Searching For Sales Talent?
Looking for a Career Change?
Why Hire Sales Talent Group?
- Focused – Sales niche only
- Proven track record – Over 17 years
- Powerful Network – Database of over 20,000 sales professionals
- Direct Sourcing Experts – Hunter mentality to find your candidates
- Process – Embrace topgrading as a hiring methodology*
- Responsiveness – Operate with “urgency”
- Follow through – Do what we say we will
Results that matter:
- Successfully placed over 800 Sales Professionals since 1998
- 90% fill rate vs 37% industry average
- 93% 12 month retention rate vs 40% industry average
- 98% customer retention
Who Says So?
Competing in a Candidate Driven Market
Over the last few months, we’ve seen the market for sales talent become increasingly candidate-driven, to an unprecedented degree. Candidates are more likely to receive multiple offers, candidates are declining offers more frequently, and offers are being rescinded by the candidate in the eleventh hour due to better opportunities surfacing. This is definitely something new we’re seeing in our industry.
Part of this candidate-driven market for sales talent is due to a strong economy and low unemployment rate, but it’s also much more than that. Candidates tell us they are getting bombarded with unsolicited job opportunities, previously a rare event. The top talent we work with are being recruited or approached on a regular basis, many times weekly, about new positions. Online job sites and primarily LinkedIn, have changed the landscape and atmosphere of recruiting by making it much easier to access top candidates.
How Do You Compete for Top Talent?
So how do you attract candidates in this extremely candidate-driven market? There are still ways to stand out as a potential employer for top sales talent and these are the traits current candidates are looking for:
- Culture – A positive work environment with low turnover and strong leadership is vital. Ratings and reviews of companies are readily accessible to candidates via LinkedIn, Glassdoor, Indeed and many others, so make sure yours are favorable.
- Growth—Strong revenue and company growth are essential. Candidates want to join companies that are in “growth mode”, where they can contribute to the momentum and success of the company.
- Product—The opportunity to work with a market-leading product or leading-edge technology is a key selling point. Candidates also want to ensure the company has a successful product implementation team.
- Compensation— In this market, compensation must be competitive and market driven. Although it’s not the most important reason an A+ candidate moves to a new company, it certainly is a top factor in consideration.
- Current Sales Team Quota Attainment—If the current sales team was able to make their numbers last year, and is on target for this year, candidates assume they should be able to do the same. But beyond this, candidates want to know the growth plan for 1, 2 years from now, so they can determine whether it sounds fair and is achievable based on their market research of your product/industry.
- Sales Training & Support – Company leadership needs to support their sales people, give them the tools and training they need to be successful, and maintain a good sales process overall. A thorough onboarding program is also attractive and ensures new employees can ramp quickly and achieve success early.
- Challenging Role—Top candidates have always tended to avoid easy jobs. They want a challenge to stay both sharp and ahead when it comes to learning new products, programs, and technology.
What Motivates Different Levels of Candidates?
In today’s landscape, we see those traits playing out differently, depending on the candidate’s career level:
- Vice Presidents—VP’s are looking predominately for three things: a growing company, a challenging role, and a strategic leadership opportunity (as opposed to purely execution). The current team is not as important of a factor (however it’s important to be transparent about the state of the existing team), as the new VP can build the team they will both want and need.
- Seasoned Sales Executives—Experienced candidates want to work for a strong leadership team. Key questions will be how long leadership has been in place, their backgrounds, and whether the current CEO is sales or product oriented.
- Millennials—For candidates early in their career, on-boarding and training are highly valued, and they are especially interested in the current sales team’s quota attainment percentages. They want a base that’s relatively high and an accelerated career path that allows them to move up the company ladder quickly. Candidates at the junior AE level are also asking about product implementation success.
Even in the current unprecedented candidate-driven market for sales talent our best advice remains: always have a “bench of sales talent”. Now, more than ever, it is vital that you are continually building relationships with top sales people in your industry. We are always doing this! Sales Talent Group has a “bench” of over 20,000 sales professionals in our database and over 10,000 LinkedIn contacts. We can quickly and successfully tap our network to find you an exceptional candidate when your need arises.
With a 20-year track record and a team of recruiters with a combined 100 years of sales experience, we understand sales and how to hire top talent in this competitive environment. To use a baseball analogy, let us scout for you and keep your bullpen filled with major league sales talent.
CEO and Managing Partner
John O’Brien is the Founder, CEO and Managing Partner of Sales Talent Group, an executive search firm specializing in placing sales leadership, outside sales, and insides sales professionals nationwide for the past 20 years.