Introduction:

Run this Sales Onboarding Checklist to hire new sales staff, train them with the required skills and knowledge, instill company values, and show them how to leverage the provided tools of a company.

Think of the sales onboarding process as one that builds the next generation of sales leaders for your team.

With a strong onboarding process, your sales representatives will be set up for success before they even begin selling. According to a study by Leadership IQ, 46% of new hires fail within the first 18 months. To rub salt in the wound so to speak, only 19% achieve unequivocal success.

Even if you are bringing in the right talent, you cannot expect rockstar performances without an effective onboarding plan - like this one.

With an effective plan, you will receive benefits such as:

  • Retention increases: The average turnover cost per sales rep is $19,690. This includes the costs of recruiting, training, and lost sales. With standardized and effective onboarding processes, your sales representatives are 60% more likely to stay in your organization for 3 years longer.
  • Productivity boosts: Starting a new job is fraught with pitfalls in productivity. With a successful onboarding process, productivity is boosted by 25%.

According to the Society of Human Resource Management, a proper onboarding process will accomplish the following:

  • Acclimate: To make a recent new hire feel comfortable, they need to understand your company's mission, what is expected of them, and what kind of support the company can give them.
  • Engage: Multiple studies have proven more engaged employees are more productive and less likely to look for alternative employment.
  • Retain: A successful onboarding process greatly increases the chance thst your organization retains top talent.

With that said, this Sales Onboarding Checklist has been specifically designed to help you acclimate, engage and retain top talent for your sales team. With this template, you can realize the benefits that come with the implementation of an effective sales onboarding process.

How to use this checklist

At the beginning of this checklist, you will be presented with a set of specialized questions given as form fields. You are required to populate each form field with your data.

Certain stages will require approval utilizing Process Street's approvals feature. Other features included in this template are:

  • Stop tasks - To ensure task order.
  • Dynamic due dates - To make sure your initiative is reviewed on time.
  • Role assignment - To delegate tasks within your team ensuring your supervisors are appropriately assigned to the review tasks.

Record checklilst details

In this Sales Onboarding Checklist, you will be presented with the following form fields for which you are required to populate with your specific data. More information for each form field is provided via linkage to our help pages:

Let's start by recording your business details and your details.

This is a stop task, meaning you cannot progress in this template until the required form fields are populated.

Business details
Your details
Checklist details

Set a due date for the completion of this checklist. This will utilize the dynamic due date feature notifying you when the completion of this checklist is needed.

Before the first day:

Prepare paperwork

To kick off the sales onboarding checklist, you need to prepare the relevant paperwork and information before the employee's first day. Start by recording the employee's basic information in the form fields below.

This part of the process is called transactional onboarding and focuses on completing all the necessary forms and documents so your new employee can legally start working.

Some of the forms you need to prepare are:

  • 1
    W-4
  • 2
    I-9
  • 3
    Insurance forms
  • 4
    Direct deposit forms
  • 5
    The non-disclosure agreement
  • 6
    Evidence of employee driving license (if required)

However, there are more forms you might need, specific to your company. Good software to use is Applicant PRO which operates like CRM for onboarding including all the necessary forms and documents and stores them in an online database.

(Source: applicantpro.com)

Using the Members form field below, assign the individual who will approve the employee's paperwork. This approval is needed one day after this prepare paperwork task.

Approval: Employee paperwork

Will be submitted for approval:
  • Prepare paperwork
    Will be submitted

Discuss role, goals and projects with supervisor

During the training period, your new employee should work closely with a supervisor or mentor. A supervisor ensures the new employee is oriented in the organization, policies, facilities, and more. 

To ensure this process goes well, you should discuss the new employee's role with their supervisor. Discuss the goals you have set for the new hire and think of appropriate projects that would be beneficial for the training period. Discuss all in the appropriate form fields below.

(Source: managementhelp.org)

Prepare employee's workstation

Prepare the employee's workstation before they arrive to avoid any delays on their first day. Include items like:

  • Furniture (desk, chair)
  • Telephone
  • Computer
  • Desk supplies (business card, stapler, letterhead, paper, pens, etc.)

If you want to impress your new employee, add items like branded pens, backpack, t-shirt or mug on your employee's desk.

When preparing the workstation ensure it follows the comfort and health guidelines.

Also, consider the benefits brought my introducing plants into the office environment. Numerous studies have shown the positives that come with the introduction of greenery into the office. For instance, they help reduce stress levels and increase productivity.

(Sources: expertsupervisor.com & commongoodcareers.org)

Give access to any tools they will need

Before your employee arrives, it is important to prepare the necessary tools and ensure your new hire will be able to access them. Fill in (or add to) the form fields below as necessary.

Also, consider details like (but not limited to):

  • Keys to rooms they will need access to
  • Company mobile phone

To make sure you provide your employee with all the necessary items, you can note down the steps you take each day and what tools you use. You can also make a checklist here on Process Street that you can also use in future when distributing tools to new employees ensuring you remember everything.

Create accounts

No self-respecting employee onboarding checklist would be complete without making sure that you create all the accounts required by the new employee. Fill in (or add to) the form fields below as necessary.

As shown above, create accounts on all social platforms your company uses. Your employee should have their email and phone line. If your company uses apps like Slack or Trello you should create an account there as well.

Assign required reading

Prepare benefits package

Every employee needs to know which benefits packages come with the job. Here is some commonly required information your employee will want to know:

  • Explain how the position is funded. You might have already discussed it in the interview, but your employee will appreciate a confirmation.
  • Let your employee know what benefits package they will receive based on their level of experience and the current job market. Let them know some details about the budget so they are aware of the potential promotions and salary range
  • Inform your employee on vacation time and health benefits they will receive.

Provide a summary of this information in writing; upload a copy of this summary to the form field below.

To help the new employee understand the benefits package better, go over it at their own pace, perhaps share it with their partner and help them plan their financial situation.

Ensuring financial stability and informing your employee on the exact monetary situation is a good way to make them feel comfortable and worry-free, therefore making sure they focus on their work and feel appreciated as workers.

(Source: idealistcareers.org)

Provide a job description with responsibilities

You have discussed the job in more detail during the interview, but now it's time to give specific instructions on what you expect your employee to do. Upload a copy of the sales description to the form field below.

If you would like a guideline for this document, see above, for example sales representative job description.

Note the necessary qualifications, you can use this place to mention the required reading. You should also list your new employee's key responsibilities and a short description.

This form can later be used as a guideline for employee evaluation. You can see if the goals you set have been made, responsibilities executed and your employee's skills are sufficient for the task.

Make sure new rep's email account is accessible

A recent study by Sales Benchmark Index, that looked at almost 800 new hires, revealed more than 2/3 were disappointed by their first day, with the main complaint that the managers were too busy to provide the support and guidance they needed.

To combat this, make sure the rep's email is set up and accessible before the new hire's first day.

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    Set up new hires email and make sure it is accessible

Document your sales processes

Now you need to make sure that your sales processes have been documented, and that they're accurate.

Record a link to the folder where you've stored them in the form field below.

Think about your sales processes. Do you know these processes from start to finish?

It is a good idea to document your business processes, this includes your sales processes also. You can document your sales processes easily in Process Street, creating checklists just like this one.

For more information on how to document your processes in Process Street, watch our below video.

First day:

Welcome to the team

Often a new employee will arrive during a busy working week. In this case welcoming the new hire is overlooked and they are not caught up to speed with the team or new role. To avoid this, you should clear your schedule and make the new employee the number one priority for the day.

Other sales representatives play a big role in the third factor of social acceptance. You want the new employee to feel like they are being accepted into the company so that they are more loyal to the brand.

You should introduce them to the team - talk about their role, tell them why you selected them - this will help the rest of the team remember them better. Notify your team in advance that the new employee is arriving so they can schedule some time to get to know them.

(Source: miningman.com)

When welcoming the new employee to your sales team, be sure to communicate:

  • 1
    The company's values
  • 2
    The company's goals
  • 3
    The company's rules
  • 4
    The company's norms
  • 5
    The company's environment

Send an introductory email

It is good practice to send out an introductory email to your sales team, introducing the new employee, and encouraging people to personally introduce themselves.

Tour of the office

Take your employee on a tour around the office. Let them know where all the important and common areas are. Make sure they know where to find:

  • Kitchen
  • Reception
  • Bathroom
  • Their workspace
  • Support desk
  • HR area
  • Their mentor's office

There might be more areas such as the IT department, sales department and others more specific to your company. If you practice an open door system you can show the new employee where your office is and encourage them to visit you if they have any questions.

Assign training material

Send your introductory training material, or add the employee to your LMS and assign the relevant courses.

Explain your expectations

If you want your employees to perform well you need to let them know what you expect. Outline the general areas of knowledge and skills required to ensure your employee is successful in his/her job. Think about:

  • What goods and services should the job produce?
  • What impact should the work have on the organization?
  • How do you expect the employee to act with clients, colleagues, and supervisors?
  • What are the organizational values the employee must demonstrate?
  • What are the processes, methods, or means the employee is expected to use?

(Source: hrweb.berkeley.edu)

Induct into the company's culture

Usually, this step is covered by the HR team. Have them contact your new employee to explain details such as:

  • When s/he must arrive at the office
  • Where s/he must park
  • How s/he will access the building
  • What your company’s dress code is

(Source: hrpulse.co.za)

Assign a mentor

To ensure your new employee has the opportunity to seek help and work productively, you should assign a mentor.

They will ensure the employee quickly learns about the job and has assistance throughout the process. 

It is important to find a good candidate for mentoring, you can check out these 15 characteristics of a successful mentor to ensure you find the right fit.

(Source: humanresources.about.com)

Take out to lunch

You should take your new employee out for lunch. If you have already introduced them to their mentor it might be a good idea to have lunch with both of them.

Avoid discussing work during this time, it should be purely about getting to know one another.

First week:

Conduct product and service training

Train your new hire so they have the required knowledge about your product and service.

Think about the following questions:

  • What are you selling/what service are you providing?
  • What value does your product or service give your customer?
  • What sales tools do you use?

Use the long-text form field below to answer these questions.

Once this information is documented using the long-text form fields, be sure to communicate this information to your employees.

  • 1
    Communicate the required information to your new sales hire

Train your new hire on how to use your CRM

Most businesses have a unique Customer Relationship Management strategy. It is important to teach your employee how to use yours. A good way to do this is via a hands-on based approach. Think about setting your employee a specific project to complete, or setting them a CRM certification exam.

  • 1
    Set your employee a specific project to complete
  • 2
    Set your employee a CRM certification exam

Assign first project

Once your new employee has settled in, got to know the team, and feels comfortable in the workplace you should assign their first project. You already thought about a project to train your new hire on how to use your CRM. Make sure your project trains your new hire in this.

This will ensure they learn the job hands-on and feel valuable to the company, rather than doing menial tasks.

Using the Members form field below, assign the individual who will approve the first project assignment. A due date for this approval step has been set for 1 day after this task.

Approval: First project

Will be submitted for approval:
  • Assign first project
    Will be submitted

Conduct call reviews

Sign up your new hire to call reviews.

It is best to get your new hires to listen to reviews from your top reps and reps that haven't been in your team for that long. Set aside blocks of time where the new hire can listen to client calls given my your top reps. Have them take notes during these sessions.

Then set-aside blocks of time to have your new hires listen to calls from new reps. Again have them take notes. Comparing to two should highlight key skills and behaviors from the top reps that the new hires can then work to incorporate.

This allows your new hire to learn from a variety of experience levels and gives them access to different types of critique.

  • 1
    Set up call reviews
  • 2
    Assign call reviews of top reps
  • 3
    Assign call reviews of new reps

Provide a sales process overview

It's time to take advantage of your preparation next provide a sales process overview.

Cover the main stages of your sales process, to communicate to your sales reps where to prioritize their efforts, and what kind of numbers they will be held to.

Use the long-text form fields below to detail process steps your reps should prioritize.

You can use the long-text form field below to document the kind of numbers your sales reps will be accountable to.

  • 1
    Communicate the above information to your sales rep

Train your reps on how your company handles prospecting

Prospecting is the first step in the sales process, that consists of identifying the potential customers, aka, prospects.

You want your new hire rep to be familiar with your sales prospecting methods. For this, answer the following questions:

  • How does your company prospect?
  • How much research should your sales reps conduct?
  • What should your sales reps look for?
  • What common channels, number of touchpoints, and best practices should your sales reps use?

Use the long-text form fields below to answer these questions:

  • 1
    Communicate the above information to your sales rep

Walk through your buyer personas

In this next stage of training, you want to describe your ideal customer. For this, think about the following questions:

  • What does a best-fit customer look like?
  • What types of consumers should your rep be targeting?

You also want to lay the foundation for how your organization assesses and communicates with decision-makers.

Use the long-text form fields to detail this information.

  • 1
    Communicate the above information to your sales rep

Provide a competitive analysis

Provide an overview of your main competitors, then explain how you are different, that is, explain your Unique Selling Point (USP).

Use the long-text form fields to document this information.

Make sure you are open and honest about where your product falls short of the competition and where it outperforms the rest of the market.

Hold technical training

Learning how to use a team or company technology can be tough. Make sure you provide training for your new hires on how to use your technological resources and have them showcase their skills with you.

  • 1
    Provide technical training for your new hires

Practice negotiating and common object handling

Even experienced representatives need to know how your company approaches the negotiation phase. Think about the following questions:

  • What are your parameters for discounts and sales?
  • What kind of judgment calls can your reps make regarding discounts?
  • What is the etiquette for discussing these topics with prospects?

Use the long-text form fields below to detail your response to these questions.

  • 1
    Communicate the above information

Offer onboarding training when applicable

If you newly hired sale rep will be responsible for onboarding new clients, think about the best practices and responsibility that accompany this role.

  • 1
    Offer onboarding training as required

Explain expectations for the following month

You have already explained the overall expectations, but now it's time to let your employee know the specifics

Refer to the job description and make a plan for your employee to follow; let them know exactly what they will be expected to do. If possible, notify them of any upcoming projects and predicted workflows.

Meet to check over the paperwork

Schedule a meeting with the employee and a member of the HR team to ensure all the forms are filled and correct. Record the date of the meeting in the form field below.

Use this time to let your employee know if there is any other paperwork for them to fill in including tax forms.

Ask a member of the HR team to explain everything to your employee and tell them about the specifics. Let the new employee know he/she is encouraged to ask any questions and can use this time to discuss any work-related paperwork issues.

First month:

Plan check-in meetings

You should schedule meetings with the employee for the first month. Use this time to address any issues and concerns your employee might have. You should also spend the meetings offering some constructive criticism and advice on different tasks. 

A good way to schedule these meetings is by using Google Calendar. Add your employee to the event and make sure you are both ready for the meeting.

Explain long-term goals

There are some long term goals your company is moving towards. You should let your employee know where s/he fits in the picture

Letting your employee know that he/she is involved in some long term goals will make them feel more secure and understand the mission they are working to achieve.

Provide reading material for personal growth

Now that you have decided where exactly your new employee fits in you should encourage them to further their knowledge in the field. Ask them to read books, articles, and magazines about the appropriate themes.

Encourage them to socially interact with the team

Have your new employee interact with the team. If the team members interact with each other they will work together much better. Perhaps you can organize some out of work activities for the team to make sure they build good relationships and enjoy operating as a team.

Review the onboarding process over the next 60 days

Once the employee is settled in and feels more comfortable in the workplace it's time for you to review your onboarding process. Evaluate the steps that do and don't work for you.

Ask your employee for their opinion, perhaps create a survey and hear their thoughts to improve your onboarding process in the future.

Once you've got your results, create a new employee onboarding checklist here in Process Street to work through in the future.

Sources:

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