If you have decided to be Proactive in your future sales recruitment, through building yourself a talent pipeline of high performers, or perhaps you have used a company like Harvey Thomas to build one for you, then its fair to say you have taken a big step towards upgrading your hiring strategy and preparing your business for the future.
But, it doesn’t end there, having a pipeline of high performing sales talent ready for consideration when you need to make the hires is great, but unless you engage with them effectively, you are going to undo all your hard work and lose their interest.
Here are 5 tips for engaging with sales hires in your talent pipeline and how to make sure your time to hire is next to zero, when you are ready to grow.
If they have shown an interest in your organisation or they have been introduced to you and they look great, then you need to speak to them ASAP. Don’t leave it for a few weeks before you chat, you are fresh in their mind, they have probably conducted some research and want to find out more. The longer you leave it, the less interest they will have in you and it’s also a great opportunity to qualify each other out early and focus on other candidates.
You should be sharing content with them regularly and not just any content. Make sure it relates to them as sales professionals and focuses on what they would find interesting. Think about customer case studies, product enhancements, new hires in the sales team, new wins for the business etc. Consider focusing time on creating specific content for your talent pipeline rather than sending generic marketing material. This will mean you can be very ‘sales’ specific and set yourself apart from your competitors.
Remember this is something for the future and not now, so you need to keep up the communication to ensure you remain in view. Try and mix it up too, don’t just send articles on your business, think about them aswell, remembering a birthday or another personal event will make all the difference. Maybe you are attending a similar event and can grab a coffee, or you’ve noticed something about their business you can comment on, either way you are making them feel a little bit special.
This really should go without saying but make sure your online presence is up to date, relevant and is a window into your business and highlights your company values. They will be following you, so make sure everything looks great.. Including your careers page, which needs more than just your open jobs. What is it really like to work in your company ?
Check your Glassdoor reviews, client reviews that are online and your LinkedIn and social media pages. Sales folk are very good at researching, so make sure you are presented well online.
Build a relationship
When you are communicating with your talent pool, both you and the individual are, in essence, part of a long interview process so it is important to try and remember this, as you get closer to an open requisition. Ideally once a role is approved, you will already have a small number of candidates for consideration that you have been speaking to over the last 3,6,9 or even 12 months. Both you and the candidate must feel comfortable at this point that you have built a good relationship and are ready to move forward. Do not make the mistake of starting the ‘interview’ process when the role is signed off, you should be talking numbers by then.
By building a talent pipeline of high performing sales professionals and managing them like you would your sales prospects, through continuous and personalised communication and building effective relationships, you will massively improve your hiring process, reduce your overall recruitment spend and bring your time to hire down to almost zero.
Harvey Thomas specialises in building and managing talent pipelines within the SaaS industry, focusing on mid-senior level sales hires. For more information on our Essential and Custom services, please visit us here.