Hitting Targets And Building Self-Confidence: What Is Sales Onboarding?

What Is Sales Onboarding?
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Summary: Efficient sales onboarding produces a capable, self-confident sales team. Learn how to introduce a sales onboarding program that benefits every member of your organization.

An All-Inclusive Guide To Onboarding Sales Employees

The integration of a new member into a team often takes a significant amount of time, resources, and personalized training. Sales onboarding should provide the fundamental competencies, knowledge, and experience an employee will need in their new position, regardless of their background or current skill set. Sales employees are the primary representatives of your company and your brand. So, in many respects, investing in a well-structured curriculum is an investment in your future. The sales training onboarding process can look different depending on the organization and the team structure, but it is always of paramount importance and must cover all bases. Discover the nature of sales onboarding, the best practices to follow, and its many benefits below.

The Importance Of Sales Onboarding

The long-term value of sales onboarding can be traced back to the company itself. Ensure that your sales onboarding process covers a wide range of subject cases so that your employee is equipped to handle complicated issues with minimal stress. Well-prepared sales representatives meet their goals, close more deals, and sell your products faster. Through effective sales onboarding, your team acquires the necessary skills and product knowledge to become a direct link between your brand and your consumer, as well as a vital component in customer retention strategies. It is a continuous process that requires planning, effort, and ongoing evaluation. Understanding the value and importance of a well-crafted sales onboarding process shows commitment to the employee's evolution, as well as the company's objectives.

The Goals Of Sales Onboarding

Any employee induction program should introduce new hires to the company, its procedures, its culture, and its mission. Sales onboarding is no different. The sales onboarding process targets individual areas that require development and offers a methodological approach to attaining more sales and clients. Training employees to use a consistent sales process is essential. Sales leaders are responsible for providing new members with the blueprints of successful selling by offering a strategic approach. Additional material like trade secrets, product knowledge, and insights into the industry and target customer base are supplemental to the primary sales system and a cornerstone of a successful L&D methodology.

The Benefits Of Sales Onboarding

The benefits of sales onboarding are more tied to tangible results rather than conceptual ones. Even rates and metrics about abstract concepts, like employee engagement, are calculated as real-world outcomes, like ROIs and revenue. So what are the benefits of efficiently onboarding sales reps?

  • Well-Prepared Sales Team

    Whether we're talking about seasoned salespeople or employees who are new to the industry, it is the company's duty to equip their talent with the necessary tools to get the job done. If their training curriculum is well-balanced in that it contains product knowledge, techniques, market research, and behavioral skills development, your new team members will achieve their goals more rapidly because they have a solid foundation. Information is power, after all.

  • Productive Employees

    An employee that starts meeting goals from day one will be more productive and engaged as long as they receive the necessary support from their organization. As mentioned previously, a sales onboarding process is continuous and multi-faceted. A sector as everchanging as sales has to involve constant training to ensure constant growth. Up-to-speed salespeople bring in and retain customers and achieve higher customer satisfaction rates.

  • Team-Building

    The onboarding stage builds the foundations of an employee's tenure within an organization. A well-developed sales onboarding process builds stronger team dynamics and inspires faith in the company's culture. Since everyone is working toward the same goals, sales onboarding is important to cultivate a sense of teamwork and collaboration among your workforce from the very beginning.

  • Retention Rates

    Companies that consider their workforce an investment spend more time curating an informative onboarding experience. It's no surprise that these companies have higher retention rates than competitors who rush through training just so they can check the boxes.

Step-By-Step Guide: Design An Effective Sales Onboarding Process

1. Background Information

No one hits the ground running without being fully prepared. Offering background information to new members during the onboarding process ensures a smooth transition from theory to practice. The induction stage covers a great deal of background knowledge on the company itself, but it is important for salespeople to know the market in general. Who is the competition, and what sets the company apart from the crowd? What is the target market? What were the biggest sales the company has achieved, and how were they attained? Deep knowledge of market fluctuations and patterns can be used by your employees to adjust selling points and seal the deal.

2. Specialized Information

This is what your salespeople will need to achieve each sale: insights on product specifications, manufacturers and vendors, the production process, as well as how they compare to similar products on the market. With this foundation set, they can create personalized selling points depending on the target customer base. Don't forget to make detailed presentations on how the products are used, how they are assembled or disassembled, and what purpose they serve. It is a good idea to offer them samples or trials so that they practice on their own.

3. Behavioral Training

How can a trained salesperson successfully convey all the specialized product information to a prospective client without possessing solid behavioral skills? Sales onboarding has to include both practical and theoretical aspects in order to be successful. Learning product specifications doesn't matter as much as your rep's communicative approach. Skills mastery is an integral part of successful sales onboarding; developing soft skills means that your sales team knows how to approach potential customers, how to resolve conflicts, and how to make a product sound irresistible because they know how their target market thinks. Interpersonal communication is not only vital in acquiring a sale but also key to retaining customers for the long haul.

4. Sales Tools

Different technologies have emerged to make a salesperson's life and work easier. Sales tools include a variety of technologies that classify, analyze, track, and manage essential data. Sales onboarding can only be successful if your new hire knows how to use all of the software in their arsenal. Today's competitive markets require strong, capable thinkers that utilize all means available to close a deal and keep customers coming back.

Sales Onboarding Best Practices

An efficient sales onboarding process ensures quick acclimation to the workplace environment, the development of necessary job skills, and the cultivation of supportive team dynamics. So what are the best sales onboarding practices to follow?

  • Onboarding Checklist

The documentation of the sales onboarding process is crucial in implementing and maintaining effective schedules when it's time to welcome a new hire into the company. By following A to Z, you make sure that nothing gets left out. Your employee covers all necessary bases to ensure a smooth transition into their new role. The sales onboarding process typically begins with the induction, followed by information gathering, and then the introduction to the field. Even if you've hired an experienced salesperson, the inner workings of your organization are unique enough that a new member would need time to navigate its uncharted territory.

  • Clear Sales Strategy

Following a standard procedure when it comes to approaching and establishing a connection with a prospective buyer, as well as having a clear sales methodology to draw from, makes the process much more approachable for a new salesperson. In addition, guidelines on negotiation and discount policies may result in higher profitability for the company and higher customer satisfaction rates. Make sure your new team members know the ins and outs of a successful sales strategy that aligns with your brand values so that they can fall back on it. It's also an opportunity for seasoned team members to chip in and offer their words of wisdom on how to approach clients and close deals.

  • Sales Team Collaboration

Establishing a collaborative team dynamic will help new hires acclimate and ensure that the entire team transfers job-specific skills. Cultivating a friendly, non-competitive environment among colleagues will ensure that the training is ongoing; new reps will have the chance to observe their team in action, learn from them, and answer any questions that may arise during their onboarding process.

  • Check-in

To review and document the sales onboarding process, schedule regular check-ins with your new rep. Gather feedback on your onboarding checklist, and consider improving your process if you notice pain points. Having regular contact with your rep establishes a positive connection that will play an essential role in their productivity and retention rates overall.

Why Do You Need Sales Onboarding Software?

Software gives you the ability to organize, track, and manage sales onboarding and training progress. These platforms streamline the process because all of the material is in one place; your new rep can go back and fill gaps, review the content again, and practice what they've learned without risk.

Sales Onboarding Software Features

Let's review some of the standout features that most sales onboarding software includes.

  • Content Management

Like any Learning Management System (LMS), sales onboarding software stores and manages the training material required to develop curriculums your reps will need to face their new day-to-day. These solutions allow you to create impactful, easily-digestible content that covers all necessary areas of Customer Experience (CX), product information, sales techniques, competition, and market insights. In addition, you can set clear, logical content structures to allow for easier maintenance by adding or deleting material as your company grows and your goals or products change.

  • Progress Reports

Utilize your software to analyze and track employees' progress and level of integration to identify and fill any gaps that may show up along the way. The advanced analytics most sales onboarding software now offers can help you personalize their training experience and follow up when necessary. For example, they still need to complete a compliance certification, and you can reach out to see if they have any questions or roadblocks. Some solutions even offer features like performance predictions that reveal your top performers from the very beginning.

  • To-Do Lists

Your sales onboarding program is only successful if you have set clear expectations on what you want employees to achieve within a given timeframe. Find software with a "To-Do" section that displays their tasks, due dates, and how they're progressing through each of them. It is a great way to ensure that your employee has a clear linear structure to follow so that they can prioritize their tasks.

  • Integration Tools

When a new hire embarks on their onboarding journey, they often have to familiarize themselves with various types of software. Navigating unfamiliar databases or management systems in different tabs can be overwhelming, especially when they are just starting out. So along with your on-the-job training materials, why not include manuals and tips on how to operate these essential systems? With software that supports third-party integration tools, you can introduce them to the programs that require extra certifications or modules to make your employee's life easier.

Who Benefits From Sales Onboarding Software

Sales onboarding software is a company-wide asset. To find out if it's worth investing in such a solution, you first need to understand who benefits most from your investment.

Sales Representatives

Sales employees are able to navigate through their training materials in one place, review their training performance, bridge gaps, and check their progress as they continue. They can even receive discreet feedback as they move forward and access moment-of-need support tools.

Sales Leaders & Managers

Those who head a sales department understand the value of having an all-in-one software solution that simplifies the onboarding process and equips their team with the skillset and knowledge to bring in more deals. In addition, having easy access to their team's progress is a crucial component in creating initiatives that target areas for improvement when you're expanding your talent pool in the future.


Sales onboarding software can aid in new employee induction, personalize each rep's training path, and manage the onboarding process even before the new team member officially clocks in.

How to Select the Right Sales Onboarding Software

The rapidly evolving sales industry requires forward-thinking, customizable solutions that can accommodate change quickly and adapt to your evolving needs. If you are in the process of hiring new sales staff, consider investing in sales onboarding software. To determine which sales onboarding software is right for your organization, consider the needs of your company first. Who is your target customer base, and what is your product or service? How did your sellers achieve your best sales? What skills and knowledge do your new hires need to learn in order to follow in your best talent's footsteps? Consider your training curriculum and how you can optimize its content to identify your next top performers. After you determine your needs, head to our online directory to discover the right sales onboarding software for your company and create an effective sales onboarding curriculum for your new hires.

You can also check out our list of the Top Content Providers For Employee Onboarding who can help you evaluate your needs and create winning onboarding experiences.