New sales rep onboarding programs take training to the next level. They help new employees become familiar with your company and goals, propel new employees to productivity and success quickly, and can greatly reduce turnover. Without a successful onboarding program, new employees can develop a negative perception immediately and you could face huge costs in continually replacing them.
Use these four tips to transform how you approach new sales rep onboarding, and stop wasting valuable time and resources doing it wrong.
1. Think About the Whole Picture.
Contrary to popular belief, onboarding starts long before a new employee walks in the door. When you think of onboarding, you may only be thinking of training new hires. Realistically, there are a lot of steps that come before and after training. A successful sales onboarding program will have many benefits for your organization including saving you money. Not only will it get your employees to a desirable level of productivity sooner, it will help get people in the door, and retain them. Your onboarding program should actually start with your company image and your recruiting program.
Having an undesirable organization will make your recruiting process much more painful and expensive than it needs to be. Not to mention, it will waste major time and resources. As you recruit new employees, the process they experience and information shared should be a positive indicator of how onboarding would work.
2. Onboarding Should Be Mobile.
Make information easily accessible. No matter how great your new sales rep onboarding is, your employees aren’t likely to retain all of it. One study shows that people will forget on average 50% of the information presented to them within one hour, and about 70% of information within 24 hours. To make sure you aren’t wasting everyone’s time, design a new employee program that makes information accessible even after training has been completed.
Keep a library of information and resources available in one location that can been accessed from any mobile device. This way your new sales reps can pull up information on their own when they have a question or need a quick reference. Not only will you make your new sales rep onboarding program more effective, you’ll save time and resources by making new employees more independent.
3. Include Interactive Onboarding Activities.
There’s a reason professional athletes practice every aspect of their game. And there’s a reason they are physically completing the activities to practice, versus watching a video or reading a book. People learn best by doing, and your new employees are no different. Instead of wasting time on traditional training efforts that have been proven to have low retention rates, get to the most effective types of training first. Build in interactive components to your new sales rep onboarding program like:
- Mock demos
- Role-play conversations
- Video recorded pitch practice
Making your new sales rep onboarding training interactive will keep employees more interested, boost retention, and build their confidence faster. Build difficult customer scenarios into your training so employees know how to handle different profiles, like argumentative, commitment phobic, and detail oriented customers. Training them appropriately from the beginning will save time once they actually encounter these scenarios.
4. Partner With a New Hire Onboarding Pro.
The number one way to save time when planning for your new sales rep onboarding is to stop trying to reinvent the wheel, or build new capabilities in-house. You’ll need an onboarding system to successfully implement the strategies listed above. Do you have a mechanism for creating, storing accessible training materials? Do you have the technology to let your sales reps record their pitches for playback review?
Partnering with an existing pro is the most cost-effective way to plan your new hire onboarding without wasting time, or money. Take MediaMath for example. This global technology partner was struggling with inflexible scheduling, high cost for global hires, and low retention. When they partnered with a leading online learning software partner, they were able to see massive benefits. They gave new hires immediate access to a custom learning portal, provided flexible scheduling, and saw greatly improved retention. Bringing a partner on board was a critical choice in implementing a successful new sales rep onboarding program without wasting time.
Want More on Onboarding?
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