Revenue Operations in SaaS

What is Revenue Operations (RevOps) in SaaS?

In the SaaS industry, revenue operations (RevOps) is an integrative business function aimed at maximizing a company’s revenue potential. Its core purpose is to align the traditionally siloed functions of Marketing, Sales, and Customer Success around common goals to foster a more cohesive, efficient, and effective approach to revenue generation.

In the context of RevOps, “operations” refers to the strategic coordination and streamlining of processes and procedures across these departments. By focusing on operations, RevOps eliminates inefficiencies, reduces friction, and ensures the entire revenue-generating engine operates smoothly.

Software companies without a strong RevOps framework face several challenges impeding their growth and success. One major issue is the presence of siloed data, where important customer and operational insights are trapped within departmental confines. Inefficient workflows are another consequence — a lack of coordination leads to duplicated efforts and missed opportunities.

From a customer’s standpoint, inconsistent experiences arise from disjointed strategies across Marketing, Sales, and Customer Success. Over time, this negatively affects customer satisfaction and retention rates.


  • RevOps in SaaS
  • Revenue operations team

What Does Revenue Operations Do Within SaaS Companies?

The RevOps function is more of a combination of practices, processes, and technologies than a specific role or department. Its main objective is to optimize the entire customer lifecycle, and it accomplishes that by bringing together data, systems, and people across and within the departments directly responsible for revenue-generating activities.

There are multiple key elements of a successful RevOps program, but we can break team structure and responsibilities into four main areas: operations, enablement, tools, and insights.

  • Operations oversees day-to-day processes, as well as longer-term strategy and planning.
  • Enablement takes care of onboarding, coaching, and development for each departmental team.
  • Insights covers the collection and analysis of sales, marketing, and customer data.
  • Tools takes care of the RevOps software you use, technical integrations, data management, and advice on new purchases.

Depending on the size of your organization, you might allocate leaders from your CS, sales, and marketing teams to build out the RevOps function. Larger companies occasionally set up a dedicated team of experts reporting to senior leadership.

Software companies are the organizations that most often implement RevOps because it suits their subscription-based model. It aligns well with their need for predictable revenue (MRR/ARR), emphasis on customer retention, and the abundance of quantifiable SaaS metrics.

Key Elements of RevOps Strategy

To implement a revenue operations strategy effectively, you have to first center each process around the customer journey. Then, you have to take a holistic approach to your go-to-market strategy. You have to ensure the entire infrastructure — data, systems, and people — is aligned to support your revenue goals.

Let’s look closer at the key elements of a successful RevOps strategy:


PwC reports that 55% of organizations operate in silos, with sales alignment being one of the most pressing issues today’s companies face. There are obvious reasons for this:

  • Marketers and sales teams share different goals and perspectives. Marketers are risk-averse and farsighted in their approach, while sales teams are primarily transactional, quota-driven, and focused on the short term.
  • Sales and customer success teams are tied directly to short-term gains. Marketers, on the other hand, are (usually) not. More often than not, it’s quite difficult to assess the total impact a marketing asset has on the bottom line.
  • The sales department doesn’t always know how to use marketing content. As such, an estimated 60% to 70% of B2B marketing content goes unused.
  • There is little empathy between departments. Each has its own strategies, workflows, and KPIs to worry about, so one department’s members aren’t automatically concerned with helping another.

Obviously, Sales will always be Sales, and Marketing will always be Marketing. RevOps teams don’t force them to overlap in responsibilities. To achieve alignment, they create one common goal — revenue growth.

From there, they map out the customer journey and its touchpoints, then involve each other in the strategic planning process. Marketers produce content for every stage of the sales funnel with insights from the sales and customer success teams. They facilitate a smooth handoff from one department to the next for a seamless GTM motion.

Data & Analytics

Data silos limit organization-wide access to knowledge. The average company has 2,000+ data silos, which significantly impacts the quality of information departments share with each other.

But revenue teams rely heavily on data. That’s how they learn about their customer journey, optimize processes, identify ideal customer profiles, and measure campaign performance.

The problem is they don’t operate with only one type of data. The average B2B sales cycle involves 7 decision-makers and takes 4-6 months to close. By the time they sign the dotted line, your customer has had anywhere from 20 to 500+ touchpoints with your brand.

Every one of them is a data point, and the platforms you use to deliver them (e.g., your website) are constantly collecting more. For the customers you already have, your SaaS is always gathering usage data, subscription renewals, and churn insights — in-app analytics that determine the health of your customer base.

That’s where team alignment comes in. Every activity ultimately leads to revenue. So, by tracing each touchpoint back to a revenue outcome and assembling a cross-functional team to analyze it together, you get a complete picture of your operations and their relationship with one another. That’s how you pinpoint revenue potential within your organization.

Technology Stack

Technology can solve most of your data and alignment issues. You can use it to streamline communication, create automations, and centralize data one department uses but the others don’t.

To run a SaaS company, you need numerous applications. And most companies grossly underestimate the number of software applications they actually use.

As of 2022, companies used an average of 130 apps within their organizations. While many of these are plugins that optimize one part of a team’s workflow, your core sales, marketing, customer success, and business intelligence tools’ ability to integrate with one another is the deciding factor in whether a RevOps strategy ends up working out for your team.

Essential Technology in SaaS Revenue Operations

Dozens of different tools support sales, marketing, and customer success. You almost certainly already have some of them. To ensure they support the RevOps function within your company, however, you need to know how they communicate with one another, where they fit into the revenue lifecycle, and how to integrate them.

  • Customer relationship management (CRM) is where all customer data lives. It’s the master record of your customer base, tracking interactions, opportunities, and deals.
  • Marketing automation software handles marketing touchpoints and the handoff between marketing and sales. It automatically collects data from your website, social media, and other channels, which your marketing team can use to improve their campaigns. Sales teams can use their insights for more context.
  • Sales enablement tools host marketing assets reps can use in their pitches. They also supply insights into how those assets are performing with customers, which better equips marketers to create content for future stages in the customer journey.
  • Customer success platforms facilitate proactive customer service and onboarding. They use data (e.g., customer health scores) to identify which customers should receive help, training, or other resources.
  • Revenue intelligence platforms use AI to analyze data from multiple sources (CRM, website analytics, and other apps). Your RevOps team uses them to understand how different touchpoints and processes impact your revenue goals.
  • Configure, price, quote (CPQ) follows your sales team through the quote-to-revenue process. It offers visibility into your sales pipeline, efficiency, and opportunities to maximize revenue through price optimization.
  • SaaS Subscription management and SaaS billing software generate insights into customer behavior, revenue streams, customer lifetime value, and churn risks.
  • Data analytics and business intelligence (BI) tools handle everything from revenue attribution to forecasting and financial modeling.

Benefits of RevOps for SaaS Companies

In 2023, nearly half (48%) of companies said they already have a RevOps function, up 15% in 2022. And Gartner research estimates 75% of the highest-growth companies will implement a RevOps morel by 2025.

There are plenty of reasons for this, but they all boil down to one thing: success. Let’s explore some of the ways RevOps helps the revenue-generating departments within a SaaS company align, achieve, and scale.

Increased Revenue

According to research from Forrester, companies that deployed RevOps grew revenue 3x faster than those that didn’t. This is all thanks to dramatic improvements at every step of the customer journey. By creating better marketing content, improving sales cycle efficiency, and driving retention and engagement, RevOps ensures better lead generation, conversion, and retention efforts.

Improved Customer Experience

A unified approach to the customer lifecycle ultimately benefits the customer. McKinsey research finds that 71% of B2B buyers expect a high degree of personalization in all their interactions, and they get frustrated when they don’t get it. With RevOps, all customer-oriented teams work in tandem to deliver a cohesive, personalized experience at every touchpoint.

Enhanced Efficiency and Productivity

Companies see a 10% to 20% boost in sales productivity when they invest in RevOps, according to a study conducted by Boston Consulting Group. Better marketing, faster sales processes, and proactive customer success activities all translate to a lower customer acquisition cost and higher ROI.

Improved Forecasting and Planning

Nearly half (45%) of all sellers say incomplete data is their #1 issue. With a RevOps function, data is more robust and accurate, leading to better forecasting and financial models. This makes it easier to make informed decisions about marketing campaigns, sales targets, and customer success initiatives.

SaaS Revenue Operations Challenges and Solutions

Although software is a major enabler when it comes to revenue operations in SaaS companies, it’s more about the people and processes involved. To properly align different departments, you have to be very intentional with how you execute your sales, marketing, and CS strategies at the operational level. It ultimately falls on leadership to create a culture of collaboration and transparency.

That said, you’ll run into a few significant challenges when doing so:

Data Silos and Integration Issues

Across departments, data fragmentation is one of the most pressing issues. Marketing, sales, customer success, and finance use different systems, which leads to inconsistent data and misaligned strategies.

Implement a centralized CRM system or a unified data platform that integrates data across all departments, providing a single source of truth. That way, you’ll have better analytics, forecasting, and strategic decision-making.

Lack of Coordination Among Teams

Without RevOps, your teams are working towards inherently different goals. This leads to inefficiencies and a disjointed customer experience. You have to establish a RevOps team with key stakeholders from marketing, sales, customer success, and finance, then hold regular meetings to discuss goals, strategies, and progress.

Resistance to Change

A shift towards a RevOps model requires significant changes in processes, technology, and culture. This is often met with resistance from employees who are comfortable with the status quo. To overcome that, leaders must clearly communicate the benefits of RevOps and involve employees in the process to address any concerns or challenges.

Ineffective Use of Technology

SaaS companies have access to an array of tools and platforms, but without strategic integration and utilization, these can become more of a hindrance than a help. Before investing in RevOps software, audit your existing tech stack for consolidation and improvement areas. Only choose tools that integrate with the rest of your stack.

Inconsistent Reporting and Metrics

Varying definitions of success and different metrics across departments cause confusion and misinformed decision-making. Your team needs to develop a set of common metrics and KPIs that are relevant across departments.

Customer Retention Concerns

In the SaaS model (or any recurring revenue model), retention decides your fate. Use insights from your integrated data platform to develop targeted engagement strategies that improve customer satisfaction and reduce churn. Train your team members on personalized communication and proactive support, and offer value-added services (e.g., customer onboarding).

The Future of RevOps in SaaS Industry Growth

When we think about the future of RevOps, we see an increasingly interconnected landscape that requires a unified approach to revenue generation. The roles of SaaS sales and marketing teams in lead conversion are becoming increasingly intertwined — most of the customer journey happens online, and the parts that require a rep still necessitate marketing collateral.

As for customer success, companies will continue to shift from reactive to proactive support, with data and technology playing a huge role in predicting and preventing churn. And with continuous improvements to business software, we’ll see revenue operations expand beyond the traditional marketing-sales-success trifecta to include teams like product and engineering.

People Also Ask

What is the revenue cycle in SaaS?

The revenue cycle in SaaS encompasses all the steps from customer contract booking, through billing, to revenue recognition. It begins with bookings (customer commitments), moves to billings after invoicing, and recognizes revenue monthly, as software access is granted over each period.

Should Finance be included in SaaS RevOps?

Yes, you should incorporate finance team members in  SaaS RevOps. Incorporating finance ensures alignment on pricing strategies, revenue recognition, and financial forecasting, crucial for cohesive operational decisions and maximizing revenue growth.

What are key metrics for Revenue Operations In SaaS companies?

Key revenue operations metrics for SaaS companies include customer acquisition cost (CAC), customer lifetime value (CLV), monthly recurring revenue (MRR), churn rate, lead conversion rate, and sales efficiency.