Keys to hiring great tech sales talent

As one of the leading software sales recruiters in Miami, we’ve compiled some of the tips that have helped us place leading sales talent from startups to multinational corporations. Having the right sales team in place is critical to business growth. Even if you have the best software on the market, if your sales team is below average you’ll fall behind your competitors.

Deep Industry Knowledge

How much industry knowledge does the sales person have from past roles? Even if they’re coming from another industry, any salesperson should be an expert in their past sales field – even if they were an associate at Radio Shack. If they didn’t take the time to learn about their last industry or stay up to date with trends, chances are they’ll fall flat in learning your companies target industry. Customers rely on your sales team to be up-to-date with their current needs and challenges. If they aren’t knowledgeable, they aren’t top sales material.

Strong Consultative Sales Skills

Selling software is a completely unique sales mindset. While many sales positions are focused on closing a single deal, software sales requires a relationship driven attitude. Even though a customer may commit to your company for now, your sales rep needs to be keeping close their relationship thriving and anticipate needs before they start evaluating other vendors.

 Ability to Align Customer Business Problems with Benefits of Solutions

Your sales team isn’t just selling software, they’re selling a solution. A great sales leader understands the difference and knows how to show a business why they really need the solutions being offered. Most of the time, the potential client already has something in place. What will your software do that’s better (ie save time and money) for the customer?

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Job Length

A great way to evaluate a salesperson is the length of time at past positions. If every position is a year (or two at most) this could be a major red flag. Sales positions are the most difficult year one – each consecutive year is less focused on new client development (aka cold calling) and more on client retention. Great salespeople tend to make more and more each year via continuity streams; clients naturally returning to renew contracts. Top players don’t move around as much and lose out on a network they’ve worked hard to establish.

Fuzzy Quotas Proclamations

Don’t let fuzzy terms like “Exceeded 110% of quota in first year” or “Sold 1.5M in contracts annually” fool you. First year sales positions tend to have lower quotas to factor in training and ramp up time. Exceeding quota by 10% is good but not necessarily great if it was in the first year – what happened in year two? Spouting of sales figures also sounds exciting, but what if each contract was 750K? Two contracts in a year might be below average or even cause for termination. Dig in, ask about team averages, quota expectations after first year (and if they continued to excel), and other questions that will help you get to the bottom of suspicious quotas proclamations.

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Keys to hiring great tech sales talent

Elizabeth Becker

Elizabeth is Marketing Manager at PROTECH. Comments and feedback can be directed to her at