…Better have a great training program and lots of patience!
In our world, hiring sales candidates with 2 to 7 years works better for retention and productivity.
I’ve read that college grads in the last 8 years have taken longer to find a career than in the past. It seems college is stressful enough and grads want to explore their options before going into a full time “grinder” type opportunity. Thus, job experiences right after college are short stays and internships.
Why take a chance on new grads without a work history?
If your training program is extensive, then you may be training for your competitor. If you can live with your retention statistics, then keep doing what you’re doing. Some companies train and others like candidates already trained as it is an expensive process. So those who do little training have a bigger budget for higher commissions to those who can ramp up quickly.
If you are keeping track, my guess is your hires that have 2-7 years experience are more productive with a better work ethic than first job types.
Our most sought after candidates are those with 2-7 years experience and 1-2 past sales positions. Sales people especially need to know their capabilities for how to prospect, present and close. Many in college who want a sales career change their mind soon after because of prospecting and rejection around it.
Who has great training? Companies who train their people to prospect daily and close often, normally 6 to 10 times monthly.
Software and industrial sales people have a longer sales cycle. Often they were originally trained by one of our favorites then went into longer sales cycles.
Xerox has always provided great training. Look for companies who have trained the sales person and kept them in a competitive environment. If sales reps receive a few days sales training then work on a small team without a sales culture, they don’t normally achieve what a Xerox alumni will. Cintas, ADP, Paychex, GK Uniform, Canon, Iron Mountain and HP all have the environments we like to draw candidates from.
If sales hiring becomes challenging in 2016 allow us a conversation about how we work.