Tech sales roles can encompass a variety of different solutions, services and industries. More often than not, you do not need a tech background to land your first tech sales job – although there are exceptions. When you are pursuing a tech sales role, consider these two factors:
Types of solutions or services offered by the company
The amount of experience required to land a tech sales job will be different for different products or services.
Custom software development, for example, may require experience with development languages such as Python or Java. Installed software, such as ERP solutions (enterprise resource planning) and some security technologies may also require advanced technical knowledge. Hiring managers working with these technologies often prefer candidates who have technical experience simply because they can ‘hit the ground running’ and training ramp-time is significantly reduced.
Other technologies, such as SaaS, (Software as a Service) require far less technical expertise. Saas is simply software that is not installed; it is delivered through an application in the cloud (that’s a fancy way of saying the solution is delivered through the internet). Any user, anywhere, can access a SaaS solution.
SaaS companies have exploded over the past decade. That’s because most business processes or problems can be solved with a SaaS solution, relatively inexpensively. To land a job with a SaaS software company, you often don’t need technical experience. You will need, however, a thorough understanding of the solution and how it can solve a business problem. This means you should do your research to familiarize yourself with the product and company before you apply for a role, and before you interview.
Level of the role
The level of the role you are applying for will also determine the amount of experience you might need. Entry level roles require significantly less experience compared to a mid-tier or senior Account Executive role. Also, roles and titles mean different things at different companies. An Account Executive role at one company may require far more experience than an Account Executive role at another company.
Be sure to research the company, roles and job descriptions before you begin the application process. Also, take a look at some of the company’s current sales professionals on LinkedIn. Look at their career path prior to joining the company to see what types of experiences they had. A little upfront research can ensure that you don’t waste your time applying for roles that require more experience than you have.
How to get started
Sales Development Representative and/or Business Development Representative roles are great entry points for people just getting into tech sales or transitioning from another industry. These roles are often considered entry level, often require little-to-no technical experience, and provide a great framework to develop your tech sales skills.
To learn more about how to land your first tech sales role, check out: How To Find Your First Sales Job; How Transition Your Career to Tech Sales; and New to Tech Sales: What Role Should I Apply For? These guides will provide you with plenty of information that will help you get started on your next career path!
Additionally, these sources will deliver great companies that are likely to be expanding their sales organization: