Hiring Great Sales Reps Is Easier Said Than Done
Hiring great sales reps has never been more challenging, and open territories are a drag on sales leaders’ efforts to achieve quota in 2022. How can sales leaders source talent in this competitive environment? Sales leaders should manage sales recruitment like their opportunity pipeline: making it a continuous effort throughout the year. Forrester data has shown that 66% of B2B companies take three months or longer to fill an open sales position. Additionally, 74% of sales leaders indicate that difficulty sourcing high-quality candidates inhibits sales growth. Therefore, filling open positions quickly with qualified candidates is crucial to success. But it’s not a straightforward process. When seeking qualified candidates, sales leaders should:
- Create a recruitment waterfall. Sales leaders must identify how many candidates at the top of the recruitment funnel will yield qualified candidates. The goal should be to recruit a pool of qualified candidates rather than searching for one perfect hire. To ensure a diverse pool of candidates, sales leaders must expand beyond referrals and source candidates from everywhere, including inbound and outbound.
- Align with sales enablement and HR. Similar to sourcing opportunities, alignment between stakeholders is key to successful recruitment. Sales leaders should meet weekly with their sales enablement and HR colleagues to track the progress of qualified candidates. Furthermore, sales leaders must keep the pressure on these functions to continue filling the recruitment funnel with potential hires.
- Ensure top-notch hiring processes. There is so much competition in today’s hiring market. Therefore, sales leaders must assess candidates and convince them the company is a fit. Well-designed hiring journeys will influence candidates’ thinking. Therefore, potential hires should be treated like potential buyers. Create hiring journey maps to ensure candidates have a seamless hiring process. Be hyperresponsive to questions, follow up, and clearly set expectations for their hiring journey.
- Implement competency–based and group interviewing. Sales execs should ensure all stakeholders interview potential candidates using competency-based interviewing to ensure the rep is a fit. Clearly defining the must-have competencies for each role will help you attract and keep the right talent.
- Emphasize the purpose — of the company and the sales organization. Much of today’s workforce wants to work for a company that has a purpose beyond making money. When companies and sales organizations embody values such as community involvement, environmental impact, and diversity and inclusion, hires will likely feel more connected and engaged.
Sales Leaders Can Use Forrester’s Sales Talent Recruitment Waterfall To Ensure The Best Hiring Practices
Forrester sales executive and sales enablement clients can leverage our research: Introducing The Sales Talent Recruitment Waterfall. Furthermore, Forrester sales enablement clients can access Introducing The Sales Competency Management Framework.
Nonclients can access our blog: Should Sales Enablement Be Responsible For Hiring New Reps?