The Most Important Information Sales Candidates Want When Job Searching (Based on Concrete Data)

There’s no denying that 2022 is a candidate’s market. With a huge demand for high-level talent and a diminishing number of young, qualified job seekers, many sales companies are struggling to maintain adequate manpower. While there’s a lot that goes into winning the talent war, a great place to start is creating quality job ads that include the specific information sales candidates want to see.

For this post, I’ll explain exactly what those things are based on concrete data, along with a real-life example of a job ad we created.

The Top 5 Pieces of Information Sales Candidates Want

An in-depth job search study analyzed what “job seekers want employers to provide as they research where they work.” While it varies somewhat, the data found that five pieces of information stood out above all else and include the following:

  1. Details on compensation packages
  2. Details on benefits packages
  3. Basic company information
  4. Details on what makes the company attractive
  5. Company mission, vision, and values

Now let’s fully unpack these findings.

Details on Compensation Packages

Compensation information being first on the list comes as no surprise. Research has found this is hands down the most important thing for job seekers, with 74% wanting salary information. For comparison, that’s 13% higher than the next piece of information on the list, which is benefits at 61%.

One of the things I mentioned in my last blog post is that today’s massive inflation rate of 7% (the highest in 39 years) has created a bidding war where many companies are willing to pay elite salespeople top dollar to join their sales force. So it only makes sense that job seekers will want to see salary information front and center.

If you look at one of the job postings we made for our client MPOWER Envision, an Illinois-based software company, you’ll notice we included both the base salary range and total compensation range so, at a glance, job seekers could see what they’re working with.

Ideally, compensation information will be located at the top “above-the-fold” of a job ad so sales candidates can see it without having to scroll down.

Details on Benefits Packages

As I just mentioned, 61% of sales candidates want to know what types of benefits a company offers. That’s also unsurprising as sales companies can differ widely in terms of benefits and perks. If it comes down to a job seeker choosing between two companies with identical pay, nearly all will opt for the company with more robust benefits. So you’ll want to be crystal clear about what you offer.

In our example featuring MPOWER Envision, we included a fully fleshed-out list of traditional benefits, such as health, dental, vision, 401(k), and so on. Besides that, we also mentioned that employee wellness is a priority, there are ample career development opportunities, and employees can provide input and be a strategic voice.

Basic Company Information

While you don’t necessarily need (or want) to go into great detail about your company, data shows that providing a quick overview is important for helping sales candidates get their bearings. Going back to our example, we point out the essentials like when MPOWER Envision was founded and how many employees it has.

We also mentioned a bit about them, that they’re backed by a 30-year-old well-established sister company, who uses their platform, and more.

Again, you don’t need to go overboard. But offering a succinct overview helps get your foot in the door with sales candidates and ensures they don’t have to struggle to get a feel for your company.

Details on What Makes the Company Attractive

I’m a firm believer in developing a great unique value proposition (UVP). With so much competition out there, it’s never been more important to differentiate yourself from other companies. In line with that, it’s important to let candidates know what makes your company attractive.

For MPOWER Envision, we noted that they have a 4.6-star G2 rating and a perfect 5-star Glassdoor rating to instantly impress sales candidates right off the bat.

Leveraging social proof like this is always a good strategy for establishing value and showing your company is respected.

Besides that, we mentioned that the job is remote, which is highly appealing for many of today’s sales candidates in our post-COVID world.

Company Mission, Vision, and Values

Culture has always played a role in who sales candidates want to work with. But that’s never been more true than it is today.

As Natalie Baumgartner of the Harvard Business Review puts it, “candidates are seeking workplaces where they can intertwine their beliefs with those of the company, and work together on a common vision of purpose and success.” Therefore, things like mission, vision, and values are critical pieces of information sales candidates want when considering applying.

When writing the job description for MPOWER Envision, we clearly articulated this information, saying what it’s like working there, what the company’s mission and values are, and more.

Making Sure You’re Including the Important Information Sales Candidates Want

Most sales companies are up against some stiff competition in 2022, and you need to bring your A-game in all aspects of sales recruiting. One of the best places to start is to understand what sales candidates want to see in a job description and strategically hone in on those areas. That way you can grab the attention of more rockstar sales reps and fill your pipeline with strong candidates.

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Salesperson Turnover is Up 25%: What to Do About It

It’s an interesting time for sales recruiting. We’re at a point where the worst of the pandemic is over, and things have steadily gotten back to normal, albeit it’s “a new normal.” As you might imagine, this has created some significant changes, with the rise of remote work and video conferencing being some of the biggest.

Besides that, there’s been an alarming rise in salesperson turnover, where it’s up substantially from a couple of years ago. For this post, I’ll examine this trend in-depth to understand why it’s happening and how to respond.

A Sharp Rise, Then Gradual Fall in Unemployment

First, it’s important to understand the context of how things got to their current state. In early to mid-2020, when COVID got into full swing, there was a sharp rise in unemployment. It went from being just under 4% in February 2020 to nearly 15% by April.

At that point, many sales professionals were scrambling to find work, with many making the shift from a brick-and-mortar setting to remote. However, as things began to stabilize, so did the unemployment rate, and by December 2021 it was back to around 4%. This brings me to my next point.

A Surge in Flexible Work and SaaS Companies Hiring Salespeople Outside Their Industry

The backlash of COVID has had far-reaching implications, not all of which are currently known. But two particular changes that have impacted the sales industry are growing flexible work options and SaaS companies hiring outside their industry. With “the genie being out of the bottle” with remote and hybrid work models and stiff competition with high-paying tech companies looking for top talent, it’s created an employee market.

Now that the worst of the pandemic is behind us, salespeople with robust skill sets are looking for the best possible jobs. And this led to another trend — higher turnover.

Salesperson Turnover Increased By 25%

Under normal circumstances, the average salesperson turnover rate hovers around 10%. But that number has more than doubled over the past couple of years.

“One consistent theme we’re seeing,” writes Karin Kimbrough, Chief Economist at LinkedIn is that “workers across the globe are eager for change and are ‘voting with their feet’ by taking their experience and skills to new roles at an accelerated pace. Globally, the share of members changing roles in October was up 25% compared to the pre-pandemic period in October 2019.”

As a result, this has made it far more difficult for companies to retain top sales talent — an issue that can be frustrating and detrimental to their bottom line.

Why Has Salesperson Turnover Increased?

I touched on the reasoning earlier with the increased desire for sales reps to have more flexible work options and higher pay. But let me unpack this a bit more. According to LinkedIn, the three main reasons for increased salesperson turnover are better compensation (54%), better alignment with employee values (48%), and more opportunities to move up (44%).

It’s clear that elite salespeople in 2022 have far more leverage than they did during the height of the pandemic. This combined with the highest inflation rate in 39 years at 7% has basically created a bidding war that shows no signs of stopping any time soon. That’s why salespeople looking for better compensation is the number one reason for high turnover.

Beyond that, the added leverage today’s sales reps have has resulted in them seeking employers that have matching values and more career advancement opportunities.

How to Handle the Spike in Turnover

This begs the question. What exactly should you do about this trend?

The short answer is to make sure you’re offering competitive pay. Recent reports indicate that the average salesperson’s salary in 2022 is around $60,000. However, those in the top 25% earn closer to $89,000. So that’s a pretty good range to aim for when deciding how much to pay new hires.

Keep in mind, though, that the salesperson’s salary outlook has increased significantly since 2010, so you’ll likely need to keep raising it steadily as time goes on. Besides that, it’s helpful to offer the right benefits, as this can serve as an added incentive to pull in the best and brightest in your industry. I wrote a post about the top 10 benefits today’s salespeople are looking for based on concrete data, and that’s a great starting point.

Here’s an overview for reference.

But what if offering a high salary just isn’t an option?

In that case, I recommend focusing on two key areas as selling points — schedule flexibility and advancement opportunities. With many of today’s top salespeople valuing remote working arrangements, a healthy work-life balance, and the chance for growth, this can be very appealing and give your brand a competitive edge.

Wrapping Up

COVID turned the world on its head in more ways than one. And we’re still feeling the aftershocks long after the pandemic reached its peak.

The bottom line is that salesperson turnover has reached record highs in 2022 and won’t likely change any time soon. But with the right game plan and an understanding of what top reps are looking for, you should still be able to hire elite talent, and more importantly, retain them.

Looking to hire better sales talent faster? See how HireDNA can help using intelligent matching and science-based assessments. 92% of candidates recommended by HireDNA climb to the top of their sales force within the first year and turnover is lowered by an average of 33%.