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  • Mike Piddock

Listen up! Using SDR calling tech to drive teamwide gains


Escher inspired image of telephones

Sales Development Representatives (SDRs) are at the forefront of prospect and customer interactions, making it crucial to continuously assess and train them for success.


Yet, by the very nature of the role, a significant part of their day to day activity is telephone-based. And, in a post-COVID environment with Working From Home somewhat normalised, it’s become a lot harder for SDR managers to listen into, and coach, a live conversation in the spur of the moment.


Naturally, technology, and increasingly AI-powered listening technology, is stepping in to help fill the void.


With the advent of advanced sales technology, such as call listening, recording, transcribing and summarising tools, SDR managers can use them to bridge the physical gap. They are able to analyse performance, provide constructive feedback, and ensure consistent training across the team, enhancing performance and driving tangible improvements.


In this blog, we’re going to explore the best practices of recording and listening to SDR calls, highlights what SDR managers should pay attention to during assessment and training, and discusses the importance of these tools, particularly in remote work environments.


We’ll also cover some of the technologies available, including those we use at Second Voice Pro, and how we get the most out of them.


Recording SDR calls

Recording SDR calls enables managers to analyse conversations objectively, providing valuable insights for training and assessment purposes. To do this effectively, make sure you consider:

  • Consent: Ensure that both parties on the call are aware and have given consent to the recording, adhering to legal and privacy regulations.

  • Quality: Use high-quality call recording technology to capture clear audio without interference or distortion.

  • Storage and Organisation: Establish a centralised system for securely storing and organising recorded calls, making it easy to access and review them when needed.

What should SDR Managers listen for?

When assessing and training SDRs based on recorded calls, managers should pay attention to the following key areas:

  • Effective Communication: Assess how well SDRs articulate their message, demonstrate active listening, and tailor their communication to the prospect's needs.

  • Objection Handling: Observe how SDRs handle objections, whether they address concerns empathetically, overcome objections persuasively, and guide the conversation towards a positive outcome.

  • Product Knowledge: Evaluate the depth of product knowledge displayed by SDRs, including their ability to highlight unique selling points, answer technical questions, and position the product's value proposition effectively.

  • Call To Action & Closing Techniques: Analyse the SDRs' ability to identify closing opportunities, create a sense of urgency, and confidently guide prospects towards the next steps.

Utilising recorded calls for teamwide training

Recorded calls offer an excellent resource for group-wide training activities, allowing SDRs to learn from both exemplary and suboptimal approaches. We like to apply various strategies for when using recorded calls in our teamwide SDR training:

  • Best Practice Examples: We share recordings of successful calls where SDRs demonstrated exceptional skills, highlighting specific techniques or strategies that led to positive outcomes.

  • Objection Handling Workshops: We play recordings featuring various objection scenarios, encouraging team members to discuss and propose effective objection handling techniques collectively.

  • Collaborative Feedback Sessions: We host group sessions where SDRs can listen to and provide feedback on each other's calls, fostering a culture of continuous improvement and peer learning.

  • Role-playing Exercises: We use recorded calls as the basis for role-playing activities, allowing SDRs to practice their skills in simulated scenarios and receive constructive feedback from their peers and managers.

Call listening, recording, transcribing & summarising tech providers

While most Voice Over IP (VoIP) phone systems provide recording functionality, several providers offer more advanced call listening and recording technology tailored for sales teams. Here are our favourites:

  • Wudpecker.io: Wudpecker.io offers video call recording and analysis tools specifically designed for sales teams, enabling managers to identify coaching opportunities, track performance metrics, and enhance SDR capabilities. We love the simplicity of its interface, the quality of its AI call summarisations, and the responsiveness of the team behind it. Right now it’s totally free with no limitations on usage. Hence, it’s our preferred choice of provider at Second Voice Pro.

  • Fireflies.ai: Fireflies.ai offers a voice-enabled AI assistant that captures and transcribes sales calls, providing searchable call records and analytics for improved training and performance evaluation. It’s got a great range of features including high speed playback, which saves SDR managers time, and plenty of integration features in it’s fairly priced paid plans. Also, it can record anything through a browser (so audio calls as well), so use this as a second option when we need this feature. A great choice for companies beginning to scale.

  • Gong.io: Gong's AI-powered conversation analytics platform is now the elder statesman of the call-listening industry, but it remains a great reliable option with plenty of integrations. It provides insights derived from recorded calls, helping teams optimise sales strategies and enhance coaching effectiveness. Gong (frustratingly) doesn’t show pricing on its website, but from our research it's significantly more expensive than Fireflies and Wudpecker, plus a set-up fee is usually charged, so perhaps better suited to larger, enterprise customers.

In summary

Effective communication is vital in sales development, and recorded SDR calls offer a wealth of insights to improve teamwide performance. By leveraging advanced call listening and recording technology, such as Fireflies and Wudpecker, SDR managers can assess SDRs objectively, identify areas for improvement, and drive continuous training.


Utilising recorded calls in group-wide activities, such as best practice sharing, objection handling workshops, collaborative feedback sessions, and role-playing exercises, creates a culture of learning and improvement within the team. In today's remote work environment, these tools play an increasingly vital role in enabling consistent coaching and training for SDRs, ultimately leading to enhanced sales effectiveness and business growth.

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