The role of HR in driving sales success

Last updated:
November 1, 2022
November 1, 2022
min read
Hazel Raoult
role of HR in driving sales success
Table of contents

HR and sales usually do not go together. But, the evolving concept of an integrated workplace is driving diverse teams across various departments to work together to achieve business goals. 

For example, the sales team can involve the HR team when setting business objectives and building sales strategies. They can get the key members of the HR team to accompany them for sales calls, thus giving them a solid understanding of various sales roles. Inputs like these can help the HR team hire fitting candidates for the sales team.

Besides recruitment, HR can help the sales team in multiple ways. This article will throw light on the role HR plays in driving sales success.

5 ways HR can contribute to sales success

Here are five ways the HR and sales team can work together to boost sales and contribute to company growth.

1. Set up training programs for employees 

Professional development and training are the primary ways HR can contribute to driving sales success. Considering the ever-evolving sales industry landscape, top sales teams must always keep learning new trends and methodologies and implement these learnings in the existing workflows to boost business growth. 

For example, the traditional quoting processes are not just complex and time-consuming but also full of risks. In such a situation, training the sales team about terms like configure price quote (CPQ) will simplify the quoting process for configurable products and shorten the selling cycle. 

Similarly, learning about various sales analysis techniques like trend analysis and pipeline analysis will help the team evaluate sales performance. 

Here are a few tactics HR teams can implement to ensure the sales team stays sharp and updated about modern sales trends and terminologies.

  • Plan regular training sessions for all the team members and encourage them to participate actively. 
  • Adopt a mentor/mentee program and ask experienced sales professionals to train the new hires. 
  • Create training modules for the in-person or virtual training sessions to make them more interesting.
  • Keep the training simple and customize it according to the client's pain points. This will help sales representatives understand the clients better.
  • Motivate the team to attend sales conferences, seminars, webinars, and other training sessions organized by industry experts.
  • Provide the sales team with the desired tools, such as e-learning platforms, learning management systems, and more. This will help streamline the training processes.

Remember, the more you invest in sales training, the more beneficial it is for the sales team.

2. Align recruitment with sales strategy

The sales industry is rapidly evolving. Sales tactics and processes are constantly changing. Hence, finding a sales professional who has the desired industry experience and awareness of the latest industry trends is hard to find. It could take a few weeks or months to find the best candidate.

Hence, designing a recruitment strategy that aligns with the sales goals is crucial. To find the right talent for sales roles, the HR team must thoroughly understand the sales strategy's nitty-gritty and its goals.

For instance, a company might want to hire sales representatives for retaining existing customers instead of converting new ones. 

Aligning the recruitment process with the sales strategy helps HR teams to craft and launch their recruitment campaigns efficiently. Here are a few tips to help you get started:


Few tips to help you get started:

Few tips to help you get started:

  • Understand the sales goals to recognize the different sales roles 
  • Learn more about the recruitment requests by collaborating with the sales team 
  • Write a clear job description stating the roles and responsibilities and get it verified by the sales team

3. Collaborative hiring between Sales Managers & HR

Hiring the right candidates with the desired skill set and relevant experience is crucial for the team's success. Once the sales recruitment strategy is finalized, the HR team should focus on finding and hiring those candidates who are the best fit for the roles.

For example, if customer retention is one of your sales goals, you should hire customer support representatives possessing experience in client communication. 

Now, let us understand the areas where the HR team and sales team can work together to hire the best talent.

  • Candidate sourcing - Being connected to other sales professionals on social media and other channels, the sales team can help the HR team source candidates and build a talent pool. The HR team can also connect with sales recruiters for candidate suggestions.
  • Candidate screening - The sales team can guide the HR team to conduct the initial candidate screening and shortlist the best fit. 
  • Background check and references - The HR team can run a background check on the selected candidates to verify their details. Similarly, HR can call up the references instead of the sales team thereby speeding up the hiring process.
  • Employee onboarding - Although the sales team should be responsible for the entire employee onboarding process, the HR team can help by sharing the onboarding forms, contracts, policy documentation, and others.

4. Build lucrative compensation packages

Did you know around 63% of workers left their jobs in the US in 2021 because their pay was too low?

Creating lucrative employee compensation packages is crucial for attracting new talent and retaining existing ones.

Hence, the HR team must work with sales managers to devise the best compensation package as they might have a few ideas about the compensation structure.

Structure the compensation package so that it motivates the sales team to perform to the best of their abilities.

An ideal compensation package for the sales team includes the following: 

Useful tip:

  • Base salary
  • Variable salary
  • Commission
  • Company perks

Besides, insurance plans, paid holidays, retirement benefits, educational benefits, flexible working hours, remote working,  company equipment, and others are a part of an attractive compensation package. 

These tips will help you design a compensation package that benefits both the company and the employees.

  • Align the compensation strategy with business goals 
  • Plan the compensation framework with the company stakeholders 
  • Consider the overall job market and recession
  • Find out what compensation package your competitors are offering
  • Understand what employees are looking for

5. Measure employee performance

Measuring the sales team's performance is important to ensure that the team is delivering the right results to fulfill the sales goals. It helps the sales team assess how well the implementation of the sales strategy contributes to business success.  

Here is a quick guide to help the HR team track the sales team's performance.

  • Invest in the right software, such as a sales CRM to track individual performance.
  • Create an action, such as a coaching plan, performance improvement plan, or others for the employees based on their performance.
  • Leverage an HRIS system to log performance reports, employee progression plans, and other documentation.
  • Help out the employees when they are facing any issues. Do not hesitate to discuss their performance with the employees individually.

Remember, a sales job can be stressful, and often the sales staff tends to overwork to achieve their targets. This leads to burnout and affects employee productivity of the entire team.

The HR team must collaborate with the sales leaders to fix these situations by improving the operational processes and workflows.

Wrapping up

The HR team can bring tremendous value to the sales team and help them hire and retain the best employees. This collaboration will help both teams make smart decisions about workforce planning and management in less time, thereby driving the company on the path to success.

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