The key points to consider if you’re thinking of switching to a RevOps strategy
What is Sales Operations? It’s a tried and tested approach that’s reassuringly familiar to most managers and execs. With Sales Operations, you support the sales team with a range of separate functions and activities. These might include incentives and territory planning, lead management, process optimisation, customer support, technology and marketing.
In a Sales Ops model, everyone focuses on their own specialist activity and works towards their own team and individual goals and targets. Revenue Operations, or RevOps, is different because everyone shares the same goals. They work together, without functional boundaries, to achieve customer-oriented goals and deliver an excellent customer experience.
Let’s look at some key differences in RevOps vs Sales Ops
- Customer experience – RevOps organisations achieve competitive advantage because their customers experience smooth and seamless engagement and communications. Marketing, sales, customer success, finance and operations are working together at every touchpoint. With Sales Ops, these functions are disconnected. Barriers between departments mean communication and ownership of customer issues can be contentious – that lets customers down, so they take their business elsewhere.
- Accountability – RevOps gives everyone in the team equal accountability for revenue and customer growth, no matter what their function or specialism. Sales Ops organisations assign different objectives to different functions. Sometimes, this creates conflicting priorities and allows small issues to escalate, because no-one is looking at the overall context of customer needs.
- Power – the power of RevOps vs Sales Ops lies in collaboration and inclusivity. The sum of the parts is greater than their separate potential. Some people say that Sales Ops is powerful because it gives teams and people a single-minded focus. That’s true, but it also creates internal conflict and rivalries that can create an inward-looking culture, with customer experiences secondary.
- Visibility – in Sales Ops, each function or department tracks and measures its own performance metrics. They may be achieving their own goals, but it’s not clear how that’s contributing to overall business success and customer experience. With RevOps, unified data and reporting shows missed opportunities and anomalies in performance. Everyone works together to grow sales and fix pipeline problems, because they can see how they’re contributing to the overall revenue goal.
Data forms the foundation for a successful RevOps strategy
Because RevOps is founded on shared revenue goals and metrics, it’s crucial to have a solid data platform before you start adopting the approach. That means designing and implementing a strategy for data usage and sharing around the organisation.
The data strategy sets out how you’ll make sure your data is high quality, complete and up to date, without duplication. Inaccessible departmental spreadsheets and databases are out – instead, you’ll design a central data platform with analysis tools and dashboards that provide a single, secure and reliable version of the truth for the whole business. With strong data governance in place, you can be confident that you’re working with accurate metrics and actionable analytics to underpin your RevOps approach, as well as complying with GDPR and other regulatory standards.
Delivering RevOps: tips for building an effective RevOps strategy
When you transform from a traditional Sales Operations culture to a RevOps approach, you’ll need to be systematic in addressing every area of your organisation’s operations, to harmonise them behind revenue goals.
- Devise a RevOps strategy that aligns with your revenue objectives
- Evaluate and redesign your sales, marketing and customer value activities to build a single end-to-end revenue creation process
- Create a multi-disciplinary workflow that supports the process
- Agree metrics, measurements and reporting
- Support your RevOps model with technology solutions and architecture to connect data and streamline processes
A successful RevOps strategy will have a large people-focused element. Do you have the collective will to apply the change throughout your business? Every functional leader will need to understand and embrace the new RevOps approach. It will require people to change their habits and work differently – it’s a culture shift as well as a change in processes and systems. Organisations that can achieve this are most likely to unlock the full advantages of RevOps for higher performance.
If you’d like to explore the value of Revenue Operations vs Sales Operations in more depth, download our full whitepaper Geared for Growth: How ambitious businesses are using the Revenue Operations model to gain rapid market advantage.