7 months ago
February 21, 2017

3 Reasons to Establish A Sales Training Budget

Consider these three reasons to establish a sales training budget as part of your operating costs.

Claire McConnachie

With the economy moving forward, many sales departments are again seeing budgets rise. A substantial portion of the budget for any sales department goes to payroll and hiring but an equally important consideration is the sales training budget. A sales training budget enables your sales department to be proactive instead of responsive by developing sales people’s skills and abilities according to priorities and future projections. Especially if your department has not maintained a sales training budget before, consider these three reasons to establish a sales training budget as part of your operating costs.

1. Having a Sales Training Budget Ensures That Training Is Prioritized

All sales managers would like to place a higher priority on sales training. However, just like with any other aspect of sales department expenditures, if there is not a strictly defined sales training budget all too often sales training does not occur. Sales managers and executives can sidestep the issues caused by not having a sales training budget by including expenditures for sales training in annual departmental budgets. It also helps to make a business case for doing so by including data on studies that show how much more competitive a sales team with a sales training budget can be. Prioritize sales training by:

  • Breaking down the annual sales training budget into quarterly expenditures.
  • Planning ahead for sales training spending by identifying training targets and the materials or activities to support sales growth through training.
  • Taking steps to ensure that the sales training budget is not reduced in favor of other activities that might not have the same benefit.

2. Having a Sales Training Budget Allows You to Adapt to Changing Priorities

Think about a time when your sales team had to undertake a rapid pivot in response to industry or business changes that in turn changed your sales department’s priorities. How much easier would that transition have been for you and your team if you had a sales training budget in place to educate and train on what needed to be done? Priorities can and do change, and the sales teams that are successful in making evolutions are those that have training support. You can make sure that this support is always behind your team if you have a sales training budget in place. A sales training budget further enables you to:

  • Sell newly released products and services more quickly and more efficiently, since you have the resources to share new information with your sales team.
  • Assign different priorities within the sales team and be able to effectively address the different training needs involved in a multi-pronged approach to the market.
  • Sell above the competition, since a more highly educated sales force is a more effective sales force.

3. Having a Sales Training Budget Can Make Your Sales Hiring and Retention More Competitive

The best sales people are not just looking for career openings. They are looking for career opportunities with organizations that will commit to helping them further their careers in sales through incentives beyond a paycheck, which includes sales training. An organization that can demonstrate that it is committed to sales force development with a healthy sales training budget has an edge in today’s job market, and can also improve retention rates for the current workforce.

With a sales training budget, you can also coach promising new sales people who are underperforming not because of a lack of attitude or effort but because of a shortfall in approach that can be remedied through training. It becomes possible to help your sales people understand the fundamentals or the “why” behind different approaches to selling, increasing sales force effectiveness through understanding. Perhaps most importantly, a sales training budget enables you to identify and nurture top performers for increasing responsibility and advancement without incurring out of budget costs for external training or additional hiring. Together, these advantages reduce human resources costs and keep sales productivity high.

Claire McConnachie

Claire is a Western University graduate with a background in recruiting, sales and customer service. As a Recruitment Consultant, her goals are to place the best people in the right roles resulting in satisfaction for both the candidate and client.