Which SDR metrics do you measure?

In the second in our series of articles on metrics, we look at which metrics most businesses measure and ask, could we do better?

In our previous article, we looked at what metrics are and how businesses need to focus on the metrics that matter. If you focus on vanity metrics, or ones that aren’t relevant to the direction you want your business to move in, it will lead to the wrong results.

In this article, we’re going to look at common metrics that companies focus on for their SDR teams. We will also ask the question, are they picking the right ones, or could they drive better outcomes by tweaking their KPIs? Let’s dive in.

The metrics businesses measure

A 2019 piece of research by HubSpot asked companies what metrics they track for their sales development teams. Here are the top five:

  • Calls – 29%
  • Meetings scheduled – 13%
  • Emails sent – 12%
  • Opportunities created – 9%
  • Activities – 9%

Almost a third of business focus on the number of calls their SDRs make. Further down the list, only 4% measure the number of conversations.

This gives the impression that a significant number of businesses are measuring the metrics that are easy to measure, or make them look good, rather than focusing on what really drives results. At SalesWorks, when we talk to sales leaders and SDR managers about metrics, we don’t recommend focusing on number of calls or meetings scheduled. With slight alterations, you can get a better outcome.

Alternatives to tracking calls

Tracking the number of calls means SDRs focus on quantity rather than quality. The number of calls an SDR makes is too far removed from the results of the business. While successful SDRs will spend a significant proportion of their day on the phone, the best will get more from the calls they make. Also, simply tracking the number of calls does not take account of who your SDRs are calling.

Look at where your SDRs need to improve and adjust your KPIs around that. For example, if your SDRs are getting leads, but not following up, implement a KPI for first-time connects. If your SDRs seem to be contacting someone one, but then never again, bring in a KPI for contacting a prospect three times or more.

Alternatives to meetings scheduled

If the goal of your SDR team is to book meetings for your AEs, you would think measuring the number of meetings they schedule is a good idea. However, 20-30% of meetings booked never happen.

To get this number down, try focusing on the number of meetings that actually take place. SDRs will then take steps to remind prospects about the meeting and give them opportunities to reschedule if they can’t make it. Businesses that take these steps generally get their no-shows down to between 8 and 12%.

Sales Accepted Opportunity

Another important KPI to consider measuring your SDRs on is Sales Accepted Opportunity. It drives an absolute focus on quality, because if the sales leader does not accept the opportunity, the SDRs do not get the credit. It will mean SDRs will work harder on qualification, not just having a conversation.

How many KPI’s?

When we talk to sales leaders and SDR managers about KPIs, we suggest focusing on four metrics. We recommend companies pick three leading indicators, metrics that predict your results, then one lagging indicator, reflecting the results of your overall business.

But however many you choose, it’s important you choose metrics that drive the kind of behaviours that lead to the outcomes you want. Ultimately, SDRs are paid based on the KPIs they hit, so use that to point them in the right direction.

What metrics do you measure?

Now, we’d like to know what you do in your business? Are there metrics in your plan that are more ‘outside the box’?

What do you track that’s more innovative than number of calls and meetings scheduled?