Are you trying to build a world-class team that can convert high-value leads to sales? With unemployment at historic lows and less than a quarter of salespeople exceeding their quota last year, companies need to use more than traditional measures such as work history and education credentials to evaluate the likelihood of candidates’ success on the job. For instance, while a quarter of sales reps majored in business, the second most popular major is the “degree of life.” Dropping traditional requirements allows companies to engage with a much larger pool of untapped talent.

Sales skills tests enable employers to identify candidates with the critical skills and traits that sales reps must possess to deliver consistent sales success, regardless of previous experience.

Measure Hard-to-Develop Critical Skills

The top skills possessed by high-performing salespeople are not easy to develop in employees. Rather, the core competencies of high-performing salespeople are largely comprised of soft skills such as communication and empathy, and cognitive ability skills such as critical thinking, working memory, and reasoning.

HubSpot’s Sales Perception Survey supports this theory because companies identify the following as the most sought after attributes for sales reps: 1) Ability to communicate effectively and create a positive customer experience (69%), 2) Present relevant product and service information so customers and prospects understand the value (61%), and, 3) Respond to customers and prospects promptly (51%). Below is a look at these core competencies and how eSkill’s sales skills assessment tests evaluate each.

The All-Important, Future-Proof People Skills

Listening, communication, rapport building, empathy, collaboration, and the ability to handle objections are people skills that differentiate top salespeople from their colleagues. For instance, a recent study published in the Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing found that a salesperson’s level of empathy had a direct correlation to the customer-rep relationship, including customer commitment to the salesperson, and overall customer satisfaction.

Interpersonal skills cannot be ignored when hiring for sales positions, as they are the foundation of building meaningful relationships with clients and, ultimately, the key to success in sales. eSkill’s validated personality and behavioral assessments evaluate how candidates will communicate and behave in a sales environment.

The Ability to Learn Quickly & Think Critically

According to research by the Sales Management Association, eight out of 10 companies have introduced a new service or product in the last year and more than half of all companies have implemented a new sales methodology during the past 12 months. Therefore, companies need sales reps who are capable of learning about new products, services, and methodologies quickly and can understand customers’ and prospects’ companies, business challenges, and current priorities.

Can candidates ask intelligent questions, identify buyer needs, and follow-up accordingly? Are they able to learn about your company’s products and services quickly? eSkill’s sales skills assessment tests measure candidates’ ability to do so by evaluating higher-level cognitive abilities, including reasoning, problem-solving, speed of information processing, and working memory.

Time Management, An Indicator of Successful Sales Reps

Research shows that average-performing sales reps make more calls in the last month of each quarter than at any other time. And those “eleventh-hour” calls have an average success rate lower than any other month. Further research shows that reps who attempt to reach leads within 60 minutes are nearly seven times more likely to have a successful outcome with decision-makers than those who wait even an hour. Identifying sales reps who can prioritize and use their time wisely is the key to creating a revenue-producing sales team.

eSkill’s sales ability tests evaluate candidates’ time management skills by presenting real-world scenarios. These questions cover decision-making, focus, planning behavior, prioritizing techniques, and multitasking which provides employers with insight into candidates’ future productivity potential.

Use an Integrated Approach to Identify Candidates’ Capabilities

While candidates need soft skills and cognitive ability to thrive in a sales role, it is also beneficial to test for other job-relevant skills, such as the ability to use popular sales tools like customer relationship management (CRM) software, social prospecting, data and list services, and email engagement. eSkill offers a wide variety of subject-specific tests that can be combined with any sales skills test, including Salesforce software, social prospecting, email etiquette, MS Office Excel, and much more. While technical knowledge shouldn’t be a proxy for eliminating a potential new-hire in today’s candidate-driven talent market, understanding candidates’ baseline knowledge is key to quick and effective onboarding.

eSkill’s user-friendly platform simplifies the process of combining a behavioral assessment and a sales ability test which enables your hiring team to measure candidates’ full potential for success. In today’s hyper-changing landscape, modern sales teams need competent employees with a variety of talents, skills and abilities. Find your next rockstar sales rep quickly and efficiently with eSkill’s automated sales skills assessment tests, available to test-takers anytime and anywhere for optimal completion rates.

Interested in Sales Ability Tests and Behavioral Assessments?

Learn more about the benefits of using eSkill’s sales skills tests and behavioral assessments to find qualified candidates quickly.

Request a demo today.

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