5 ways to utilize technology when hiring sales reps
There is nothing worse than spending time and money on hiring new sales representatives that can do everything except..selling.
The awkwardness of having to hire then fire staff members who are simply not performing as expected is a minefield for employers.
Anyone who has ever tried to hire decent salespeople that can successfully represent your brand and persuade other people to invest in your products or services, will be familiar with the difficulties involved.
The good news is technology is on your side and there seems to be no limit to the kinds of help it can provide when you are recruiting sales reps.
Verifying references and credentials, screening potential employees and psychometric testing has never been easier thanks to an emerging army of A1 systems, chatbots, verification software and social media tools that make it easier to hire the right person.
So let’s take a look at a small selection of the tech tools available and how this can help you to recruit top talent into your organization.
Applicant tracking systems
It’s a competitive marketplace and nowadays a job vacancy for a sales rep can easily attract up to 600 applicants or more. If you do not have the resources of a major recruitment agency or you simply don’t have enough time to review them all, you may want to consider an applicant tracking system. There are many tools on the market that can screen resumes and assess how well they match your job description.
For example, a person may have worked for 20 years as a used car salesman, but if you are selling radio adverts to specific types of businesses, they may not necessarily possess the right type of skills or sales techniques that you need for your organization. The applicant tracking system makes it much easier to see at a glance whether their experience will be right for your company.
If you’re short on cash you can also find many free applicant tracking tools on the market such as iKrut, OpenCATS and SmartRecruiters, to name just a few. Some of the better-known tools are Hyrell, Bullhorn and Jobvite. Armed with these tools, you can seamlessly sift your way through hundreds of resumes and select the ones that are more closely aligned with your requirements. The technology is advanced so it also helps to cut down on false positives and false negatives.
Background checking tools
So finally you get around to selecting the resumes that match your requirements and you find some that are paper-perfect. Good job. But how do you make sure that their skills and experiences are genuine?
Thankfully, there are many online tools that can help you do just that. These tools scan online databases to conduct various background checks, including criminal records, qualifications, results achieved, annual audits and schools attended.
Artificial intelligence can play a leading role in helping to streamline different aspects of the recruitment process. For example, A1 systems can make it easy for you to narrow down your list of applicants and hire the most qualified candidates.
Other applications of A1 systems include sending automated responses to candidates, analyzing body language and speech patterns of interviewees to build up a clear profile of a person and utilizing big data to verify and screen potential employees. So for example, if you want to assess how well a prospect is able to deliver a sales pitch or presentation, an A1 system can rapidly assess their speaking skills and provide feedback on that.
Social media is a hiring manager’s best friend. You can utilize social media in a variety of different ways to help with the hiring process. Platforms such as LinkedIn, Vault and Glassdoor make it easy and affordable to post job advertisements to potential candidates. You can also use these same networks to screen potential applicants by assessing their qualifications, online activity and endorsements.
These platforms also make it easy for candidates to showcase their credentials and demonstrate their sales accomplishments, portfolio and industry knowledge. It also allows you to see how often they share posts about their industry, whether they seem passionate about what they do and the type of sales they have made in the past.
A growing number of businesses are using chatbots to communicate with customers, answer questions and process data. These capabilities are valuable when it comes to recruiting sales reps and answering commonly asked questions about the nature of the job and company. Setting up a specialist recruitment bot can be incredibly useful for this purpose and help you to gain insights into a candidate’s qualifications and performance.
The sheer amount of technology out there can itself be overwhelming for employers. The key is in identifying the tools that are going to save you the most time and money when it comes to hiring sales representatives. Investing in tools that speed up the process of analyzing resumes and conducting background checks will probably be the two most useful services for the majority of organizations, but such tools can also help to streamline communication with potential employees.
The great news is that thanks to the prevalence of open source technology and apps, many of these tools are free or low-cost. Regardless of how you use these them, one thing is for sure: the process of hiring qualified salespeople that will generate revenue for your business will be much easier.
By Janine Griffiths