How to assess your SDR candidates
The next step is to qualify the job applicants. While every team will have its own process, Reply has developed the following process for SDR hiring:
- Initial assessment. At this stage, we review the applicant’s CV and SDR cover letter. It’s worth mentioning that we do not consider candidates without the cover letter attached to their application. At all. Even if they have the necessary background and years of experience.
- HR screening. Next, our HR will have a brief call with the candidates who seem to meet our requirements. Although it’s just a basic check, this call often gives us an understanding of whether the candidate is a good fit in terms of culture and personal qualities.
- Pre-interview screening. Before we get the candidate on a call with the team lead, we usually ask them to do some research on our product/company and write 10-15 sentences explaining what we do and how people could benefit from it. Additionally, the candidate should make a 1-2 minute video talking about their hobby (to check their English).
- Interview with the team lead covers a variety of questions that assess both the candidate’s hard and soft skills as well as how they qualify for the job. Some examples of good questions to ask an SDR candidate during an interview are:
- What’s your research process?
- What questions would you ask to qualify a prospect?
- How do you deal with rejection?
- What do you love about working in sales?
- What’s the hardest part about working in sales?
Ideally, we try to encourage the candidate to share specific examples of how they’ve dealt with similar situations in the past using IEI (intelligence, energy, integrity) questions, for example, “What’s the hardest you’ve ever worked on anything?” or “What values do you appreciate the most in a team environment?”
Important: Pay attention, not just to what they say, but how they say it. Do they communicate effectively, or do they struggle to make conversation? The way they act in the interview is a great indicator of how they’ll act on a sales call. It’ll also help you see whether they’re a good fit for your company’s culture.
- Post-interview tasks. If the candidate passes the interview, we ask them to complete two more test tasks: objection handling (come up with responses to 5 common objections) and email template writing (based on the given context and parameters).
Once the test tasks are complete, we will review them along with the results from the previous steps and shortlist the top 5 candidates. Out of those 5 candidates, we will ask our CEO to talk to 2-3 and we make an offer to the best one, considering his feedback.
Lastly, it’s important to note that we ALWAYS provide exhaustive feedback to every candidate, along with recommendations on what to improve. If a candidate is really good but doesn’t fit our specific criteria, we’ll always consider referring them to another company in our network.