Sales Recruiters: Best Practices to Reduce Employee Churn


The Pareto principle, also known as the 80/20 rule, states that in many cases, 80% of the output is the result of 20% of the input.

For the average sales professional, this can mean that most of your efforts return little in terms of your company’s bottom line. Of course, the best salespeople quickly learn how to flip this equation to their advantage by adjusting their process to focus solely on the inputs that result in the greatest outputs.

Some companies have the means to offer world-class sales training that adequately supports the transition of a newbie salesperson to a top closer. But for companies that can’t dedicate adequate resources to ongoing sales training, it’s important to recruit individuals with proven track records. Specialized sales recruiting can also prove necessary for finding sales managers and directors who get results.

A 2018 CareerBuilder survey found that 44% of global employers planned to hire full-time and permanent employees at the beginning of the year. Interestingly, 45% of these surveyed HR Managers stated that they can’t fill needed positions within their organizations. This may have something to do with 2018 bringing in the lowest United States unemployment rate since 2006.

Because the demand for jobs is lower than it’s been in recent memory, it’s important to up your game when it comes to sales recruiting. Knowing this, potential candidates feel comfortable interviewing the company to the same extent that companies interview candidates. 2018 seems to be the year of finding win-win situations between a company and job candidate.

To reduce your churn rate from hiring a bad fit, follow these sales recruiters best practices.

The Most Important Traits for Sales: Defining Traits for the Ideal Candidate

Per the Pareto principle, hiring the top 20% of salespeople involves understanding what makes them tick.

According to Harvard Business Review, the following represents the seven major personality traits of top salespeople:

  • Modesty: While the common belief suggests that successful salespeople are pushy and egotistical, 91% of top salespeople had a medium to high score of humility and modesty.

  • Curiosity: Top salespeople are naturally more curious than their low performing counterparts.

  • Conscientiousness (having a strong sense of duty): It’s definitely a red flag if salespeople try to shirk responsibility for their results. Top salespeople own their metrics through both good months and bad.

  • Achievement Orientation: Goal-orientation makes it easier to measure (and achieve) goals.

  • Lack of Gregariousness: Small talk is a skill. Top salespeople have the ability to approach strangers and converse in a friendly and comfortable manner.

  • Lack of Discouragement: A bad call doesn’t ruin a top salesperson’s day. They’re not easily discouraged or overwhelmed after rejection.

  • Lack of Self-Consciousness: A top salesperson isn’t easily embarrassed. The Harvard Business Review states that the byproduct of a high level of self-consciousness is bashfulness and inhibition.

Sales rep recruiters look for these traits to find the best-fit person to rock a sales role. Consider assessment tools that challenge whether or not a candidate fits the top salesperson mold.

Fine-Tuning The Job Description: Be More Specific

According to Debbie Doak (in an interview with Ian Altman), one of the biggest mistakes that sales recruiters make is not being specific enough during initial outreach efforts. Starting with your job description, get specific about what job candidates will be selling, to whom they will be selling, and whether they’ll be selling products, services, or both.

As a best practice, fine-tune your job description to proactively answer FAQ-type questions. This will help you to better qualify potential candidates who are the best fit for your company.

Keep Up With Sales Recruiting Trends

Sales and marketing best practices are constantly changing in the digital age. Smart sales recruiters know this and work to keep in-the-know.

In 2017, SalesForce Research forecasted that these trends would become important for sales recruiters to pay attention to in 2018:

  • Practicing hiring diversity in terms of gender and ethnicity

  • Mobile recruitment (applying for jobs via mobile devices)

  • Automation in the recruiting process

Another interesting new trend for recruiting talent involves facilitating the process through augmented/virtual reality or video. Google, Microsoft, and Apple have helped to pioneer the trend of video interviewing.

Pro tip: TalentVideo integrates with Salesforce to facilitate a seamless video recruiting process. Set questions and time limits, then empower candidates to complete the interview on their own time. You can then review applications when you’re ready—without having to set any appointments! Clearly, interview automation is actually possible in 2018.

Interested in getting started with video recruiting? Video Brewery offers inspiration in terms of the 10 Best Recruiting Videos. Also, check out our tips for video recruiting best practices.

Use Assessment Tools & Data to Make Strategic Hiring Decisions

It’s impossible to know exactly how a job candidate will work out until you hire them, train them, and ramp them up. But this doesn’t mean you can’t maximize your chances of successful placement by using predictive assessment tools.

According to Talentnow, the top uses of data when hiring new talent includes:

  • Increasing retention (56%)

  • Evaluating skill gap (50%)

  • Building better offers (50%)

In addition to personality and skill tests, an interview is another common type of assessment tool that sales recruiters use to predict a candidate’s success.

Of course, in order to be effective, you need a process for effectively comparing candidates against each other. This means asking candidates the same questions, in the same order. No random questions for each candidate — come to the interview prepared!

Make an Enticing Offer

Compensation is an important factor for salespeople — they’re incentivized by the opportunity to set their own salary in terms of commission.

But though it’s certainly important, compensation isn’t everything. You also need to spend time learning about top candidates’ deeper motivations in order to present an offer that satisfies their every need.

If you’re familiar with Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, you know that compensation is most important at the bottom of the pyramid, in terms of satisfying physiological and safety (shelter) needs:

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

Non-monetary benefits that revolve around vacation days or the flexibility to work from home may attract top talent even better than the promise of beating their current base pay and commission level.

Working in the ideal work environment is important for achieving the top level of self-actualization.

Final Thoughts: Sales Recruiters: Best Practices to Reduce Employee Churn

In order to build a high-performing sales team, you must start by following sales recruiters best practices.

From your job description, to a first interview, and eventually a hire, you must effectively tell a story about your company that attracts the right type of candidate. To better qualify initial applicants, use video to get a more multi-faceted understanding than you could during a phone interview.

NativeVideo makes it easy for Salesforce organizations to implement video recruiting best practices. Watch a demo to see how it works, then try it out for yourself!