It’s well known that on the baseball field, a singles hitter with a high average is much more valuable than a home-run hitter who strikes out more times than he gets on base. The same can be said in the IT sales department – most notably in the Software-as-a-Service space.
Collapsing bandwidth and plummeting SaaS margins have created high employee churn rates as well as what executives now refer to as a “vast middle of mediocrity” in the professional IT sector. As a result, the role of the technical sales engineer is quickly giving way to a new breed of sales and support staff. This generation comes with a basic technology understanding, a reduced price tag and the ability to get on base—or make the quick sale. It’s simply cheaper and more effective to hire 60-80 salespeople who can garner an average number of deals instead of 12 to 15 high-priced home-run hitters with 10 to 15 years of experience who only land a few big-ticket deals per annum.
Financial reasons aside, this shift can also be largely attributed to the fact that companies are no longer purchasing their own network infrastructure. SaaS comes with a light virtual footprint for a company, and requires less maintenance to operate. It also comes with less user engagement, which means it’s a quicker and easier sell.
Managers should therefore take this shift into account when filling total cloud, SaaS and hosted service sales positions. Look for candidates who are good hunters, fast learners and easily adaptable to new situations and environments. Tech and business-savviness is a plus, as is experience with Salesforce.com and social media channels. Successful SaaS salesman will be those that can add ‘mini marketer’ and ‘webinar master’ to their resumes. Effective up- and cross-selling will also prove essential qualities as companies shift to selling more seed licenses and total solutions rather than single services.
At J. Patrick and Associates, we live and breathe these evolving technical recruiting parameters and nuances. It is our job to keep up with the every-changing industry and work closely with executives in these technical fields to understand their specific hiring requirements. Seeking out the most qualified candidates leveraging nearly two decades of IT recruiting expertise allows our Technology vendor, Network Service Provider and Systems Integrator customers to focus on their core business.
Click here to learn how we can help your company adapt to the changing shift in the IT industry today.