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Essential KPIs for elite revenue teams

Mona Akmal May 25, 2021 3:57:00 PM
80% of revenue-growth KPIs should track inputs

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Demand generation teams, revenue development teams, AE teams, and CSM teams comprise the modern revenue organization. While they engage with prospects and customers in different phases of their life cycle, collectively they are responsible for customer and revenue growth.

Data driven revenue teams strive to achieve and exceed growth goals with predictability and efficiency. These goals are connected to output metrics like Bookings, Revenue. In addition to these, there are 87 other essential KPIs that should be tracked but rarely are. Why? Because analytics teams have a backlog a mile long and business teams can’t get these KPIs built for months or even years. More on how to address this later.

Here’s the complete list of KPIs revenue leaders should demand. Without these, you’re flying blind.

Output KPIs (i.e. usual suspects)

These are the outputs that ultimately determine whether a company’s revenue organization is performing well.

  1. Bookings (dollar value)
  2. Bookings (logos)
  3. Net new logos
  4. Monthly Recurring Revenue (MRR)
  5. Churn (dollar value)
  6. Churn (lost logos)
  7. MRR Retention Rate
  8. Account Retention Rate
  9. Account Renewal Rate

Most companies have these output KPIs defined but often lack input KPIs, team performance KPIs, and rich and actionable ways to slice and dice them. More on these below.

Leading indicator KPIs

These KPIs are often an early signal into whether the team will meet its output goals. Many organizations also have 50% of these KPIs. Even these lack actionability because there’s no way to slice and dice them deeply. For instance, if Opportunities Created is decreasing, what regions, channels, campaigns, ADR activity, prospect touches, explain this decline?

Another common problem I’ve discovered is that many KPIs are misrepresented as “Averages” which hides what’s really going on.: I was recently talking to a RevOps leader who said “Even though our average deal size is 100K, 90% of our accounts are either significantly larger than this or significantly smaller.” So then that average deal size KPI doesn’t really tell us what’s going on. More on this in a related post from the lead data scientist at Falkon on how averages go awry.

Marketing & Sales

  1. Inquiries
  2. Leads
  3. Marketing Qualified Leads
  4. Sales Accepted Leads
  5. Opportunities Created
  6. Opportunities Advanced
  7. Opportunities in Each Stage (e.g. Procurement, Negotiation etc.)
  8. Active Opportunities
  9. Stuck Opportunities
  10. Stale Opportunities
  11. Time Since Last Touch on Opportunity (incorrectly represented as an average)
  12. Time in Prospect Funnel Stage for an Opportunity (incorrectly represented as an average)
  13. Opportunities Closed — Lost
  14. Pipeline Coverage
  15. Deal Size (incorrectly represented as an average)
  16. Deal Velocity (incorrectly represented as an average)
  17. Conversion Rate for the entire prospect funnel
  18. Conversion Rate for each step in the prospect funnel

Customer Success & Support

  1. NPS
  2. Active Customers
  3. Reference-able Customers
  4. Expandable Customers
  5. Customer LTV
  6. Customers Onboarded
  7. Customer Onboarding Completion Rate
  8. Time to Onboarding Completion
  9. Time to First Use (incorrectly represented as an average)
  10. Time Between Subsequent Usage
  11. Up-sold Customers
  12. Up-sell Rate
  13. Cross-sold Customers
  14. Cross-sell Rate
  15. Downgraded Customers
  16. Downgrade Rate
  17. Time to Up-sell
  18. Time to Cross-sell
  19. Time to Support Issue Resolution
  20. Support Issues Opened
  21. Support Issues Closed
  22. Support Issue Satisfactory Resolution Rate

Activity & team performance indicators

Most of the KPIs above are focused on desirable outputs. To achieve these outputs, 80% of our focus as practitioners should be on the inputs! That’s all we control. Roughly speaking, the inputs are all about the productivity and effectiveness of our teams (ADRs, AEs, SEs, CSMs etc.) and our engagement with customers (channels, campaigns, content). I will leave product out for now (since that is not directly controlled by revenue teams).

Marketing & Sales

  1. ADR Emails Sent
  2. Email Engagement Rate
  3. ADR Call Volume
  4. Call Success Rate
  5. ADR Meetings Scheduled
  6. ADR Meetings on the Calendar
  7. ADR Meeting Success Rate
  8. ADR Meeting Cancellation Rate
  9. ADR Meeting Reschedule Rate
  10. Follow-up Meeting Rate
  11. Demos Booked
  12. Demos Completed
  13. ADR Time to Demo Meeting
  14. Bookings per Meeting
  15. Accounts Touched by Rep
  16. Rep Win Rate
  17. Rep Close Rate
  18. Rep — Assigned Opportunities
  19. Rep — Opportunities Sourced
  20. Campaign Conversion Rate for the entire Prospect Funnel, Expansion Funnel
  21. Campaign Conversion Rate for each step in the Prospect Funnel, Expansion Funnel
  22. Channel Conversion Rate for the entire Prospect Funnel, Expansion Funnel
  23. Channel Conversion Rate for each step in the Prospect Funnel, Expansion Funnel
  24. Attribution of Campaign to Leads, Opportunities, Bookings
  25. Attribution of Channel to Leads, Opportunities, Bookings

Customer Success & Support

  1. Number of Customers Onboarded
  2. Number of Customers Trained
  3. Time to Customer Onboarding Complete (repeated from up above)
  4. Time to Customer Training Complete (repeated from up above)
  5. Number of Customers Waiting to be Onboarded
  6. Number of Customers in progress of being onboarded
  7. Number of Customers per Customer Success Manager
  8. Support Call Volume
  9. Support First Response Time (incorrectly represented as an average)
  10. Support Time to Resolution (incorrectly represented as an average)
  11. Support Escalation Rate
  12. Support Abandonment Rate
  13. Customer Satisfaction Rating for Support Experience
  14. Calls per Support Agent
  15. Close Rate per Support Agent
  16. Satisfaction Close Rate per Support Agent
  17. Cost per Support Call

Actionable levers

For all the KPIs above, they only become truly powerful when they can be sliced and diced in actionable ways. We classify these attributes into two categories: descriptive attributes and actionable attributes. 

Descriptive attributes: These are useful for segmenting prospects based on common attributes.

Examples include:

  1. Region
  2. Industry
  3. Customer Segment or Size
  4. Buyer Persona (for products that are sold to multiple personas)
  5. Expected Deal Size
  6. SKU (if the company has multiple products)

Actionable attributes: These are actionable levers that we control.

Examples include:

  1. Sourced By
  2. Channel
  3. Campaign
  4. Journey to Date (i.e. what’s been the customer’s journey with the company to date)
  5. Account Owner
  6. ADR Owner
  7. Customer Success Manager
  8. Account Executive
  9. Product SKU
  10. Payment Plan
  11. Product Version
  12. Support Issue Type

Circling back to the example I started with, Opportunities Created are going down. If you have all of the attributes available for this KPI, you can quickly figure out that Opportunities Created are going down primarily for SMB and Mid Market, for Product SKU: CRM, driven by 3 specific channels, and 12 campaigns. This in turn is because of an anemic Lead Mix for this segment.

So what’s in the way?

There are two serious obstacles for revenue teams to become data driven:

KPI Creation

Often the backlog to create KPIs is a mile long and it takes months and hiring dedicated analysts to put all this together. These analysts get pulled into 20 other initiatives and the backlog is never completed.

Fortunately with tools like Falkon, these KPIs can be created in weeks, not months for companies that use Salesforce, Salesloft, Outreach, Gong, Chorus, Marketo, Hubspot, Gainsight, Zendesk, and other well known tools.

Information Overload

Processing this much data to identify the top 5 things you really need to pay attention to is not a human scale problem.

At Falkon, we’re helping revenue teams overcome these obstacles.

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