H1 Enablement Snapshot

with Pete Thornton,

Customer Teams Enablement Manager, Postman

Enablement can often be a solo mission, so in this episode, Postman’s senior manager of customer teams enablement shares the results of what he’s doing. If you’re looking for a place to collaborate, understand what’s possible, or learn how you can get better, look no further!
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Key topics in today’s conversation include:

  • The enablement team (1:14)
  • Challenges that enablement solves (2:08)
  • Postman’s Center of Excellence (4:01)
  • Our promise to the company (6:12)
  • What enablement does (7:34)
  • What we’ve experienced this first half-year (8:45)
  • The revenue impact (11:16)
  • Company-wide utilization (13:16)


The SaaS Ramp Podcast explores how tech leaders scale from product adoption to enterprise success. Learn more at www.saasrampmedia.com.


Pete Thornton 0:06
Hello, hello, welcome to The SaaS Ramp Podcast. This is your host podcast, Pete. I want to share a few results today from the last two quarters with my enablement team just to give you an idea of what an enablement team actually can provide in a hypergrowth situation. So this is for Postman API lifecycle management platform. This is 19. This is the previous six months I’ve been here 19 months, we’ve grown our team, from one to nine, we have three software’s to fulfill promises of three initiatives that we undergo. And I will go ahead and walk through what took the last two quarters, this is h1, first half of the year of 2022, what that looked like for us, and I’ll actually share a short slide deck couple of slides, so you can see them. If you’re viewing this, if you’re only listening, no worries, I’ll actually just go ahead and speak through these results. So let’s get a look at creen two right there. And let me just pop through a few of these things for you. Okay, looks like the results are on slide six, so I’m gonna go ahead and share this slideshow from the beginning and tell you a little bit about each thing as we go.

Okay, so first of all, we are a team of nine now we have grown, we’re split between the globe, we have half our team in India, where we have a Bangalore office where the majority of our engineering team is about 300 engineers mostly sit there. And then we have a team and an office in San Francisco to kind of lead the go to go to market and our customer teams charge for about another, I guess 200 200 employees throughout the United States and then have about another 100 that are located globally elsewhere besides India, and the U.S.

So what we’ve done is we’ve taken our enablement team, and we broken it out into onboarding and ongoing motions. So we have the Center of Excellence, which you see on the screen right now, which is our new hire ramp creation studio. And we have continuous enablement, which is creating tip-of-the-spear resources based on the very fast people product process updates that we gather.

So we have a challenge, we have a challenge that every company experiences in hypergrowth. And this is what we’re solving with the Center of Excellence. So that challenge is remote employee onboarding pains associated with 100% year-over-year growth, that is both revenue and headcount growth. And there are three things in particular, that we felt to be challenges that leadership wanted, amended as soon as possible. And that would be any indications of inconsistent company culture. That is the fact that you probably also have an excellent company culture, and you don’t want it being diminished at all. As you grow so rapidly, you’re going to have so many new people come into the organization, that you’re not going to get that diffusion, that automatic osmosis of culture moving from one person to the next. It’s not in an office, it’s going to be remote first. And you won’t just have these few this nucleus of people that started the organization, now you’re scaling, how can we keep that company culture as we move forward, that’s first.

Second piece, mid-level management struggle. So this is what happens when you start adding tier after tier after tier of management in something that was previously leaders, and individual contributors only. This is something that happens when you have individual contributors who move into management, when you bring in management from the outside that still ramping. And these are all has to do with the ability of management to carry forward the business objectives of the company over time.

And the third challenge could be at any organization, delayed productivity and growth, meaning everybody’s probably going to get there eventually, from day one to job done. This is New Hire ramp. But how quickly can we move there? How successfully can we be how fast? And can we continue with our level of success as we grow and scale? So three particular challenges.

Okay, and so this is just my chance to flash up the team that I’m so very proud of. It’s also a chance to show you the four subsections of the Center of Excellence, this new higher-rent creation studio that we’ve lifted. And I want to tell you a little bit about each, we have launch and that’s my picture down there. We have the boost team, Orbit Team and Supernova launch is where we generate the outcomes. We work with leaders to actually understand what the outcomes of their particular team happens to be for strategic sales for enterprise for the inside team, the business development team. For the enterprise customer success team, the scale customer success team, the product advocates, maybe the renewals, Team sales support, on and on, there are about 20 teams we support. We need to know what specifically they’re doing and for that quarter because things change over time, right? That’s launch.

Boost is the content creation engine. These are instructional specialists or instructional designers and LMS specialists. So they take the content that we already have they uplevel it into curriculum, they embed it into a learning management system. And we scale it across our new hires.

Orbit, the next one you see. Orbit is the maintenance and improvement path you can kind of catch in this post-Minot theme we’re launching, we’re boosting out of the atmosphere, a lot of effort there, orbit should be simple. However, orbit is also necessary on a monthly basis. We have a synchronous methodologies as well as in-person meetings every month as a backstop to make sure that we have every path every program maintained and improved over the course of time.

And finally, supernova, which we’re seeing with supernova is the reference of our cohort leads. These are our cohort leads, these are the people that move our customers, our internal new hires, because remember, this is the center of excellence, the onboarding, the new hire ramp studio, they move them from day one to job done in a specific manner, piece by piece. So we have a 60/40, maybe a 70/30, with our management teams, and they are the 60 or 70% of that’s not asynchronous to the learning management system. They provide a lot of those virtual instructor-led trainings, and then make sure all the logistics are handled as well, that supernova.

Okay, here’s our promise to the company. This is what we view as the solution what we’ve agreed with leadership as the solution, a new hire ramp creation studio that fuses systems, services software, to accelerate time to job done by 45 days. And that’s that acceleration is important because the customers that we typically have revenues associated with them. So the average revenue is about $1.3 million. They can vary wildly for every organization as low as 750, as high as 3 million. These are the ranges we typically see. The benchmarks are based on whatever happens to be the case now, like when are they closing deals? When are they getting account plans prepared? When do they have a certain amount of pipeline? When are they being able to create case studies or otherwise advocate on behalf of customers for product releases, et cetera, whatever the outcomes are? When are they doing that today? Can we speed it up by 45 days? Because the revenue generated by simply speeding it up by 45 days has downstream effects, not just with money but quality and productivity and employee morale. Net promoter scores there that we measure every bit of. Everything that we can, we measure. And so that’s what we’re saying. And we do that with a system. That’s kind of like our playbook, a service, which is essentially our people and what we do and software’s these are the platforms that we offer that we do it within.

Okay, so I just went through what these actually are the system service software. And so what we do the new hire rent Studio is a collaborative experience, meaning we work with our team leads and champions, resulting in measureable. Very important, right measurable, role-based also very important because we do not sit in HR, nor do we ever wish to what we do is domain-specific function-specific it is role-based, then outcomes-driven, meaning we have specific graduation requirements that we drive to we measure time or productivity and time to job done. Those are the measurements, those are outcomes-driven measurements, new hire rent programs. And we do that in these in the manner of certifications. We have team consultations, and we have LMS software and reporting.

Okay, so here’s what I wanted to get to. And this is where I’ll stay for just a moment, I just like for anybody out there in enablement, because again, this can kind of be a solo mission. So some of what I’m doing here with the podcast is trying to share our results to others, but also just like create a place of collaboration for other enablement leads to understand what is possible, and like, Where can we get better at this. So here’s what we’ve experienced over the first half of this year. And this is just again, on the new hire ramp side.

So there’s been 130, new hires ramped total, and that is, from day one to job done, it’s this little phrase we had, that means from the time they move through the door. It’s only for maybe three or four hours of the first day, but they work with HR and IT to get provision for certain tools. The more generic tools we help with the rest, as well as the benefits, some of the cultural pieces throughout HR, etc. And then from there, we’re moving into what their job done actually is, how can we get to those role-based outcomes? 130 total. Okay, so And by the way, that’s over the course of 19 months. So that’s, that’s the team growth that we’ve seen, it was 130 61 year to date. So that is in two quarters, we’ve had 61 move into the customer teams, and this is across 17 Total roles. But the two main buckets of those roles are sales and customer success. The third bucket would essentially be support, whether it’s product support, sales or revenue operations. We do help with all of those teams, but the primaries there in that bucket would be sales and customer success. So the average days to productivity is 27.8 days to productivity. Now, that’s a great number to have, but really it’s what does that number mean? What that means is, people who take our programs, on average, get through the content and certification of the content in 27.8 days. So that means they have moved through the LMS system in that amount of time. And that’s great. It’s just good to know whether that’s getting longer, shorter when people say, Hey, you just put it in New Hire ramp, and it’s like going to be a week-long say like, would you like us to hang on to your new hires for an extra however long that was, and that’s a different conversation, it’s good to know your numbers so that you can have honest conversations with leadership. And then that also means that they are, they have experienced pieces of everything and even simulated their outcomes in a safe environment within certifications in that amount of time. It’s nice that it south of 30 days, it doesn’t have to be.

Okay, so there’s 17 unique teams that we serve, specifically serve, we kind of do a little, we call it our volunteer work for some additional teams. But that has, they all have a 45 day increase in speed, some are much, much more, but 45 days is what we can kind of set the expectations of. And we either benchmark that from actual results that are available prior, or we benchmark it from a 90-day or 180-day standard, depending on the role.

So here’s the revenue impact to this. And this is my favorite part it has to be because we all always need to be able to move forward gather resources, gather support, time, energy money to continue the programs moving forward. So $162,500 per new hire is the revenue impact. And of course, that works backwards by kind of multiplying something here, it’s averaged revenue influenced. Again, that could be between 750,000 and 3 million at Postman, that number is typically between one and 2 million. And I feel like that’s average across more times the speed to rent. So if you’re, if you have a $1.3 million quota, for example, and you were a sales team member, and you can move to your job done to being able to help customers across the line to deals one closed one deals, yeah, 30 days faster, that’s 108,000. If it’s 45 days faster, it’s 162,500. annually. That’s how much you’ll gain annually. And that number is fantastic. When you multiply it times the number of new hires that come through the system is just one of 10 challenges that we say we can help overcome, have another podcast about the 10 challenges, called you might need enablement, if kind of funny, I thought it’s funny. But this is what it comes down to is that revenue number, that’s a snapshot number that you can utilize. In many meetings, it would be good if you knew that for both your onboarding side and ongoing. On the ongoing side, the best way I find to get a revenue number is to run a sales acceleration play of some sort. And so you can have it tied to your CRM tied to your salesforce.com CRM, CRM if you’re like us. And that way you can actually attach the play, you’re running with your team to revenue on the back side, a lot of the things that we do have to be measured in a different way, it’s nice if you have at least one place where you can tie it to a hard number in either your onboarding side of the house, or your ongoing side of the house and enablement.

And then this last piece, I’m calling it company-wide utilization. What’s interesting is we created something in the customer teams that is being asked for and now utilized across the organization widely. So though we do not have 300 Plus users in the customer teams, everybody in the customer teams is a user of lessonly. At some point lessonly is the LMS that we had moved forward with, then we have over 300 that are using them across the organization. That is because they would like to have people product and process information for their own use or to understand better about the customer teams. Because the customer teams are newer, the engineering teams have been here for longer because it’s a product lead growth company. So they utilize that. And there’s a thumbs up thumbs down in there, as well as an area to lend specific feedback, but we get thumbs-ups 90 98% of the time. So that doesn’t mean it’s the best stuff in the world. It just means that they only found missing commas on some of them. So that’s where the satisfaction rating of 98% comes from. And then there’s another one on here. That’s interesting. And this is your 90-day monthly active user window. So we actually have 178 active users of our learning management system. And again, that’s interesting because we only have so many new hires coming through at a time. So we’re running some other information through the learning management system on the ongoing side, that continuous enablement side, but also that comes from the wider organization. So as you get a big hit across the organization, from your customer teams or your sales enablement, even when it’s not specifically made for them, that’s what finding That’s why I’d like to share that. And lastly, lastly, we have over 4000 active lesson views. That means in a 90-day rolling window, this is always just north of 4000 we have 4000 active lesson views Now we’ve created a lot of lessons and we created them last year. So the lesson creation phase is, in a lot of cases, that bass lesson was from 2021, h2 of 2021. But it’s a lot of lessons used, that’s a lot of content input. That’s a lot of information flying that is not going to otherwise be able to be disseminated because people aren’t in an office, this is their digital experience. This is their interaction. So we are proud of that.

Thanks. Hope you enjoy the results. It certainly was nice to like put this together, go digging for it, put it together. I put it into a quick little blurb, an eight-minute presentation to the all-hands are the demo days is what is actually called here. And so if you’re an enablement lead, I highly suggest you do this actually quarterly. I’m a little behind on some of the promotional pieces, some of the metric sharing, but I won’t let that slip. Again, this is just too important to let everybody know and when it’s time for you to ask for additional software’s additional headcount or even just getting that meeting with a leader saying, “this is important,” this good to lean back on some hard data because you are selling just as much as a true sales or customer success person sometimes it is because you’re trying to gather the time the energy the resources from your internal teams. And as we both know, that could be tough. If you see anything on here missing or if you have any questions, please reach out puck SP here at SaaS, right, just reach out and let me know DM me. Thanks all.