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Finding The Best Candidate

Nick Devine, founder of The Print Coach, reveals an integrated approach to finding the best candidate

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To find the right candidate, you will need to post a compelling job advert as well as directly approach candidates that look like a good fit

Six places to find great salespeople

Jack Welch, the former chief executive officer of General Electric once said: “Hiring good people is hard. Hiring great people is brutally hard. And yet nothing matters more in winning than getting the right people on the field.”

This, of course, begs the question, where do you find these great people? In this article, I will reveal the six best sources we use with our private clients. If you want a consistent flow of great candidates, I would recommend you use all six as part of an integrated approach.

Best of the best

Your goal is to hire A-players. This is a very different approach compared to filling vacancies. When your goal is to fill vacancies, you simply hire the best available person from the pool of candidates that responded to your advert. When your goal is to hire an A-player, you keep going until you find exactly what you are looking for. An A-player is someone who is in the top 10 percent of the available talent for the money you are willing to pay.

When your goal is to hire an A-player, you keep going until you find exactly what you are looking for

Finder’s fee: Be willing to pay a compelling finder’s fee to anybody that refers a great candidate which you subsequently recruit. Consider paying 5 to 10 percent of the total package as a fee. Pay the finder’s fee over time i.e. 25 percent every three months after the candidate joins. If the candidate leaves any time in the first twelve months, the payments stop.

Referral networks: The best source of new candidates is through your existing network. Email/phone/write to your complete network (clients, suppliers, peer group, business network, personal network, etc.) letting them know you have a great career opportunity available for the right person. Offer them a finder’s fee. When executed correctly, combining referral networks with finder’s fees is the most effective source of great candidates.

Social media platforms: Ensure that your company website has a ‘careers’ section. Have everybody on your team post a link to the career opportunity on their social media platforms. The two obvious platforms are Facebook and LinkedIn. Give everybody an approved paragraph of text so you are sending a consistent message across all of the social media platforms. Make sure everybody on your team is aware of the finder’s fee so they are motivated to take the required action.

Job boards: This marketplace is continually evolving and there are new players appearing on a monthly basis. If you are recruiting for a great salesperson, here are five job boards I would consider: www.seniorsalesjobs.co.uk, www.simplysalesjobs.co.uk, www.saleswork.co.uk, www.monster.co.uk, and www.indeed.co.uk.

You will want to take two different approaches when you are using job boards. The first and obvious approach is to post a compelling job advert on the relevant sites. Secondly, you will want to proactively search through the available talent pool using relevant search filters.

LinkedIn: This platform has gone through a lot of changes in the last six months. They offer a specialist recruitment service that starts at around £650. Visit their website to get details on how this works. Unfortunately, the traditional LinkedIn platform has lost a lot of the great search facilities it used to have. However, the new version of LinkedIn Sales Navigator (a paid premium service) has fantastic search facilities.

Recruitment agencies: The sad reality is that most business owners feel they do not get the anticipated value from the recruitment companies they work with. My suggestion is that you work with recruiters on a contingency basis i.e. they only get paid if you recruit one of their candidates. I would also suggest that you offer to pay them a higher fee than they initially proposed. The logic behind this suggestion is that candidates are the product that recruiters sell, and they will sell that product to the highest paying client. In order to get access to those potential candidates, you need to be willing to pay a little bit more.

The job advert that you use is critical to the whole process. If you want an example of a great job advert for a salesperson, send an e-mail to Nick@theprintcoach.com and put the words ‘great salesperson ad’ in the subject line. We will email back a proven advert, which you can modify for your own use.

Nick Devine is the founder of The Print Coach. Visit www.theprintcoach.com for more information.

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