How Do You Create a Virtual Sales Team?
The digitalization of the business landscape and the transition to a more knowledge-based economy have made remote work more realistic for sales managers and salespeople. The pandemic also forced sales organizations worldwide to embrace virtual selling and employees to work remotely.
Now that sales employers and employees have experienced the benefits of remote sales, they prefer to work remotely moving forward. Working remotely has significantly helped reduce the fixed cost of running a physical office space for sales organizations. For sales employees, virtual selling presents them with more flexible work hours and the chance to work from anywhere regardless of time zone.
With many sales organizations operating virtually, sales leaders now rely on remote teams to execute their virtual sales processes. Thus, having a virtual sales team, either full-time or contract employees, has become necessary to help provide value to your customers if you’re engaging with virtual buyers.
With this in mind, we’ve put this content together to help you create a virtual sales team that you’ll be proud of. In this post, we’ll help you understand if hiring your salespeople is best for you or outsourcing to sales agents.
Should You Hire Or Outsource Your Virtual Sales Agents?
The job of the virtual sales team is to boost sales performance for a sales organization, regardless of whether you hire them or outsource them. However, your sales organization’s financial capacity and time investment would determine which option is best for you.
When Should You Hire Virtual Sales Agents?
If you need a sales team that will develop a deep understanding of your virtual sales process, hiring sales agents (an in-house sales team) would be best for you. An in-house virtual sales team will work closely with you in your virtual office space using the same software and communication tools you offer them to boost sales performance. This way, you’re in control, and you get to ensure every agent gets the knowledge and training they need to sell effectively in a remote space.
However, hiring the best sales agents requires a considerable time commitment, and managing hired sales team needs significant financial investment.
When Should You Outsource Your Sales Agents?
If you don’t have the time and financial capacity to go through the hiring process yourself and you need to assemble a virtual winning team as quickly as possible, outsourcing is your best option. Here, outsourcing refers to delegating the process of hiring, onboarding, and training your virtual sales team to a sales agency or company. These agencies or companies already have a ‘boilerplate’ in place, which allows them to speed up the entire process.
Outsourcing to virtual sales experts requires a lower financial investment than an in-house sales team because they give you the chance to hire based on your budget and sales needs. However, outsourced agents don’t develop a deep understanding of your product or service because they have the chance to work for multiple sales organizations while still offering their services to you.
How To Build A Virtual Sales Team In 5 Easy Steps
If you want to create your virtual sales teams yourself, then follow these five easy steps:
1. Establish Your Sales Goals And Budget
The initial step in building a virtual sales team is to pick a clear direction and set your sales goals and needs. Establishing clear sales goals will give you insights into what number of sales professionals you’ll need on your sales team and how much hiring and onboarding sales reps will cost you.
The best practice is to determine the current average onboarding cost and industry salary trends for full-time employees, full-time in-house sales agents, independent sales agents, and agencies. That way, you can set your budget based on your sales needs and goals.
2. Come Up With A clear ‘Want List’
The best way to attract top talents who are a ‘remote fit’ in your hunt for a virtual sales team is to clearly define your key requirements in your job post. Here, you don’t need a long ‘want list’ that has little or nothing to do with your sales goals. Instead, highlight the skills and capabilities specific to the remote position you want to hire for.
Find out from virtual sales experts in your niche what requirements matter the most to succeed in their role. A clearly written job description with well-defined job requirements and eligibilities will send only the suitable candidates to your doorstep for screening.
3. Research Your Ideal Candidate
Now it’s time to research candidates considered suitable for your virtual sales team according to your job requirements. The objective is to disqualify less fit candidates from the hiring process.
Here, you need to consider your sales organization culture and value, the candidate’s remote working experience, sales experience, and relevant virtual selling skills (including social selling). Interview your candidates to be sure if they possess those traits or not.
4. Establish A Scoring System To Define Top Candidates
Setting up a scoring system will make it easier for you and anyone else directly involved in the hiring process with you to decide on the best candidates to offer the role to. Define a scoring system for an ideal candidate based on the culture fit, skills, experience, and values of utmost importance to you and your dream sales team. Then assign specific points to each of the characters based on the order of their importance to you.
For example, candidates with the right culture fit can get 40 points, and those with remote work experience can get 20 points with extra 10 points for every year of experience. Also, candidates with sales experience can get 20 points with additional 10 points for every year of sales experience. Then add up these points, grade them, and choose your top virtual sales team based on the score.
5. Ramp Up Your Hiring Process
Now that you’ve hired the best of the best for your sales team, it’s time to get them up and running. Get your new virtual sales team prepared for the work ahead by providing them with the right resources, training, and tools they will need to discharge their roles as expected. Work closely with them to ensure they remain on the right track and working towards meeting your sales needs and goals.
Schedule periodic sales meetings, virtual meetings, video conferencing, or phone calls with your hired team to foster engagement with other employees. It’s crucial to align your sales team with your marketing team to improve sales workflow within the organization.
Build A Virtual Sales Team You Can Be Proud Of
You’ll need an experienced virtual sales team to sell effectively as a virtual sales manager. Take inspiration from this article to decide whether to hire or outsource your sales agents and follow the five simple steps to build yourself a virtual sales based on their expertise, your budget, and sales goals.
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