For Series A+ startups, recruiting salespeople is something you have to get right. The consequences of appointing the wrong person can put a severe dent in your plans for growth. It’s imperative that you bring salespeople on board who can accelerate your growth and take you to the next level.
Sometimes, however, companies decide not to use a headhunter to find salespeople for them. There are a variety of reasons why they may choose to do this. Maybe they feel they can find the right salespeople themselves. Perhaps they work with internal recruiters. Maybe they haven’t budgeted the extra cost of using headhunters.
There are pitfalls to this DIY approach. For so many reasons, using a headhunter gives you the best chance of finding the best salespeople. You could even say it’s priceless! Let’s look at some of those reasons now.
Think of the time it takes to hire a new salesperson at your startup from start to finish. You need to:
- Advertise the role
- Wait for applications to arrive
- Sift through the (possibly hundreds) of applications you receive
If the calibre is not high enough via applications (which is often the case), you will need to proactively headhunt candidates yourself. This can take anywhere from 1 week to 4 weeks, 5 days a week.
- Interview your chosen candidates, probably 2 or 3 times each
- Deliberate and select your preferred candidate
- Offer them the role
If your successful candidate is currently employed, it’s likely they’ll be on a notice period. You may have to wait three months before they can start with you. Even worse, your first-choice candidate may turn down your offer, which means you have to start all over again.
What is the cost of your time? What could you be doing instead of all those different tasks? Could you be out selling? Did you lose a £100K deal because you were busy trying to find a new salesperson?
A professional headhunter will take the majority of those tasks off your hands. We:
- Make sure your employer branding attracts high-calibre candidates
- Map out the market
- Proactively approach the best handpicked candidates in the market
- Perform qualification and telephone interviews
- Arrange the timings for you to meet the best candidates
- Take care of all contact with the candidate
- Check references
You get your time back to do what you’re best at.
When a company advertises a sales role themselves, they’re limiting the number and calibre of people who will apply. By definition, people looking at job ads are usually people actively looking for a job. These active candidates may not be the best people for the job. Often, but not always, people are looking for a new job because they’re not hitting their targets in their current one.
When you use a headhunter, you automatically have access to a much bigger pool of talent. We’re experts in the SaaS industry. We know who the best salespeople are. We have built up relationships with them. As well as active candidates, we talk to salespeople who aren’t specifically looking for jobs at that moment. When the opportunity is right, we persuade them to consider it.
We take the time to get to know your company, your culture and what kind of people are successful there. We make sure the candidates we recommend will be the best fit possible. We’re a trusted source of information between you and the candidate. We want to create a partnership between you and the them, that way, everybody wins.
Estimates of what it costs to hire a salesperson in SaaS sales vary. However, when you take everything into account, it can certainly spiral past the £1 million mark.
You have the cost of advertising the role. Then, once you’ve appointed someone and they’ve accepted your offer, you have to train them. Think of the cost of training materials, flying them to your HQ and putting them up in a hotel for a week.
Finally, you have to wait up to a year before your salesperson is ramped up and generating revenue to their full capacity. How much potential revenue are you losing in that time?
Of course, these costs are applicable whether you use a headhunter or not. However, it makes it all the more critical that you get the hire right. If the person you hire leaves after six months, you have to go back to the drawing board and start again. You lose time and money all over again.
Using a headhunting agency makes it much more likely that you’ll hire the best person for the job. If we charge you £20K in fees, but find you a top performer who adds an extra £400K to your bottom line, surely that’s an investment worth making?
If you’re looking for top performing sales generators for your business, it’s time to talk to Ingenio. You can call us on +44 203 948 4363 or visit us at ingenio.io. We can’t wait to hear from you.