How to recruit the first sales rep for your Singapore startup

Before we get started, allow us to congratulate you on founding your brand or business! This is by no means an easy feat – especially in a highly competitive country such as Singapore – so we commend you for that!

Since you’re reading this article, you may have already experienced or noted the below:

  • Your founder-led business is doing very well
  • You’ve achieved a product-market fit, and it has great potential
  • You’re aware of your core customers and would like to zero in on them more

If you said yes to all, then you’re already at the stage where you’re aware that you need to hire the right salespeople to take your business to the next level.

This is not an easy task, of course. If you haven’t the faintest idea of where or how to start, or if you have already hired a sales organization that isn’t performing, don’t worry. SalesWorks is here to help.

With a proven track record in Singapore that stems all the way back from 1999, we know exactly how to help our clients from varying industries and backgrounds boost sales and penetrate the highly competitive market here.

So, without further ado, let’s discuss your next steps.

Recruiting your first sales reps

Recruiting your first sales reps
Image: Rawpixel

As with any other job posting or industry, it’s crucial that you understand what is needed for your company. These include:

  • Recognizing that founder-led sales is a bottleneck
    You’ve made it work so far, but with the increasing demand for your product or service, you might not be able to handle everything on your own – even if you do enjoy working solo.It’s important to delegate the duties as your company grows, but this doesn’t mean that you don’t get to do any sales at all. Consider coaching your new team members instead!
  • Building a strong employer brand
    What kind of employer or company do you want to be? What kind of experience do you want to offer your future employees? What kind of culture do you want to inculcate within the company?These are some of the questions you need to ask yourself before you even start hiring people to join your company. Building a strong employer brand is extremely important, and this means thinking about how to better communicate and connect with potential hires, following up on applicants regularly, and establishing a structure that enables you to recruit more efficiently.This practice does not have to stop after a successful hire – ensure that you keep the culture going by treating your employees well, keeping them motivated, and reassuring them of their value.
  • Creating the ideal candidate profile
    Using buzzwords such as “self-motivated” or “target-driven” may be tempting, especially since we see so many of them peppered on job descriptions for sales positions.These are vital traits, of course, but we strongly recommend hiring people who would be equally passionate about your brand or business (as well as the product or services that you’re selling).Be sure to highlight the skills that you’d most likely want to add to your company such as soft skills (strong communication, great interpersonal skills), personality traits (easygoing, friendly, able to connect with customers easily), and more.
  • Hiring someone who can close new sales
    The priority here is hiring someone who can persuade new customers to buy, not someone to manage existing ones. On that note, avoid hiring anybody with ‘manager’ in their titles – not now, at least.If you’re looking for people to generate inbound leads, another way of doing this is to hire marketing people or outsource this task (to SalesWorks, for example).But just to reiterate your focus: your first few hires should be candidates that can get new customers onboard. Ideally, they should be people who have closed new sales for a company or brand like yours and have onboarded customers with similar pain points to yours.

When should you make the first hire?

When should you make the first hire?
Image: Rawpixel

There’s no general rule as to when you should hire your first few sales reps, but you (the founder), should look into hiring after you’ve closed the first 10 to 20 customers, just so you’d know how to better train and coach your new hires.

We highly recommend hiring two new sales reps to start. If your budget doesn’t allow it, you can always share your duties with one sales rep, or even hire part-timers to help you out with sales.

This would make it easier for you to monitor performance, and decide on what would work best moving forward.

Extra tools to help you out

Once you’re ready, you can also start looking at customer relationship management (CRM) tools such as Salesforce and/or Hubspot. These tools will help you manage your pipeline, track leads, and nurture them.

It would also do you good to brush up on your knowledge regarding sales funnels. If you need extra reading materials, take a look at our blog post here.

If you would like to read more on sales strategies that are proven to work in Singapore, read our other article here!

Scale your startup in Singapore with SalesWorks

Scale your startup in Singapore with SalesWorks
Image: SalesWorks

With our expertise and insight, the team at SalesWorks can be your perfect partner in growing your sales strategy.

We offer a custom service based on your needs and would love to get to know you and your goals better. Drop us a note so we can have that conversation about your business and how we can help you get where you’re headed as soon as possible!