Acquiring top talent through an effective sales hiring process is only part of the battle. If you don’t have a plan in place to retain these stars, you’re going to continue to bleed top talent back onto the market.
High turnover in sales is embedded in the competitive nature of the business. There are a few key drivers of high turnover that force you to improve the sales hiring process - but are within your control.
1. The onboarding process is a complete mess
Many organizations are so focused on the recruiting process (which is understandable) that they lose sight of the fact that the road doesn’t end after the offer letter is signed.
An effective onboarding process helps protect your investment in your sales hiring process, and sets them up for success right out of the gate.
Tips for effective onboarding:
- Create a list of priority tasks and timelines
- Design a resource library with reference materials
- Give examples of what excellence looks like
- Provide guidance and validation regularly (without micromanaging)
2. There isn’t a defined sales strategy
If you don’t have a clearly mapped out sales methodology, your marketing and sales teams are on two different wavelengths and your customer’s buying process just isn’t clear, then you’re leaving your new sales reps out in the wind. They’ll quickly pick up on these things and lose faith that things will get better (despite your plans and intentions). Defining your sales strategy, communicating strategy during the sales hiring process, aligning with marketing and mapping out the buying process will help mitigate employee turnover, revenue loss and poor morale.
3. The roles aren’t clearly outlined
In the startup environment, roles often blend together. That’s just the reality. But, the sales role needs to be crystal clear in order for you to see the results you want.
Ask yourself or your sales manager the following questions. Are your salespeople:
- Responsible for generating their own new leads?
- Expected to follow up with old leads?
- Tasked with customer service?
Be sure to explicitly define where the salesperson’s role starts and ends.
4. There isn’t a long-term focus on the sales environment
Opportunity for growth and development are a big reason why a salesperson will leave an organization just as quickly as they came in. Great sales managers recognize this and take the time to develop and support their talent to strengthen the fabrics of their teams and reduce turnover.
It’s always good to facilitate a high-energy and competitive sales ecosystem, but there has to be a support system in place to help nurture your talent, just as you would nurture leads coming through the pipeline.
5. There’s no motivation beyond monetary compensation
You don’t have to watch Glengarry Glen Ross to understand how to motivate a sales team. Make sure your compensation package is fair but also identify and sell those non-monetary elements of the opportunity like regular team lunches, training, fitness plans, discounts at local businesses, pet-friendly environment, company-wide social events. Regardless of what they are, always reveal the perks of working at your tech company. They all contribute to the social, friendly but competitive culture you choose to design.
Are you getting ready to grow your sales team? We've created a free checklist to help you refine your requirements, plan the interview process, and get aligned on competitive compensation.