October 20, 2015

Ultimate Guide to Hiring Salespeople to Creating a Sales Job Ad that Attracts Top Candidates

Do you need to hire a new salesperson soon? Are you worried that you will not be able to attract top candidates for the position?

If you answered “yes” to both of those questions, you are likely concerned about how your sales job ad will perform.

After all, you do not want just any candidates – you want to bring the right candidates into your office. This way, you can meet with them in person, ask them the appropriate sales interview questions and determine who will be best fit for the job.

 

Avoid Guesswork When Creating Your Ad for a Sales Position

Decide where you want to post your job ad.

To create an effective job ad, you have to put yourself in your ideal candidate’s shoes. When they search for job postings, where are they looking?

Here are 3 popular websites job seekers visit:

1. Indeed

Indeed is an incredibly popular job board because it is easy to use for job seekers and inexpensive for companies posting job ads.

As a hiring manager, you can use Indeed as a search engine and look through candidates’ resumes instead of waiting for them to come to you.

While it does not boast as many features as sites like LinkedIn, it is still a good option due to its large search engine and popularity as a resource for job-seekers.

2. LinkedIn

Sales Managers Use LinkedIn to Post Job Ads

LinkedIn is a social network for professionals. When you post a job there, you can view the profile of each candidate that you are considering.

This is beneficial because a candidate’s profile can contain information about their career history, a brief bio, articles they have written and recommendations from past employers and co-workers.

So, not only are you provided with an easy way to find professional salespeople when you use LinkedIn – you get to take an extra peek at the history of their careers as well.

Because of this and the fact that LinkedIn offers many insights and tools, hiring managers often consider LinkedIn the best place to find ideal candidates for job openings.

3. Craigslist

Craigslist is a classified ads website. While it has been popular with the general public for some time now, it is decreasing in popularity with recruiters and hiring managers.

Why?

Because many jobs on Craigslist appear illegitimate, top candidates often avoid looking there when they want a new job. It is much easier for them to look on LinkedIn, Indeed or another job board where they can trust that the position is legitimate.

So, try LinkedIn if possible, and use the tools they have to offer for finding top candidates.

You may also want to consider Indeed or niche job boards, but you may find less luck recruiting on Craigslist.

Perform your own research, and try testing with different job boards to see which ones yield the best results.

 

Sell the position.

First of all, open your job ad with something that addresses the reader directly (In this role, you will…) and avoid using third person language (“The ideal candidate is…”). The idea here is to immediately grab a top candidate’s attention and make him want to work for you – something you cannot do with a dime-a-dozen job ad.

Make sure you also highlight the benefits of working at your company, including the culture, commission structure and any other unique perks.

Also, avoid using generic buzzwords like “best” and “innovative.” Instead, speak directly about why the job seeker should want to work for you (without exaggerating), and be as specific as possible to set your ad apart from the ads of your competitors.

You can even put something lighthearted that illustrates your company culture (like “must love dogs”) as a requirement to make sure you find someone who is a good cultural fit for your company and sales team. Doing so may attract candidates who would have passed over your ad otherwise.

use-company-culture-to-attract-driven-salespeople-5

 

Include the responsibilities and requirements.

When you list the requirements for your position, make sure you are serious about them.

For example, you may want to think twice about whether you should require a degree. Many top salespeople who do not hold a degree might opt out of applying for the position if they see that they do not meet your requirements.

To avoid problems like this, consider listing “must-have” requirements and “nice-to-have” requirements in your ad. That way, you can easily weed out unqualified candidates without scaring off those who may not hold all of your ideal requirements but would still be a valuable addition to your sales team.

Also, be specific about what the sales role entails. For example, you can include information about what they will be selling, their sales quota ,travel requirements and any other important responsibilities that they will need to be aware of.

Make sure you are honest in your ad and mention challenges as well – that way, you are more likely to attract candidates with the Drive needed for long-term success with the company.

Finally, choose the correct job title for the position by thinking about what top sales candidates are searching for when they look for a job.

Consider testing multiple job titles and seeing which one attracts the best candidates – changing just one word could make a huge difference!

 

Format the ad for easy readability.

Even the most patient job seekers do not want to read through an intimidatingly large chunk of text.

Break up your text with bullet lists and headers and keep your paragraphs and sentences short. That way, the ad is easy for top candidates to read and understand.

 

Include a specific requirement for applicants.

Want to find out whether or not a candidate has read your entire job ad?

An easy way to do this is to post a set of specific instructions somewhere in the posting. For example, you can let candidates know a specific subject line to use when they email you or you can choose a random word and tell them to include it in their cover letter.

Sales Rep Application Checklist

This way, you can immediately weed out candidates who did not read through your ad and focus more on the candidates who pay attention to detail.

 

Use a call to action.

Just like you expect your salespeople to close the sale properly, you must close your job ad properly! Do this by adding a call to action that tells the candidate how to get in touch with you.

Also, make sure you let them know exactly what is expected. For example, if you require a cover letter or a certain number of references, state that plainly in the ad. Doing so will save both you and your candidates time and effort.

 

Have someone edit the job ad.

When you finish with the ad, show it to your salespeople and have them verify that the ad sets the proper expectations for the position. You may need to make some changes based on their recommendations. Then, have an editor check the ad for spelling and grammar problems.

Tip: For some sales positions, you may also want to consult an attorney. That way, you can navigate any legal language requirements with ease.

 

In Conclusion

Remember, being specific about what you are seeking in a sales candidate and writing the job ad in a human voice are key actions when trying to attract top salespeople.

Once you have used your ad to attract your ideal candidates, you can avoid bad hires by testing them further with a sales interview test and effective sales interview questions .

While taking these steps may involve a bit more time and effort, the end result of choosing the right salespeople will make the hiring process well worth it.