General Manager, Northeast at Vision33 and host of Shark Bite Biz Podcast – Helping Companies Achieve Growth via the Promise of Technology.
As a kid in coal country Pennsylvania, I was always asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?”
I had ideas — and good ones. A doctor, I said. No, maybe a lawyer, or a fireman? Something interesting. Something with people.
Truth be told, I never had a solid answer. Lucky for me, a career in SaaS (Software as a Service) sales turned out to be exactly what I wanted.
What Is SaaS?
SaaS is a software delivery model in which businesses purchase a subscription to a software solution and access it over the internet. Instead of having a server on-premise in your office, your data is stored in a secure remote cloud server. SaaS solutions can include accounting software, warehouse management systems, e-government solutions, customer relationship management (CRM) programs and more.
The best part? SaaS solutions are low-maintenance and optimize your business while giving it a competitive edge. These scalable cloud solutions can show you the bigger picture when it comes to data and forecasting and ensure you make the best decisions for your business.
Why Get Into A SaaS Sales Career?
SaaS is a rapidly growing industry that can offer budding sales professionals huge opportunities for growth.
To start, it pays well. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, as of May 2019, the median salary for technology sales professionals was $103,900 — almost three times as much as the average median salary for all occupations in the United States.
Plus, technology job prospects are bright, especially when it comes to software and computer sales. Between 2019 and 2029, that job market is expected to increase by 25%. Because new technology and software are being released regularly, the demand for SaaS sales professionals will inevitably continue to grow.
Curious? Here are three signs a career in SaaS sales might be right for you.
You Like To Help People
All sales jobs are about building relationships, but SaaS sales careers stand apart: they’re about demonstrating to your potential customer that you’ll take care of them as they implement what may be their biggest business purchase to date.
Whether your prospect is a state government looking to implement an online driver’s license renewal system or a food producer seeking a full-service warehouse management system, helping their business starts with compassion and understanding.
When you understand the needs of their team — the people who’ll be using the software — you create trust. When you understand the software implementation process, you build credibility. These two elements together will get you one step closer to implementing the right scalable solution that will help your customer’s business soar.
I think getting to know people and figuring out how you can improve their lives can be incredibly meaningful. To me, nothing can top the feeling of helping someone grow their business, create jobs and prosper with the help of technology.
You Like To Learn
Being a lifelong learner isn’t just something that’ll make you seem interesting during Friday afternoon Zoom calls. It’s something that can help you build a rewarding technology sales career.
The standard pre-requisite for a SaaS sales career is a college degree, but that’s not the type of learning I want to focus on. I mean learning about your prospects and products.
No matter the size of the prospect, you need to learn as much as you can about their business. You’ll do standard sales prospect research and will need to dig deeper with online research.
Additionally, you should be knowledgeable about your own software products. You should be able to determine which one is the right fit for your prospect. After all, you’re often their first point of contact with your company. Your ability to communicate thoughtfully and translate technical language will strengthen your relationship with them and may also enhance your sales career.
I think that being a quick, dynamic learner is what makes a great SaaS sales professional. From my experience, the education you get in the classroom is what can get your foot in the door, but having a hunger for knowledge every day is what can take your technology sales career to the next level.
Routine Bores You
As the General Manager (Northeastern Region) at Vision33, the word ‘routine’ isn’t in my vocabulary.
In this role, I manage all new and existing customer relationships and oversee the software implementation team. Any given day, you can find me Zooming with new prospects, grabbing virtual coffee with existing customers, guiding the software implementation team or scheduling guests for my podcast Shark Bite Biz.
There’s always something new in the SaaS industry, like new software solutions to learn about. Additional software solutions have helped us diversify product offerings and also offer more custom solutions to help businesses succeed.
Naturally, when working with a global team, new ideas and opportunities are a regular occurrence. The people I meet with bring unique perspectives to every project. For example, when the company acquired iDocuments and integrated their UK team into Vision33’s, they brought critical knowledge about the software that my own sales team was able to learn from and apply to their own sales approach.
When you work with a diverse group of coworkers and customers in a technology company that’s always growing, there’s never a dull moment. That’s certainly one thing that’s kept my SaaS sales career dynamic and interesting.
Technology sales professionals are needed now more than ever before. If the past year has taught us anything, it’s that businesses must be agile in order to weather unpredictable economic and social circumstances. SaaS sales professionals help businesses throughout the world do just that by making sure they have the tools they need to adapt.
The bottom line? I know that the next time someone asks me why I chose this career, I’m going to have a good answer: because I wanted to do something interesting, something that helps people.
If you’re anything like me, a SaaS sales career might be the right path for you.