March 27, 2014

Many people cannot cut it in sales, which might explain why the industry has a high turnover rate.

Hiring managers are left frustrated when their repeated attempts to find and keep qualified candidates fall short. Sales managers are left in perpetual training mode without the potential for building a strong sales team.

Nobody wins when talent acquisition falls short.

So what can you do to change it?

Sales recruitment is all about finding the right candidates for the long haul. Companies must look in depth at a person’s personality profile and appropriately gauge a person’s long-term ability to thrive in a sales environment.

Finding candidates that have the criteria your business needs to fuel sales may sound nearly impossible. Incompetence may be becoming a pattern.

Hiring a sales recruiter is one way to shore up the search for talented candidates, but there are also some other hiring “must-haves” to put into place.


What a Sales Recruiter Can Offer

sales-recruiter-can-offer-pool-of-qualified-candidatesA recruiter has the ability to sink his or her teeth into a company’s mission.

By being fully involved in the recruitment process, a company can evaluate more prospects over a shorter period of time when hiring an internal or external recruiter.

While the price tag on recruitment services may appear steep up front, they can actually be a cost-effective solution in the bigger picture.

Successful recruiters can provide your company with in-depth analyses of all the candidates who come through the pipeline.

They are able to take on every aspect of the recruiting process, from putting feelers out in the community to asking for applications. People who focus on recruiting are often able to provide a larger pool of qualified candidates in a relatively short period of time.

Professional recruiters should have also been trained in the art of interacting with candidates. When they spot a prospect who meets all of the criteria, they can nurture and encourage that candidate to become a part of your company.


Not Every Recruiter is Equal

Be wary of recruiters who only offer a bright first impression. Your recruiter should be able to exhibit past results and hard skills, not merely the potential for self-motivation and an alignment with your company’s culture.

A sales recruiter on his or her own may not be enough to ensure that your company’s goals are being met over time. Recruiters can fall into the same trap as companies that rely on traditional recruiting methods. They may rely too heavily on first impressions and fail to take a prospect’s inherent strengths into account.

Recruiters should have a deep understanding of the mechanics of the sales trade and also exhibit the right resources to test candidates with proven sales recruitment methods.


Identifying the Right Recruiter for Your Company

choosing-the-right-salespersonWhen your company begins to look for a recruiter, you need to consider many different factors.

Many recruiters will vie for your attention with well-developed pitches and elevator speeches. It is important to look at the candidate’s rate of placement success and recruitment processes.

Does the recruiter offer a guarantee, or have a timeframe in which he or she expects to show some measurable results?

It is important that your recruiter is 100% sales-oriented. Always ask a professional what drives him or her as a recruiter for sales.

Does your recruiter have experience in your industry?

Specialization can be a key factor when it comes to picking out the right candidates. More importantly, you need to know that a recruiter does not rely on a “gut” feeling alone when recruiting potential sales candidates.

Recruiting firms and individuals who specialize in sales know about sales recruitment tests and qualifying candidates. Find one that uses a proven method for identifying sales candidates who have the most important trait needed to succeed in sales: Drive.

Drive is critical to long-term sales success and is comprised of three leading, and measurable, qualities including: Need for Achievement, Competitiveness and Optimism.


Recruiter + Drive = Success

If you can find a recruiter who understands these concepts and who uses proven methods like thorough sales testing to provide in-depth analyses of candidates, then your company can effectively eradicate the frustration of high salesperson turnover and the endless stream of poorly qualified candidates.

Much like your sales candidates, any recruiter you choose should exhibit the same Drive. A recruiter who is willing to go after the top candidates and offer them what they need will ultimately become a winning asset for your company.

The recruiter should also have the soft skills needed to be personable enough with each candidate while basing any final recommendations on a mixture of real world experience and testing results.


Making Hiring Decisions

making-sales-hiring-decisionWe understand that recruiting for sales can seem like a difficult, time-consuming task.

It is disheartening when you, as a hiring manager, recruiter or sales manager find yourself going through the same hiring cycle over and over again.

The traditional recruiting methods are not working.

They do not yield the results because they only look at the surface of a candidate. You need to make sure that your sales candidates will not peter out with the first tough blow.

Ask yourself these questions if you are not sure about whether your company needs the assistance of a recruiter:

  • Can we offer the same vetting process internally? Recruiting takes dedication and time. If your internal team is too busy with other processes, a dedicated recruiter can fill in the gaps and become a real asset.
  • Does the recruiter offer a guarantee? When you invest in a new resource, you need to know that your investment will pay off. Look for recruiters who are willing to go the extra mile to ensure that you are satisfied with the candidates they provide.
  • Is the status quo working? If you are consistently dissatisfied with the results of your hiring process, it may be time to look for an alternative, like hiring a recruiter.

It may not be necessary to hire a recruiter to handle your hiring process if you have the right sales recruitment process in place.

The bottom line is that you need to start looking past the initial impressions you receive when you start reviewing resumes and interviewing. Identify early-on whether or not your candidates have the necessary foundation to really succeed in sales.

Sales candidates need to have certain personality traits to ensure their long-term survival in an industry that says “no” more than “yes.” When you can hone in on the individuals who have Drive, you have found your answer.

Some companies may have a hiring manager or assistant who can implement the practices needed to find great candidates.

Other companies may not have the resources or the time to delve into the innate personality traits in their candidates. For these companies, look for recruiters who are passionate about yielding results that will last for the long haul.


Have you worked with a recruiter before? What are your tips on hiring the right one?