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Several job roles are responsible for building a business on certain levels, so it’s important to be aware of what duties are outlined in various titles. Additionally, it’s good to develop an approach when it comes to recruiting and hiring for these roles. Take, for example, sales development representatives. These individuals are crucial when it comes to expanding your client base and increasing your sales. However, the roles of an SDR are often confused with those of other company roles, like business development representatives.
Being informed about what a sales development representative is and what purpose they serve a company can help make it easier to recruit and hire the right candidate.
What is a Sales Development Representative?
A sales development representative (or SDR) helps the company generate new leads and introduce them to the sales pipeline. Unlike the individuals that work in a business’s marketing team, sales development representatives are not in charge of making sales. Instead, they attract new individuals and companies to the products and services available in hopes of making a sale possible for the rest of their team.
The title says it all. A sales development representative is not a standard sales representative, because their job focuses on developing their company’s selling process and reinforcing the pipeline. They approach a new lead through outbound prospecting, which involves seeking out businesses or individuals that have a need for their products and services. From there, they take steps to build a rapport with the new lead, qualify them, and convert them from a “cold call” to a warm lead.
SDR VS Business Development Representative?
A sales development representative’s job roles might sound very similar to a business development representative’s job roles, but despite their likeness, these are two different positions that serve two different needs.
On one hand, a business development representative (or BDR) is responsible for attracting new business to their existing company. The main goal of a BDR is to help the company grow and expand its reach in its current market.
Sales development representatives typically work on a smaller scale, by developing their company’s selling process and expanding their reach to new leads. Their main goal is to assist their company with selling products and services, while a business development representative works on a higher scale and aims to network with bigger businesses and expand the company itself.
How to Recruit for an SDR
If your company is planning on hiring a new sales development representative, it’s a good idea to create a clear picture of the sort of professional you’d like to work with before posting to job boards. List the traits that you absolutely need to have in your ideal SDR and as you’re scanning through resumes once the position opens, keep these traits in mind along with the additional qualifications you seek.
It’s a good idea to hire someone who has both an interest and a background in sales, as it takes a specific personality type to succeed as a sales development representative. A candidate who is not necessarily interested in selling or sales development is unlikely to deliver the same performance a sales professional will.
In your company’s job posting, be sure to include a clear outline as to what is expected in the role of a sales development representative. This includes years of experience, the expected volume of work, willingness to adapt, and pay rate.
While including the position’s pay rate is likely going to result in your inbox becoming flooded with the resumes of unqualified individuals, it will also let qualified candidates know how your company is prepared to compensate them. This way, you can be assured that from the time you hire a new recruit, they’ll be more willing to put forth their best work when they know they’re being paid what they’re worth.
There’s no single job board that works best for hiring sales development representatives, so using a combination of platforms is likely going to yield the best results. For example, posting on both LinkedIn and Indeed is going to attract qualified candidates that individually use those platforms.
As with any other job posting, narrow down your list of candidates by checking their level of education, experience, location in proximity to your company, availability, background information, and the list of traits you came up with that fit your ideal candidate.
Finally, when interviewing shortlisted qualified candidates, you’ll further narrow down your potential hiring pool with a series of interview questions. In addition to answering the questions you direct at them, you’ll want to gauge their ability to maintain a conversation as well as the answers they provide.
Ask questions like:
- What questions would you ask a lead in order to determine their qualification?
- Why do you want to work at this company?
- What was a significant workplace challenge you faced and how did you overcome that challenge?
- What separates you from other SDR candidates?
- What steps would you take to research a prospect before contacting them?
- Can you give me an example of explaining our products/services to a lead?
As you ask questions during the interview process, make them dynamic. When the candidate answers, present possible lead objections, questions, rejections, or concerns and determine how well the candidate responds to these scenarios.
Finally, when you have decided to hire the right candidate, be upfront about your expectations, encourage your new hire to continuously develop their communication skills, manage their time wisely, and learn about the company as they grow with it in their new position. Additionally, acknowledge good work when it occurs. If you have hired the right candidate and they’re performing well, let them know that their work is appreciated.
If your creative and professional SDR needs help to set up or refine your sales pipeline, we at Automated Dreams are always a click away.