Most sales organizations have sales operations teams working behind the scenes, removing barriers to make the sales team more productive. But when a company subscribes to a revenue team model, as Guru does (read more about that here), a sales operations team alone won’t cut it. If the revenue team encompasses all customer-facing teams – customer experience, support, and sales – a revenue operations team is needed to make each component more successful.
At Guru, our rev ops team empowers our entire revenue team to close deals, delight customers, and drive revenue across every stage of the customer journey. And we use our own product to do it. Here’s how:
The value of having strong operational teams
Before diving into how our revenue operations team works at Guru, it’s important to underscore the benefits that strong operational teams can bring to an organization. Operations teams like rev ops, people ops, finance, and others don’t book revenue directly, but their day-to-day work smooths the way for revenue-generating teams to work more efficiently. Because these teams don’t generate revenue themselves, they’re sometimes referred to as cost centers. At Guru, we firmly believe that having a strong operational backbone empowers revenue-generating teams to drive more revenue.
When you have a strong operational backbone, you sell more. In the absence of strong operational teams, there’s chaos.
Revenue operations teams and titles are on the rise as more organizations recognize the value of empowering all the teams that interface with prospects and customers, instead of just sales. According to SiriusDecisions, companies that align all go-to-market functions see 19% faster growth and 15% more profits on average. At Guru, our rev ops team evolved from humble sales ops beginnings to align with our mission of empowering the entire revenue team with the knowledge they need to do their jobs.
Guru’s rev ops team contributes to driving revenue through a simple goal: to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the entire revenue team via strategies, systems, policies, and processes. Or, as we say affectionately, ESP. Without rev ops’ S and P, there would be no E. Without the E, there would be no revenue.
The concept of ESP is especially pertinent in companies that are scaling quickly, like Guru. Policies and processes naturally evolve as businesses grow, and we add new systems and strategies on what seems like a monthly basis. All of that change and growth is good, but if no one is communicating it or holding people accountable – if there’s no operational backbone to implement and enforce those things – it can lead to absolute chaos.
So how does our rev ops team keep things from devolving into chaos? We use Guru to document and communicate changes about knowledge pertaining to the revenue team. Guru serves our rev ops team in two primary ways: we use it to collaborate more effectively within our team, and we use it to share our knowledge with the broader revenue team.
How Rev Ops uses Guru to do our jobs better
Because our rev ops team guides the strategies, systems, policies, and processes for the entire revenue team, we have a lot of knowledge that needs to be documented and accessible to many parties. To foster that accessibility, we keep all of our knowledge in Guru. That knowledge includes both the internal information that we on the rev ops team need to work efficiently, and the wider information the revenue team needs from us to perform effectively. Let’s drill down into how our rev ops team uses Guru within our own team first.
We keep knowledge that’s meant for our team’s eyes only in a private Revenue Operations
Collection in Guru. In this collection, we house
things like internal meeting notes, compensation plan information, individual teammate responsibilities, system permissions, tech stack points of contact, and more.
The goal in putting all of our team’s collective knowledge into Guru is to eliminate single points
of failure so we can all operate as smoothly as possible. On the surface, something like meeting notes or tech stack points of contact may not seem like “knowledge,” but when that information lives on an individual’s computer, the wider team can’t reference it or benefit from having it documented. By housing all types of knowledge in Guru, we can find pertinent info whenever we need it through a quick search. Instead of wasting time shoulder tapping each other to ask questions about repeatable processes, we keep everything clearly documented in Guru so we can help ourselves to the knowledge we need to do our jobs.
To make our rev ops team as efficient and effective as possible, we keep the Guru Trust Score of our Rev Ops Collection at 100% – and we’re super proud of that! That means that at any given time, 100% of our team’s internal knowledge has been recently verified as accurate by one of our team members. By striving to maintain that perfect trust score, we all operate more confidently knowing that the knowledge we rely on to do our jobs is up-to-date.
How Rev Ops uses Guru to empower the Revenue team
Our team also publishes knowledge that is pertinent to the wider revenue team in Guru. That includes information related to how they do their jobs, and by clearly documenting it in Guru, the entire revenue team can easily access that knowledge and accordingly perform more efficiently and effectively.
It would be madness to expect every revenue team member to remember all the in’s and out’s of our various policies and strategies, so we break everything down in Guru. Going into a high level of detail benefits both the revenue team members who need to know this information, and our rev ops team as the subject matter experts of this knowledge. We save ourselves from countless Slacks and meetings every week by documenting everything in Guru. Equally as importantly, we save our revenue team time that they could be spending on generating revenue instead of searching for knowledge about how to do their jobs.
Having confidence in the knowledge you need to do your job lends itself to confidence on the job. Our rev ops knowledge helps new reps onboard faster and start performing sooner because all the information they need to be successful is at their fingertips. All they need to focus on is delighting customers and prospects.
The less time the revenue team has to spend worrying about the strategies, systems, policies, and processes that go into how to do their jobs, the more time they have to spend on actually doing their jobs and driving revenue.
We also communicate new additions or changes to existing policies and processes through Guru. If a big change comes through, we assign a Knowledge Alert to the entire revenue team that requires them to read the update. That way, we can ensure that everyone who needs to know about a new policy gets a ping that something has changed.
Using Knowledge Alerts to share information also helps us maintain a level of accountability. Much like how the revision history of a given Guru card helps our People Ops team document policy changes, Knowledge Alerts help our team minimize instances of reps not knowing a policy has changed. With Knowledge Alerts, we can see if they read the new policy or not!
Beyond ensuring knowledge consumption, documenting policy and process changes in Guru makes them referenceable after the fact. We put a lot of detail into our updates, including the reason why something has changed. Oftentimes, a new process will temporarily slow reps down – for example, adding another required field in Salesforce – so it’s important to us that they know why we’re asking them to take an additional step. Understanding the rationale behind a decision (“This new field will help our Marketing team understand where our leads are coming from so they can invest in the right channels.”) helps make new processes easier to digest and implement. Since we serve multiple teams, we also make sure to explain what a change means for different stakeholders.
Leveraging AI to do the heavy lifting
Leaning on Guru's AI suite to empower our revenue team makes our knowledge go even further. Guru's AI Suggest can serve up contextually relevant rev ops knowledge to the revenue team in the exact moment that they need it. In the below example, Lily, an account development rep (ADR), has started drafting a handoff email to pass a prospect to an account executive (AE), and Guru's AI Suggest proactively flashed to alert Lily to the exact email template she should use, without her even having to search for it. This automatic functionality saves reps time and lets our rev ops team rest easy knowing that the knowledge we work so hard to produce is being used at the right time.
Increasing efficiency and effectiveness through knowledge
At the end of the day, the success of our company depends on our revenue team’s ability to close new business and delight existing customers, and the revenue team’s success depends on the supporting teams smoothing their path, like revenue operations. The more organized and comprehensive the operations team, the more efficient and effective the revenue team. At Guru, we rely on our internal knowledge network to grease those wheels. By documenting knowledge where we can all access it, we better serve each other as teammates and we better serve our customers and prospects.