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"Having applied for a role via Reed, I was contacted by Simon the next day and had an interview and offer within a week. Simon provided a brilliant personal and thorough service and I would definitely recommend Aaron Wallis"

Alex Clegg

5 Things You Must Do Before Selecting Your Next Employer 

When considering your next career move in sales, it is common to focus on the “what” of the role- What market, what product or service, what territory, what level of new business or account management…….

These are all reasonable considerations and can influence your chances of selecting the right opportunity.

In many ways however, it is more important to ask the “why” questions, as these will be central to your career strategy and likelihood of success.  Why that market or sector, why that product or service and perhaps the most important of all…. Why that employer!

If you fail to answer this most basic question, then your next career moves becomes a spin of the wheel and as with all high odds games, your likelihood of winning is greatly reduced. In this case with profound consequences for your long-term career aspirations.

Lamentably, as a Recruiter we hear all too often, “It was a bad move” or “I was miss-sold the role at interview”.  Savvy candidates will have a clear strategy to uncover the qualities they require of their next employer, thus maximising their chances of a long, happy and successful relationship.

With that in mind we have put together some key points that you should consider when interviewing your next employer –

1. Why Am I Looking to Move?

A detailed examination of the factors that have led you to seek a new employer, will highlight the characteristics to identify (and to avoid!) in your next employer. 

For example, if your last employer was chaotic and lacked structure, then you will want to investigate what CRM a potential employer uses, what processes and reporting lines are in place to ensure effective day to day management within the organisation.  What KPI’s will be in place by which you can measure your own progress.

We recommend a pen and paper exercise detailing the pros and cons of your current environment.  This will provide you with a template for your next move.

2. What Are My Highest Priorities in the Next Stage of My Career?

If you have a burning desire to earn a high OTE and are fearless in the pursuit of new business, then a high pressure, high reward organisation might be for you…… HOWEVER, be brutally honest with yourself.  If that desire does not supersede the impact that pressure has on you and your family, it is unlikely you will enjoy such an environment when the inevitable screws are turned.  It’s not worth being miserable, be true to yourself or you will swiftly find yourself back on the job market following the ubiquitous “bad move” that could have been avoided……  Again, grab a pen and list a hierarchy of priorities.

3. How Do I Research My Next Employer!

If you walk into an interview ill prepared and under researched, there can be no surprise if you “make a bad move”.  It is vital that you thoroughly research the market and organisation you are considering.  Not only to improve your performance at interview, but as part of your basic due diligence.

So much information is available in the public domain, mere clicks of the mouse away….. What is the company’s turnover? Has it grown consistently in recent years? What are their assets and liabilities?  Is the market for their products or services growing or in decline?  The list goes on and on, but even half an hour of research can be all it takes to shield you from a poor career choice.

4. How Do I Competency Interview an Employer?

“I was miss-sold the role at interview” is a common complaint.  This can certainly be the case, but an interview should be a TWO-WAY PROCESS and it is your absolute responsibility to gather evidence in support of the claims that employers make at interview.

If the role is represented as account management, what is the account base?  Are they current trading partners or long lapsed and effectively cold, new business prospects?

If a role is sold as possessing an astronomical OTE, then investigate that….. How many of the sales team achieved that figure last year?  What percentage of target (or over target) was required to earn that?  Ideally, they should be able to provide evidence to substantiate such claims.  DON’T BE SHY!  Employers think nothing of asking to see payslips or P60’s to evidence your claims regarding performance.  Polite but thorough investigation is entirely reasonable. Evasive, vague or defensive responses should start to ring alarm bells.!

5. How Do I Know if a Company Culture is Right for Me?

Some consider “instinct” as a lazy way to make an important decision, badly.  However, when it is supported by a package of research, due diligence, commercial acumen and competency-based questioning, it can still be the most important insight of all!

Company culture, management style and environment are all key to your happiness and chances of success.  If you don’t believe what you are hearing, or your inner voice is saying that it is the wrong place for you, then it is usually wise to listen.

Ultimately it all boils down to a very simple equation……

Right role + Wrong Company = Bad Career Move!

You owe it to yourself to take responsibility for your next move.  It should be a researched, calculated decision, based on the collection of evidence and a process of due diligence.  Not a spin of the wheel!.......

Date published: 6th March 2024

A photo of Simon Bonner, Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment

About the author

Simon Bonner

With over 25 years in B2B sales and recruitment, Simon is an English Graduate from UEA and specialises in recruiting commercial and FMCG sales positions. Simon joined the sales recruitment industry in 1998 before progressing into field sales and returning to recruitment in 2015. As an Associate Director, Simon is well placed to understand the needs of clients and candidates' needs, having spent ten years selling electronic security and managing National Accounts within OEM manufacturers and distribution channels. An avid Luton Town football fan, Simon dotes on his two daughters and enjoys keeping fit, socialising, food and wine.

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Commercial Director, Incentive Facilities Management

Thanks for all your help during the recruitment process. I have been extremely impressed with Aaron Wallis especially when compared to other agencies we have dealt with. I really felt you grasped the type of person we required and found strong candidates.

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Understood the type of person we were looking for and good follow ups - not too frequent.

Managing Director, bigHead Bonding Fasteners Ltd

I can't fault Sam or AW! Sam was a pleasure to work with and provided great support from the start. Sam always provided me with timely updates when required and provided outstanding candidates!

Director, Waste Managed Ltd

Sophie did a great job at understanding our business and our needs, she is extremely professional and we hugely benefitted from her experience and expertise.

HR Manager, The Data Privacy Group Ltd

Generally good standard of candidates. Especially liked the personality profile. Overall good value for money and will certainly use you again.

Managing Director, Medicash

Since joining DSGi, Rob has been a supplier of permanent staff and has performed to an extremely high standard, successfully filling 98% of roles he has worked on. If anyone is looking for a good sales and marketing based consultancy with an informal yet professional approach, I would recommend Rob.

Senior Recruitment Consultant, DSG International

Thank you for your dedicated help during the recruitment process - we came to you after unsuccessfully searching elsewhere, and hired, not one, but two! Quick response times, and a really personal approach, without being pushy.

Managing Director, Accora Ltd

Rob’s knowledge of the recruitment industry and his thoughts and how to make it better for his clients have always been eye opening. I would recommend Rob to anybody who is looking for a professional, knowledgeable and flexible recruitment specialist.

CEO, Friday Ad Online Services

I just wanted to thank you for your help with our recruitment process which went very smoothly and has – we hope – found us just the person for the job!

Managing Director, Citrefine International Ltd

Giles is highly professional and was a pleasure to work with. He achieves excellent results through his personable skills and tenacity. I have no hesitation in recommending Giles to anyone who considers employing his services.

Commercial Director, G4S Government & Outsourcing Solutions

Very professional service and will certainly be in contact for future recruitment.

Director, Blakedown Sport & Play Ltd

Rob is a true recruitment professional that goes the extra mile that I have never experienced from any other recruitment agency before. If you need sales people call Rob or someone in his team, as they really are experts in sales recruitment.

Sales Director, Inside Business

I really liked the YouTube presentations which made the service seem both simple and accessible. The company came to see me, and my management team, at short notice to present their service and I liked the support and advice that I received about maximising the results from the applicant.

Managing Director, Leisuresec plc

George came recommended by a colleague and has been a pleasure to work with. He was great at updating us on his progress and ensured a great experience for both client and candidate.

HR Manager, Annapurna Recruitment Ltd

We appointed Aaron Wallis in February and the successful candidate, out of the six which Aaron Wallis introduced, was able to join Alphametrics before the end of April. The whole process took less than three months. I would recommend Aaron Wallis' services to others without hesitation.

Chief Financial Officer, Alphametrics

In an industry where people over promise and under deliver, Rob and his teams have consistently provided a high-quality service. It is great to deal with someone that has an excellent understanding of UK industry, and a passion for sales.

Sales Manager, TR Fasteners

I found Aaron Wallis to be very professional and efficient, taking time to understand the role and the type of candidate we were looking for. The candidates they put forward met our criteria and were of a high standard. The service they provided was exemplary and I would have no hesitation in recommending them, and will certainly consider using them again in the future.

HR Assistant, Fischer Connectors Ltd

I could not suggest anything I would like you to do better. The service you provided materially exceeded my expectations. I would especially like to commend Simon Bonner; he is easily the best recruitment consultant I have ever dealt with. I particularly valued his advice and guidance throughout the recruitment process. 

UK Sales Manager, BTS Holdings Limited 

George is a rare find in the world of recruitment - communicative without being pushy or over-bearing. He listens and understands what the customer needs as gets to know the business to ensure he provides fully competent candidates who fit.

HR Manager, Big Dug

I have used Aaron Wallis to fill a number of our Sales Development Manager roles and I have found them to provide a very professional service. I will use their services again in future recruitment campaigns.

HR Business Partner, Greene King

George is a joy to work with, and I'd recommend him to anyone seeking that unicorn hire - he found me mine, and I'm delighted!

Director, Education Support

As always we were extremely impressed with Rob's understanding of the role and our specific needs.

Managing Director, Speck & Burke

I have always found Rob to be very knowledgeable about our industry sector, and it is refreshing to see after all of these years that Rob continues to quickly and accurately understand my requirements.

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Our candidates say...

I have to say using Aaron Wallis Recruitment has been nothing but an absolute pleasure. I've used many agencies over the years as the client and the candidate and its not always been a pleasurable experience!

L. Knowles, Candidate

The detail put into the preparation for interviews and the detail of the job description was first class. Rob and Simon in particular are amongst the best I've ever dealt with.

K. Peacock, Candidate

Professional and responsive from start to finish. I would highly recommend. Special thanks to Sophie J for her help and support throughout.

N. Leney, Candidate

George above and beyond to make sure I had everything I need to secure my new role. Outstanding Professional.

A. Kirkland, Candidate

Rob was really helpful when I was putting together a presentation for the second stage interview. Overall their communication was great and kept me updated of any progress

J. McGrattan, Candidate

Friendly, proactive, communicative. Overall a really positive experience.

R. Houston, Candidate

Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment are a very friendly and professional recruitment organisation who listen to your needs, work with you and act on your behalf which sets them apart from many of their competitors who in my experience are willing to throw anything at you. We discussed my history, my preferences and my wishes - one opportunity was introduced. It was perfect. I start at the end of June.

R. Buckley, Candidate

Excellent service, very professional and friendly, would and have, recommended Aaron Wallis.

E. Heley, Candidate

I had the absolute pleasure of working with George Humphries on finding a placement best suitable for me.

A. Van Der Mescht, Candidate

A great recruitment company to work with. Excellent experience with Aaron Wallis through the entire recruitment process. The team was really professional and extremely helpful. Darren was a pleasure to work with. He was friendly, supportive and gave me great advice. Thank you very much!

A. Bauchet, Candidate

The Recruitment agent I used, Simon, was extremely helpful and really went the extra mile to ensure all of my questions were answered, and that I felt as comfortable and prepared as possible. Very professional company and would definitely recommend to others. Thank you Aaron Wallis!

A. Callaby, Candidate

George Humphries was a complete professional at every point, from our first phone conversation to his “good luck tomorrow” text on Sunday before I started in my new role.

E. Fry, Candidate

I would highly recommend Aaron Wallis Recruitment, Darren was extremely helpful and provided me with plenty of advice and support throughout the whole process.

D. Bretherton, Candidate

Sam was by far the most professional and helpful of any individual I've ever dealt with through a recruitment agency. He was supportive and thorough throughout the process. He definitely goes the extra mile for you. A pleasure to deal with. I would highly recommend him. An asset to Aaron Wallis

M. Wyer, Candidate

For anyone looking for work, I can't recommend Aaron Wallis highly enough.

C. Rockliffe, Candidate

Aaron Wallis (and in particular Rob Scott) have been fantastic throughout the recruitment process, and even a few months down the line, still continues to care. Rob clearly cares about each individual and has a wealth of knowledge and expertise, which shows in the work he does. Each candidate is not just a number, and the support received from Aaron Wallis has helped me get a career which I truly enjoy.

M. White, Candidate 

Wanted to say a huge thank you to Simon Bonner who has just helped me secure my new role. He was one of the most professional recruiters I have ever worked with.

J. Marcinkiewicz, Candidate

I have to say coming across and having dealings with Aaron Wallis proved to be very successful. Being highly experienced did not seem to count for much during my job search bit a conversation with Robert Scott gave me a real confidence boost and enabled to get a position at the age of 63. Great service!!!

D. Burgess, Candidate

Simon was knowledgeable on his clients history, background and what their requirements were and he worked around time zones, holidays and a pandemic to get the right result.

J. Tooze, Candidate

Less than two weeks after joining Aaron Wallis I was offered my new job. I got a £10,000 rise in my basic salary, car allowance, a laptop and many other perks, which will help to further my career. I definitely would not have found my dream job without the help of Aaron Wallis.

C. Hoy, Candidate

Sophie has been fantastic and always so attentive, highly recommend.

T. Ashbourne, Candidate

I can honestly say that the time and expertise you gave me was way beyond any other recruitment consultant I dealt with. You are a rarity in your industry.

S. Akers, Candidate

Excellent experience. Knowledgeable staff and really went the extra mile. Found my ideal position and I couldn't be happier. Special shout out to Sam and George: who made the process smooth and easy for me. Highly recommend.

K. Pearce, Candidate

The staff at Aaron Wallis were fantastic. Throughout the process, they maintained excellent communication and I always knew where I stood.

M. Owusu, Candidate

Very good advice and support was given during the course of the interviewing process. Potential job seekers would be well advised to use this company whilst looking for their new career.

R. Speakman, Candidate

Good swift process with Aaron Wallis, informative regarding the role and the process was moved at a good pace with healthy interaction. Would recommend them to anyone pursuing a change.

S. Bartlett, Candidate

Aaron Wallis is an outstanding recruitment agency specialising in high calibre sales positions. I was working directly with Darren Dewrance who went above and beyond my expectations in sourcing me my perfect role. I was kept in regular communication with Darren and he worked extremely hard to secure my dream job. Highly recommended and Thanks Darren for all your expertise and hard work.

R. Sealy, Candidate

When talking with Simon you felt relaxed cared to help you find a position that suited your needs

D. Pinder, Candidate

Sophie helped me secure a new role I have been searching for. She took her time to explain clear and concisely all I needed to succeed at the interview stage. Thanks again Sophie!

O. Oladejo, Candidate

I would highly recommend thank you to Darren for helping me secure my new job role! Excellent service all round!

G. Thompson, Candidate

The service provided by Aaron Wallis has been just great. I was constantly informed about what was going on with the process interview and the agent has always been supportive and kind to me.

L. Colagrossi, Candidate

George is a fantastic recruitment agent and provides a great service. It was a pleasure I thoroughly recommend George to anyone.

C. Beaugie, Candidate

Fantastic service, helped me find my ideal job quickly and smoothly. Would highly recommend them.

C. Caine, Candidate

Very polite and friendly and was very helpful finding me my next new role.

K. Craggs, Candidate

I had a very good experience with Aaron Wallis. The company itself is offering great content for all things related to the hiring process. I definitely recommend.

J. Ostermeier, Candidate

Perfect from start to finish. Simon deserves a shout out. Best recruiter there is. If you need a job, this guy will get you one. He's like the super man of recruiters. Top man, can't recommend him enough.

M. Crisp, Candidate

Darren at Aaron Wallis was really encouraging and helpful. He was very responsive and regularly made phone calls to explain the job opportunities available, and guided me through the application process.

A. Brown, Candidate

I had a great experience. Helped me every step of the way to get my new job. Sophie was very polite, kind and helpful!

J. Parnham, Candidate

The most professional recruitment agency I've ever worked with. Robert Scott was extremely proactive and send me a detailed briefing before each interview, ensuring I was well prepared.

D. Bermant, Candidate

Wanted to say a huge thank you to Simon Bonner who has just helped me secure my new role. He was one of the most professional recruiters I have ever worked with he was supportive really quick at replying and really put me at ease.

J. Marcinkiewicz, Candidate

Sophie contacted me about a role explained the details clearly and made sure I was ready for the interview. She kept in touch every step of the way till I started the job. Thank you Sophie for a great experience.

S. Powell, Candidate

Managed to get me placed within a week! Really friendly and easy to deal with. Always available for a call and my biggest challenge was I was in work at the time I was looking for my next opportunity (which is stressful) but Sam made that easy.

P. Fitzsimons, Candidate

Fantastic customer service, communication was brilliant, happy polite people to talk to, made everything a lot easier and smoother. Thank you for all your help getting me back in the work force, Keep up the good work :-)

K. Everitt, Candidate