When it comes to sales candidates, what you see isn’t always what you get. One study found that nearly four out of five sales resumes are misleading, and up to 46% contain straight-up lies! This isn’t to say all sales candidates are deliberately trying to be deceptive. But the fact of the matter is that you simply can’t take everything at face value. That’s where a sales assessment comes in.
Though not a magic bullet, there’s a solid body of evidence that shows effectively using a sales assessment can have a dramatic impact on recruiting, with companies that use it having a noticeable advantage over those that don’t. Allow me to explain.
Some Eye-Opening Stats
Most sales recruiters acknowledge that sales assessments have some type of impact on recruiting. But many don’t realize the extent of the impact. So let’s quantify.
One of the most telling studies comes from Aberdeen Group, which found “organizations that use pre-hire assessments are 24% more likely to have employees who exceed performance goals.” That alone I found to be highly impressive and, right off the bat, it shows the correlation between evaluating the skills a potential candidate claims and making smart hiring decisions.
But that’s not all.
Additional research found that “hiring managers who utilize pre-employment assessments report 36% more satisfaction with their final decision than those who don’t.”
So not only are salespeople who are hired after completing a sales assessment far more likely to thrive, hiring managers are far more likely to be satisfied with their decision.
Why is a Sales Assessment So Beneficial?
Again, a sales assessment isn’t a cure-all, and there’s no guarantee that by using one you’ll find the perfect salesperson 100% of the time. But there’s no denying that it can be an immensely helpful tool. I think Aberdeen Group summarizes it well with this quote.
“While this technology might not predict every facet of an employee’s tenure with a company, it certainly is an improvement over making hiring decisions based on interviews, references, resumes, and/or gut feel — together or separately.” By objectively evaluating a sales candidate’s knowledge and skills, you can approach recruiting much more confidently than in the past. And the odds of the person you hire working out long-term are much higher.
But what are some specific reasons why companies that use a sales assessment have reps that are much more likely to exceed their performance goals? Here are three of the biggest.
You Can Verify a Sales Candidate’s Claims
Perhaps the most obvious benefit is that this tool gives you a means of “fact-checking” a sales candidate to ensure they truly possess the skills they claim to have on their resume. Going back to the data in the intro, the majority of resumes are misleading, and, unfortunately, close to half contain some type of lie. So you shouldn’t assume that every candidate you encounter is as good as they say they are.
But with a sales assessment, you can see exactly what they bring to the table. And because all candidates answer the same questions and perform the same tasks in their assessment, you can accurately compare each one side-by-side to see who’s the best fit for your company.
You Can Get a Feel for a Sales Candidate’s Personality
Besides finding someone with the right hard skills, it’s also important to take soft skills like communication, problem-solving, and organization into account. While you can get a general sense of a candidate’s personality through interactions and interviewing, this doesn’t always tell the whole story.
Another big advantage of a sales assessment is that it goes beyond traditional interviewing where you can ask questions to gauge their personality and see how good of a match they would be for the specific role and your overall company culture.
You Can Eliminate Bias
One reason why some sales recruiters make the wrong hire is that they “fall in love” with a particular candidate, even if they’re not the optimal choice. Say, for example, a candidate is incredibly charismatic, shares the same interest, and went to your same college. There’s a good chance you would be compelled to hire them over another candidate that didn’t check these boxes even if they’re not objectively the better fit.
At the end of the day, human bias is always a factor and can easily cloud a recruiter’s judgment. The great thing about a sales assessment is that it eliminates bias so each candidate can be evaluated objectively.
Sales Assessment Tools to Use
At this point, I think we can agree that, when used correctly, a sales assessment can be a huge asset. But what specific tool should you use?
One that many sales recruiters have success with is HireDNA, which offers the industry’s number one skills assessment solution. Here’s an overview of what HireDNA has to offer.
With it, you can assess core selling competencies like lead hunting, the ability to reach decision-makers, relationship-building, and more.
You can also measure “sales DNA competencies,” such as being able to control emotions, comfortably discuss money, and handle rejection, as well as development traits like the will to sell and coachability.
Aftering setting up your ideal candidate profile, you can use HireDNA to filter and screen candidates 10x faster, and recruiters that use it are able to eliminate 96% of hiring mistakes. You can get a full overview of HireDNA and learn more about it here.
Sales recruiting isn’t something you want to leave to chance. Fortunately, technology like a sales assessment has created a framework that allows you to evaluate potential candidates from all angles while eliminating many of the inefficiencies that recruiters had to deal with in the past. With a clear correlation between using a sales assessment and reps exceeding their goals, it’s definitely a technology worth implementing if you haven’t done so already.
Ready to take the next step? Schedule a live HireDNA demo today.