How to attract new graduates for a sales role?

New Graduates are the future of the organisation and important part of any growing economy. They create new ideas, introduce fresh perspectives and bring energy into the organization every year. Having fresh graduates also increases diversity in your work team. New graduates are a valuable addition to any company as they are full of energy and enthusiasm, more knowledge and experience with social media and the internet. It is always the best combination to have a mix of people in your sales team from senior managers with lots of experience to graduates with new ideas and perspectives.

Why it is important for a sales organisation to hire new graduates? 

New graduates are keen to learn and progress. They have an eagerness and enthusiasm which might not be present in more senior professionals. Their enthusiasm also boost the team spirit. This makes them perfect for pursuing new business. Employers find new graduates to be more creative, energetic and persuaded than non-graduate, and these qualities are precious to the wider organisation.

Hiring new graduates will not only be short-term enthusiasm but they will also offer long term potential. As the workforce is continuously aging and the economy is expanding, it is important for the companies to recruit new graduates to expand their sales team and train them for the future as well. Companies should provide structured and proper’s sales training and support to help them become your future sales star.

Why new graduated don’t want to take a sales job?

A large number of new graduates are missing out on the opportunities to work on well-paid job because of their old belief about what it means to work in ‘sales’. They are wrongly informed that all sales jobs are the same, involving cold calls and hard sell strategies.

Today’s sales techniques and methods especially for selling high-end products and services have moved on from those old stereotypes methods. Now the quality of selling anything has become exceptionally valuable skills which employers are looking for. No matter in which profession you are working, you’ll find yourself selling something throughout your career.

We have done a video survey on young graduates to know their opinion about the sales job. Some of them think sales job as a way to get a lot of money, a chance to interact with new people and others think that it is difficult and unstable in terms of income. Here’s the video:

Most of the graduates admit that they have a negative perception of sales which put them off to think of employment in the sales sector. One of the possible reason for their thinking could be that the higher education don’t qualify sales as a ‘profession’. Unfortunately, because of this wrong information, new graduates are being discouraged from one of the most satisfying and fulfilling careers.

How employers should attract new graduates for a sales role?

The most important thing that an organisation should do is to rebrand sales roles as a cutting edge career with strong financial benefits. When new graduates deeply understand this they are more likely to take to enter into the sales career.

Sales as an Consultancy-Style Role

Sales as an Consultancy-Style Role

It is important to replace the old stereotypes working style of sales executives with a more exciting job role. Consultancy style roles require more purpose-driven work, creative ideas, and entrepreneurial thinking. By rebranding the job description of sales roles, leaders from sales and human resource would be able to build the job attributes that are more likely to appeal to the new graduates and increase the chance of positive match.

New graduates are unaware that the modern sales position requires deep and critical thinking and fine ability to negotiate. In order to attract new graduates for sales roles, it is necessary to emphasize more on problem-solving and data drive skills. New graduates have the ability to guide prospects through complex problem-solving processes and help them to match their needs with the right services. During the recruitment process, employers should sell sales jobs as a consultancy based role, as they are highly suitable for the new graduates’ attributes.

Purpose-Driven Work

New graduates are increasingly looking for organisations which have a ‘sense of purpose’. These organisation have significantly higher job satisfaction and financial success. Organisation should link their strategies with a greater motivation that encourages to help clients. The message ‘sale is an act of goodwill’ is essential in recruiting new graduates. Hiring managers should emphasise the role of buyer empathy in a job and should link it with the purpose of their corporate brand.

Framing Salespeople as entrepreneurs

Representing salespeople as entrepreneurs within an organisation requires self-starting and creative mentality, which new graduates seek from prospective employers. These kinds of roles appeal to graduates who value extra responsibility and independence. They get the unique opportunity to take risks and experiments their strategy to clients without pressure. New graduates prefer to come up with their own ideas and follow their own judgment rather than following a rigid method.

Introduce Sales Graduate Program

The most important factor that graduates look for is career development and progression. They expect to receive formal training from their first employers. It is important for the organisation to understand that new graduates are ambitious and keen to learn. Employers should take advantage of this and should include dedicated training in their sales graduate program that allows graduates to grow within the company. If the organisation needs new sales graduates in their sales team, they should make sure that the have a clear path for career development and progression.

Hybrid Sales Role

Before joining any company, graduates typically demand two things: work-life balance, this is something which is increasingly important to the best graduates and other is to join the organisation with real ambition. So the employers should make sure that it is not only their ambitions which they want to achieve but they should be ambitious about the opportunities graduates can attain in these roles.

To keep motivating new graduates in the team and ensure their long term commitment, make sure that your hybrid sales role offers them the opportunities to explore other areas rather than sales to provide them ample of varieties so that they do not get bore in doing the same job.

Positive Working Atmosphere

New graduates are increasingly looking for a place with a positive working atmosphere as they are placing more importance on the company culture. Working in a sales role is a hard job, so the employer should make sure that they keep their sales team motivated. As for new graduates this will be their first job, they are naturally excited and prefer to work in a positive and healthy atmosphere where the company culture is fun. Organisation should promote their company cultural if they take part in social activities as business, do some charity work or if they have sport teams or tournaments, to provide little extra to the graduates from the role.

Highlight Perks and Rewards

Along with a healthy work-life balance, fair pay is also very important for the new graduates. The company should offer additional incentives like two weeks paid holidays, advance education tuition loans or reimbursement, annual salary increase, proper commission schemes, or flexible work opportunities.  With many companies offerings unlimited benefits like outing and gym reimbursement, it is clear that today, new graduates want more from their employers.

In 2020, new graduates will make up to 50% of the workforce. Companies that fail to attract these demographics for their sales role will not be able to retain and expand their sales team. By rebranding sales role as a consultancy based jobs, introducing sales graduate program, framing salespeople as an entrepreneurs, organisation would be able to strengthen their position as an employer of choice for new sales graduates. Follow our steps to ensure you are hiring new graduates for your sales role and soon you will be on your way to a successful sales future.

This is first published by Asia Pacific Sales & Marketing Academy Pte Ltd on 4th November 2019. All Rights Reserved.

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