The Most Useful B2B Sales Onboarding Activities

onboarding

Onboarding is an important way to improve the productivity of new sales hires. Simply put, effective onboarding provides the knowledge to be successful from the get-go.

In our recent international survey of 300 B2B salespeople, we explored the importance of onboarding and even went as far as to find out what activities salespeople consider to be the most effective in today’s post-pandemic selling environment.

But before we dive into what those are, let’s consider the fact that onboarding has actually improved since COVID-19 and take a look at why that is.

 

B2B sales onboarding improved after the pandemic

More than half (62%) of respondents “agreed” or “strongly agreed” that their organization had improved their onboarding process since the pandemic.

According to open-ended responses, one of the key reasons for investing in onboarding is the recruiting and retention of sales talent.

“New employees during Covid were tough to get,” noted one respondent. Getting “them to stay and like the business atmosphere” was an important reason for improving the new sales onboarding process.

“Salespeople are becoming pickier about the companies they want to work for as businesses recover and start to expand again,” said another.

There’s no doubt that onboarding holds a special place in the enablement of sales talent. It’s what bridges the gap between the moment of hiring and the deployment of talent to help the company sell products or services. And for this reason, it’s critical that sales leaders invest in the sales onboarding process.

So with the aim of supporting leaders in understanding how to do this, the survey identified both the most common onboarding activities and then asked respondents which activities they found most helpful. Here’s what we found…

 

The Most Useful B2B Sales Onboarding Activities

The survey asked respondents to identify the sales onboarding activities they think are most useful. The top three are as follows:

  • 17% said business, market or product demonstrations;
  • 14% said instructor-led sessions or education; and
  • 13% said self-paced sessions or education.

The survey also asked respondents why they selected those activities in open-ended remarks. Here are some of the answers:

Why demonstrations?

“Product demonstrations give salespeople an immediate means of tactics to communicate to their clients.”
“When this training is applied to sales, a better conversion rate is seen.”
“Product demonstration training provides a ready proof for salespeople to understand.”

Why instructor-led sessions?

“Instructors can see whether students are grasping a concept throughout a session.”
“Teams get benefit from instructor-led training as well because they can share ideas, work in groups, and debate with their peers.”
“This training type provides a less distracting environment for the trainee.”

Why self-paced sessions?

“They gain a great degree of self-confidence from this kind of training.”
“The time constraint that exists during live instruction is eliminated by self-paced learning.”
“Large groups of employees can receive self-paced training quickly and easily, even if they are in different places."

 

* * *

Read all the findings from the complete survey here: The Adaptability of B2B Sales Teams in Uncertain Times.

 

If you enjoyed this post, you might also like:

How to Build a Bullet-Proof Onboarding Process

 

 

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