SaaS sales careers
Introducing the SaaS world and the variety of sales development roles we work on with confident, articulate and ambitious candidates
What is SaaS?
Software as a Service (SaaS) is a cloud-based product or service providing business solutions to save time and money across sectors.
Before SaaS, software applications had to be downloaded, installed and manually updated. With SaaS, a product can now be accessed anywhere in the world through a web browser or mobile. For businesses, this is a huge advantage as it streamlines accessibility and adoptability with minimal effort or cost. Organisations can focus on what they do best as everything is managed by the SaaS provider in the cloud.
SaaS firms include: Aircall (providing call centre software), Salesforce (customer relationship management software), SurveyMonkey (survey software) and Xero (accountancy software).
How do SaaS businesses make money?
Typically, SaaS providers adopt a subscription- based pricing model, where they charge clients a monthly fee to access their software.
Often this is structured on a ‘per-user’ basis, allowing for a scalable model for both SaaS businesses and their clients.
As SaaS businesses are not selling a one-off product or service, they rely on customer acquisition and upselling. Subscription-based models enable growing SaaS firms to scale quickly. The more clients onboarded, the greater their Monthly Recurring Revenue (MRR). It’s a snowball effect, and a lucrative pricing model. Average deals sizes can range anywhere from £500 to £5,000 to £500,000 per month. Each SaaS business has a different product and pricing model.
What are the career opportunities?
We focus on placing Sales Development Representatives. SDRs are the first face of a business looking to introduce their product to potential clients.
The role involves researching new clients and the most appropriate contacts at these firms. This is known as prospecting.
Following prospecting, an SDR will reach out to potential clients to introduce the business offering by email, phone or through LinkedIn and other social channels. Then, qualify the commercial potential with prospects, looking to progress the conversation with an experienced Account Executive (AE),
who the SDR will work closely with. While an SDR identifies and opens up new business prospects, AEs are responsible for closing these opportunities.
What raw skills make a good SDR?
Our clients primarily look for raw talent.
They want to speak to candidates who are research-driven and have a solid commercial mindset. Our clients look for someone who is great with people, has excellent written and verbal communication skills, and is motivated by the idea of working towards, and achieving, targets.
Will there be training and guidance?
You can expect to be enrolled on a full training programme by any company you join, where they’ll continually invest in your learning and development.
Most SaaS businesses adopt sales processes and implement specific methodologies, such as MEDDIC or SPIN. These are highly consultative and often complex.
Cold calling: what is it?
First, ignore any pre-conceived negative connotations with the term ‘cold-call’.
An SDR does not make hundreds of tele-sales-like nuisance calls. Rather, an SDR makes business introductory calls to those who will be receptive to this approach. Any person or company an SDR calls will have been fully researched and prospected first. And the person on the other end of the line is employed to take such calls, especially when you’ll be suggesting a potential business solution to a problem they face.
Most SDR roles will involve aspects of cold- calling, but for lots of positions this isn’t a core focus.
What can I expect to earn?
Upto £60k by year 2
As an entry level SDR, you can expect a base salary of between £30,000–£40,000 in year one. In addition, you will earn commission or a bonus which will form your full On Target Earnings (OTE). Typically, this is between 25–50% of your base salary, but can often be much more.
Most successful SDRs can expect to be earning a minimum of £60,000 by year two.
Lingo to know: Sales-cycle job titles
- Sales Development Representatives (SDRs): Responsible for the first 180° of the sales cycle, opening new business opportunities
- Account Executives (AEs): Responsible for the final 180° of the sales cycle, seeing deals through to completion
- Customer Success Managers (CSMs): Responsible for onboarding and supporting clients, ensuring they use the product and achieve their business goals from it
- Account Managers (AMs): Responsible for maintaining customer acquisition by renewing contracts and upselling new products or services
- SDR/CSM Managers: Responsible for managing a pod of SDRs or CSMs, sometimes by being a ‘player/coach’
- Director or VP Sales: Responsible for overseeing all aspects of the pre-sales cycle, including line management of SDR Managers and AEs
- Director or VP Sales of Customer Success: Responsible for overseeing all aspects of the post-sales cycle
- Chief Revenue Officer (CRO): Responsible for overseeing all pre- and post-sales revenue operations, CROs sit at board level, reporting to the CEO