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What is tech sales and how you can get your foot in the door

career pivot career tips job hunting tech careers Nov 17, 2022

Tech sales jobs have been climbing for the past 15 years, and there are even more around the corner. With 1.35 million tech startups launching each year, these companies need skilled employees to drive their product forward. 

 

Tech sales is providing consumers with technology products and services to solve their problems. Tech sales differ between industries and companies. Consumers are in need of software, security, storage, applications, and several other tech-based tools. 

 

This can include hardware sales, software sales, and IT service sales.

 

Hardware sales are the physical products. This covers computers, phones, storage drives and other accessories that keep customers’ data and work in one place. 

 

Software sales include SaaS products, which are a centralized provider that multiple users can access, such as Google Workspace, Dropbox, and SharePoint. These sales are also software programs and subscriptions that run through vendor’s servers and are installed on customers’ appliances. 

 

IT services sales include consulting services and packages that help customers troubleshoot their technology problems. These services can be sold to solve hardware or software problems.  

 

That’s where tech sales people come in. That’s where you come in. 

 

It is the tech salesperson’s job to match customers with the best tools – which ideally, come from their company. Their duties include:

  • Discussing client needs
  • Creating technology packages
  • Creating customer deals and promotions
  • Finding technology to provide solutions for current and potential customers 
  • Answering questions about company technology products and services
  • Reporting sales numbers 

 

Tech sales people have a number of tools to help them do their jobs. They fall under a few different categories: internal communications tools, lead enrichment tools, sales engagement tools, customer relationship management, and sales scheduling tools. 

 

Internal communications tools

These tools give employees a way to pass information with one another online. E-signing, instant messaging, employee social networks, video chat, and other online tools allow tech sales teams to work remotely with each other.  

 

Sales engagement tools

These tools help companies control how they interact with consumers. Sales engagement tools provide employees with data and analytics to determine the best way to contact stakeholders and their future customer base. They can:

  • Automate selling actions, such as email campaigns
  • Gather customer insight from interviews and surveys
  • Contact customers over their preferred channels (social media, email, telephone, etc.)
  • Analyzing sales data and creating corresponding reports

 

Customer relationship management

This software saves and manages a company’s leads and customer information such as contact information, tracking customer engagement online, and all company communication with the customer to assess care quality. This allows businesses to strategize their sales tactics and improve their chance of reaching their goals and objectives. 

 

Sales scheduling 

These tools provide companies with the opportunity to schedule meetings with future customers as efficiently as possible, whether they are online or in-person.

So how do you know if you’re cut out for tech sales?

 

Tech sales is customer service, but your interactions with customers do not always have to be face-to-face. Introvert or extrovert, reserved or outcoming – tech sales is about how well you know your product or service. How compelling can you be when you’re convincing a customer that you have the solution, no matter how big or small their problem is. 



How to get into tech sales

Canada alone has over 43,000 tech companies to choose from. There are plenty of options to choose from, but It can be daunting to know where to start.

 

Fortunately, you don’t need a software or business background to be in the running for an open position. If you have experience selling any service, can pick up concepts quickly, and are personable, you can succeed through your resume and interview alone.

 

If you need a place to start, you can’t fail with bootcamps, research, and networking

 

Bootcamp

Never underestimate the power of upskilling. There are several free bootcamps, training, and courses online that can teach you to sell products and services and improve your customer relation skills. 

 

Having courses on your resume could give you the leg up if you’re coming into tech with little to no experience. They give you an understanding of the role and insight to questions you may be asked during an interview. These courses can also be helpful if you have tech experience and want to improve or want to be tracking for leadership positions. Demonstrating your willingness to learn and refine your skill to be a better team player will not be lost on recruiters and hiring managers.

 

To start, check out this course by Aspireship and 3Skills to help you transition into SaaS (software as a service). They are offering Saas Sales Foundations and Customer Success Foundations to help you transition into the industry. Here’s how:

 

In the first part of the course, you will learn vocabulary, tactics and Saas and customer success knowledge. In the second part of the courses, you will use practice projects, quizzes, and other exercises like phone calls and video simulations to put your skills to the test. 

 

Source: Aspireship & 3Skills

 

Once you pass both parts, you will meet with the candidate experience team to provide interview coaching and feedback and set you up with job interviews for companies in the industry.



Networking

Getting your past and current employees to talk to you about new roles or mention your name to people seeking to fill them will introduce you to jobs you may not have known even existed before. 

 

LinkedIn messages, emails, phone calls, going out for coffee – do not shy away from telling people what you have to offer and asking them what they may be able to provide. 

 

While you’re at it, add recruiters to the list of people you should be connecting with. You must get to know them to get closer to your dream job.

 

Typing “recruiter” on LinkedIn will show you top people who are good at the job and have an engaged following on the website. But if you want to get to know more, find recruiter groups on LinkedIn. Here are few to start:

 

Once you connect, ask them if they have a few minutes to spare. Either ask them what they look for in a successful candidate, check if they are currently accepting resumes to pass along to their company, or remind them to think of you when they are trying to fill a role. You never know who may remember the conversation they had with you when they are on their next round of hires.  

 

Research

Sales development representative inbound, business development representative outbound, account executive, account manager – any of these positions can be acquired through transferable skills you already have. 

 

To make this jump into the tech world, you need to know where you can apply your skills from past jobs to fit into these new positions. 



An inbound sales development representative makes calls within the companies’ prospective and existing customers to drive sales. 

 

An outbound business development representative finds new markets and channels to acquire new customers and partners who may not have the company on their radar. 

 

An account executive supports existing client accounts. An account manager develops relationships with customers to connect them to key account executives and stakeholders. They also prepare sales reports. 

 

Customer service, project management, lesson-planning, communications, critical thinking. All these and more can help you apply to a tech job, so long as you show a vested interest in what the company’s mission is.

 

This is why you should research the company’s particular field and apply your newfound knowledge to what the company is selling customers. Look into the company’s history, short-term, and long-term plan. Research its competitors. Follow trends on social media. Follow thought leaders on social media.

 

Do everything to immerse yourself in the world of what you’re selling, so that when it comes time to serve customers, there is a natural progression from all the information you have stored in your head. 



Finding the right tech companies 

A great place to begin your transition into tech is with startups. Startup companies are trying to grow quickly to make the most of their seed funding and investments. They are more willing to to take a risk on new talent, so you don’t need over a decade of experience for your work to be valuable to them. 

 

If you’re trying to find more lucrative companies, a recent database analysis has determined which startups and veteran tech companies are on their way to reaching $1 billion in annual revenue. The companies fall within the following annual revenues and growth rates:

  • $20 million to $39 million in annual revenue with a growth rate of 60% or more
  • $40 to $79 million in annual revenue with a growth rate of 40% or more 
  • $80 to $99 million in annual revenue with a growth rate of 20% or more 
  • more than $100 million in annual revenue with a growth rate of at least a 15%

 

Here are 35 Canadian tech companies on track to $1 billion:

 

Ontario 



Alberta

 

Charlottetown, PEI

 

British Columbia

 

Quebec

If you want to focus on IT specifically, here are some promising companies to check out:

 

TRIARE, LLC – Calgary, Alberta

It is a software company that creates web and mobile software and provides small- and medium-sized businesses with custom IT solutions.

 

Nervina Info tech Pvt. Ltd. – Calgary, Alberta

It is known for its expert-level, high-tech custom, web, and mobile app development and digital marketing services.

 

Seasia Infotech – Edmonton, Alberta

It is a software development company that transforms clients’ businesses by enabling digital workflows and customer experiences.  

 

Datarockets – Toronto, Ontario

A web and mobile app development agency that helps businesses grow. 

 

SociallyInfused Media Ltd. – Hamilton, Ontario

A company of digital marketers and graphic designers helping local businesses grow.

 

Codewave Technologies – Vancouver, BC

This UX design thinking and digital transformation services company that engineers mobile apps, cloud storage, and edge solutions.

 

Incrementors Web Solutions – Toronto, Ontario

It is an award-winning digital marketing agency.

 

Excellent WebWorld – Calgary, Alberta

A website-building and tech solution company that helps businesses optimize their online presence and mobile app.

 

The Digital Marketing People – Oshawa, Ontario

It is a digital marketing agency specializing in lead generation for local businesses. 



Tech sales is a world of opportunity. Now is the time to jump in. 

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