Preparing To Build Your Sales Team Using CommissionCrowd - Part 1

Commission only sales team

We’re truly excited that you’re considering building your team of self employed sales agents using the CommissionCrowd sales platform. We’re creating much more than a simple job posting board and our ultimate goal is to ensure that every company that uses our platform is as successful as they possibly can be. In the coming weeks we’ll be running a series of posts that will be looking at some of the things companies will need to take into consideration when preparing to use CommissionCrowd to its full potential.

In Part 1 of this blog series we’ll be looking into the concept of job boards and why they’re not effective in building a successful team of self employed sales agents.

The Difference Between CommissionCrowd And Generic Job Posting Websites: What Is A Job Board?

A job board is usually a website that charges a fee to create a listing and advertise a specific opportunity i.e. “We require sales agents”. Some job boards are larger than others and you may have even seen a few of them advertised on mainstream media like the television or radio.

How Much Does It Cost To Advertise On A Job Board?

The cost of advertising on a job board varies widely and usually depends on the size of their database or how high their overheads as a company are. It stands to reason that if a site like Monster Jobs advertises across national media, then their overheads will be much higher and hence charge more to post an opportunity on their site.

Poor job boards can range from around £30 (or equivalent currency) for a small advert on a site with hardy any sales agents, or £500+ per month larger - though often unfocused - job sites.

How Do Job Boards Work?

A job board will usually allow you to do two things: The first will be to post a job listing that will appear in searches conducted by users of that site, i.e. job candidates. The second aspect will allow you to use a search function that will usually give you the ability to conduct your own search of their database.

How Effective Are Job Boards?

Job boards can actually be very effective but this is heavily dependent on the type of candidate that you are looking for. Let’s say that you need to hire or even head hunt an experienced HR manager for your company. Using a job board for this purpose can be very efficient as you are able to actively seek out the candidate that you require based on the CV that they have uploaded to the site. In addition, prospective candidates can also conduct their own search for opportunities and contact your company directly.

When Job Boards Don’t Work To Find Self Employed People

As mentioned above, job board listings can be highly effective if the conditions are right. However, it is a whole different ball game when you need to find self employed candidates for your company. The best way for us to explain this to you is by giving you a little insight into our own experiences with using one of the largest job boards available today.

Using Job Boards To Find Self Employed Sales Agents: A Case Study

Back in 2010 before ‘CommissionCrowd’ was even a twinkle in our eyes, some of our development team were working with a very large global Internet Marketing company. Our job was to build a team of highly motivated outsourced sales agents that would allow the company to move into, and dominate the UK market quickly and effectively. The company gave us a fairly decent budget into the £000’s and we proceeded to contact a very well known job website that we had seen advertised in the national press. We were assigned an account manager that quickly had plans for our entire budget (obviously) and then created a plan which would span over the course of three months. Our account manager explained that there were two aspects to the campaign: Our job listing and the ability to actively search their database of sales agents.

Sales Job CV Search: The Problem

The CV search was initially very exciting to us as we now had around 10,000 CV’s to choose from based on our search criteria. What we didn’t know was that we were limited to how many CV’s we could physically open which was due to our level of budget for the campaign.

Because of this, the process suddenly became extremely time consuming as we had to narrow the list down based solely on the title of the CV before we were willing to waste one of our click allowances. This process took a team of two people working full time nearly two weeks to do.

We now had a list of many hundreds of CV’s to make our way through and after reaching out to many of the agents on the list, what quickly became apparent was that the whole exercise had been almost a complete waste of time. Many of the CV’s that had been uploaded were inactive, incomplete (i.e. wrong telephone numbers) or were simply from sales agents with little experience in the industry and certainly no experience of, or indeed desire to work on a self employed basis.

We ended up losing a huge amount of money, time and resources on the project, and came to the conclusion that finding self employed sales agents with any chance of becoming successful was not going to be possible on those type of websites.

Sales Job Listing: Why It Wasn’t Effective

Ok, not to worry, we still had our job listing up on their site and now all we needed to do was sit and wait for the phone to ring—which it did.

We started to become excited again. A few CV’s started to come in, and the phone was ringing with enquiries. In the first week we took on three or four sales agents who seemed excellent on paper. The fact that they had no experience working for themselves wasn’t a problem because they sold us on the fact that they were the best of the best of the best—no surprise there! The rest wanted to know why we weren’t offering a wage and couldn’t seem to grasp the idea that we were looking for professional self employed sales people.

We spent another few days putting together a comprehensive training pack, setting each of them up on our CRM system, creating their own company Email accounts as well as dedicating lots of time to mentoring them over the phone and using tools like Skype.

So what happened?

Two things happened: The first two thirds dropped out within the first few days as they missed a regular wage as an employee, while the rest of them tried to fool us (and probably themselves) into thinking they were working hard and producing leads, when in reality they simply couldn’t cope with working on their own merit.

We quickly came to the conclusion that regular job websites are simply not geared up for companies that are looking to find experienced, professional self employed sales people. It is possibly a different story if you are looking to recruit employees, but simply not the case for a company in our position.

It was then that we put our knowledge and experience to work creating and optimising our own website to find commission only sales agents. That website and the leads and traffic it generated was the catalyst for CommissionCrowd. A job board dedicated to freelancers and companies looking to connect is a core feature of our system but like I say, we are developing a platform that incorporates so much more. A system that both companies (principals) and agents are really excited about.

Preparing To Build Your Sales Team Using CommissionCrowd - part 2

In part 2 we look into the life of a self-employed sales agent to bring you a better understanding what drives them to work for themselves and become successful.

You can read part 2 here: Preparing To Build Your Sales Team Using CommissionCrowd - part 2

Ryan Mattock

Co-Founder of CommissionCrowd... Let's get disruptive!