Sales Capacity

Essential questions RevOps should be asking themselves about sales capacity

We all get it. I certainly do. As RevOps leaders, we have so much on our plate it’s a constant worry that the small but incessant problems of today will cause us to miss the monumental issues of tomorrow.

Weekly forecasting meetings, or your organization’s recurring business reviews, is a great reminder to keep us focused on important performance KPIs and organizational shifts that might impact revenue plans. The more data driven insights that can be brought to these meetings the more valuable they become. The old refrain, “If you don’t measure it, you can’t improve it” unfortunately applies to too many areas when it comes to forecasting and business reviews. 

Sales capacity and hiring is one of those areas.  It is often left out of these discussions, leaving the organization open to risk and preventable revenue loss.  RevOps can change this!  By raising this area's importance and bringing insights and recommendations to forecast meetings, risk blind spots can become visible, identified, and addressed, improving business outcomes.

Questions RevOps Should Ask Themselves During Annual Revenue Planning

  • What are the key strategies for next fiscal year?
  • What are the revenue team's goals and objectives for next fiscal year?
  • What initiatives can we drive to achieve our revenue and efficiency targets?
  • Do we have the headcount to hit our revenue target? 
  • What is our hiring velocity?
  • Are hires in-seat on-time?
  • Does my plan account for attrition? 
  • Did we have more attrition than planned in previous quarters?
  • How accurate were our ramp assumptions previously? 
  • How did our sales hiring plans and assumptions compare to past quarters, months, and years? How are we trending?
  • How are sales reps performing against quota?
  • How do we need to support the plan with Sales Development Reps, Solution Engineers, and specialists?
  • What is our organization model?
  • Should we adjust segment break points and territories?
  • Do I know where there’s risk in the plan?
  • What are the key efficiency and cost metrics and how do they compare?
  • What is the impact of the above?
  • What levers can we pull to improve efficiency and reduce risk?
  • Are there differences in the above by geography or segment?

Questions RevOps Should Ask Themselves During Forecasting

  • How is the team’s revenue performance against quota? 
  • Are some teams behind plan while others are ahead? 
  • Have we hired to plan and on-time?
  • How does our street quota compare to plan?
  • Do we have enough quota on the street given recent attainment to street quota? 
  • Are my reps ramping to plan? 
  • Is attrition tracking to assumptions? 
  • What is the mix of ramping vs ramped reps?
  • What is the actual attainment to street quota?
  • How are sales reps performing against quota?
  • What is the forecast for all of the above for the next 2 quarters?
  • Are we forecasting gaps and what is driving them?
  • What levers can we pull to close gaps or capture upside and what is the effort, cost and impact?
  • What is the impact to plan efficiency and cost on over or under performance of the above?
  • What initiatives can we drive to impact the levers and improve performance?
  • Are there differences by geography, segment and manager?

There are tremendous benefits to an organization when RevOps integrates the above into their planning and forecasting cycles. Both plans and forecasts become more accurate by measuring  hiring and capacity metrics and performance.  This allows for RevOps leaders to be more strategic by raising areas of risk or opportunity along with insights and recommendations to mitigate risk or capture opportunity.

Drive revenue performance by getting planning and forecasting right.

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