Thanks for coming to our recent customer event, Achieving Revenue Predictability During Economic Uncertainty.
As promised, here are tips to help you leverage Gong so you can improve your forecast accuracy.
Top Tips from Drew Korab, Sales Operations Director @ Upwork
In order for you to call a more accurate forecast, have your sales ops and sales leadership team come together. Build a project plan to overcome these issues and create a forecasting methodology. Let’s break down the project into four main steps:
- Deep dive into your business
- Co-author your forecasting definitions
- Defined Forecast Categories ensures everyone is forecasting the same way. Moving as a team to Gong as one source of truth, gives an end to end platform to input, inspect and present your forecast both top-down and bottom-up.
- Define an operating rhythm
- Creating a forecasting rhythm ensures everyone understands their deliverables and timing expectations.
- Set regular reviews.
By doing so, you and your team will gain improved insights. Once everyone forecasts the same way, you can move beyond your CRM data alone. And by leveraging deal warnings, trends and changes found in Gong, you can drive more accuracy in your forecast, and continue to give information to help drive your strategy forward.
After implementing their new forecasting methodology at Upwork, Drew has come away with some advice for anyone looking to improve their forecasts:
- Understand your W’s. Its critical to understand why your forecast is having issues and what impact that is having on the business. It's easier to dedicate resources to an issue that you can actually point to as hindering your strategy. Understanding who is responsible, and when are things to be executed is crucial to having a consistent and scalable process to forecast your business.
- Partnership is Key. Find your partners, stakeholders and champions. When we set out to launch our forecast methodology, sales ops did so in partnership with Sales. While we didn’t agree on everything at first, which shouldn’t be a huge surprise to anyone on this call, we found that having multiple perspectives to build the methodology proved successful. When it came time to roll out steps in our process, our leaders were all aligned on our “w’s” and it made it easier to get buy in from our Sales Reps
- Keeping it simple. There are many reasons we agreed upon leveraging Gong as our source of truth. One, is that it was a platform that our reps and managers were already leveraging for coaching among other things. All the information we decided was important, we simplified in Gong to make our process as painless as possible for our sales teams.
- Documentation. When we worked with our sales leaders to build our methodology, we wrote everything out, and it acts as our guide. Even if we decided to iterate on certain things, which we have done, and will continue to do, we have a reference point to go back to.
- Be transparent with Leadership. We link out our Gong deal boards with every forecast letter, and everyone has access that needs it. I’ve found it far more impactful to work driving the strategy that impacts the number, rather than spending that time trying to just align on the number.
Need some step-by-step guidance on how to run a successful forecast? Check out our Academy courses below for some quick and easy learnings:
- Gong Forecast at a Glance: For leaders (2 min read)
- Rolling Up an Accurate Forecast: For sellers (25 min course)
- Forecasting in Gong: For FLMs (25 min course)
- Forecasting in Gong: For Senior Managers (25 min course)
If you're a Gong newbie, you have to learn how to leverage deal boards and Gong for pipeline reviews in order to put any of our tips above into action. So begin your journey with this course on Customizing Gong for Pipeline Management to get the basics down.
Look out for our post-event email with a link to the recording of this event. And let us know if you have any questions or learnings in the comment section below!