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Staffing Industry Sales: How Do Account Reps Spend their Time?

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Earlier this year,  we surveyed over 500 staffing professionals to answer one simple question:

In recruiting, sales and marketing, what works best?

Today, I’m continuing our series of posts that breaks down the data we collected and provides practical takeaways your staffing firm can use. If you missed any of the earlier posts, here are the other installments in this series:

Related posts – Recruiting in the Staffing Industry:
Biggest Recruiting Challenges in the Staffing Industry

Bridging Technical Skills Gaps in the Staffing Industry

Candidate Intake Best Practices – The Mobile Job Search

Candidate Intake Best Practices – Keep Your Recruiting Funnel Full

In this post, we switch focus from recruiting to sales. Let’s start by taking a look at how the typical account manager spends his time.

The Data: How Sales Reps Spend Their Time

Q1: “How many phone call attempts is each sales rep expected to make per week?”

Q2: “How many connects (actual conversations with prospects) is each sales rep expected to make per week?”

The data showed that call and conversation quotas vary tremendously:

  • Sales reps in over half (55.7%) of firms are expected to make fewer than 100 calls per week.
  • But on the other end of the spectrum, sales reps in nearly 5% of firms are expected to make an average of 80 or more calls per day!
  • Sixteen percent of sales reps are expected to make just 10 connects per week, but an equal percentage are expected to make a minimum of 50 per week.
  • Substantial differences in sales activity quotas could be due to the nature of respondents’ businesses (i.e., niche specialization, size of prospect pool, types of services offered).



Tips for Working Smarter – Not Harder – in Staffing Sales

  • First of all, despite the explosion of new communication tools, prospects are becoming harder to reach. As a result, cold-calling is becoming less efficient. In fact, increasing call volumes may actually be counter-productive – irritating potential customers and frustrating your sales reps.
  • If a sales rep is going to interrupt a prospect’s day, give him a “valid business reason” to do so. Make sure the communication adds value for the prospect and helps build the relationship. Shows respect. Patiently educates. And illustrates how your offerings can help the prospect accomplish his goals.
  • In the long run, time spent nurturing business relationships is much more impactful than “dialing for dollars.” In fact, companies that excel at lead nurturing generate 50% more sales-ready leads at 33% lower cost, according to Forrester Research. Provide your sales team with the training and resources they need to grow high-value relationships – without becoming pesky.

Up Next: Staffing Sales – Key Challenges & Solutions

In my next post we’ll take a look at the biggest sales challenges account managers are facing – and how you can overcome them. And if you don’t want to wait, you can access complete survey results and insights here:


About our 2016 industry survey:

In July and August 2016, we conducted an online survey of staffing industry professionals to find out what works best when it comes to their firms’ sales, marketing and recruiting efforts. The survey was completed by nearly 500 individuals located throughout the U.S. representing a wide range of staffing specialties and company sizes.

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