Retaining employees is essential in every industry. In sales, however, high employee turnover presents a number of unique challenges.

Since sales is a relationship-based field, high sales employee turnover results in unstable relationships with customers. This, in turn, can lead to lower sales and the need to constantly cultivate new customers instead of working with existing customers who already trust your business.

Here’s how to encourage more sales staff to stick with your team for the long term:

Recruit and hire from within.

A strong employee referral program and a habit of hiring for open positions internally help to build a culture of longevity. Your employees see that their work is valued in the long term, and they also have the opportunity to recommend qualified colleagues who offer a good cultural fit with the rest of the team.

Make sure salary and benefits are competitive.

Employees who aren’t receiving the compensation that fits their hard work are more likely to move to a company with a better compensation structure. Update both pay and benefits structures regularly to ensure they’re competitive or progressive for your industry.

Also, spend time making sure benefits are comprehensive; sales staff who don’t have to worry about increasing healthcare costs or confusing retirement plans have more to give to their daily job – and more to lose if they join another company.

Give them more independence.

Sales professionals typically enter the field because they love solving problems and building relationships on their own initiative. While training and feedback are essential, so is giving your sales staff the independence, they need to build each new customer relationship as it comes. Set clear benchmarks for success but give your staff flexibility to determine how they’ll reach those goals with each customer relationship.

Invest in their education.

Investing in your employees’ education has two huge benefits when it comes to hiring. First, it helps ensure that you don’t face a skills gap that tanks productivity if one of your top performers leaves. Second, it communicates that your organization cares about the continued career growth of its sales teams. The opportunity to keep growing where they are mitigates the desire for sales staff to look elsewhere.

The recruiters at SMR Group focus on connecting our clients in the biotech, pharmaceutical and medical device industries with some of the best sales and marketing talent available. Whether you need help finding new talent or cultivating the talent you have, we’re here to help. Contact us today to learn more.

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