A closer look at employee retention in sales

Posted in Sales team management.

Employees moving on to new workplaces, and hiring new staff, are both a natural part of business operations. In fact, the average company will typically see a 15% per year staff turnover rate.

However, retention is notably better in some industries than in others, and reports suggest that sales is one of the poorest performing sectors in terms of overall retention. Average turnover rates in a sales team can be anywhere between 20% and 30% per year, with some sources confirming that turnover within the sales sector recently hit a 5 year high. So what’s going on?

With the majority of sales-based businesses taking upwards of 6 months to recruit new staff, it can often be more cost effective, and more beneficial in terms of overall performance, for businesses to take measures to retain their staff rather than making new hires. How can businesses achieve this?

Why Do Sales Reps Leave?

The first step towards better employee retention is to understand more about why key team members leave. Salary, career advancement opportunities, and employee recognition are key factors to employee retention, but in terms of sales there are also other aspects to take into consideration. It is important for businesses to think about the following factors:

– Performance expectations
– Leadership and training
– Commission, recognition, and reward
– Creating a Retention Strategy

All businesses should have an employee retention strategy. However, it is even more essential for businesses operating within high turnover sectors, such as sales. Here are 3 ways to help to ensure that your key players stick around, helping you to grow your business and achieve your sales goals:

1. Build a Great Sales Culture

One of the most obvious ways to boost retention rates is to make your business a great place to work; a place where your team look forward to spending the day. This can be done by building a strong sales culture, where employees have the necessary equipment and environment to achieve success.

2. Ensure the Right ‘Fit’

Sales is a world that’s constantly evolving, so it’s important for employees to feel like they’re able to adapt alongside it, so that their skills are always a perfect fit for the job at hand. Be sure to conduct regular evaluations, and provide opportunities for further training as and when it is deemed necessary.

3. Be Unique

Quite simply, try to offer your employees something that your competitors can’t. While a competitive salary is the obvious suggestion, there is more to retention than just finances. Consider your overall workplace environment, your perks, and the social side of your business; these are all important factors.

The Importance of Employee Retention

Did you know that employee retention has been directly attributed to customer retention? Experts claim that customers are more likely to remain loyal to a company, if they have the opportunity to interact with a familiar employee over the course of their relationship with a business. Therefore, it is really important for businesses to consider their retention rates, and identify the best ways to minimise their turnover.