1. Regular check-ins with managers: It's crucial to establish a regular check-in schedule between sales reps and their managers. These check-ins allow managers to monitor the progress of the new hires and identify any challenges they may be facing.
Additionally, managers can provide constructive feedback and offer guidance to ensure sales reps are meeting their targets.
2. Additional training and development opportunities: Even after completing the initial onboarding process, ongoing training and development opportunities should be made available to new hires. This includes opportunities to attend conferences, webinars, and workshops that provide valuable industry insights and best practices.
These opportunities allow sales reps to continue learning and growing, which in turn boosts their confidence and performance.
3. Continuous feedback and performance management: Providing regular feedback and performance management is essential for the success of the sales team. This includes setting clear performance expectations and goals and providing feedback on their progress toward achieving those goals.
This ongoing feedback and support help sales reps stay on track and maintain high levels of performance. It also helps managers identify any areas where additional coaching or training may be needed.
By including ongoing coaching and support in your sales onboarding template, you can ensure that your new hires are set up for success and have the resources they need to thrive in their new roles.
How to Create a Winning Sales Onboarding Template (+Checklist)
Here's a simple method on how to create a winning sales onboarding template to help new sales reps to get on speed -
1. Identify the Key Components of your Sales Onboarding Process
When creating a sales onboarding template, it is important to start by identifying the key components of your sales onboarding process. This will ensure that your template covers all the necessary aspects of the onboarding process and is tailored to the specific needs of your organization.
Here are some pointers for identifying the key components -
- Map out the onboarding process: Start by mapping out the entire onboarding process, from pre-onboarding planning to ongoing coaching and support. This will help you get a holistic view of the process and identify all the necessary components.
- Review existing processes: Review any existing onboarding processes and materials to see what has worked well in the past and what could be improved. This will give you a good starting point for developing your template.
- Consider role-specific needs: Take into account the specific needs of different sales roles within your organization. For example, a sales representative might need more product-specific training, while a sales manager might require more coaching and leadership training.
- Consult with stakeholders: Consult with key stakeholders such as sales managers, HR professionals, and existing sales team members to get input and feedback on what they believe should be included in the onboarding process.
- Keep it simple and flexible: Ensure that your template is easy to follow and can be adapted to different sales roles and learning styles. Don't overload the template with too much information or make it too rigid, as this can hinder the effectiveness of the onboarding process.
2. Develop a Plan for Each Component
Once you have identified the key components of your sales onboarding process, it's time to develop a plan for each component. This plan will serve as the foundation for your sales onboarding template, ensuring that every new hire receives consistent and comprehensive training.
#1. Pre-Onboarding Planning
- Determine the desired outcomes of the onboarding process
- Identify the necessary resources
- Plan the logistics of the onboarding process
#2. Orientation and Introduction
- Introduction to the company
- Introduction to the team
- Introduction to the product or service
#3. Sales Training
- Sales methodology
- Product or service training
- Sales tools and technology training
#4. Role-Specific Training
- Overview of the sales role
- Explanation of the sales process
- Customer persona and industry-specific training
#5. Ongoing Coaching and Support
- Regular check-ins with managers
- Additional training and development opportunities
- Continuous feedback and performance management
For each of these components, create a detailed plan that outlines the specific training materials and activities that will be provided to new hires.
Be sure to include any necessary resources, such as videos, presentations, or training manuals, and consider the best way to deliver this content, such as in-person training or e-learning modules.
It's important to have a clear timeline for each component, including when it will be delivered and how long it will take. This will help ensure that the onboarding process stays on track and that new hires are not overwhelmed with too much information at once.
By developing a plan for each component, you can create a comprehensive sales onboarding template that provides consistent and effective training for all new hires.
3. Choose the Right Format for your Onboarding Template
Choosing the right format for your sales onboarding template is crucial to ensure that the information is organized, easy to understand, and accessible to everyone involved in the onboarding process. Here are some tips to help you choose the right format:
- Consider your audience: Before choosing a format, consider who will be using the template. Will it be used by new hires, managers, or both? Make sure the format is easy to understand and use for your intended audience.
- Use a customizable template: Consider using a customizable template that can be adapted to your organization's specific needs. This will save you time and effort in creating the template from scratch.
- Use visuals: Incorporate visuals, such as graphics or charts, to help make the information easier to understand and more engaging for the reader.
- Consider online platforms: Online platforms, such as learning management systems (LMS), can provide a convenient and accessible format for your sales onboarding template. It can also allow for easy tracking of progress and completion.
- Keep it simple: Avoid making the template too complicated or overwhelming. Keep the information concise and easy to follow, and use headings and subheadings to break up the content.
By considering these tips, you can choose the right format for your sales onboarding template, making it a valuable tool for your organization's onboarding process.
4. Test your Template with a Pilot Group
To ensure that your sales onboarding template is effective, it is important to test it with a pilot group before rolling it out to your entire sales team. This will help you identify any areas for improvement and make necessary adjustments.
Here are some tips for testing your sales onboarding template with a pilot group -
- Choose a small group of new hires: Select a small group of new hires who are representative of your typical sales team.
- Provide feedback surveys: Develop feedback surveys to gather input from the pilot group. Ask questions about the clarity and effectiveness of the training, the ease of use of the template, and any areas that need improvement.
- Review the results: After the pilot group has completed the training, review the feedback surveys to identify areas that need improvement. Look for patterns in the feedback to determine what changes are necessary.
- Make necessary adjustments: Use the feedback from the pilot group to make adjustments to the template. Revise the training materials, adjust the format of the template, or make other changes as needed.
- Roll out the revised template: Once you have made the necessary adjustments, roll out the revised template to the entire sales team. Be sure to communicate the changes to the team and provide training on the revised template as needed.
By testing your sales onboarding template with a pilot group, you can ensure that it is effective and meets the needs of your sales team. Regularly reviewing and updating the template based on feedback will help ensure that it remains relevant and effective over time.
5. Implement and Refine your Onboarding Template
To implement and refine your sales onboarding template, follow these steps -
- Implement the template: Once you have tested your template, it's time to implement it company-wide. Make sure all new hires receive the template and that it is integrated into your onboarding process.
- Monitor results: Monitor the results of your new onboarding process to ensure it is effective in achieving the desired outcomes. Track metrics such as employee retention rates, time-to-productivity, and sales performance to determine the success of your template.
- Gather feedback: Gather feedback from new hires, managers, and other stakeholders to identify areas for improvement. Use this feedback to refine and update your template as needed.
- Regularly review and update: Regularly review and update your sales onboarding template to ensure it stays current and relevant. As your company and sales processes evolve, your onboarding template should too.
By following these steps, you can ensure that your sales onboarding template remains effective and relevant, helping to improve employee retention, productivity, and sales performance.
Quick Onboarding Checklist -
- Determine the desired outcomes of the onboarding process.
- Identify the necessary resources.
- Plan the logistics of the onboarding process.
- Develop a plan for each component, including pre-onboarding planning, orientation and introduction, sales training, role-specific training, and ongoing coaching and support.
- Choose the right format for your template.
- Test your template with a pilot group.
- Implement and refine your template based on feedback.
By following these steps, you can create a comprehensive sales onboarding template that will help your new hires get up to speed quickly and effectively.
In conclusion, sales onboarding is a critical process for any organization that wants to achieve sustained success in its sales efforts.
With the right approach and tools, companies can create an effective onboarding program that sets new sales reps up for success and leads to increased productivity, improved retention rates, and ultimately, better bottom-line results.
By following the steps outlined in this guide and using the ready-to-use checklist, organizations can develop a comprehensive sales onboarding template that covers all the key components of a successful onboarding program.
And with the help of technology like Salesken, companies can streamline their onboarding process, ensure consistency across the team, and maximize the ROI of their sales training investments. Book a demo with Salesken today and see how our AI-powered sales coaching platform can help take your sales team to the next level!