How do you know your last hire was a success?!

How do you know your last hire was a success?!

So, you’ve successfully filled the vacancy that you’ve been struggling with for months however how will you know the chosen candidate was a good hire?

Nearly all hiring managers and business leaders put a lot of time, effort and money into finding the best talent for their teams however once on board how do they know this hire has been a success? It is vital that there are clear and measurable expectations for any new hire, especially for a salesperson!

There a few key practices that the Robertson Sumner team would implement to ensure that it is crystal clear if your new hire is a success or otherwise. These are:

1) Set expectations!

It’s surprising how little this is actually done and it is absolutely vital that the success of a new hire is judged by stats and science rather than the candidate being a ‰’nice’ person… It’s also recommended that this is done by using more than just one metric, i.e. not just ‰’he/ she has hit their revenue target’. The Robertson Sumner team would recommend that you pick 3 to 5 KPI’s which are a vital element of your new candidates role and outline how you’d want them to progress over their first 2 years. Something along the lines of the following:


These KPI’s and revenue values can be broken down monthly or weekly but it is vital that they are there and realistically set in order to track that your new hire is developing at the rate expected… We’d recommend that these are set bespoke to each hire and often a good idea is to base them on one of the current stars in your team to set realistic progression expectations.

2) Clearly communicate expectations early

Once you’ve outlined your expectations for the role, it’s important that as a hiring manager you are as transparent as possible with these from the first interview and continue to clearly communicate them throughout your induction period. A candidate should have a clear idea of what is expected of them and a clear expectation can’t just be ‰’sell’ or ‰’well… hit your target’, there has to be quantifiable and measurable targets to achieve!

3) Re-evaluate and re-assess regularly

Make sure your expectations become something that you regularly discuss – it should be seen as a positive tool for both the candidate and yourself as a business leader! There shouldn’t be any grey areas when it comes to a candidate’s success in the role. Your interview process should decide that the candidate is a good cultural fit or not and the rest needs to come down to some sort of quantifiable measurement. Sales is an outcome based role!

4) Incentivise hitting the milestones!

Finally, once clear expectations are set, you want them to be strived towards and it is therefore sometimes a good idea to have incentives assigned to the different milestones. For example, if you’re at or above the expectations discussed after 6 months, then not only will you pass your probation period, you’ll also get a £2,000 pay rise on your basic salary. A candidates’ probation period could also be linked to certain key metrics rather than a time period… Why does your probation period need to be 3 or 6 months? Why can’t it be based on achievements in the role?!


To summarise, it is vital that you know what is expected of a candidate before even signing the vacancy off and that these expectations are achievable. If this isn’t the case then don’t recruit for the role!

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