Over the last two years, I have noticed a slight change in hiring activity in the last quarter of the year. When I first started my career in recruitment it was clear that hiring started to slow down at the end of October. This is due to people going on holidays and companies being afraid that there are too many breaks in this period. This has started to change.
Here are a couple of reasons you should not wait for the New Year to recruit sales professionals.
Firstly, we are in a time where finding good talent is extremely difficult across the board. Slowing down your process over a 3-month period gives your competitors a competitive edge. I recruit across several different sectors and, in my experience, every industry has ups and downs in their recruitment drives. Historically, the companies that are hiring during a time where none of their competitors seems to attract better talent. Mostly because there are not as many options on the market.
Secondly, from an onboarding perspective, this is the perfect time to integrate new employees into the business from both a cultural and a business perspective. Any good business that I have worked with give a new BDM or Account Manager at least 3 months to get traction on their market, at least in the B2B space, as relationships take time. If you onboard at this time it gives the employee time to start building those relationships and enter the first quarter of the following year with traction and confidence, especially if you are hiring someone from outside your industry. Culturally, I can’t think of a better time to have someone start at a business than over the silly season. They get to meet the wider business at the Christmas party and people seem to let their guard down during this time, so it gives them the opportunity to connect on more of a personal level.
Lastly, most sales professionals work on a 3-month commission cycle. If your recruitment process takes 4 weeks end-to-end and you start your recruitment process in January, the candidate will be expected to walk away from commission, which in my experience does hinder your chances of the candidate accepting. And let’s be honest, if you hire a sales professional, they should be on commission. Otherwise, why are you hiring them? Having an offer for the candidate to start in the New Year will lower this risk of this.
We are in a time where talent is difficult to find, especially sales talent. If you follow my sentiments that businesses are just a collection of people - great businesses have great people and average businesses have average people, then it’s only logical to do whatever you can to attract the best people.