Alation Experiences 88% Improvement in Lead Response Time with LeanData

January 13, 2023 Ashley Ward

with Krishna Shah, former Marketing Operations Manager and Yana Clark, Senior Marketing Ops Analyst


To take full advantage of the hypergrowth in its competitive industry, Alation needed to shift its marketing operations, keeping a keen eye on lead response time, or speed to lead. First, the Marketing Ops (MOps) team addressed manual processes that were inefficient and error-prone. Then, as Alation rapidly scaled its operations, MOps deployed empowering technologies that not only served their internal customers on the revenue team, but also their prospective customers in the marketplace. The result has been a soaring growth in revenue built on a foundation of accelerated speed to lead and a dynamic customer experience.



Founded in 2012, Alation pioneered the modern data catalog and is now a leader in enterprise data intelligence solutions. With more than 450 enterprise customers and 300,000+ subscribers worldwide, their products and services include data governance, cloud data management, privacy and compliance, metadata management, and many others. 

At Alation, a robust marketing engine is responsible for the creation of approximately 90 percent of the sales pipeline, 75 percent of which is driven from an inbound go-to-market (GTM) motion, fueling the activities of a growing sales development representative (SDR) team. 

But, they had no way to match leads to accounts, so leads from the same account were being routed to different SDRs, leaving room to improve the  buying experience. And Alation’s MOps team had been manually routing leads through a round-robin process to an ever-growing SDR team. As a result, responding to leads was slow, requiring SDRs to piece together information. At that rate, they knew they could not efficiently grow and scale. 

As new global regions opened up, Alation needed an automated solution that would route leads, contacts, and accounts within Salesforce to SDRs and AEs while taking into account their complex territory structure. 

With Krishna Shah,  former Marketing Operations Manager, and Yana Clark, Senior Marketing Ops Analyst, at the helm, Alation’s MOps team turned to LeanData for solutions. 

Hypergrowth Supported by Speed to Lead

Alation first purchased LeanData for lead-to-account (L2A) matching to support account-based motions and routing to help with round robin lead assignment pools. However, they soon found they could use LeanData to support more complex GTM motions as Alation grew globally and expanded into new territories.

Today, they use LeanData’s Multi-Graph, allowing the MOps team to manage each business unit’s unique GTM processes, territories and round robins without affecting the flows of other GTM motions.

Besides Matching and Routing, Shah and Clark are huge fans of LeanData’s Audit Logs and reporting features to identify anywhere there may be a routing error.  Lead routing is no longer a mystery as the MOps team uses auditing capabilities to test GTM motions and make corrections.  

In 2022, they implemented BookIt which has also contributed to Alation’s remarkably improved speed to lead. Prospective buyers are now able to schedule a meeting the moment they submit a demo request form. Alation’s SDRs no longer spend time making multiple attempts to schedule meetings, freeing up their time to focus on outbound motions. This change alone resulted in an 88% increase in lead response time.The MOps team solves so many different problems with LeanData, they’ve become a strategic partner for other business initiatives, helping other departments do a better job. 

Shah sees so much value in LeanData knowledge that it is now a requirement to be LeanData Certified to join the Marketing Operations team. 

Significant Time Saved from Manual Troubleshooting 

Upon implementing LeanData territory routing, Alation identified that 25% of their leads had the wrong country information, even when using enrichment data. Once discovered, Alation made changes to their forms and now requires completion of a country field. This simple change created a huge impact in time saved as routing errors had previously taken 25 to 30 hours of manual labor per week to fix. 

By switching to territory routing and overhauling their forms to require a country, Alation’s leads are now routed to the right people, creating efficiencies across all Sales teams. 

Leveraging Integrations to Increase Pipeline

Alation uses LeanData’s partner integrations to automatically add leads to sequences in Outreach when certain criteria have been met, leveraging data from sources like UserGems. Then they use the Slack integration to send automated alerts to team members and drive sales activity. These integrations open the possibility for even more GTM automations in the future.

New-Found Agility for Change Management

The MOps team no longer worries when changes arise. Whether they’re onboarding a new SDR, a new account rep, or simply needing to make routine changes to lead routing, MOps has become an important, collaborative partner to the Sales Ops team. When new Sales team members finish their bootcamp, they can hit the ground running as all routing changes have been done. 

The Sales Ops team now approaches the MOps team for help with territory routing, account routing or other objects, making MOps a key player in the process. 

About Alation

Alation is a leader in enterprise data intelligence solutions including data search & discovery, data governance, data stewardship, analytics, and digital transformation. More than 450 enterprises drive data culture, improve decision making, and realize business outcomes with Alation.

Headquartered in Silicon Valley, Alation was named to Inc. Magazine’s Best Workplaces list and is backed by leading venture capitalists including Blackstone, Costanoa, Databricks Ventures, Data Collective, Dell Technologies Capital, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Icon, ISAI Cap, Riverwood Capital, Salesforce Ventures, Sanabil Investments, Sapphire, Snowflake Ventures, Thoma Bravo, and Union Grove. For more information, visit

About the Author

Ashley Ward

Ashley is the Director of Customer Marketing at LeanData and is responsible for the development of strategic initiatives to drive growth and advocacy throughout the customer lifecycle. Her favorite part of Customer Marketing at LeanData is getting to know OpsStars who are transforming the way they work.

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