Are you doing RevOps right? Survey says: probably not.

Are you doing RevOps right? Survey says: probably not.

How do you define revenue operations? According to What does RevOps look like today? And what should it look like?, the first of a series of reports from The 2024 State of RevOps Survey, chances are very high that your answer will differ from the next person’s.


Although most people agree that the main benefit of revenue operations should be go-to-market alignment, job descriptions are all over the place.

Within the industry, it seems clear: “Revenue operations is a centralized team of professionals that supports all go-to-market teams–marketing, sales, and customer success,” said Matt Volm, CEO and founder of community organization the RevOps Co-op.

“But that’s often not what we see implemented,” he added. “Many folks are given a revenue operations title but aren’t part of a centralized department and only focus on a single go-to-market team. Other variations include marketing and sales support or sales and customer success support. Whom they report to and what they are responsible for also vary wildly.”

By the numbers: how prevalent is RevOps?

According to the report, more than two-thirds of organizations have some form of revenue operations. However, only half have a formal revenue operations department. The other half is a collective of siloed operations professionals who work together as an informal team.

One-third of respondents had no revenue operations representation and relied on siloed operations organizations.

The punchline? Nearly two-thirds of companies have not implemented a centralized revenue operations department.

By the numbers: what is RevOps?

While an overwhelming majority (89%) of revenue operations professionals self-reported supporting all go-to-market teams, the perception of people outside revenue operations departments is very different.

According to What does RevOps look like today? And what should it look like?, people outside of RevOps who are in an operations function thought RevOps just supports Operations (10%), just supports IT (11%), or just supports Finance (4%) without any coverage for the go-to-market teams.

The perception (or, perhaps, reality) for these departments may be that they are augmenting business intelligence, systems management, or some other auxiliary operations specialty such as compensation planning, pricing strategy, territory design, or customer retention.

Who they report to is also variable: 41% report to the CRO, and the rest are scattered across executive leadership roles, including specialized go-to-market executives (CMO, VP of Sales, or VP of Customer Success).

About 10% of respondents report to a COO (chief operating officer), which is the closest thing revenue operations professionals have to an executive track today without specialized go-to-market experience. Despite the title, CROs (chief revenue officers) tend to come from a go-to-market executive background, and in B2B, these roles are dominated by executives with a sales background.

There are rare CROs that come from revenue operations, but these exceptions typically also have sales or marketing experience or augment their team with senior leaders who specialize in managing the tactical sales and marketing execution.

In addition to which departments revenue operations supports, what they are responsible for also varies. What we don’t know for certain is what percentage of RevOps departments focus exclusively on analytics, own go-to-market systems, or include enablement. Sometimes go-to-market systems are controlled by IT, and enablement can fall under multiple departments within a company – particularly if they specialize in supporting a particular team or creating customer-facing materials.

Anecdotally, most revenue operations departments own some go-to-market systems (like the CRM) and support the organization with reports and dashboards needed by go-to-market leaders.

For more on the differences between perception and reality in RevOps, including changes in investments and where RevOps hires come from, download the full report, What does RevOps look like today? And what should it look like?

Download report now.

What should RevOps be?

Revenue operations is a fairly recent addition to the go-to-market team, but pundits have consistently touted this department as a key to scaling as a company. To do this effectively, RevOps cannot focus on one function within the go-to-market motion.

To support this belief, we’re seeing a ton of change in the market that indicates that focusing only on the sales team is not sustainable. A few signs of this shift in go-to-market momentum include:

With 55% of buyers reporting that they prefer to consume digital content prior to making a purchasing decision and 67% of buyers attending webinars within the last 12 months, we’re seeing more and more signs that marketing is becoming critical earlier in a company’s growth.

However, a broader scope of responsibilities alone will not increase revenue operations’ ability to align teams.

Today, there is no obvious path to the C-suite for revenue operations professionals. The result is a lack of positional power when compared to go-to-market executives, who often have interests that conflict with overall company objectives.

For example, marketing and sales executives often invest in short-term tactics rather than long-term solutions when a goal is at risk. Historically, revenue operations professionals have tried to influence alignment by creating consistent data definitions, centralizing reports via a “single source of truth,” and doing what they can to remove friction from team handoffs. While RevOps is promoted as a force for go-to-market team alignment, their hands are often tied when directly influencing behavior that is counter-productive to alignment.

For a more in-depth discussion of how to increase your operational efficiency, read the recommendations outlined in The 2024 operations roadmap. This report, #5 in our series from the 2024 State of RevOps Survey, details how you can more objectively weigh operational recommendations with short-term fixes proposed by go-to-market teams hyper-focused on hitting a quarterly goal. B2B companies, in particular, must adapt in order to stay in front of market trends–and this can’t be accomplished by clinging to the status quo.

For more on how to make this vision of revenue operations a reality, and to learn how we measure and rate departments, download report #2 from The 2024 State of RevOps Survey: Operational maturity.

Download Report 1

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