3 years ago
January 6, 2015

Building a Business Case to Hire More Sales People Internally

By including the following in your business case, you can increase chances of success in hiring more sales people.

Rhys Metler

Experienced sales managers and executives tend to develop a sense of when it is time to hire more sales people. However, knowing that there is a need to hire more sales people does not make the business case for action; other decision makers might not immediately see the pain. Providing a thorough business case to hire more sales people can prompt these decision makers to understand the problem and approve additional sales hiring. By including the following in your business case, you can increase its chances of success. Explain the Pain in Your Proposal

Simply stating that you want to hire more sales people to make more sales won’t make your business case. Your proposal should include the big picture of why you want to hire more sales people and why this is necessary to your organization. Also showing what your sales team has done to fill in the gaps, and how this will gradually erode the ability to grow as your sales team gets caught in administrative or routine tasks without enough staff to handle the workload, will help you make your case.

Show Direct and Indirect Costs on Both Sides of the Equation

Working in sales, you know that two of the most important questions that someone asked to buy into a decision will have are “How much will it cost?” and “What does that get me?” When making a business case to hire more sales people, you need to show shared decision makers what the costs will be to hire more sales people. Many sales managers leave it at that, but you can do better and build a stronger case by also showing the costs of doing nothing. By including both direct and indirect costs in your estimates, you can also avoid the delay or denial that comes from incomplete information.

Show How the Ability to Hire More Sales People Will Become a Profit Driver

Expenditures that clearly result in profit are much more likely to be approved than those that cannot show how profit will be derived. You might be tempted to think it should be obvious that more sales people will result in more sales, but it might not be – especially for a decision maker whose key responsibilities are not closely sales related. Show in your business case how an allotment to hire more sales people will drive profit:

  • Provide information on how many more customers can be converted from leads on average in a year
  • Provide the average quarterly and yearly sales for your organization’s average sales person, and how much of this on average is profit after costs
  • Provide historical information on average repeat sales from converted prospects over different time horizons – 1 year, 2 years, 5 years, 10 years – and how many repeat customers are generated by the average sales person in a year

Put It All Together for Return on Investment

Whenever possible, you should use data and information generated by your own organization when calculating costs and profits. This is particularly important when it comes to costs used for calculating the return on investment, since this is the section likely to capture the majority of decision makers’ attention. Include graphics with citations to your data sources to explain:

  • How much does one person need to sell to cover the average costs of hiring?
  • Assuming average performance, how long will it take to recoup the initial cost outlay to hire more sales people?
  • Is there a cost savings for acting now vs. waiting until later to hire more sales people?

If your business case to hire more sales people is thorough and numbers driven, you will convert decision makers into allies in your initiative to add to the sales team. Take the time to build a formal business case to show those whose support you need to hire more sales people why such a decision will benefit your organization.

Rhys Metler

Rhys is a tenacious, top performing Senior Sales Recruiter with 11+ years of focused experience in the Digital Media, Mobile, Software, Technology and B2B verticals. He has a successful track record of headhunting top performing sales candidates for some of the most exciting brands in North America. He is a Certified Recruitment Specialist (CRS) and has expert experience in prospecting new business, client retention/renewals and managing top performing sales and recruitment teams. Rhys enjoys spending quality time with his wife, son, and two daughters, BBQing on a hot summer day, tropical vacations and cottaging.