It’s all coming together nicely: you’ve got agreement to increase head count and now you want to find a fresh new sales recruit. You’ve talked to the key people involved; and agree what the role is all about. All that’s left to do is attract applicants who have the drive to go ahead and forge a successful career in sales: fortunately, there are several methods you can apply to ensure that you are attracting the best sales talent for the job.

Create a killer job description

The most important thing you can do to attract the best sales talent is to write a good job description. Outline the key sales skills that you’re looking for and responsibilities they’ll have as part of the job: be clear about the role and what it is that they’ll be expected to sell. Make sure to include things that would attract a person in sales, for instance a competitive salary, a bonus scheme and good opportunities for training and progression.

When it comes to writing your job advert and maximise your response it’s important to remember how they work and how people search adverts. It should be no more than 200-500 words long, and also be specific about the location of the job. If you want to boost visibility, it’s also a good idea to choose a search-friendly job title, and repeat it around four or five times throughout the job description to boost it up the search results page. Salary is also vital – whilst it can create internal issues if other team members see you’re paying a slightly higher salary than they are on – adverts with salaries get a 25% better response rate according to Monster.

Research job boards

When it comes to making your post as visible as possible, take the time to build a strong relationship with the job boards that you’ll be using. Have a look at which packages you can buy to raise your profile online, and negotiate on economies of scale for multiple vacancies: if you have a good relationship with these job boards, it’s much more likely that they’ll say yes! Consider which type of sites to use: if you use job boards that cater to a wide range of jobs, then you’ll reach a larger number of prospective candidates; however, it’s also worth considering the more niche boards that cater specifically to sales candidates if you want to attract a higher quality of applicant. In reality, to really maximise your applicant response, you’ll probably need to use a mixture of both approaches and advertise across multiple job boards.

Create an appealing careers section

Creating an appealing careers section, or page, on your website is about much more than simply listing which vacancies you have! A careers page is a great place to build your company’s employer brand, and you can start by posting some great content for potential candidates to see what life in your company is really like; create employee videos, and show off the perks that sales people find attractive: for instance, bonus incentives, prizes for top performers, or even the company car. Write articles that will help your candidates out, advising them on the interview process, and helping them to prepare if they do get one: it’s touches like these that will drive applicant engagement. Think about the candidate experience.

When it comes to making your company an attractive job prospect, it’s just as important to remember your social media profiles, too. Nothing looks worse than a neglected profile on sites like Glassdoor, and it’s vital to keep on top of your reviews- the good and the bad- so you can sell yourself online and make a good first impression for potential sales talent.

Get active on social media

If you want to reach a huge number of prospective sales candidates, then social media is the way in which to do it. Social media provides you with a huge variety of channels through which to make your mark, and it’s important to personalise your approach: posting role vacancies on Glassdoor and LinkedIn ensures that you reach a business-oriented audience, which you can then refine further on LinkedIn by adding filters to find potential candidates and contacting them with a personal message to catch their attention. If you’re on Twitter, you can push your job adverts further by using hashtags, and ensure that your posts will reach like-minded people.

Email previous candidates

Using email is still one of the best ways to reach potential sales candidates, and to ensure that you make an impression it’s important to contact the right people. Reach into your database for previous sales applicants to target, or ask your recruitment partners whether they are targeting a specific database on your behalf; see whether job boards can offer you a targeted or branded email that focusses on the people most likely to apply for your role. This will let you refine your search and contact the most relevant people, ensuring a higher rate of engagement.

Even if some of the candidates aren’t right for the role that you’re offering at the time, it’s always worth keeping in touch so that you can email them when the right job does come along. Building good relationships with potential applicants in this way will also ensure that you come first to mind when they do start looking for employment later.

In summary

In the competitive world of sales recruitment, it’s important to make sure your job role stands out from the crowd. Attracting the best sales talent is a case of reaching the right people, and by diversifying your approach you can gain the edge and ensure that the person you hire is the best candidate for the role.