Salesforce Recruitment and Selection

Report
Salesforce Recruitment
and Selection
Sales and Distribution
Management
Marketing 3345
Sales Force Turnover
Rates*
Consumer
21%
Industrial
Services
18%
34%
17%
26%
21%
53%
0-5%
65%
5-10%
*Turnover rates per annum
Source: Dartnell’s 30th Sales Force Compensation Survey (2009), p.187.
45%
More than
10%
Turnover Rates in
Selected Industries
Industry
Construction
Office Equipment
Insurance
Retail
Wholesale (Consumer Goods)
Electronics
Business Services
Pharmaceuticals
Banking
Real Estate
Turnover Rates
1999
13.8%
47.0
.8
51.2
18.5
14.1
26.2
8.3
4.3
11.9
Source: Dartnell’s 30th Sales Force Compensation Survey (1999), p.187.
First Year Cost of a
Salesperson in the U.S.
Compensation
(trainee average)
$35,500
Benefits (approx.21.5% of
compensation)
7,600
Field Expense
16,000
Direct Expense
$59,100
Training Costs
7,100
Total Costs
$66,200
Source: Dartnell’s 30th Sales Force Compensation Survey (2009), p.187.
The Recruiting Process
Mark W. Johnston and Gary W. Marshall, Sales Force Management,
McGraw Hill, 2006
Who is Responsible for
Recruiting?


Depends on size of sales force and kind of
selling involved
First-level sales managers often handle
recruiting for:
– Straightforward sales jobs
– Jobs where new recruits need no special
qualifications
– Jobs where turnover rates are high
Who is Responsible for
Recruiting?


When a firm must be selective, a recruiting
specialist may assist in the recruitment
process
If the sales force prepares individuals to be
sales or marketing managers, personnel
executives or top-level managers often
assist with recruitment
Job Analysis and
Selection Criteria



Conduct a job analysis to determine what
activities, tasks, responsibilities and
environmental influences are involved
Write a job description that details the
findings of the job analysis
Develop a statement of job qualifications
describing the personal traits and abilities
needed to perform in the job
Who Conducts the Analysis
and Prepares the Description?

Current occupants of the job

Sales managers who supervise people in the job


Current staff should be observed and interviewed
to determine what they actually do
Use the job description creation process as a
means of reaching consensus on job content,
activities and training needs.
Content of the Job
Description






Nature of the product(s) or service(s) being
sold
Types of customers
Specific tasks and responsibilities
Relationship between the sales position and
other positions within the organization
Mental and physical demands of the job
Environmental pressures and constraints
JOB DESCRIPTION FACTORS
Selling Requirements:
New account vs. established
account
Selling through distributors
Entertaining customers
Level of buying authority
Physical activity required
Weekends away from home
Relocation
Non-selling Tasks:
Reports to management
Customer service and training
Sales promotion
Degree of Responsibility
and Authority:
Negotiations of pricing
Career Paths:
Compensation plan
Promotion timing
JOB DESCRIPTION FACTORS
Performance Expectations:
Activity level requirements
Written proposals
Individual vs. team selling
One time vs. systems selling
Type of prospects and customers
One-on-one selling vs. groups
Travel--how much and what kind
Program or concept selling
Technical knowledge
Educational seminars
Collecting receivables
Marketing plans
Performance Expectations:
Travel and entertainment
Earnings potential
Promotion leaders
Minimum sales volume or
profits
Determining Job Qualifications
and Selection Criteria

This is the most difficult part of the recruitment
and selection process

Need specific criteria to guide the selection

Methods deciding on criteria include:
– Examining the job description
– Evaluating personal histories of the current
sales force to identify differentiating
characteristics among high performers
Characteristics of
Salespeople who Fail

Instability of residence

Failure in business within the past two years



Unexplained gaps in the person’s employment
record
Recent divorce or marital problems
Excessive personal indebtedness; for example,
bills could not be paid within two years from
earnings on the job
Recruiting Applicants



Successful firms depend upon a wellplanned and effectively implemented
recruiting effort.
Recruiting should be step one in the
selection process.
Internal sources of candidates consist of
employees in other departments within the
firm.
Recruiting Applicants

External sources of candidates include:
– people in other firms
– educational institutions
– others attracted through advertising or
employment agencies.

Recruiting issues facing sales managers
grow exponentially as companies expand
globally and seek salespeople in new
international markets.
External Resources


Classified Ads
– Reaches wide audience
– Used if high turnover
– Tend to over-produce under-qualified
candidates
Internet Resume Sites
– Reaches wide audience
– Too new for significant data
– Will continue to grow in importance
because of screening options and ease of
access
External Resources




LinkedIn
Employment Agencies
– best if company pays
Schools & Colleges
– Poised & easily trained
– Lack experience & become bored
Customers, Suppliers & Competition
– Good if need w/out much training
– Legal & ethical issues
– Common: insurance, stock broker, office
equipment, clothing
Inside Recruiting

Advantages:
– Company employees have established performance
records and present themselves as a known entity
– Recruits from inside require less orientation and
training due to familiarity with current products,
policies and operations
– Recruiting within bolsters company morale because
employees see opportunities for advancement

Facilitating internal recruiting starts with fully
informing human resources of sales staff needs
Selection Tools and
Procedures





Application blanks
Personal interviews
Reference checks
Physical examinations
Psychological tests
– intelligence
– personality
– aptitude/skills
Selection Tools and
Procedures


Composites of psychological test scores
offer the greatest assessment validity and
predictive value for evaluating a candidate’s
potential and possible future job
performance.
Personal interviews offer the lowest
predictive potential but often carry the
greatest weight.
Personal Interviews

Structured interview
– applicants are asked the same
predetermined questions
– potential weakness is that interviewer may
fail to identify or probe a candidate’s unique
qualities or limitations
Personal Interviews

Unstructured interview
– induces free discussion on wide ranging
topics
– afford the applicant opportunity to talk
freely with minimal direction and may
yield unexpected insight
– requires experienced interviewers with
interpretative skills
Background and Credit Check
Previous Employer Reference Check
• Dates of Employment?
• What was the Job?
• What type of selling was involved?
• How did the applicant get along with his/her
manager? Customers? Fellow salespeople?
• How did his/her job performance compare
others?
• Applicants strongest points? Weaknesses we
should help him/her overcome?
• Why did s/he leave your company?
• Would you rehire the applicant? Why?
Physical Examinations




Sales jobs require sound basic health, stamina
and the physical ability to withstand stress
Caution should be exercised in requiring
medical examinations and other specific tests
for such things as drug use or the HIV virus
A physical exam can be performed only after
extending a job offer
Managers deem using a standard physical
examination for all positions ill-advised
Tests


Well designed, validated and administered tests provide a
valid selection tool
Possible reasons to use test cautiously
– Tests may not validly predict future success in a
specific firm
– Some creative and talented people may deviate from
expected norms
– Intelligent and “test-wise” individuals may be able to
manipulate results
– Some tests may discriminate against people of
different races, genders, et al – thus becoming illegal
Guidelines for the
Appropriate Use of Tests




Test scores should be considered only a single
input of several in the selection process
Applicants should be tested only when abilities
and traits tested hold relevance to the job
When possible, tests with internal checks for
validity should be used
The firm should conduct comparative,
longitudinal studies to validate the predictive
value in their setting
TESTING VALIDITY
Validity of Predictors for Entry-Level Jobs


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Predictor
Ability composite (tests)
Job tryout
Biographical inventory
Reference check
Experience
Interview
Training and experience ratings
Academic achievement
Education
Interest
Age
Validity
.53
.44
.37
.26
.18
.14
.13
.11
.10
.10
.01
Legislation Impacting
Recruitment
Mark W. Johnston and Gary W. Marshall, Sales Force Management,
McGraw Hill, 2006
Illegal/Sensitive Questions








Nationality or race
Religion
Sex and marital status
Age
Physical characteristics
Height and weight
Financial situation
Arrests and convictions

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