2 years ago
March 14, 2016

5 Key Recruitment & Retention Strategies

Sales turnover is costly. To make sure you hire the right sales professionals, consider using these key recruitment and retention strategies.

Rhys Metler

As you surely know, your most valuable assets are the talent, resources, and expertise of your workforce. Your sales employees in particular are extremely important to your company’s growth.

Successful sales recruitment and retention are human resource functions that require strategic planning. They’re critical to so many aspects of your company, such as customer service, sales, and profits, and it pays to prioritize them.

Use these key recruitment and retention strategies to ensure that you hire and keep the top sales professionals on your team.

1. Always Be Recruiting

Rushed recruiting and hiring will more often than not lead to hiring mistakes. To ensure that you have the time you need to carefully review applications, interview a large number of candidates, and keep searching if needed, you should always be recruiting. Don’t just start looking for a new sale person once a position opens up. Recruitment should be done on an ongoing basis. That way, you’ll be able to build a database of qualified applicants to call on once a job opens up. But remember to nurture these applicants in the meantime—let them know you’re still thinking about them.

2. Partner with a Sales Recruitment Firm

Let’s face it: sales hiring mistakes are incredibly common. The fact is hiring top-performing sales talent isn’t easy. It’s hard to spot top talent. It’s hard to seek out great sales people. And it’s just as difficult to weed out the bad apples with charming personalities who convince you they’ll be great during the interview.

If you’re constantly recruiting and hiring the wrong people, partner with a sales recruitment firm. Its recruiters have the experience and expertise required to differentiate the good candidates from the bad, have deep relationships with great sales professionals, and have wider candidate pools that you can access. If you’re failing at recruiting properly in house, it might be time to outsource this important function to the professionals.

3. Offer Proper Sales Compensation

Sales compensation isn’t as important as it used to be but you still need to ensure that the base salary, commission, and bonus structure that you’ve created to compensate your sales people is attractive enough to recruit top sales professionals and retain your top earners. It’s still one of the most effective retention strategies you can implement. If you’re paying your sales team peanuts, you won’t be able to recruit and retain the best. You get what you pay for. Make sure you create a sales compensation plan that works.

4. Create and Market a Positive Work Environment

Your company culture is critical to recruitment and retention. Though you might see this more as a morale booster than one of the key recruitment and retention strategies, you might be surprised to know just how important your work environment is.

If sales professionals are hearing bad things about your work environment, because your manager micro-manages, because your atmosphere is negative, because you use unethical sales practices, because stress is too high, or for any other reason, they’re not going to want to work for you.

And the people you do end up hiring won’t stay in a terrible work environment for very long. Make it a priority to make your sales team happy through effective leadership style, proper motivation and encouragement, and positive energy. Make people want to work for you and stay on your team by being an awesome employer to work for—one with a great company culture.

5. Offer Career Growth

The greatest sales people want to continue growing professionally. They don’t want to work for a company that stagnates them. Offering a systemic process for employee development and career growth is one of the most effective retention strategies, yet most employers fail to do so. Offer professional development courses. Pay for your team members to go to seminars, conferences, and presentations. Give them the opportunity to move up in the company.

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.