How do recruitment agencies get customers

Sales & Distribution: Personnel placement

Bringing services to the customer

It's like a matchmakerwho is supposed to bring the right man to the right woman. Except that in the sales department of a personnel service provider you find the right employee for the right employer. "We earn our money by finding the right specialists for our customers," says Christian Jost, Head of Talent Management at Hays, explaining the work of the personnel service provider.

"We mainly place freelance experts in our customers' projects and also offer permanent placement and temporary employment."

Anyone who works in sales is responsible for “bringing goods and services from the company to the customer and ensuring that as many interested parties and buyers as possible can be won over,” explains Dr. Heike Claus, managing director of tradu4-you GmbH and scientific director of the Institute for Sales Research and Development (IVE) in Chemnitz. Starting salaries for economists in sales are on average 35,000 to 40,000 euros - excluding bonuses. The career prospects are »excellent«, says Heike Claus. The labor market situation is also "excellent" at the moment. And in the coming years, too, "sales employees and sales managers will be among the most sought-after and best-paid specialists in Germany," says the expert.


As a sales representative for a personnel service provider, however, you are not dealing with goods and services, but with people. Christian Jost von Hays believes that this is a very demanding but also very fulfilling task. »Our account managers have to discuss with the customer who they want to introduce themselves and find someone from our pool of candidates who best fits the idea. Then you have to bring the customer and the expert together and manage the contractual and financial aspects. For a job like this, personality is required, «says the Head of Talent Management. »At Hays, personal and social skills are therefore paramount in the selection process. Personality is more important to us than the grade point average, because a sales representative convinces the customer with his personality. We look: What is there about part-time jobs, social commitment, social responsibility? For example, have the applicants once been the youth coach of a soccer team, have they ever worked in retail? For us, these are good indicators when it comes to customer orientation, service orientation and social skills. An affinity for sales activities is important to us. What else they can and need to know, our employees learn in our training courses. «There are enough training courses at the world's leading recruiting company for specialists. “In the first six months, our people spend around 15 to 20 percent of their time in further training events, in which we give them the tools to use,” says Christian Jost. For this year, Hays is looking for 220 to 260 newcomers in key account management.

Fabian Berg has been with Frankfurt as an Account Manager for almost a year. The 29-year-old specializes in freelance IT professionals. Before studying environmental and business administration, he already completed an apprenticeship as a wholesale and foreign trade clerk and was the head of a guard of the Maltese relief service for two years. After graduating in 2009, "I worked for a company as an M&A consultant for another year," he says. In June 2010 he applied to Hays and was surprised "how quickly I received feedback". After two weeks, a telephone interview and two interviews, "I was here". He wants to take the next step in his career as a Key Account Manager by the end of the year and is completely satisfied with his career decision: »I have great colleagues, the environment is great and with a little ambition and fun at work, you can develop further quickly. The work is very diverse. You get to know all kinds of people and get to know something new every day. And it's a great feeling to find the right person for the right job. "

Making work more flexible

Philipp Maximilian Raasch has also decided to work in sales. The 26-year-old sales manager works at Randstad in Bad Homburg.

»During my studies I did a practical semester at Randstad. Then I decided to start working in sales there after my studies, «reports the business graduate. »As a sales planner, I am both the contact person for the customer companies and for the employees. My tasks include, for example, acquiring new customers and looking after active customers. I also take care of the recruitment and support of our employees on customer assignments. Budget planning and control for temporary workers in the commercial sector are also partly my responsibility. "

Philipp Maximilian Raasch finds it particularly exciting about his job "that you develop a good understanding of people very quickly because you come into contact with many different people." And that in turn is very useful for his work, "sales, looking after employees and also when dealing with colleagues." The 26-year-old wants to continue his path at Randstad. His next step is the Senior Sales Planner, who is also responsible for the »training of new sales planners«.

To start at Randstad, "the applicants ideally have a degree in economics," explains Antje Mielke, HR specialist responsible for the South-Central region. »In the area of ​​soft skills, we expect the ability to work in a team, the ability to cooperate, empathy and a high degree of assertiveness. Initiative, communication skills and customer orientation as well as flexibility and resistance to stress are also very important. "For the South-Central region, Randstad is looking for around ten new employees with an economic background for sales by the middle of the year. As Germany's leading personnel service provider with 500 branches in around 300 cities, we offer young salespeople optimal career opportunities and good future prospects in an international company. "

The HR professionals agree that the personnel services industry is becoming increasingly important for academics as well. Christian Jost: "In times of a shortage of skilled workers and demographic developments, making work more flexible is becoming an increasingly important issue for large customers as well."

And Michael Wehran, press spokesman and head of the press and public relations department of the Federal Association of Temporary Employment, also predicts:

»The demand for academics in temporary work will continue to grow. Because companies are increasingly looking for highly qualified personnel. In times of a shortage of skilled workers, they are happy to fall back on professional personnel service providers who will advise and support them in their search. "