5 Things To Look For in a Good Sales Resume

Six seconds. That’s all the time you need to evaluate if a candidate’s resume is good fit for your organization. Although it may seem like a short amount of time, sometimes we’re just aware of what we want — and some candidates don’t cut it.

So, what’s in a good sales resume? Is it obvious elements, such as number of years active or what school a candidate went to? Or is it more than that? What elements does it absolutely need to have and what can be left out?

Check out these five notable things all good sales resumes need to have:

Numbers

The right kinds of numbers can give you some valuable insight into a potential sales representative. For example, due to their efforts, did they meet their quota last quarter? What was their ranking in comparison to other workers? What about how many clients they’ve worked with and which experiences were a success? Each of these numbers offers a quantifiable way to compare and contrast your candidates.

Products sold

Though a sales representative may have had success selling a product, it’s more imperative that they’ve sold the right product. For example, medical sales professionals typically have to sell very specific products, including lab and diagnostic, dental, and veterinary products. They also make different salaries based on what sorts of products they sell.

So, without the insight and know-how of these products, it may take you longer to train a candidate who doesn’t have as much experience. A candidate who’s already familiar with your product line will have a smoother onboarding process, saving you time and money.

Travel experience

It’s no surprise that travel is a common aspect of the sales industry. After all, it’s how products are often marketed and sold to various clients. In fact, medical sales professionals spend an average of 20 percent of their time traveling overnight for work. Candidates who have already traveled in some capacity will likely have an easier time adjusting to this sort of schedule, especially if the position you’re filling has an irregular schedule. Plus, if candidates can illustrate previous success while on the road, it’s easier to assume they won’t have any problems with this requirement of the position and will perform well while away from the office.

Company background

It’s important to evaluate who candidates have worked for in the past for a few significant reasons. First, many sales professionals who have worked for manufactures rather than distributors earn more. This may mean they will require a higher salary.

In addition, having worked for a larger company versus a smaller organization may have an affect on their knowledge base, both positive and negative. For instance, larger companies may have provided the candidate with a wider variety of experiences. Conversely, smaller organizations may focus only on a few products. Understand what sort of company background you’d want in a potential employee and consider those who can meet your needs.

Commission history

Commission is another important aspect of the sales industry. Since many employees work on a base salary plus commission system, knowing what a candidate has earned in the past can help evaluate what you can afford, as well as what sorts of results a potential employee can bring in. Although you can always negotiate, understand that many sales professionals may be used to a certain rate based on their efforts. If it comes down to it, have a conversation with the potential candidate and find out what they’re looking for. Then evaluate if you can meet their needs.

Although you don’t need to — nor should you — chose sales representatives based solely on a resume, it is a great tool to help you quickly narrow down your top candidates. If you focus your attention on the above elements, you can quickly determine which candidates are likely to be great sales representatives.

What do you think? What are some other things to look for in a good sales resume?

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