3 Ways RevOps Teams Can Drive Growth – Lessons From ZoomInfo + HubSpot

Revenue Operations (RevOps) teams can play a critical role in understanding and optimizing the full customer journey to drive growth. 

They have a unique overview of the customer lifecycle, from initial marketing efforts to sales, contracts, renewals, and customer retention, enabling them to detect trends, identify potential issues early, and spot opportunities that might be overlooked by others.  

Their comprehensive perspective makes them an invaluable asset to enterprise organizations, particularly in the unpredictable post-COVID-19 market. 

However, many organizations consider RevOps to be a tactical resource, rather than a strategic partner that can inform and improve go-to-market (GTM) strategies. 

And this underutilization is limiting their potential for growth. 

Take, for example, leading companies today such as HubSpot and ZoomInfo. Both attribute a part of their growth to having a strategic RevOps function that: 

  1. Builds a strong partnership with sales based on trust and a shared vision 
  1. Keeps close watch over a highly focused and limited set of KPIs  
  1. Plans continuously (not quarterly) in order to enable true agility 

We recently had the opportunity to learn from RevOps leaders at HubSpot and ZoomInfo in our Panel: RevOps—The Driving Force Behind Enterprise Sales Agility. Watch the recording or keep reading to discover 3 ways these companies leverage their RevOps teams to drive growth.

1. Build a Partnership with the Sales Team Based on Trust and a Shared Vision 

A strong partnership between RevOps and Sales creates a creates a powerful, revenue-generating engine. This is achieved at HubSpot and ZoomInfo when the teams build trust, stay aligned on a shared vision, and co-create to achieve that vision. 

“Alignment, trust and communication really is the foundation of our relationship [with Sales] and is critical when we think about sales agility.”
Tessa Whittaker, VP of RevOps at ZoomInfo

Both HubSpot and ZoomInfo have sales and RevOps teams that built a foundation of trust through frequent communication on matters large and small. This trust makes it easy for the sales team to take strategic guidance from RevOps, because they know every modification or strategic shift from RevOps is done with the sales team's best interests and ultimate success in mind. 

However, those changes aren’t just top-down directives. The sales team is consistently aligned with RevOps on the overarching vision of the company, which ensures both teams are motivated and synchronized in their objectives, tactics, and definition of success. 

Guided by this shared vision, they co-create toward the business objectives that will get them there. 

The RevOps teams at HubSpot prioritize co-creation with not just Sales, but also Marketing and Customer Success. They brainstorm the best strategy, potential risks, and untapped opportunities together which further builds trust, vision alignment, and motivation. 

“It's a key element of agility: that co- creation, alignment and bringing them in to be part of the ride.”
Sid Kumar, SVP of Revenue Operations at HubSpot 

Sharing this vision and co-creating around how to get there leaves no doubt from Sales on what numbers they have to hit to move the needle for the business, who owns each individual KPI, and how each KPI maps back to company goals. 

But RevOps is very selective over what these KPIs are – and very vigilant over them. 

2. Set the right KPIs – and only a few 

A byproduct of aligning on a shared vision is synchronizing on the most important objectives to reach that vision. From there comes shared KPIs that guide every decision made by each go-to-market team. 

At HubSpot and ZoomInfo, this process is guided by the RevOps teams. Since they have full insight into every go-to-market function in their organizations, they work with the various teams to help link company objectives and KPIs to each team’s individual goals, from lead to revenue to post-sale.  

That way, each team can ensure the capacity of the employees, and the micro-decisions they make every day, are going toward the right things.  

“There's like 100 micro decisions that need to be made every day by all of these different teams. And if we're making these decisions and we don't have that end state in mind... we run the risk of prioritizing different things.”
Tessa Whitaker, VP of RevOps at ZoomInfo

Knowing that when everything is a priority, nothing is a priority, the teams at both HubSpot and ZoomInfo focus on a select few KPIs, which their RevOps teams vigilantly watch. 

“It's not 10 KPIs, right? It's not 20 KPIs. It's really simply what are the five KPIs?”
Tessa Whitaker, VP of RevOps at ZoomInfo

This vigilance, paired with the close partnership with Sales, enables Sales to quickly pivot as soon as any sort of change is needed – proactively or reactively. 

3. Enable True Sales Agility by Always Planning 

Rather than waiting until a pre-determined date to revisit goals and shift strategy, the teams at HubSpot and ZoomInfo are always planning, which enables true sales agility. 

“When I think of agility, it's...the ability to sense and respond to change....How do you get signals of potential risk upcoming that could impact your performance? Conversely, what are the signals you're going to go look at to capitalize on certain favorable changes?”
Sid Kumar, SVP of Revenue Operations at HubSpot 

To Sid’s team at HubSpot, agility is the ability to leverage data, both qualitative and quantitative, to make changes when you have sufficient conviction, as opposed to waiting until the next arbitrary planning period.  

They shifted to a mindset of “always planning” as opposed to “annual planning” at HubSpot. They have very prescriptive leading indicators for sales that they track “manically,” week after week. And they look for signals indicating a change in either the broader market or customer behavior that may require them to reevaluate their strategy. 

For Tessa at ZoomInfo, sales agility means adaptability, so the ability to change, whether it’s a massive GTM shift or simply a change to the sales comp plan. Her team also tracks leading indicators to respond as quickly as possible to what the data is telling them about their team, their customer’s needs, and the broader market.

Related article: From Cost to Revenue: Turning Sales Comp into a Strategic Center

Since both teams have already built trust with the sales team and aligned on a shared vision, the sales team is able to respond immediately when RevOps indicates it’s time for a change.

Leverage RevOps as a Strategic Guide to Growth 

Agility has taken on a more significant and central role for organizations adapting to the unpredictable market of recent years. And if it’s growth that these organizations are after, they can’t afford to not leverage RevOps as a strategic guide. 

As we learned from ZoomInfo and HubSpot, keeping your RevOps team in alignment with Sales, focused on the most important KPIs, and enabling agility is what sets high-growth, leading companies apart from the rest. When RevOps builds trust and co-creates with Sales, and when the teams stay focused on the right goals, it unlocks new levels of agility that drive significant growth. 

One of the most important levers that RevOps uses to drive growth is the sales compensation plan. When done well, it motivates the sales team toward behaviors that tie back to those specific KPIs and company objectives. 

See our step-by-step Sales Compensation Planning Guide to motivate your team toward the right behaviors. 

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