How we used OKRs to improve our Onboarding experience
7 min read

How we used OKRs to improve our Onboarding experience

How we used OKRs to improve our Onboarding experience

If you are looking at your Product Onboarding experience focused on new users, think again. New users are only one part of your user base. User Pilot has categorized onboarding into three types:  Primary, Secondary and Tertiary at every stage of user journey.   

Consider a company having Sales, Marketing, Customer Success, Support, Product and Engineering, HR and finance teams.  Each team has a bunch of KPIs that would define success for their specific teams.  These KPIs run into a page with over 70+ metrics that each team would need to watch. The reality is, if you measure everything then you measure nothing. That’s where OKRs or Objectives and Key Results come in. If you are new to OKRs, read our Ultimate Guide to everything that you ever need to know about OKRs.   

These are  a set of most critical metrics that move the company forward.  Using OKRs, one can transform how teams work together, keeping a sharp eye on Product Onboarding, not as an event but as a journey. 

Today’s buyers are spoilt for choices. The number of Apps out there makes one feel like a kid in the candy store! Each App has a self serve product tour, which most often is skipped.’ Users just want to get going to reach the action which they are setting out to do.  

How do you set OKRs for improving Onboarding experience? 

For those who are new to writing OKRs/Objectives and Key results, it is a strategy execution framework that focuses efforts on the most critical business metrics. One of the important Company Metrics which were selected as part of our Company Key Results was ‘Increase free trial activation from X to Y%.’  We went on to find that only a small percentage of our trial users were actually activating key features. This probably had a lot to do with not having structured onboarding.  

We set OKRs as a Growth team. Remember, OKRs are best set as teams rather than individuals/silos. They are shared commitment metrics that move the business forward. These metrics are shared by Sales, Marketing, Customer Success, Support and Product & Engineering. 

OKR tip: OKRs are meant to be agile. During the mid quarter check-in, if a metric does not make sense or an experiment or initiative is not working, then do change it.   

OKRs for Team Growth 

Objective: Improve free trial experience in order to increase new customer acquisition

KR1: Reduce page download speed from X to Y seconds 

KR2: Increase key feature activation from X to Y 

KR3: Increase trial activation from X to Y 

Stages of User Onboarding 

Armed with an OKR, the team went on to list down actions for each stage of the onboarding experience. These experiments/initiatives were linked to a specific Key Result.  

Stage 1: Primary Onboarding 

Let's start with the first step on Primary Onboarding. The goal of this onboarding experience is to push the user to the AHA moment and activate a value add feature or key feature.   

With the help of user interviews, we figured that ‘Writing an OKR’ is a step which most users want to get to. In other words, the A-HA moment is when users write a good OKR!  

Now, the personas of Users coming to Fitbots are quite different. We have CXOs/Founders who want to get to Company OKRs and view how everything comes together with our Alignment boards.   

Another persona being ‘Business users or Team members’ who want to write a Team/Department OKRs. 

Both these journeys require a different set of actions to reach the AHA moment.   

Persona 1: The CEO/ Founder 

For this persona, writing a Company OKR is important. However, not all who take our trial know the best practices on How to write effective OKRs.  

The CXO/ Founder is taken to ‘Write Company/ Org OKRs’ and here a video by a Global OKRs coach on ‘How to structure an OKR. alongside an OKRs Writing Assistant

Persona 2: The User/Team member 

For the Business user/Team member/ HR Leader the A-HA moment is to write an effective Team OKR.   

Progress Bars for both personas highlight how far they are into their journey. They can, of course, pick up from where they left off.  

We experimented with different types of Progress Bars, and zoned in on the design below.  

The hook here is the progress bar showing how much of the walkthrough is left for the user, either in the form of percentage or number of steps left. This is incentivised by giving the user a nice clouser in the form of becoming an OKR champ.

Stage 2: Secondary Onboarding


The stage of Secondary Onboarding, as shared by User Pilot is to ‘keep driving more value to your users’ by showing them more about the benefits your product can bring to them.  

We thought deeply about what additional value will users want from writing OKRs? Is it unlocking more features, or content, or both?  

We realized that most folks who take a trial may want to learn more about ‘How to get OKRs right’ once they have written them up. 

Here’s how we help our users: 

  1. An OKRs expert from Fitbots is available for a call with any trial user.  

  1. A free OKRs course is optional via our OKRs academy 

How do we keep them coming back?  

Remember that OKRs are definitely not a set-and-forget. An absolute No! This requires discipline and updates on progress.  

Notifications to users on OKRs progress, and a rain check on the activity for the week is delivered straight to their inbox. These notifications are sent to the OKR Champions and copied to team members who are part of moving the needle.  

Stage 3: Tertiary Onboarding 

Tertiary Onboarding is the stage for paid users. You would wish these users to use the product and become advocates.  

Customer success has a key role to play here, along with Product and Engineering teams. The intent is to make this an intimate experience.  

Here are a set of initiatives planned for tertiary onboarding.  

OKRs onboarding for new users:

As teams get onboarded during the course of the year, the need to keep newbies abreast on OKRs is also key.  

Our awesome Customer Success teams and Coaches have a key role here. Learn OKRs masterclasses are run FREE of cost for new users, along with a Live product walk through.  

Communication on New Feature releases

New feature launches are ongoing for all companies or products. Bi-monthly mailers are scheduled to communicate with users. While we see open rates are high, the click-through rates need focus for sure.  

These mailers are scheduled per the life cycle of an OKRs roll out.  

QBRs with OKRs sponsors 

OKRs sponsors are key to sustaining OKRs. Touchpoints with sponsors helps in learning more about what is going well when it comes to an OKRs roll out, and what are the pain points in product adoption.  

Onboarding is a journey, with the right metrics to track and initiatives that move the needle, there is a lot to learn on how to make a customer journey truly meaningful.  Fitbots is proud to have received G2 High Performer badges for Spring 2022.    

Fitbots has worked with over 5000 teams in helping them get OKRs right and tracking powerful insights on our OKRs software. Click here to take a Free Trial.  

About the Authors

Vidya Santhanam is the Co-Founder of Fitbots OKRs. Having coached 600+ teams, and conducted 1000+ check-in meetings, Vidya likes writing about Metrics, high performance, and leadership.

Arunabh Arjun is all things product, an ex-entrepreneur and a skilled software engineer. Arunabh likes writing about product management, tech, product design and execution 🚀


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