Blog | 10.13.2022

Hybrid Sales Onboarding: 6 Days to Action For New Hires!

Accelerating Ramp-Up Time for Sales Execs

Onboarding of new employees has evolved into a largely hybrid approach —sometimes virtual, sometimes in person, but mostly a mix.

More than 400+ employees have joined NWN Carousel over the past two years. Like most organizations, we are still adjusting our recruitment and training practices as we discover what works best when it comes to employee engagement in a hybrid setting. 

One of our recent new sales hires, like many professionals, changed focus during the Pandemic. James Hodge embarked on his new role as an Account Executive at NWN Carousel with both excitement… and a little hesitation. 

Over the past decade, James dedicated his sales career to a global technology services company. He oversaw a portfolio of clients across Pennsylvania focused on network infrastructure and security services. 

James was part of a pilot sales onboarding program designed by Chris Judson, Sales Enablement Manager, along with his peers in Sales Enablement and Marketing.  The program educates new account executives on our core offerings, tools, and sales methodology all in 6 days. We call it 6 Days to Action!

“A first impression, whether be it a new relationship or a company, really begins to outline the experience one can expect going forward. I’m happy to say from start to end with NWN Carousel’s new onboarding experience, my first glimpse into its company and culture was warm and welcoming,” said James.

Our accelerated training is a recipe for success with live role play and real time feedback in preparation for Day 7 out in the field.

New Hire Orientation Trends

According to a Gallup survey only 12% of new hires are satisfied with their onboarding. 

Where does NWN Carousel’s training efforts stack up against other enterprises?  See the latest trends.

TRANSFR’s buddy system allows their employees to have access to knowledgeable peers to answer questions, as they pop up during the workday.

Accenture says it plans to use the metaverse to onboard 150,000 new hires using Virtual Reality goggles.

SmartScouter takes it a step further by using an avatar to “dress your avatar up, navigate to your virtual office, all from the comfort of your house and your pajamas.”

Atkore also indulges new hires with immersive training: “We’ve realized that dedicating time up front to acclimating new employees into the company builds a stronger foundation to the start of their careers.” 

Working Closely with IT, HR and Sales Enablement

The challenge remains: How do you welcome new employees to a company when you’re fine tuning your culture to account for less face-to-face time?

Key takeaway: Build new sales onboarding training to help your organization refocus strategies going forward. 

Specifically: Get personal, collaborate across departments, and remain standard! This will nurture self-motivated (and perhaps a little less motivated) employees to complete tasks, accomplish work-related commitments, and get a firm understanding of goals and resources from Day 1.

6 Days to Action! Focused Training for New Sales Hires

NWN Carousel is striving to be the Employer of Choice.  One facet of becoming such an employer is the complicated and fulfilling process of bringing on new employees.  Employee onboarding is one of those ongoing projects that needs to continue to evolve just like a security posture.   Companies like employees learn through doing and taking feedback to result in direct change.   

Challenge #1:  To onboard effective sales teams in a remote/hybrid setting without making it feel distant or cold.  Update our Sales Onboarding programs to jump start the sales motion in only 6 days.  I like to call it 6 days to ACTION!   

The answer:  The process started over the spring with changing the Onboarding approach for the entire company and coming together as a team to build standardized onboarding processes in HR and IT.  The task was to create a seamless process from the date of hire to the arrival of one’s PC with many critical steps in between making sure the employee felt welcomed and excited!

Now that the company onboarding experience to day 1 was consistent, it was time to re-envision the Sales Onboarding path with the Sales Enablement team. Chris Judson, Sales Enablement Manager, took the lead on designing the new program.

We took the time to review the existing program/s and decided they were too long, had too much self-paced training, and didn’t have enough live connection or practice.  

Goal:  To define a program to be completed in 6 days that would take them from new hire to action.  Our program is quite simple but also effective.  It incorporates all things a new sales rep really needs to ramp up but most of all allowing them the time to learn, practice, and grow before releasing them to their teams in a supportive learning environment.

We worked alongside our stakeholders (HR, Marketing, and Leadership) to get the fit just right building better content and role play practice so that we built skills that could ramp up to mastery in quick succession.  

This new program helps us to build effective relationships early with new sales team members and help build a sense of culture up front.

No employee should feel distant while remote and this program showed that we can make this hybrid journey all of us are on seamless.

“With the technology being ready and expectations laid out prior to Day 1, the onboarding team was crisp in their communications and well prepared with content. I appreciate the focused time each member spent with me. I could tell from the start NWN Carousel takes their first impressions seriously and created a solid foundation for me to take the next steps in my IT career.”

James Hodge, Territory Account Executive