Assigning qualified meetings
Sending new qualified prospects to AEs for a demo isn't always as simple as assigning the next prospect to the next AE in a list. How do you make sure your rep books are balanced?
AE assignment can be complicated
Assigning new qualified prospects to your team's account executives is a chance for you to make sure that all your AEs have balanced opportunities relative to their quota capacity, giving them all a fair chance to meet their quota. AEs’ books can easily get out of balance, depending on how you assign new opportunities.
For example, if you have a lot of variation in your sales cycles, some reps may end up holding on to opportunities for a long time and become overwhelmed with new opps while other reps are moving through their opps more quickly. Capacity management is important to balance output across your sales team and over time.
In its most basic terms, it’s pools vs. pods. Some companies have BDR->AE pods that each work a specific territory. One BDR qualifies leads from that territory, and then hands them off to their partner AE.
Generally, at Gradient Works, our preferred model is a pool of BDRs and a pool of AEs, instead of BDR->AE pods. Pods are less efficient, as we explain below. But even with a pool of AEs you can assign new opportunities to, you still need to consider how you distribute those opportunities.
Round robin assignment
Most sales teams use some form of round robin assignment. It's a simple concept that always becomes more complex in practice.
Almost every step of your customer lifecycle depends on some level of round robin assignments. It's a fundamental way to distribute ownership of leads, accounts, contacts, opportunities or anything else to a set of sales reps.
While round-robin assignment is "fair" because it distributes an equal number of leads to each rep in a group, it doesn't always give you the outcomes you're looking for. This means sales organizations almost always use a modified form of round robin in reality. You probably have some rules to deal with rep availability and capacity. You may weight certain accounts differently. Whatever you're doing, it's a lot more than just sending the next account to the next rep.
Gradient Works Assignment provides intelligent account executive assignment, making sure new accounts and opportunities are sent to the right reps at the right time.
Pools vs pods
Some organizations adopt a "pod" model where BDRs and AEs work together in a small team. In this case, a BDR may always be handing off to the same AE which makes the assignment process pretty simple. The pod model is usually associated with a geographic territory model and suffers from many of the same resource allocation issues. However, it can be a good way to drive teamwork and camaraderie between BDRs and AEs.
Organizations that have moved beyond the geographic model, will often have a team of BDRs handing off to a team of AEs. While this is better than the pod model from a resource allocation standpoint, it makes assignment more complex - because at a minimum, it's necessary to use a round-robin system to allocate qualified leads to AEs.
AE assignment for the future of your business
With Gradient Works Assignment, you can optimize your account executive assignment. Working directly with your Salesforce, our technology can assign every new prospect to the right rep at the right time. Our advanced round robin techniques ensure you never drop another new opportunity on the floor again.