“A knowledge test is one thing but being able to see people use knowledge and assess what they actually do…that is much more powerful and that’s what Rehearsal allows us to do.”
A major online retailer was looking for effective ways to onboard new associate account executives to its sales team. Its recruiting program is highly selective and only chooses new hires from the best colleges and universities in the U.S. While the recruiting process ensured that these new graduates had the intellect and desire to handle the job, the company had to find a way to train the new hires to master key objectives and handle any customer objections with confidence at any point throughout the sales process.
The online retailer built the Rehearsal platform into its launch plans for a cohort of new hires who were fresh out of college. The new hires were trained on a product and then asked to record their “pitch” for that product using the Rehearsal platform. The pitch had to be no more than two minutes in length and needed to address the benefits of the product and why the product would make a difference for the customer. Their “pitch” was then replied to by a role play of a customer objecting to the pitch. From there, the new hire would have to use what was learned in the sales training program to respond with a remedy for that objection. In all, each new hire was responsible to complete 12 role plays — each addressing a different objection. All role plays were graded against a standard set of criteria and by a group of sales managers and executives.
The company evaluated the Rehearsal platform based on three areas: user experience, engagement, and “lift” in performance. The students described the user experience as supportive of their busy lifestyles as it allowed them to train anytime, anywhere. Each student was asked to complete 12 role play scenarios — all students completed all 12 scenarios. As for “lift”, by watching the students’ performance videos, they could see where the group struggled and were able to quickly adapt training materials to make immediate adjustments in performance.
The company is now broadening this program to the North American Sales force of approximately 200 employees. The Rehearsal platform will be integrated into the onboarding plan for new salespeople and become part of the accreditation process for existing salespeople. Going forward, a salesperson will receive a certificate of completion that not only shows the student attended a training session but that there exists proof that the student knows now to apply what was learned and to a standard that the company expects.