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Why Work with a Specialist SaaS Recruiter

There are many challenges facing the SaaS industry right now. And as a Hiring Manager, it’s likely you feel the skills shortages and Sales team turnover most keenly! But there are a host of things you can do to address these issues and support the growth of your company.

Let’s take a closer look at some of these SaaS market challenges and how partnering with a specialist SaaS Recruiter can help you overcome them.

Sales Team Turnover Rate

An Xactly survey of over 400 Sales Leaders revealed companies had a 58% higher employee turnover rate in 2021 compared to 2020, with the figure even greater at technology and software companies (67%).

On the surface this doesn’t appear to bode well for Hiring Managers in the SaaS industry. But figures from a SaaS Capital survey of more than 1500 private SaaS companies across the UK, USA and Canada paints a slightly different (and more positive) picture.

They found the biggest factor driving retention in 2021 was the company’s ARR growth rate. Those that grew by 75% to 100% had a 6.6% employee turnover rate, in comparison to those that grew by 0 to 10% who had a 15.1% employee turnover rate.

Interestingly, very small companies with an ARR under $1 million had one of the lowest attrition rates (7.7%), while the largest private SaaS companies (those with an ARR over $20 million) had one of the highest (11.5%).

From these results, the report authors surmise that a small SaaS team with a high growth environment is optimum for staff retention, perhaps because employees can have a larger relative impact. It also seems fast-growing companies, ones that present greater opportunities for career growth, are more attractive than slow growers.

In addition, the type of work makes a big impact on Sales teams’ happiness levels. According to LinkedIn’s 2022 State of Sales report, sales professionals worldwide spend less than one-third of their time actually selling, which is unfortunate as it appears to be the part they love the most. They spend time more on administrative and other non-selling duties.

The same study also found top sales performers devote more time to studying their customers. Figures show that almost 70% of salespeople who exceeded their quota by 50% or more always researched a prospect before connecting.

In light of these findings, it pays to review your current employees’ workload and the split between high-engagement and low-engagement tasks. If you find a skew towards low-engagement, you may like to consider what you can do to address this.

How a Specialist SaaS Recruiter can help

A good SaaS Recruiter should be focused on making long-term placements. When attrition rates rocket, the starting point for any Recruiter should be to find out why. Using experience and market knowledge, they can determine the factors that may lead to this. If it’s down to the time balance of the role, Recruiters can advise on what others in the market are doing, and consult on job descriptions and defined areas of responsibility. Many of our current clients have experienced success with automating more of their manual process duties to free up their Sales team’s time, which can reduce attrition rates

Fierce Competition for Top Talent

LinkedIn Sales job postings have jumped by a huge 114% year-on-year in the UK. This is well above the global average of 82%. Furthermore, even though they had great retention rates, the top growth companies in the SaaS Capital survey still had open positions representing 18% of their workforce.

These figures showcase the stark reality of skills shortages across the SaaS sales industry. And with so many SaaS companies continuing their rapid expansion, it’s not likely to change in the near future. Finding the right talent for your SaaS Sales and Customer Success teams in this climate is certainly a challenge.

How a Specialist SaaS Recruiter can help

In a tight-talent field, it’s all about enticing candidates to consider your company over your competition. It’s an area where developing a professional relationship with a SaaS Recruitment Agency can be most beneficial.

They can help you:

  • Accurately benchmark and adjust your salary, compensation and benefits package to meet current market rates, whilst still maintaining a competitive edge
  • Develop personal progression pathways, which is very high on the ‘wants’ list for most SaaS Sales and Customer Success professionals
  • Suggest ways you can enhance your culture and Employee Value Proposition to attract new talent and retain the valued staff you have
  • Help you focus on creating the right work-life balance conditions, including hybrid working
  • Expand your hiring parameters by sourcing active and passive talent from complementary Sales and Customer Success fields


Management Matters

A recent GoodHire survey of 3,000 workers across 10 industries in the USA found 82% would consider quitting their job because of a bad manager. Those in Sales and Marketing seemed to have more trust issues than the general workforce, with only 19% feeling like their Managers trust them. Less than a third (27%) feel their Managers care about their career progression (coming in at the third lowest spot across the 10 industries, with only HR and Hospitality faring worse).

How a Specialist SaaS Recruiter can help

As these statistics show, good management is the backbone of a successful SaaS organisation. While you can internally review how your company performs on the management front, getting a set of outside eyes to take a fresh look is a savvy move.

One of the complementary tasks of a SaaS recruitment agency is to help clients take their organisation’s pulse. This helps to effectively understand what is working well and what gaps may need filling. . It can also be done through autonomous employee surveys and includes current staff, new hires and former employees to gain a holistic view. A third party can more easily facilitate this.

Assessing Candidate Skillset & Cultural Fit

Many SaaS Hiring Managers find it challenging to accurately assess candidates during the recruitment cycle, particularly with a shift to remote recruitment. Mistakes are easily made when company growth necessitates a rapidly increased headcount, forcing Hiring Managers to scramble and produce rushed recruitment materials, such as job ads and descriptions, which can result in a skills and culture mismatch.

How a Specialist SaaS Recruiter can help

A specialist SaaS Recruiter has best practice processes in place to cover the entire recruitment cycle. Having done a deeper dive into a candidate’s personality, a SaaS Recruiter should have their finger on the pulse of what makes a Hiring Manager tick and be able to spot a mismatch in the early stages. Alongside writing recruitment materials, reviewing applications and pre-screening candidates, Recruiters should advise on interviewing prowess, as well as keeping applicants informed throughout the process to ensure they have a positive candidate experience. Working in partnership with the business, they should advise on how to construct a compelling offer, negotiations and post-placement support.

Take Your First Step to Engaging a Specialist SaaS Recruiter

While there are many challenges in the SaaS space, they are also plenty of opportunities to secure talent that have the potential to propel your business ever forward. This requires some proactivity, being open to expanding your hiring requirements and utilising recruitment techniques that are geared specifically to your industry.

Here at Harvey Thomas, we work with SaaS organisations across the UK, EMEA and USA to build and source teams according to their individual growth strategies. We have a keen eye for spotting a successful  SaaS sales operator as well as Customer Success professionals who artfully combine active listening with a customer-centric mindset.

Please get in touch with one of our expert recruiters if we can help you source new SaaS talent, or for additional advice about dealing with any of the other challenges covered.

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