10 Reasons - Don't Worry When Sales Candidates Don't Take the Test

Posted by Dave Kurlan on Thu, Jan 19, 2012 @ 06:01 AM

We  instruct clients to have their sales candidates take the Sales Candidate assessment very early in the recruiting process. It's the first step after the client receives their resumes.  Clients carefully spell out exactly how the entire process will work and explain that the assessment is simply the first step.

Recent statistics show that only 34% of the candidates are taking the assessment without additional prompts.  Isn't that awful?

Maybe - let's explore it further.

We should consider that the following ten scenarios are all possible reasons why candidates fail to complete the assessment:

  1. RISK AVERSE - they think it's a scam and they're afraid to click the link
  2. NARCISSIST - they think they are above such nonsense as having to take an assessmentNarcissistic Salesperson
  3. POOR ATTENTION TO DETAIL - they suck at following directions
  4. LACK OF CONFIDENCE - they do click the link, take one look at the questions and realize they are over their head
  5. NOT QUALIFIED - individuals are not a salespeople so this prevents them from pursuing the opportunity
  6. POOR FIT - they don't have the background you are looking for so they won't pursue the opportunity
  7. CAN'T MULTI-TASK - they begin taking the assessment, get called away and never return to complete it
  8. LONE RANGER - they didn't take the process you laid out seriously
  9. POOR NOTE TAKER - they intended to take the assessment and forgot to do it
  10. REACTIVE - They were waiting for you to call and ask them to take the assessment
I would be the first to say that 34% is a terrible completion percentage.  But considering most of the reasons, would you really want to waste one minute of your time reviewing their resumes, talking with them on the phone, interviewing them face-to-face or even considering them for the position?  If you are doing the hiring, is the 34% completetion really such a bad thing?
Instead, the 66% who don't complete the assessment simply become the victims of the first filter.  The assessment itself is the second filter - recommending only 25% - 50% of those who do take the assessment.  The variation is a direct result of the configuration of the assessment and how strong you need your salespeople to be, based on the challenges they will face.
The next filter is a phone call with the the recommended candidates.  Clients learn that of those recommended, they don't all sound great and some don't fit.  The best of the candidates who survive the first 3 filters get interviewed, the first time in the process where the hiring manager really has to invest any time.  Interviewing skills are extremely important for this step, where the hiring manager must determine if the candidate owns what is written on their resume or they simply penned a work of fiction.  
Is your sales recruiting process this efficient? Do you have and use the skills necessary for being able to conduct a thorough, intensive, challenging 30 minute interview and know at that point whether you have found your next salesperson?

Topics: Dave Kurlan, sales recruiting, Sales Candidate, omg, sales selection, sales assessments, objective management group

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Best-Selling Author, Keynote Speaker and Sales Thought Leader.  Dave Kurlan's Understanding the Sales Force Blog earned a medal for the Top Sales & Marketing Blog award for six consecutive years. This article earned a Bronze Medal for Top Sales Blog post in 2016, this one earned a Silver medal for 2017, and this article earned Silver for 2018. Read more about Dave.

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