Solutions Consultant Onboarding


March 2020


Ryan Price

Portland, OR

- Web Developer ca. 2003

- Drupal Developer ca. 2006

- Enterprise experience

   - Pfizer, NBC Olympics,
     Mass.gov, Red Hat, Autodesk

- Serial mentor and trainer

- Community builder

   - Coworking

   - Drupal Meetups / Networking

   - Technology and Arts Podcasts

The Role

Solutions Consultant


- solutioning

- estimation

- proposal writing


- customer relationships

- technical backstop


- qualify leads

- high-level solutions

- interpret client goals


- peer relationships

- client backstop

The Plan



FFW Organizational Structure

FFW Services & Tech Stack

FFW Accounts & Portfolio

FFW Sales Process

Solutions Team Offerings

90 days to understanding

May - August 2020

Organizational Structure

Understanding of teams, roles and key personnel


 - Attend each department's all-hands meetings

 - Attend standups of some in-process projects

   - Sprint/project retrospectives

 - Observe Slack/chat traffic

 - Onboarding Buddy one-on-one time

 - Job shadowing


Organizational Structure

A distributed workforce requires team building

 - Virtual lunch

 - Cross-functional matchmaking - short talk with someone on another team

 - "My user manual" (create a video/presentation of how to best work with me)

 - "What's on your desk?" (or in your garage, spare bedroom, etc)

 - Reddit-style "secret Santa" gift swap

Services & Tech Stack

Understand service offerings, sales positioning and capabilities, contributions to open source, non-tech services


 - Assist an issue or QA on an active project

 - Assist with content strategy

 - Conduct a design/accessibility review

 - Participate in analytics reporting

 - Review a project plan

 - Code review an open source contribution

Accounts & Portfolio

Understand key past projects and current accounts, scope of engagements and opportunities to grow


 - Review past projects

 - Write a case study of a past project

 - Brainstorm ideas for new business opportunities

 - Pitch an idea for a new offering

 - Continuing education on Account Management

     - Udemy, Lynda, etc

Sales Process

Understand processes for working with potential and active clients to support their needs and grow our business

  - Join client calls with sales reps

   - Leads

   - In-process projects

 - BCC me on some client communications
 - Review any sales onboarding documents

 - Continuing education on Sales

     - Udemy, Lynda, etc

Solutions Team Offerings

Understand Solutions work streams including discovery, consulting and training


 - Learn how other teams interact with Solutions

     - What are we called to do, and when?

     - When are we not called but should be? Vice versa?

     - When does a situation escalate past the first Architect or Consultant?

     - When do we primarily create an artifact vs. collaborate on one?

     - What proactive steps can I take to ensure project outcomes?

Solutions Team Offerings

 - Review recently created artifacts

     - RFP responses, estimates, project plans, etc.

 - Review significant artifacts

     - from successful pitches and projects

     - from less successful projects or failed pitches

 - Replay a project from start-to-finish

     - i.e. start with the first time solutions team interacted with the project,
       read through documents, review challenges and problems, go over the
       process for workarounds, changes, and client communication

The Timeline

Break it down

Subjects Hours
FFW Organizational Structure 4
FFW Services & Tech Stack 4
FFW Accounts & Portfolio 10
FFW Sales Process 10
Solutions Team Offerings 8
36 hours


Subjects Hours
FFW Organizational Structure 48
FFW Services & Tech Stack 48
FFW Accounts & Portfolio 120
FFW Sales Process 120
Solutions Team Offerings 96
432 hours


90 days = 12.8 weeks
rounded down to 12 weeks

Risks and Challenges

Watch your step

Main Challenges

  • My lack of Sales experience
  • The large amount of past projects
    and current accounts
  • Time Management

Key Advantages

Step it up

Key Advantages

  • DrupalEasy Podcast and community involvement
  • I am a tenacious researcher
  • I love to connect ideas, resources and people


and Discussion

Solutions Consultant Onboarding

By Ryan Price

Solutions Consultant Onboarding

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