Traditionally, due to the nature of trying to build a successful company in “real-time”, businesses have been a collection of interconnected but disparate departments. Yes, they all have the same goal (the company’s ultimate success), but they also have their own individual needs and constraints. Revenue Operations is a framework that aims to connect your strategy, data, processes, people and technology in order to create a frictionless revenue-generating machine while delighting your customer at every stage.
There are many RevOps definitions out there (I’ve listed quite a few below, from multiple sources), but most of them focus on a few key elements: alignment of go-to-market functions (GTM), meaning people, processes, data and tools. RevOps is all about people (skills), data (KPIs and reporting), processes (marketing, sales, customer success) and technology (tech stack) all aligned to a unified business strategy.
Revenue Operations is more than just marketing & sales alignment. As per MaRS Startup Toolkit: “Revenue Operations (RevOps) is the alignment of sales, marketing and customer success operations across the full customer life cycle to drive growth through operational efficiency and keep all teams accountable to revenue.”
HubSpot defines RevOps as a better alignment between “Marketing, Sales, and Customer Success functions to encourage better revenue growth across an organisation. It’s a framework to connect your technology, processes and strategy and create a frictionless revenue-generating machine while delighting your customer at every stage.”
RevOptics defines Revenue Operations as “the alignment of marketing, sales, and customer success operations across the full customer life cycle or funnel, to drive growth through operational efficiency. This includes increased communication between areas, more access to data, better data flow between departments, and a holistic approach in looking at organizational objectives.”
According to InsightsSquared, “Revenue operations is a methodology that drives cross-functional collaboration in order to close gaps in the customer experience and maximize revenue for the business. Revenue operations combines thefunctions of sales ops, marketing ops, and customer success ops into a single team that drives strategy based on revenue impact.” According to Digitopia, RevOps is a business function that aims to maximize a company’s revenue potential through the full accountability enabled by the alignment of marketing, sales and customer success teams.
It is important to nail the correct definition of Revenue Operations as a lot of people thing that RevOps is driving revenue. Nicholas Gollop, an accomplished leader with 10+ years experience driving revenue and operational excellence for public and private tech companies, says that RevOps professionals are not in charge of driving revenue, but rather in charge of driving the processes to enable people to do so. “We enable them, for sure; giving them tools, giving them more efficient processes internally, but we cannot drive that growth or that revenue ourselves,” Nicholas said in a RevOps Co-op webinar.
In reality, RevOps incorporates and impacts more than just marketing, sales and customer success. RevOps is also about finance (especially if you ask Salesforce), about product management and marketing, about data and analytics, about websites and content, as well as about the overall business operations. As a part of BigOps, RevOps is deeply embedded into a company’s operations ecosystem.
What does RevOps do?
According to Sales Hacker, “the RevOps function is responsible for the processes, systems, and data that their client functions (marketing, sales & customer success) use every day. While much of this work revolves around tool implementation and administration, it also involves process design and documentation. Essentially, the operations team is responsible for building the tracks and keeping the trains running on time.”
Aside from the operational part described by Sales Hacker, RevOps also does strategy as they need to have an overview of all the go to market functions and their strategies, as well as they company’s business objectives and the reporting needs of the management team. This means that the RevOps function looks to close the numerous and various gaps across people, data, processes, technology, and team accountability through data transparency, which, in turn, improves operational efficiency.
In other words (Revvana), “From lead to close, RevOps streamlines all data aspects of the customer journey, including initial touchpoints via marketing and weekly touch bases via customer support. A RevOps team commonly leads the company in optimizing its technology tool stack to gain company-wide transparency and enhance cross-departmental communication.”
If you want to read more about the role of Revenue Operations and why it is important, you can explore this other article on our blog.
The Revenue Operations team
In its RevOps resources for its partners, HubSpot lists six pillars of Revenue Operations team activity, namely:
- Strategic insights & planning (goal setting, target accounts, revenue opportunities, analyse “best deals” and market, etc.)
- Data (health, data infrastructure, data administration, data governance, etc.)
- Customer processes (customer journey, sales process, segmentation, QBRs, renewal, expansion, documentation, etc.)
- KPIs & reporting (KPIs, business development, pipeline management, forecasting, account retention, account expansion, sales performance, etc.)
- Tech stack (evaluation, acquisition, implementation, administration, integration, utilisation, adoption, etc.)
- Training (personal development, training, coaching, onboarding, etc.)
The RevOps team can be anything from a single person (most probably a jack of all traders, or a wizard, as I’ve mentioned recently in another post) in an early stage startup to an entire business department with very specialized roles in an enterprise level organization. In a nutshell, RevOps is really the glue that binds the entire go to market business function and its operations.
Q: What do you call (or which title do you give) to the person who makes your tool stack work. The person who is the G-Suite, Hubspot, Slack, DNS, etc. administrator… ?
A: A wizard! Indispensable! Operations wizard!Pavilion community discussion
If you want to learn more about who the RevOps team reports to and how the RevOps management structure looks like in larger companies, please check the related article on the blog.