How to identify high performing sales reps in an interview

The saying is true! Sales is the heart of the business!

So who wouldn’t want to better be able to identify a high sales performer in an interview?

Here’s what to look out for:

  1. The candidate can tell you about specific instances where he / she has set goals and achieved them and how he / she achieved them.
  2. The candidate can demonstrate an ability to think out of the box. Give the candidate a real life example relating to a problem you may be facing in your organization and see how the candidate responds. What organization won’t benefit from fresh ideas or a creative perspective’s.
  3. Ask about networking events he / she has attended in the last year and establish whether it was of his / her own prerogative. A candidate who attends networking events without being told to shows a willingness to go the extra mile.
  4. Presentation skills: Ask a sales candidate to promote a product or service during the interview, giving them a real objection to see if he/she ability to think on his/her feet. It may not always be the right answer but you will get a good indication of whether the candidate can handle some pressure.
  5. Passion and willingness to learn: Most Sales Managers require a person to have industry experience as a prerequisite for the job. But product knowledge can be learned, soft skills need to count as well. You can’t teach ambition so what you need is a candidate who will do anything to succeed and become an integral part of your business
  6. Figure out what motivates the candidate: Sales Reps should be motivated by money! After all, they do generally work on commission. An individual who doesn’t need to work for that extra commission is not going to necessarily give it their all.

The benefit of utilising recruitment agencies

Despite there being an increased trend in businesses to utilize search portals and hire internal recruitment staff, recruitment agencies are still yielding more successful results for a number of reasons:

  • There will always be a core need for recruiting professionals to find talent for companies and assist that talent to become hirable.
  • Your best prospective employees are not necessarily sitting on job portals and applying to adverts and are what we refer to as “passive” candidates. Even if they are not actively on the job market, chances are a good recruiter will know who they are and how to reach them. It takes immense skills to identify, locate and reach this talent and sell the opportunity to them.
  • Good recruiters will be able to advise you on shifting trends, pay scales and competitor activity which information is integral to your hiring decisions. If other businesses are battling to find the same candidates as you, recruiters will often be able to apply alternative methods to source rare skill.
  • Using a good recruitment agency should mean that you are only seeing candidates who have been pre-selected and screened to ensure that they meet all the criteria as opposed to spending wasted time sifting through heaps of advert response which may not necessarily meet your criteria.
  • If you choose your agency wisely and let them spend time getting to know you and some of your key managers, they can get a real insight into your business, its culture, what it’s like to work there and they will then be in a position to represent your organization as an employer of choice.
  • With talent shortages now potentially hindering organizational growth, it is more important than ever to have experts assisting you in your hiring process.
  • While the above predominantly refers to permanent placements, we must not forget the integral role that recruitment agencies play in their ability to bring in qualified, experienced help at short notice. These flexible solutions are particularly useful for projects, stand in’s while employees are on leave, seasonal work and increased workload.
  • There is little doubt that a busy HR team can benefit from the reach and network of a trusted recruitment agency partner.
  • Many organizations have their reasons for using agencies, it may be, among other reasons, for larger market access, time saving on screening through candidates that don’t meet the criteria or fast access to temporary staff.

Feel free to visit our website at or contact us on 011 746 8600 for any assistance with your recruitment needs.

Interview tips for job seekers


  2. Smile and maintain eye contact with the interviewer/s.
  3. Sit still.  Don’t lean on the Interviewer’s desk.
  4. Use the interviewer’s name, but not first name unless invited to do so
  5. Avoid using swear words and slang expressions.
  6. Answer questions honestly and concisely. Don’t ramble and don’t attempt to take command of the interview. If you don’t know the answer to a question, say so.
  7. Don’t criticize or be rude about past employers, gossip about them or give out confidential information.  It is unethical, and shows you cannot be trusted.
  8. If you don’t agree with something, say so politely – and say why. You have a mind of your own, so don’t be afraid.  On the other hand, rudeness and aggression are not looked upon favorably, and may destroy your prospects.
  9. Do not discuss your personal, domestic or financial problems in an interview.
  10. Leave questions about salary and benefits until the end of the interview.
  11. Do not discuss an expected salary different from the one discussed with the Consultant.  Negotiations will be handled by the consultant.
  12. At the end of the interview, thank the interviewer for his / her time and interest.
  13. Soon after the interview, review your performance and make some notes. Interview notes will be a valuable guide in preparation for future interviews.
  14. You need to speak clearly, with confidence – Invest in Yourself Today!


  1. Why are you applying for this position?
  2. What are your goals?
  3. What do you expect to be doing in 10 years from now?
  4. Do you think that your education prepared you well for this job?
  5. What can you offer this company?
  6. What kinds of people do you like working with?
  7. Do you like working on your own / independently?
  8. Tell us about yourself?
  9. What does success mean to you?
  10. How did you hear about this job?
  11. What do you do in your spare time? (Hobbies / sport / clubs)
  12. What do you expect to be earning in five years?
  13. What is more important to you, the money or the type of job?
  14. What do you consider to be your greatest strengths and weaknesses?
  15. Describe the relationship that should exist between a supervisor and those reporting to him / her?
  16. What two or three things are most important to you in your job?
  17. Are you willing to travel?
  18. How do you work / cope under pressure?
  19. What university subjects did you like most / least, and why?
  20. What do you know about our company?
  21. Do you think that your results are a good indication of your academic achievement?
  22. Do you have plans for further studies?
  23. How would you describe your ideal job?
  24. What major problem have you encountered and how did you deal with it?
  25. How do you feel about change?
  26. What have you done by way of self-development over the past few years?


These are some of the questions that you may like to ask employers:

  1. What are the opportunities for personal career growth?
  2. What are your expectations for new staff members?
  3. How is an employee evaluated and promoted?
  4. Describe the work environment?
  5. How can you utilize my skills?
  6. What is the overall structure of the department where the position is located?
  7. When can I expect to be told whether or not I have been successful in securing the position?
  8. Remember to keep your list of questions short. Try not to sound like you are interviewing the employer!

Interview Questions NOT to Ask!!!

There are some questions that you should avoid asking, since they won’t present you in a positive light.

  1. What does this company do? … (Do your research ahead of time!)
  2. If I get the job when can I take time off for vacation? … (Wait until you get the offer to mention prior commitments)
  3. Can I change my schedule if I get the job? … (If you need to figure out the logistics of getting to work don’t mention it now…)
  4. Did I get the job? … (Don’t be impatient – They’ll let you know)


Usually interviewers assess prospective employees along the following lines:

  1. Capability and suitability for the job
  2. Social skills
  3. Initiative and energy
  4. Motivation
  5. General interest in the job
  6. Stability and level of maturity
  7. Self-reliance / independence
  8. Leadership qualities

What does the assign services versus numsa judgment mean to the temporary employment services sector, employees and their clients

What does the assign services versus numsa judgment mean to the temporary employment services sector, employees and their clients?

There is much confusion about this Judgment and what it means for Temporary employment service providers “TES”, clients and employees.

The Assign services case was only required to determine one thing namely, what is meaning of the deeming provision in terms of the client being “deemed” to be the employer of the employee after three months in respect of employees earning below the threshold of R205 433 per annum.

This Judgment determined that the deeming provisions means that both the client and the TES are liable for any breaches of the Labour Relations Act after a period of three months. All other legislation pertaining to TES remains unchanged and applicable.

So in a nutshell this judgment determines that employees can take action against the client or the TES for breaches of the LRA after a period of three months.

What we already know which was not part of the assign services judgment

  1. Equal work for equal pay. Employees earning below R205 433 per annum who are employed through TES for a period longer than three months are entitled to the same pay and treatment as any other employee in a comparable positions unless certain justifications for differential treatment exist such as inter alia
  • The employees seniority, experience or length of service
  • Merit criteria
  • Quantity or quality of work performance 
  1. Justification for fixed term contracts beyond three months: The law does not require that the employee becomes permanent or employed by the client after a three month period but it does require a justification for fixed term contacts longer than three months in respect of employees earning below R205 433 per annum. Justifications include: 
  • replacing another employee who is temporarily absent from work;
  • temporary increase in the volume of work which is not expected to endure beyond 12 months;
  • a student or recent graduate who is employed for the purpose of being trained or gaining work experience in order to enter a job or profession;
  • engagement to work exclusively on a specific project that has a limited or defined duration;
  • engagement for a trial period of no longer than three months for the purpose of determining the employee’s suitability for employment;
  • non-citizen who has been granted a work permit for a defined period;
  • Engagement to perform seasonal work

What do these changes mean for the TES Industry?

Fixed term contracts extending beyond three months through a TES are still permissible provided there is a justification for this and employees are treated equally. In the case of breaches of the LRA the employee can take action against the client and the TES.

It is important to note that these changes merely regulate the TES industry to create a triangular relationship between the TES, employee and client after a three month period. Employees are not automatically permanently appointed beyond three months.

The importance of temporary employment

Clients will always need to align their labor costs to revenue cycles. If an organization only has fixed costs in respect of permanent staff this can have devastating consequences for organisations during times of decreased revenues. Many organisations have increase and dips in revenue for a variety of reasons and their staff compliment need to be aligned in accordance with this.

Fusion Recruitment is committed to facilitating employment by enabling a flexible workforce for organisations while simultaneously ensuring the protection of workers’ rights.