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Sales Assessment – Does It Work When Hiring Salespeople?


What is a Sales Assessment?

Sales Assessment is the ability to gauge the “potential” of a sales candidate for a specific job BEFORE they are hired.

One of the most common questions we get is “do assessments work when hiring salespeople?” Type “Assessments” into Google and see what you get. Now type in “Sales Assessment” and you will realize that hiring salespeople is not an easy task and everyone is looking for a better way to make the right hiring decisions.

It seems that every day a new sales assessment tool enters the marketplace with great claims as to its ability to assist sales teams in assessing the potential of candidates you are thinking of hiring.

sales assessmentThere are a few ways to find out if the assessment product you are reviewing will actually work and assist your team in making quality hires within your sales department. However, the best and most practical way is to simply ask the vendor the success ratio or validity of their sales assessment. How is it helping and impacting organizations today in their hiring needs in their sales department?

In most cases a sales assessment tool will be part of an overall hiring process. Hiring teams may want to provide a specific weight to the assessment being used along with other tools or interviews being conducted. An example of this would be as follows:

1st interview (assuming they pass the interview) 20%
Sales Assessment (online) 30%
Hiring Simulation Assessments (Job Simulation) 40%
Final Interview 10%

In this example weights can be distributed in any arrangement, however, as you can see from this example, the sales assessment should not be 100%.

Notice the weight assigned to Hiring Simulation Assessments is high. This type of assessment brings into account many of the real life activities the candidate will be engaged in when working on the job.

Will a sales assessment work? Yes they do but the one using the assessments needs to understand where a sales assessment will fit into the overall hiring mix for the role being filled.

The Best Hiring Results Come From Sales Assessment

The best results from a new hire often come from the use of a sales assessment. Image that you and your hiring team are about to embark on a hiring program for two key players on your management team. The rules in these two hires are a little different. You and your team can only select candidates who have either “Knowledge/skills” or “Core Values and Motivation” – not both.

rsz_better-presentation1What do you do? The answers will vary depending on the requirements however most readers will pick “Core Values and Motivation” – which, in most cases, is the right response. However, in the real world most organizations will lean towards the Knowledge/Skills side when selecting candidates. It is only natural to think this way since these are the elements that are the easiest to assess during the interview process. What this company needs is a new sales assessment for job candidates.

The real issue becomes when the team wants to widen the hiring net to get a better sales assessment for job candidates who may not have the “knowledge and skills” but have the “core values and motivation”. One of the real issues is that the hiring team typically is not equipped with the right tools to assess all candidates. Because of this – the candidates who are selected for future sales assessment / interviews are the ones who have strong “knowledge / skills” resumes. Or teams will say there is a “shortage of talent”.

Over the years we have watched as hiring teams (who are desperate to hire new, refreshing talent onto the team) bypass future stars because they do not have the right industry experience or specific skills.  These are candidates who have the right “core values and motivation” and could be taught the skills required for the job.

sales assessmentIf organizations had the ability to see past the resume and into the candidate (talent) then we would recognize that there is not a shortage of talent in the marketplace. What exists today is a marketplace full of talented professional who do not have the knowledge / skills for the open requirements but have everything else to meet and exceed teams hiring expectations.

There is no real full proof way of identifying those talented professionals who are applying for open role however there needs to be a more concerted effort on hiring teams to find any tool, sales assessment program or process that will allow stars to shine and be discovered.

Don’t believe the newspapers – there is no talent shortage!! With our Hiring Simulation, you can get a far more successful and accurate sales assessment for job candidates.

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Craig Bissett is President of Hire Results Ltd – developers of the Hiring Simulation Assessment process.

Sales Assessment – Does It Work When Hiring Salespeople?
Craig Bissett

By Craig Bissett Visit author's website

Craig Bissett is the President of Hire Results Ltd – the developers of the Hiring Simulation Assessment process. Allowing hiring teams to Test Drive candidates before they are hired.  Craig has been actively involved in the Human Capital marketplace since 1986. He has had roles as a General Manager and Partner with progressive Human Capital firms. In 2002 Craig left his partnership to start Hire Results Ltd. Since then the company has worked with organizations throughout North America through its innovative Hiring Simulation Assessment process. As the founder of Hire Results Ltd., I welcome the opportunity to assist and impact your organization through our Hiring Simulation Assessment process.
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