July 31, 2018
Updated: January 7, 2020

Test to Assess New Hire Sales Performance

When bringing on new sales hires, onboarding is vital for them to learn about your business and what is expected of them throughout their time with the organization. However, it is difficult to know the effectiveness of your onboarding materials and delivery without analyzing the sales performance of new reps along the way.

What to Test

What you test for will depend on the KPIs you have set for your business, team and individual reps; however, you’ll want to get good insights into both quantitative and qualitative performance metrics.

Knowledge of Materials

The most basic information you can gather through assessments is new sales hires’ general comprehension of the subjects covered throughout the onboarding process. Provide short and simple quizzes, tests and surveys in various question formats including true/false, multiple choice, fill in the blank and free response; in-depth test results and analytics will give you a window into any knowledge gaps between new reps as well as areas that need improvement across the entire group.

Leveraging the information provided by real-time reporting and analytics, you can create customized learning paths for each new rep that allows them to confidently use their strengths while developing the skills aren’t yet up to par.David Skok, Hubspot board member, says that with testing in place, “there is a very high chance that you’ll be able to identify bad hires early in their lifecycle, and remove them fast” before their errors have serious financial implications.

Ramp-Up Time

A key indicator of onboarding success is the average time it takes for a new rep to reach full productivity, also known as ramp-up time. This benchmark sets reps up to achieve a measurable objective, while holding management accountable. There are various ways to measure ramp-up, none of which are an exact science:

Length of sales cycle + 90 days

  • Pro: Simple concept and easy to calculate
  • Con: Depending on your onboarding process, 90 days may be an arbitrary number

Length of time to hit 100% sales goal

  • Pro: Simple concept and easy to calculate
  • Con: If a rep is taking over existing accounts, this number may not be realistic Alternatively, if the rep never hits 100%, technically they’ve never fully “ramped up”

Training Period + Length of Sales Cycle + Experience (Training period is the length of time spent onboarding; experience is a number you assign based on the sales background of individual reps)

  • Pro: Potential to be more accurate than other two methods
  • Con: Onboarding and training periods may not be concrete, and determining numbers to use for experience may take some experimenting

With successful onboarding, you should see a decreased ramp-up time. Hireology, a talent management platform, leveraged LearnCore software to create an onboarding program where new sales hires needed to complete and pass assessments before pitching clients. This method reduced ramp-up time and helped new sales hires achieve revenue goals 50% faster.

Long-Term Sales Activities & KPIs

You may think that once sales hires are ramped up and fully contributing to your business on their own, you don’t need to continue evaluating their performance. Falling into this line of thinking is a mistake. Even a salesperson that has been with your organization for several years has room for improvement and growth. With this in mind, continue creating and offering regular content and quizzes that challenge your sales team and encourage them to learn.

In addition, make sure you have systems in place that collect ongoing data on prospecting and lead generation, such as:

  • Average sales cycle
  • Average ROI
  • Total open/closed opportunities on a monthly and quarterly basis
  • Number of calls made
  • Number of meetings set
  • Average contract value
  • First-year quota attainment

Each of these KPIs gives insight into productivity and allows you to reach the objectives set and revenue targets faster while increasing your ROI. This will give you an understanding, backed by definite data, as to how each member of your team is contributing to the success of your business.

LearnCore’s sales enablement expertise delivers sales training and coaching materials through efficient and convenient software, available on both desktop and mobile. Our software also supports Salesforce and other data and API integrations so you can customize the system to include everything you need.

Check out our Complete 90-Day Sales Onboarding Plan to kickstart your onboarding program.