When I began in Enterprise Technology Sales (then Software, then Cloud), there used to be about an 80% success rate - those who met or exceeded their annual sales goal. The success rate now appears to be in the 10 - 20% range.

Are you seeing the same thing?

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I've seen data from Xactly that shows less than 25 percent of reps in SaaS hit their quota. It feels like this is true based on what I've seen over the past 5-6 years. It leads to a lot of unnecessary turnover. Root causes are many but what I've seen are finance departments setting targets at a level that is not realistic given market conditions, product maturity, rep readiness, insufficient top of funnel support, etc.


Yep, we just got a Trojan Horse rolled into our commission structure. We used to be paid a bonus on % attainment of variable, now its an arbitrary % commission where, even if you hit your number, you don't get paid your OTE.


This is on sales management and company management. Good companies want most reps hitting quota.


I wonder if the 80-20 rule applies and that 80% of sales come from these 20% hitting plan?


Doesn’t the 80/20 rule always apply?

I'm sure if any company of at least a decent size had 80% of reps hitting target, the execs and finance are looking at that and thinking "well evidently we need to raise targets."

20% of reps hitting is like a sweet spot, high enough that you're keeping your good core talent and it seems at least possible to maybe hit, low enough that you aren't paying out all this extra money.

You want to ensure your reps are milking all their territory properly. If targets are too low, then you're losing out to companies whose reps have higher targets and need more. Now other side to this is of course the mental health toll on reps and the fact that your territory might not have enough in it to get you to target even if you work 100 hour weeks, but such is life 😁


Another thing to think of/consider is that although retention may be high at times, how many reps are on plan? So although a company not show huge amounts of turnover, the entire picture is not always presented

I’m an Education Technology Sales Professional, and we’ve seen quite an uptick in venture capital companies acquiring Ed-tech companies in recent years. When this happens, this then shifts the priority to short-term high growth. The squeeze is then applied to extract maximum return for minimal investment - which is understandable. Although, as pointed out by others, % to quota has dropped, stress and turnover are up, and long term employment stability is harder to achieve. On the flip side, moving to a different employer more frequently has allowed me to learn new skills, expand my network, and increase my base salary.


Agree 100%. Too much competition, and no brand loyalty from customers. management turns over ever 3 years, and brings their previous solutions with them.


I have been doing an executive MBA and my classmates are experienced folks with 15+ years in industry in IT so a lot of my classmates are hiring managers now. The attitude is quite negative and sales is seen as a disposable asset by a lot of them. They openly joke we are easy to replace as we are now constantly job hopping it actually suits them because we forgo proper severance this way and company goals change so fast anyway that you may need a totally different salesforce every couple of years anyway or have to pay to reskill / upskill them. Some take this task on like Salesforce but most others dont want to bother. The attitude I have seen candidly from hiring managers who are my friends in the program towards sales is mainly negative and this has been a consistant trend. I think its something you should do for no longer than 5-6 years to earns some good income than make sure you skill up so you can move into higher value side of the business like operations. I dont think SaaS sales is a long term gig anymore. But perhaps I am wrong. My background is about 12+ years in Enterprise and I have really seen a shift to a more inside sales, diposabke battery type salesmen model. Cheaper/higher churn/less skilled but less risk. Just replace in 9-18 months if not working out. Plus it helps that salespeople are constantly job hopping themselves.


Also, SAAS has become a buzz word and more companies are structuring their offerings this way. This has muddied the waters and confused customers because everone is throwing that word around their offering.

Companies who license on SaaS pricing models or host a SaaS offering use the word SaaS. How is that confusing?


I agree with salesforce1 job hopping can be avoided 🙏🏽🙏🏽


I’ve averaged a 88%+ closing rate in 2022. I’m sure it’s industry relative.

Yes, about 15-20% from a revenue standpoint but closer to 40% from a transaction perspective.

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