Sales Hiring

Everything You Need to Know About Sales Hiring

Published on January 8th, 2023


Building a high-performing sales team is vital for business success. But finding top sales talent can be challenging. In this blog, we'll uncover essential sales hiring strategies to attract, assess, and onboard exceptional sales professionals. Let's optimize your sales hiring efforts for maximum results!

A job in sales is fast-paced and competitive. Sales professionals need to possess strong interpersonal skills, resilience, and the ability to adapt to changing customer needs to drive meaningful connections and close deals. However, it also involves patience, follow-through, communication, analytics, and connections. So, lets understand sales hiring in a better way.

What is Sales Hiring?

Sales hiring refers to the process of recruiting and selecting individuals for sales roles within an organization. It involves identifying and attracting qualified candidates, assessing their skills and qualifications, conducting interviews, and ultimately hiring the most suitable candidates to join the sales team. Effective sales hiring ensures that the organization brings in talented individuals who have the necessary skills, experience, and personality traits to drive revenue growth and achieve sales targets.

Depending on the role, a sales professional may also be expected to coordinate the efforts of an entire sales team or prepare weekly or monthly reports for management.

What does a Sales Job Entail?

Before embarking on the search for qualified sales professionals, it is crucial to have a clear understanding of the multifaceted nature of a sales job and the responsibilities it entails

Sales professionals are responsible for selling products or services that meet customer needs. People in sales identify prospective customers, establish trust, nurture prospects through the company's sales funnel, provide information on offerings, and bring in new customers by convincing people to make a purchase.

Roles & Responsibilities in a Sales Jo

  • Generating leads.
  • Meeting or exceeding sales goals.
  • Negotiating all contracts with prospective clients.
  • Helping determine pricing schedules for quotes, promotions, and negotiations.
  • Preparing weekly and monthly reports.
  • Giving sales presentations to a range of prospective clients.
  • Coordinating sales efforts with marketing programs.
  • Understanding and promoting company programs.
  • Actively looking for possibilities to upsell and cross-sell to existing customers
  • Obtaining referrals from the current clientele to widen the sales pipeline
  • Management of customer relationships
  • Management of key accounts
  • Development of new accounts
  • Reporting and operations

Skills Required in a Sales Job

1. Strong Follow-up Game

One of the abilities that separate the all-stars from mediocre sellers is effective follow-up. So seek out those who have a natural understanding of the value of following up.

Sure, you can teach someone how important it is. However, they are already one step ahead if they are aware of its significance. They're about as close to a sure hire as you'll get if they know how to do it. Deals are closed through follow-ups, and if a candidate is already good at it, they stand a good chance of being hired.

2. Tolerance for Rejection

A sales call can sometimes go south and the customer may not be interested in the product at all. A sales professional should be sporty enough to take that rejection and move on to the next clients.

3. Eager to Learn

Everyone claims to be receptive to criticism, but few genuinely are. They must be able to act upon that feedback. Just because someone is receptive to criticism doesn't mean they can effectively implement it. Some sales representatives need to be reminded repeatedly to change.

You've hit the jackpot when you come across someone who actively seeks input and changes their selling style when you recommend it.

4. Excellent Communication Skills

Although it might seem obvious, there are some career salespeople who are simply poor communicators.

Make sure the salesperson you employ has excellent communication abilities. They must be empathetic and capable of prospect reading. To know what to say next, they must possess a sixth sense. They must have excellent listening skills.

However, effective communication extends beyond the phone because email is a major part of contemporary prospecting and selling. They must therefore be proficient writers.

Sales Roles in an Organization

1. Sales Development Representatives (SDR)

SDRs are in charge of researching, prospecting, and qualifying prospects for the first stage of the sales process.

Identifying and contacting possible good fits, responding to requests for more information, following up with prospects who downloaded content, prospecting on LinkedIn and other social networks, and other activities may be required depending on the organization.

Once an SDR has determined the lead is qualified, they pass the opportunity to a sales rep, who is responsible for presenting or demoing the product, resolving the buyer’s objections, and creating a proposal.

The average salary for a Sales Development Representative is $57,714, according to BuiltIn.

2. Account Executive (AE)

As an AE, an employee runs demos or gives presentations; identifies surfacing, and addresses potential buying obstacles; crafts personalized value propositions; gets the commitment to purchase; and negotiates the actual terms.

The average salary for an account executive is $70,469 per year, according to Indeed.

You can make use of pre-employment assessments skills such as Assistant Account Executive Skills Assessment to hire the perfect candidate for your organization.

3. Outside Sales Representative

The majority of an outside salesperson's time is spent "in the field," making office visits to prospective clients.

According to Glassdoor, the national average compensation for this position is about $107,206.

Since they'll mostly be seeing customers on their own in outside sales roles, employers typically look for more experienced salesmen.

You can also use the Outside sales representative test to hire a talented candidate for your organization.

4. Regional Sales Manager

Sales managers and regional sales managers lead teams of SDRs, reps, and, sometimes, account managers. They set individual quotas and team goals, analyze data, coordinate sales training and call reviews, and manage sales territories.

The average Regional Sales Manager salary is $124,263, but the range typically falls between $107,798 and $144,379, according to Salary.

Make use of the Regional Sales Manager Skills Test and Sales Manager Test to hire the best sales manager for your organization.

5. Sales Engineer

These professionals are also known as “pre-sales support,” “systems engineer,” or “field consultant.” Sales engineers combine the technical expertise of engineers with the business acumen and selling skills of a traditional rep.

The average salary for a sales engineer is $84,118, according to Indeed.

Try the Sales Engineer Skills Test to evaluate your candidate and hire the best one.

6. Director of Sales

A director of sales works with sales managers to determine sales objectives, forecast and develop sales quotas, maintain sales volume, and remain a crucial part of the hiring process.

The estimated total pay for a Director of Sales is $199,231, with an average salary of $103,641 per year, according to Glassdoor

7. VP of Sales

A vice president of sales contributes to the overall growth and strategy of the sales organization—and the company as a whole.

The average salary for a Vice President of Sales in the US is $196,494, according to BuiltIn.

Try the Vice-President Sales Test to evaluate your candidate.

Roles & Responsibilities of Recruiters in Sales Hiring

  1. Talent Acquisition: Recruiters play a pivotal role in sourcing and sourcing sales talent by utilizing various channels, including job boards, social media, and professional networks.

  2. Candidate Screening: Recruiters are responsible for evaluating resumes, conducting initial screenings, and assessing candidates' qualifications, skills, and experience to ensure they meet the requirements of the sales role.

  3. Interviewing: Recruiters conduct thorough interviews to assess candidates' sales aptitude, communication skills, interpersonal abilities, and overall fit for the organization's sales team.

  4. Relationship Building: Recruiters establish strong relationships with candidates, acting as a point of contact throughout the hiring process. They provide updates, address questions or concerns, and build rapport to create a positive candidate experience.

  5. Collaboration with Hiring Managers: Recruiters collaborate closely with hiring managers to understand their specific sales hiring needs, align candidate qualifications with job requirements, and provide valuable insights and recommendations during the selection process.

  6. Employer Branding: Recruiters contribute to building and promoting the employer brand to attract top sales professionals. They highlight the organization's unique selling points, culture, and opportunities for career growth to position the company as an employer of choice.

  7. Offer Management: Recruiters negotiate job offers, discuss compensation packages, and facilitate the closing process with selected candidates, ensuring a smooth transition from candidate to employee.

  8. Market Research: Recruiters stay updated on industry trends, competitor activities, and market dynamics to advise hiring managers on the current sales talent landscape and make informed decisions.

  9. Data Management: Recruiters maintain accurate candidate records, utilize applicant tracking systems, and analyze recruitment data to track hiring metrics, optimize processes, and improve future sales hiring strategies.

  10. Continuous Improvement: Recruiters continuously refine their sourcing, screening, and selection techniques based on feedback, market insights, and industry best practices to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of sales hiring efforts.

How to Assess and Hire Sales Professionals?

1. Use Skill Assessments

Pre-employment skill assessments have created a buzz in the market and are being used by the majority of recruiters to vet their candidates. A skill assessment fairly and accurately tests your candidate and gives you a ready-made report to analyze if the applicant can fulfill your job position.

At HireQuotient, we provide many types of sales assessments based on skills. Check them out!

2. Ask the Right Questions

  • Are you comfortable making cold calls?
  • Have you consistently met your sales goals?
  • How did you land your most successful sale?
  • Sell me this pen.
  • What are your long-term career goals?
  • What interests you most about this sales position?
  • What are your strengths and weaknesses?
  • What do you find most rewarding about being in sales?
  • Why are you the best person for the job?

3. Assign a Task

Another super-dependable method to assess a sales candidate is to assign them a task. Ask them to sell a particular product to you. This way you can check both the technical skills and soft skills and give you an upper hand to judge your candidate accordingly.

Wrapping Up

Sales play a key role in the building of loyalty and trust between a customer and a business. Trust and loyalty are the main reasons why a customer would choose to recommend your company to a friend or family member or write a great review of your product or service online.

Book a sales assessment with us today!



Radhika Sarraf

Radhika Sarraf is a content specialist and a woman of many passions who currently works at HireQuotient, a leading recruitment SaaS company. She is a versatile writer with experience in creating compelling articles, blogs, social media posts, and marketing collaterals.

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