what is a head of sales?
As the head of sales, you manage the sales team in various activities, including defining and communicating key performance indicators and targets. You also analyse market trends and consumer behaviours and develop strategies to boost sales in the new markets. You make data-driven decisions to optimise the company's commercial performance.
You rely on data to analyse patterns, understand your consumer base and study the sales department's performance. Your head of sales role involves knowing your competition and developing new ways to outsell them. Your responsibilities also include managing external partners and collaborating with internal departments to increase company revenue.
As a supervisor, you lead the sales department by developing sales targets, identifying growth opportunities and developing the product mix. You manage the department's calendar, from trading priorities to launches, campaign activities and promotions. You also take responsibility for the mistakes and negative performances of the department. You mentor other sales professionals and guide them to achieve the department's vision and goals.
As the head of sales, you play a strategic role in the company by driving enhanced revenue generation activities in your department. Your job is to deliver an optimised market mix and expand the company's market share and consumer base. You use analytics to measure the successes and weaknesses of sales strategies.
Would working as the head of sales suit your commercial acumen and analytical skills? Then read on to find out what competencies and qualifications you need to thrive in a head of sales role.head of sales roles
average salary of a head of sales
A head of sales earns an average annual salary of ₹8,61,210 or ₹381 per hour. Candidates with more experience can expect to earn significantly higher wages. Salaries in larger cities are generally higher. For example, pay offers for head of sales roles in Kolkata recently have averaged ₹12,67,874. While most sales professionals receive commissions, the head of sales typically only earns bonuses for achieving milestones and steering the team to achieve targets.
ways to boost your salary as the head of sales
The principal determiner of your compensation package is the size of the company. A large organisation can afford to pay workers more. Besides, roles in big companies are more complex, and your compensation should reflect the effort and expertise you bring to your role.
The location also influences pay structures since the demands and costs of living impact salaries. When you work in a large city, you are likely to earn more due to the higher demand for employees. In small towns, both the need for heads of sales and the cost of living are lower.
types of head of sales
Some of the types of heads of sales include:
- regional head of sales: as the head of sales, you can be in charge of a specific region. That means you oversee sales functions in a designated area to ensure smooth operations. Your job is to grow the company's market share in the region and achieve set targets by empowering field sales agents and sales managers.
- branch head of sales: when you manage the sales activities of a particular branch, your job is to direct the sales managers and executives working under you. Your job involves recruiting sales managers, setting targets and supervising the sales activities in the branch. You also manage warehouse activities and evaluate sales performance compared to other branches in the organisation.
working as a head of sales
Working as a head of sales involves leading the entire sales team, from field sales representatives to sales managers. The role requires exceptional leadership skills and self-motivation to inspire others to work hard and achieve the company's targets. Let's explore what the head of sales does daily.
duties and responsibilities
Some of your tasks as a head of sales include:
- developing plans to penetrate new markets: as the head of sales, you grow your employer's revenue by launching new products in various markets to improve the company's market share. Your job is to collaborate with the marketing teams to identify new opportunities and strategies for introducing your products into the market.
- designing the sales and distribution strategy: as the head of sales, you define new approaches for selling products. When you penetrate new markets, you develop comprehensive distribution strategies to maximise sale opportunities. For instance, you direct the sales teams to generate proposals and define a clear path for revenue growth and client satisfaction.
- establishing guidelines for customer relationships: apart from creating distribution policies, you also define clear guidelines for client satisfaction and revenue growth. That involves establishing customer relationship management systems and procedures for managing customers. You also create internal policies for data protection and handling customer data.
- fostering relationships with new partners: as the head of sales, you oversee dealings with premium clients and buyers in your business. Your job is to foster relationships with new partners and improve revenue. You provide advice when preparing proposals or bidding documents for important accounts. You ensure high-profile customers are happy and receive the best service.
- supervising and investigating sales performance: as the head of sales, you monitor changes in the industry that could affect sales performance. You also examine other factors that disrupt sales outcomes and find ways to improve revenue and meet sales targets.
As the head of sales, you work in an office environment and spend most of the day attending meetings or analysing sales data. Sometimes, your job involves presenting to the executive team or training sales professionals at conferences. You also work outdoors when meeting important partners and premium buyers. Your role involves travelling for conferences or overseas meetings, depending on the organisation's size. While you can work remotely or from home, some aspects of the role are hands-on, especially when fostering new partnerships with important clients.
who are your colleagues?
As the head of sales, your colleagues include sales directors, field sales representatives, inside sales representatives, account managers and sales assistants. You may also work alongside marketing managers, as well as other specialists that could include marketing executives, brand managers and accountants.
The work schedule of a head of sales depends on the company size and specific duties. In full-time positions, you will generally work standard office hours. Sometimes you will have to work in the evenings and at weekends for urgent projects and deadlines. Part-time jobs are rare since you supervise a large team. However, you can often split your time between working from home and the office.
As the head of sales, you are the top executive in your department, allowing you to effect change and develop the company's strategy. Depending on the company hierarchy, you could progress to vice president of sales. However, in some organisations, the head of sales is the sales director and the vice president. You can move into other marketing or executive roles, like becoming the chief executive officer or chief operations officer. The outlook for sales roles is positive, as the sales sector is currently one of the fastest-growing employment markets in India.
advantages of finding a head of sales job through randstad
Finding your head of sales job through Randstad provides important advantages such as:
- a wide variety of training and development opportunities
- an experienced contact person to provide help if needed
- a range of opportunities in your area
- get paid on a monthly basis
- temporary and permanent contracts
Want a permanent contract? A temporary job as a head of sales is often a stepping stone to an attractive permanent job. Every year, thousands of people earn a permanent contract with great employers thanks to a temporary job found through Randstad. What's more, many companies recruit their permanent employees through Randstad too!
education and skills
The following qualifications will improve your chances of becoming a head of sales:
- bachelor's degree: the start of your career in sales will likely rest on a bachelor's degree. Subjects like business management, communications, marketing or sales are suitable. Some employers may hire promising candidates without a degree for more junior sales roles. However, a bachelor's degree will stand you in good stead if you want to move on to higher roles.
- master's degree: as you rise to the head of sales role, you will be expected to have gained an MBA, preferably in sales and marketing.
- work experience: you cannot become the head of sales without extensive work experience. Apart from internships, it is beneficial to work in junior sales or marketing positions to learn the ropes. A strong work ethic is required too.
skills and competencies
The personal qualities of a head of sales include:
- analytical skills: as the head of sales, you rely on research and data-driven insights to formulate strategies and measure the sales performance of your department. Your analytical skills enable you to understand marketplace models for measuring performance. These skills also help you evaluate performance and develop new strategies.
- computing skills: as the head of sales, proficiency in Microsoft Office applications is required, especially Word and PowerPoint, to create reports and presentations for senior sales management teams. Computing skills are also helpful in analysing performance and making comparisons.
- interpersonal skills: as the head of sales, your interpersonal skills help to build trust and encourage openness with your sales team and external stakeholders. Interpersonal skills help you thrive and work comfortably in group settings. They also improve your persuasiveness and leadership.
- people and leadership skills: as the head of sales, you perform a supervisory role that requires leadership skills. You should be able to inspire and motivate a large group of people in a unified direction or vision. As the company's representative, your people skills make you approachable to customers and help you build lasting relationships on behalf of the business.
FAQs about working as a head of sales
FAQs about working as a head of sales:
what does it mean to be head of sales?
The head of sales is the top executive in the sales department in charge of supervising and managing all sales activities in the business.
what does the head of sales and marketing do?
Your role is to oversee the development of strategies and the implementation of sales plans. You also evaluate and monitor sales performances based on KPIs.
what is the hierarchy of sales jobs?
You start as a sales assistant before becoming a sales executive and manager. You can become the head of sales or sales director from the sales manager role.
what skills does the head of sales need?
Exceptional leadership skills and analytical abilities enable you to supervise the performance of various departments and track the success or failure of sales strategies.
how do I apply for a head of sales vacancy?
Applying for a head of sales job is easy: create a Randstad profile and search our job offers for vacancies in your area. Then simply send us your CV and cover letter. Need help with your application? Check out all our job search tips here!