The Enablement Advantage
The war for talent and the recent phenomenon of ‘The Great Resignation’ is driving all companies to reconsider their talent strategy.
Finding great people, attracting them to your company and getting them started is just the beginning.
Making them successful quickly and consistently- is one of main key principles to keeping great talent.
Pandemic Driven ROIs
One of the toughest battle grounds right now in tech - is hiring great people.
The pandemic has driven growth for most tech companies, and with the crazy amount of cash invested and soaring valuations the industry being awash with new headcount.
It's a candidate-led market.
Negotiated salaries are above average in every field, driving the need to achieve higher yields for the heads created.
But the increase in yield is invisible to employees.
It would be very difficult to sell a role with a higher sales quota, for example, just because the market is hot, so companies are being driven to increase yields in the shadows.
That's where we meet the heroes of our story – The Enablement Team.
People stay at companies for a few reasons. Purpose, pay, their manager, …
Certainly, feeling valued and being successful feature too.
Being successful 1) quickly and 2) consistently – creates stickiness.
When it comes to 1) quick success, how quickly we ‘ramp’ our team members is imperative.
Measuring ramp time for sales people is easiest with time-to-first-sale being the most obvious measure.
That said, ensuring across the whole organisation good planning, great experience of those first few months must be measured and tracked – to be improved upon to great up those hidden ROIs.
How are we onboarding our employees?
Are we giving them everything they need to skill up?
Not just product information, but market insights and competitive analysis.
Do we check progress? Test knowledge? Role play ‘in theatre’?
A perfect ramp equates to between 25-50% increase in productivity in Year 1. Easily refunding any salary increase driven by a candidate-led market.
Good sales reps know the ramp is imperative for them and the company.
And the best talent check this out at interview.
The Trough of Disillusionment
Early success not only helps with the salary maths but also, can you keep the employee long term?
In sales, the ‘trough of disillusionment’ comes at around 6-9 months from their start date.
This is the time the honeymoon period wears off, the grind kicks in and the evaluation of quota achievement becomes into sharp focus.
If our reps are not seeing wins – their focus will wander as the pressure builds.
As the war on talent rages on ramping our teams to be optimally skilled and productive is imperative. We must ensure they have help and support available from day 1.
Enter our Enablement Heroes.
The New Battleground – Enablement
Smart companies spotted this years ago.
Having an enablement function whose sole purpose is driving employee success, has helped many organisations hire and retain the best.
That said, times are changing. A new gear has been found.
In the last few months, talking to a number of industry colleagues (the organisations leading enablement), best practices are going even further.
Great investment in ‘enablers’ – greater salaries, increase in skill sets, new functions, better tools. All very common in 2021 and early into 2022.
The maturity of measuring the impact of an enablement function has significantly contributed to this.
The fact that we can now better measure the output & yields driven by enablement means that CROs, CFOs and CEOs can easily dial up investment as needed.
Ongoing Retention and Productivity
And it’s not just about new hires.
How you go to market quarter on quarter – relies on your marketing and sales teams being lock-step with enablement.
Teach => try in market => leverage assets => teach => try, and so on …
Agile and consistent sales organisations understand the enablement motion quickly becomes the life blood of high growth organisations.
Well, it’s obvious.
Employees time to success is decreased.
Employees achieve consistently.
They enjoy the success.
Companies see a higher return (increased productivity and increased retention rates).
Nothing I have included here is new so why write the article?
There is a small number of companies a) investing in enablement and b) an even smaller number ‘really’ investing.
Enablement programme management requires planning and investment, to get it right.
Often, it’s considered a ‘cost’ to a business – but it can materially affect the top line – if done right.
As the war for talent continues, it’s worth a moment to check => is there an enablement advantage you are missing?
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