BenchSights for Software Sales Metrics

Metrics for Team & Compensation Plan Decisions (30+ decision metrics collected)


Sales Organization & selling decisions

  • What distinguishes this sales Segment? e.g., geography, target contract size, product, industry etc.
  • Do you have a separate team of “farmers” to do upsells/expansions?
  • Where did leads come from?
  • How effective (% of their quota) were the lead-gen people generating leads?

Account Executive Team (AEs)

  • How many AEs did you have?
  • By how much did you grow the AE team?
  • What hiring criteria (required selling experience) do you typically require?
  • How long does it take to ramp a new AE?
  • How important is the equity component of AEs’ compensation?
  • Where are they located?
  • How big a problem was it hiring AEs?
  • What was voluntary and involuntary AE turnover?

Broader Sales Team

  • Ratio of AEs-to-Sales managers
  • Ratios of AEs to each of SEs, BDRs, and SDRs
  • What was the ratio AE cost-to-total sales cost

Compensation Plan


  • How high was quota?
  • What was included in measuring performance against quota?  ARR or TCV? P.S.?  Renewals?
  • Over what period did you measure performance against quota?  Annually? Quarterly? Hybrid?

On-Target-Earnings (OTE)

  • How high did you set OTE?
  • What was your Quota-to-OTE ratio?
  • What percentage of OTE was from variable comp?
  • What was the effective commission rate at OTE?

Accelerators, Decelerators & Caps

  • Did you have decelerators for AEs performing below quota?  If yes, at what effective commission rates for achievement of 50% and 75% of quota?
  • Did you have accelerators for AEs performing over quota?  If yes, at what effective commission rates for achievement of 125% and 150% and 200% of quota?

Penalties & SPIFs

  • For which performance criteria did you have either penalties or SPIFs?  Areas include: upfront cash, contract length, debookings, renewals, discounting, linearity, etc.
  • What level (percentage change in variable comp) in economic penalty or bonus?

Did you use “farmers” for upsells/expansions?

  • If so, at what commission rate?
  • How did they perform?

Did you have a cap on AE variable compensation?  If so, at what level?
Did you pay a separate commission to AEs for P.S.?

Metrics for Other Relevant Attributes (20+ decision metrics collected)


  • What category of software does your company sell?
  • What is the ASP across all of your existing customers?
  • What was the ASP of new customers from your AE team last year?
  • What was the ASP of upsells/expansions?

Selling Environment

  • How important a factor was market headwinds/tailwinds in performance last year
  • How important a factor was competitive dynamics (beyond AEs’ control) in performance last year
  • What is the typical sales cycle (beyond AEs’ control)
  • How much of your overall bookings have been self-serve?  How much of the bookings are coming from the CEO/Founder(s)?

Company Financial Profile

  • Size of company (ARR)
  • Growth rate of company
  • Software business gross margin
  • FCF profitability
  • Annual gross dollar retention
  • Professional Services attach rate

Other Company Factors

  • How old is the company?
  • Ownership profile (VC, PE, Public, bootstrapped, etc.)
  • Is software the main business?  If not, what %?
  • What is your customer NPS score?
  • Where is HQ?
  • ASP across entire software business