Hiring a dynamic, enthusiastic and, above all, an effective sales team is vital for any business seeking to increase its profits and push its products and services out towards a wider audience. However, sales recruiting is not always all that straightforward – it takes time, effort and expertise if you want to find the best salespeople around.
You need to know where to find them, how to attract them to your company and how to make sure that they are the right people for the job. Put simply, it’s not just the people who you are hoping to recruit who must be good at sales – you as the recruiter needs to be just as adept.
Why recruiters must be master salespeople
Recruiting sales talent is a highly skilled form of selling. It requires the same set of skills as salespeople working in other industries. The ability to spot opportunities and identify the candidates who will perform well, and then to influence, persuade and attract them to accept your available role and to join your sales team.
Just like any salesperson, therefore, a sales recruiter must always be ready to proactively seek out candidates to interview and, hopefully, hire. Staying in touch with the relevant online platforms and social media sites, especially LinkedIn, is crucial to help you see where salespeople are currently working, how they are performing and whether they are showing signs of wanting to move on.
To help sales recruiters and businesses looking for their next sales talent, here are five top sales recruiting tips designed to offer a range of effective recruiting sales strategies and sound advice to help hire the perfect sales team.
As with any aspect of business, you will get better results from your sales recruiting activities if you plan ahead. Take time to work out a properly detailed, well considered job description and team that with a detailed person specification.
Really think about what it is that your sales function needs. What will the person or people that you hire actually do in their new role? What longer-term plans do you or the recruiting company have, and how will this affect the successful candidate’s job?
Having drawn up your personality profile, do use it, but don’t get too caught up in a box-ticking exercise. Look for people who can meet the criteria by all means, but also dig a little deeper.
Can the candidate demonstrate how they have overcome any weaknesses, or built up particular strengths over time? How resourceful are they? Are they more than just a list of positive attributes – can you get on with them as a person, and will they be able to form meaningful connections with potential
customers? Most importantly, can they think on their feet? This may not always be totally obvious from their written CV or application form alone.
This is where the role play comes in to its own. It gives you a chance to witness the candidate in action, showing off their sales skills and ability to persuade. Asking someone to demonstrate how they would sell you a product or service, as if you were one of their customers will reveal the depths of their imagination, confidence communications skills and resourcefulness before you even make a formal offer to recruit them.
It also offers a great way to gauge energy levels, determination and ability to read the situation and adapt sales techniques according to how the conversation is unfolding. This can be done via a phone or video conferencing call, during a face-to-face interview – or both!
Crunch the numbers
Once you have found a pool of candidates that have impressed you with their sales techniques and whose personal profiles you gel with, it’s time to delve deeper into the numbers. Can their track record back up what they claim to be able to do, day in, day out, rather than just as a one-off task in an interview?
Ask to see sales records, references, performance review data and any other relevant paperwork, such as awards, evidence of bonuses and positive customer feedback. Ask questions relating to past performance and find out what they have achieved not only in positive times, but how they have turned around negative experiences and secured sales against the odds.
Finally, remember that recruiting sales talent is a two-way process. They have to impress you, sure, but you must impress them as well. Top salespeople are likely to be investigating several opportunities and you need to make sure that your offer stands out.
Find out what they want from their potential new position and what their own longer-term aspirations are. Could you offer them training to help progress their career and hone their existing skills? Are they interested in other perks, such as sales bonuses, healthcare, company car? Keep an open mind and be open to questions too. You may have to showcase your own sales techniques to convince them to accept!
Recruiting Sales Reps
So, when you are thinking about recruiting Sales Reps, always bear these five tips in mind. In addition, watch out for potential candidates with the right attitude and skills for sales. They may well be in a different line of work, or not be actively searching for a sales role, but there’s no harm in approaching people whom you think would make a great addition to your sales team. Look for likeable people who are happy to travel, meet and engage with new people and haver a passion for what they do.
Want to know more about our recruitment services?
If you are looking for a top sales recruitment consultancy that can work alongside you during this process to help you identify, interview and hire the best candidates for your available sales roles, then please contact SalesNet today. We would be delighted to meet up to discuss your current sales recruiting requirements and to see how we can help.