Article: Setting Sales for Success: Here are 5 ways you can hire high-impact sales professionals

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Setting Sales for Success: Here are 5 ways you can hire high-impact sales professionals

Sales professionals are a game-changer in any organisational growth strategy, and we bring you key strategies that can help you source the best talent amidst this pool of professionals.
Setting Sales for Success: Here are 5 ways you can hire high-impact sales professionals

Talent is key to unlocking exponential growth and success, even more so in a competitive business landscape. But there is a flip side to this equation, which is how incredibly challenging it has become for recruiters to navigate the talent market and source high-impact hires. Studies over the recent years have highlighted the continued skill shortage heightened by the emergence of new-age technologies, high incidences of attrition, increased hiring costs and critical roles remaining unfilled for undesirable periods. Simultaneously, the pressures on recruiters increase. They must attract highly skilled professionals fielding multiple offers and ensure they bring talent on board by strengthening relationships and meeting their expectations. 

One of the roles that have risen in importance lately is Sales Professionals. Given the turbulent and disruptive economic conditions we find ourselves in, this set of professionals plays a unique role in ensuring that your products and services continue to find customers across the globe. This is one arena where even hybrid working practices have led to great success. As a result, this pool of salespeople has become a game-changer in any organisational growth strategy. 

For organisations wishing to grow and transform at speed, recruiters now have to pull up their socks and find people ready to outdo themselves in the market. They need to come with the drive and passion for fulfilling the unique business vision and growth, and while this may seem like we’re setting our expectations very high, the right hiring strategies can create wonders.  

As we witness the growth of professional social networks, social selling, mobile CRM and intelligent databases in a hyperconnected economy, we empower you to find the sales professionals you need to win in the market. In conversation with Central Test, an expert assessment solution provider driven to empower talent, here are five key strategies that we have unlocked just for your recruitment game plan:

Asking the right questions: Who is a successful salesperson for you?

A successful salesperson comes with product and customer knowledge and is driven to thrive in today’s competitive economy by seeking out business opportunities and continuously learning and unlearning. There are four key traits that set them apart when it comes to closing deals and strengthening the sales culture: interpersonal skills, passion for the role, emotional intelligence and resilience. Organisations today need to add these traits to their list before setting out on their hiring process, as this will ensure that they recruit more strategically and will empower them to recognise the critical people skill sets in their talent pipeline. As a result, they will be able to hire faster and better, keeping the unique organisational vision in mind.

Clarity on defining the job role backed by skill analysis

This is a follow-up to the earlier strategy but is tied to the message we give our candidates. We all know that job descriptions (JD) are integral to inviting the desired candidates, and we can only write that sharp JD by having complete clarity beforehand on the skill sets we seek and the assigned responsibilities. So as much as it’s about you outlining why this role adds value to the growth strategy, it also enables the potential hire to understand their purpose in the organisation. This is key to bringing talent on board. 

What recruiters need to zero in on today is potential. Corporate vision and values and defining hard and soft skills are all important, but the role's purpose and short plus long-term evolution must be communicated. If you want your talent to succeed, you must tell them why and how their skills serve the company. 

Using psychometric assessments to test talent potential

Coming back to the importance of potential, psychometric assessments are known to be a valuable source of objective data which considerably increases your chances of making the ‘right decisions’ while predicting a candidate’s potential and performance in relation to what defines the success of the role. Most importantly, it ensures a fairer and more reliable recruitment process by tackling unconscious biases such as affinity and confirmation bias. Additionally, reports have shown that investments in psychometrics help save on recruitment costs by ensuring that you zero in on the right candidates to improve employee retention. After all, it’s not only about the performance of the individual but also how they will thrive in your unique working environment, the value they will bring, and the opportunities they will explore.

Investing in the right assessment tools unique to your sales strategy

While psychometric assessments will overall definitely accelerate the recruitment process and help deliver the desired results, it is also essential that leaders and recruiters strategically pick up the right assessment tools. Businesses will reap positive results only when intelligent investments are made, so tools must be handpicked to measure specific skill sets in line with the JDs. For instance, if you’re interested in specific sales skills (like combativeness, affirmation, relationship skills, strategic approach, etc.), a behavioural assessment specifically designed for salespeople, like the SALES PROFILE-R, that includes these aspects will be more predictive than a generic assessment.

Along with knowing your objectives and purpose, budgets and resources have to be factored in, and organisations need to ensure that the chosen assessment tool is tested for reliability, and validity, is as bias-free as possible and uses the latest techniques in psychometrics. 

Combining assessment scores with structured interviews

The final and deciding stage of any recruitment process comes down to interviews. Having received the candidate assessment scores, the next step is to find evidence of these traits through a structured interview plan with pre-determined questions to avoid bias and ensure consistency in the recruitment process. The assessment results can serve as a discussion point during the interview to tap into the desired skill sets. For example, behavioural/situational questions on negotiation and communication skills can enable you to understand the candidate’s outlook on these skills and also helps in aligning it to the assessment scores to see if there is a coherence between the two.

Studies have shown that structured interviews are twice as effective in predicting job performance and help to reduce confirmation bias. Therefore, using it with the right tools, such as psychometrics, will enable a multi-criteria approach in recruitment that ensures bias-free, strategic and reliable decision-making in giving out the final offer letters. 

As the world of people and work continues to evolve, employer and employee expectations keep changing, and the success of any recruitment strategy depends on the alignment between the two. Achieving this alignment can get challenging, especially for the recruiter in a candidate-driven market. Knowing your priorities and implementing the right strategies by incorporating psychometrics early on can help build a robust talent pipeline. When it comes to hiring high-impact sales professionals, this is only the beginning of the journey. If you wish to know more about identifying the potential of sales professionals and onboarding the best talent for your growing enterprise, this latest ebook by Central Test is the one for you. Follow this link to learn more and unlock the doors to exponential growth and success. 

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Topics: Recruitment, Recruitment Assessments, #Hiring

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