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What is a Round Robin Meeting – Guide to Smart Meeting Distribution

Looking to explore round robin meetings for your distribution workflow? Here’s all you need to know about the types of round robin meetings you can implement for different business use cases.

Krishna Charan
May 4, 2023
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Updated on… January 16, 2024

Sports leagues and championships are the best way to understand the terminology behind ‘round robin’. A large number of teams play smaller tournaments or ‘qualifiers’ to find a spot in the final line-up of the championship.

Now, you have 20 teams playing the championship, having qualified previously. Now the first level of play is usually in a round robin format, where every team faces every other team. 

Alternatively, these 20 teams can also be divided into four groups, where each team faces the 4 other teams in their group – before moving on to the next rounds that involve elimination, playoffs, and the eventual championship game.

Round robin meetings are similar in spirit, with way more automated distribution flexibilities. 

  • Qualify leads before they are distributed through round robin meetings.
  • Ensure every sales rep gets to hit their meeting quota.
  • Keep the number of meetings variable for some sales reps and teams. 

For instance, sales reps who are just getting started might need less meetings; and an experienced closer might take more meetings.

  • Reassign meetings when reps are not available and also balance their quotas simultaneously.
  • Enable a smooth handoff between reps and AEs to move the deal forward.

In this article, let’s understand how to get the best of round robin meetings for different distribution use cases and internal sales scenarios. 

Wait, so what is a round robin meeting?

Round robin meeting is an automated meeting distribution workflow to evenly assign leads to the right sales reps. Prospects are routed to reps instantly, ensuring quick responses and also a fair system of providing equal opportunities. 

For context, when prospects land on your feature or landing page and schedule a demo, round robin meetings will ensure that these leads are distributed equally to all the reps in your sales team. 

While even distribution is a basic characteristic of round robin meetings, you can get a lot more nuances into the workflow:

  • Negate late responses but distributing the meeting to immediately available rep.
  • Avoid long queues by prioritizing high intent prospects in round robin meetings; with separate workflows and nurtures for low intent prospects.
  • Ensure that the round robin meeting considers the account owner (lead-to-account matching) and SDRs’ expertise associated with the prospect’s company or background.

What are the different types of round robin meetings?

There are three ways to calibrate your meeting distribution using round robin meetings.

1. Strict round robin meetings – If you want to keep your distribution rules strict and in your control

With strict round robin meetings, the system determines the next sales rep in the queue and assigns the meeting equally to everyone in the team. 

Which means, as soon as a prospect submits a form, the next available rep on the queue is identified and that rep’s calendar is shown for prospects to book a meeting.

Example flow:

→ Prospect fills up a form. 

→ System qualifies the lead based on form values or enriched data.  

→ Prospect picks a time slot to schedule a meeting with a rep who is predetermined by the system based on round robin rules.

Use a strict round robin when you need to ensure every single rep gets an equal number of meetings. 

Drawback of strict round robin:

Since the system shows only the next rep’s available calendar slots, you might miss out on some prospects who might not be available at the same time.

 A GIF that shows RevenueHero’s instant meeting scheduler in action.

2.  Flexible round robin meetings – Give prospects the choice to look up SDR availability and pick a slot

Instead of routing prospects to the next available rep by strict round robin, flexible round robin scheduling shows the combined slots of everyone in the team.

So, the meeting is assigned to the rep available in that particular slot that the prospect chooses.

This gives your prospects a lot of flexibility with a lot more calendar slots to choose from. 

If there are more than 1 reps available for a particular calendar slot, then the person with less number of meetings assigned is given the current meeting.

Example flow:

→ Prospect fills up a form. 

→ System qualifies the lead based on form values or enriched data.  

→ Prospect picks a time slot from the calendars of all available reps. 

→ Prospect schedules a meeting with the rep associated with the time slot (in cases where multiple sales reps are available, the rep with less number of meetings gets the new meeting assigned).

Use a flexible round robin when you need to ensure that prospects who schedule a meeting get the maximum number of time slots to choose from. 

Drawback of flexible round robin:

Since the distribution can be uneven in this system, some reps might get too many meetings while others get less number of meetings – creating a void in the fairness of quota attainment. 

3. Weighted round robin meetings – Customize the SDR and sales team workloads based on your process requirements

Imagine you’ve just hired a new rep, who is still ramping up with onboarding. Wouldn’t you want them to get fewer meetings till they get up to speed? That’s the option weighted round robin meeting gives you.

There are other scenarios where weighted round robin meetings will come in handy:

  • If you want to route meetings to reps based on their expertise and skills, weighted robin is the way to go. For instance, you can assign 2X more meetings to a specialist over other reps. 
  • Weighted round robin is a great way to incentivize or train reps with more meetings to help monitor performance. This can also be pivoted to particular meeting types, customer size, and more variables while qualifying the lead.
  • Despite your best efforts to qualify leads, some meetings still end up as false alarms for reps. In these scenarios you can override the system by assigning more meetings to reps who received low-quality leads.

Use a weighted round robin when you need to keep the workloads and meeting quotas of some of your reps or sales teams variable for special use cases. 

The advantage also is that you can add meeting weightage, whether you follow a strict round robin or flexible round robin at the outset.

Drawback of weighted round robin:

Similar to strict round robin, prospects might see less and inconsistent number of slots, given how weightage might vary between reps.

Example flow:

→ Prospect fills up a form. 

→ System qualifies the lead based on form values or enriched data.  

→ Prospect picks a time slot from the calendar that pops up. 

→ Based on whether it’s primarily a strict or flexible round robin type, the system keeps track of the weightage you add and balances meetings accordingly.

Round robin meeting software like RevenueHero also let you have different distribution rules for different groups or sales teams.

A screenshot of RevenueHero’s round robin distribution rules for a team.‍

And also, group round robin, for when you want to multiple assignees on a single meeting with customized conditions.

A screenshot of RevenueHero’s group round robin meetings functionality.

Benefits of round robin meeting distribution

How can round robin meeting models fix your sales operations and lead management for the better? 

A round robin meeting significantly cuts down on your speed to meeting time. It’s a simple logic that the faster you get a prospect in front of a sales rep with a meeting, the higher the chances of conversion.

Internally, you can have your meeting distribution hassles sorted. Checking quota attainment is a manual trek through excel sheets and CRM, which wears down sales teams from doing more customer-facing and revenue-generating tasks. Round robin meetings put distribution on auto-pilot if you set the right custom rules for your needs.

Let’s lay down some of the key benefits of round robin meetings.

1. Faster lead routing and meeting assignment to sales reps

Round robin meetings automatically ensure leads don't fall through the cracks by distributing meetings across the sales team so no one rep is over burdened and your customers don’t have to wait too long for communication. 

By extension, round robin meetings accelerate response times and pipeline to save customers from a broken buying journey after they book a meeting; and also keep them from shopping around because of your indecision.

2. Ensure an equal or custom meeting distribution 

Maintaining team performance and results is a struggle for even the most experienced sales managers, regardless of how enticingly motivating their incentives may be. 

To stay on top of productivity, round robin scheduling can be of great help – it ensures that each team member is always following up with new leads, staying accountable, and keeping their sights set on closing deals! 

3. Assigns leads and meetings based on sales reps' availability in real-time

Round robin meetings efficiently assign leads to the right reps while considering their availability in real-time. 

For instance, a sales rep might need to be away during working hours; or not be available at the specific time that prospects want. Despite such outliers, the ideal round robin meeting system can balance workloads between reps seamlessly by getting them in front of the next available SDR.

How to use round robin meetings?

While setting up a basic distribution model can be simple, you need to account for some of the outliers unique to your business needs.

What happens when a meeting no-show happens? How does every sales rep attain their designated quota? What if an incoming meeting request is from an existing company that has an account owner? Let’s find out.

1. Configure custom rules beyond your basic round robin meeting set up

Settling for basic round robin will make your meeting distribution very rigid and prevent a better buying experience for your prospects. With custom rules, you can automatically refund sales reps their meeting credits if their assigned meeting or lead cancels the meeting or doesn’t show up. 

Whether it’s a no show or unfit lead, your reps deserve another fair shot at hitting their quota. 

Other conditions include setting up round robin meetings based on prospect’s company size, the reps’s skillset, team, time zone, and so on.

2. Build different round-robin meeting conditions for multiple teams

If your sales team is split by customer region, time zone, deal size, and other customer types, it makes sense to build dedicated team lists that have their own rules.

For instance, your APAC deals might need your round robin meetings to kick in only in the particular time zone. And within the region, you might have reps specializing in enterprise accounts.

So, you need to look out for a software that helps you scale these conditions without giving growth pains.

An image that shows one of RevenueHero’s round robin meeting distribution workflows.

3. Give account owners priority with lead-to-account matching

If your incoming meeting is from an existing company in your CRM or has contacted you before, the original AE needs to take the meeting. Because they still have the best context about the prospect. Right?

The lead doesn’t need to go through a typical round robin meeting workflow for such cases.

There are 3 types of lead to account matching you can configure to power your round robin meetings. 

Match to the owner of existing contacts: This rule assigns the prospect to an AE if it’s an existing contact they’ve handled before. 

Match to the owner of similar contacts:  Here, the contact is matched to an AE who owns a related contact that is similar to them or has handled someone similar recently. 

Match to the owner of a company: The contact is matched to an AE who owns the entire contact list of leads from a company. 

PS. You can match based on email or any other CRM property using RevenueHero.

A screenshot of RevenueHero’s lead-to-account matching functionality.

RevenueHero is purpose-built to implement round robin meetings in the most simple way

Companies shouldn’t have to choose between a meeting scheduler and lead distribution too. RevenueHero was purpose-built to bring the best of both worlds together with meeting scheduling and round robin happening in a few moments after a prospect fills up a form.

Without an efficient round robin meeting tool like RevenueHero, managers would need to: 

Put up a hammock on an excel sheet and stay there to calibrate meetings.

❌ Scour through the assigned meetings and availability to manage weightage.

❌ Manage another layer of complexity like matching leads to their existing CRM owners.

A funny GIF that shows the difficulties of meeting calibration without RevenueHero.

With RevenueHero, you can add due diligence and surety to your meeting scheduling and round robin distribution workflow:

  • Assign meetings instantly based on fully customizable round robin rules to distribute leads evenly and also display your best sales rep’s calendar slots to high-intent leads – simultaneously.
  • Compensate or credit back meetings to sales reps for missing out on quota during vacation, meeting no shows, and dead end leads.
  • 1-click magic links can trigger a round robin workflow through unique meeting links embedded in inbound and outbound emails.
  • Add lead-to-account matching, weighted distribution, skill-based and team-based routing, and more such conditions – over and above your round robin meeting workflow.
  • If an SDR takes the first meeting in your organization, after the first meeting n is done, they can handover the prospect to the right AE in 2 clicks with Relays while letting RevenueHero route and balance meetings across your AEs. 
  • Automatic 2-way CRM sync that removes the grunt work of updating meeting status and other details in the CRM after every call.
A GIF of 1-click magic links by RevenueHero
Magic links can round robin meetings right from a click in an outreach email.


How does round robin distribution work?

Each rep gets the same number of leads on a rotating basis. The process is done automatically based on configured routing rules. This allows reps to work at their own pace and ensures that the same reps aren't inundated with leads.

How does it differ from cherry picking?

In round robin, leads are assigned to reps in rotation, while cherry picking is where leads are assigned to reps based on established criteria such as their knowledge, skill set, geographic areas serviced, compatibility with the lead, etc. Cherry picking allows you to optimize lead assignment in certain cases but might not be considered fair by some.

How do you account for times when reps are unavailable?

If reps are unavailable, RevenueHero pools the availability of the reps within the round robin row to serve the customer. If a rep is in a shortage of meetings, their availability will be prioritized, so they receive a meeting as soon as possible. RevenueHero continues to count the number of meetings if a rep is unavailable, so the rep is prioritized. This process ensures fair distribution while catering to customers' wants and needs.

How do you gather data on round robin performance?

Platforms like RevenueHero provide reports to understand better why a meeting was scheduled or the effectiveness of a given lead source. Insights on number of bookings, no-shows, drop-offs, MIA leads, and rescheduling or meeting cancellations can also be tracked at a channel-level, in real time.

Revenuehero is fast and intuitive, custom-built for modern sales.
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