Hiring sales professionals that not only have talent, but that also fit well into your organization, is more complicated than many sales leaders realize. The right person needs to have the skills and abilities necessary to blend in with your existing team, connect well with prospects and clients, and commit to growth within your organization.

The following are some helpful tips to assist you as you attempt to hire sales reps that are right for your business.

Develop Systematic Hiring and Onboarding Processes

Talent Management is likely on the bottom of the list for most sales managers. When it comes to sourcing a great salesperson or closing an opportunity, the immediate revenue possibility often wins out.  If you leave your talent process to chance, you’ll create constant fire drills every time a salesperson quits.

Your sales organization can greatly reduce the time and resources needed for talent management by creating a consistent process to help you recruit, hire, onboard and retain a high-performing sales team. Taking the time to develop the right process for your organization can save you hours and money wasted on the back-end.

Define Sales Roles

The skills required to sell a medical device for example, are likely much different than what’s required to take a prospect from freemium to premium for a SaaS solution.  To hire the “right fit”, you need a clear definition of the roles and responsibilities required in the position.

If you want to drive productivity, you need to align your hires with the sales tasks that they will be required to master, if they’re to be successful in the role.

Use Predictive Talent Analytics

Data strengthens confidence in creating the profile of the ideal new hire for a given position. Analytics provide your organization the ability to hire based on data, rather than gut feel.

In his article, “Most HR Data is Bad Data,” Marcus Buckingham details how many HR rating systems are based on inputs that aren’t backed up by science. He writes,

“It means that all of the data we use to decide who gets promoted is bad data; that all of the performance appraisal data we use to determine people’s bonus pay is imprecise and the links we try to show between our people strategy and our business strategy – expressed in various competency models – are spurious. It means that, when it comes to our people within our organizations, we are all functionally blind.”

Predictive talent analytics combined with a process to manage to the data puts science into your talent management process. When you’re trying to reach aggressive revenue goals, there’s no better way to make sure you’re hiring the right salespeople.

Always Be Prepared for the Rule of Three:

  • Someone will be promoted
  • Someone will resign or be fired
  • Someone will surprise you

Sales talent management needs to be a consistent priority for sales managers, who want to attract, hire and retain top sales talent. Human resources can help, but they shouldn’t be the lead owner of your recruiting efforts. You, as a sales manager, need to participate in your own rescue by developing an effective strategy for talent management. It’s a crucial component to the success of your team. Here are three steps you can take to own your own talent process.

  1. Conduct three sourcing efforts a week (E.g., a phone call, LinkedIn reach-out)
  2. Get three candidate names from each contact you make
  3. Maintain the contact with your top three candidates