Hiring Process Recruiting

How to Recruit the Best Sales Talent into Medical Sales

Any job seeker trying to break into medical sales, knows how hard it can be. Medical sales jobs are known for requiring experience in the field. Employers typically look for candidates with directly related industry experience to fill their open positions. However, if you’re struggling to fill jobs – or if your new hires aren’t turning into high-performing members of the sales team – it may be time to consider hiring sales professionals from outside of the industry.

How to find qualified candidates in medical sales.
Bigstock; Flynt

The timing may be right to find sales professionals from other industries. A recent LinkedIn survey found that many professionals are transitioning to jobs in the healthcare industry. But why?

To bring the best sales professionals into medical sales, you need to know what they’re looking for in a new job and a new industry. Here are the top things sales professionals want from medical sales and how to use them to attract the best talent:

Growing healthcare market

The healthcare market is growing, and sales professionals are excited about the possibilities. According to the most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the healthcare industry is expected to grow at annual rate of 2.6 percent, adding 5 million jobs between 2012 and 2022.

The aging population and the implementation of the Affordable Care Act are driving an increased demand for medical care and services, creating opportunities in medical sales.

Show talented sales professionals that medical sales is growing and that there is no shortage of career opportunities. Although transitioning to medical sales will require extra training and education, the investment is worth it — there will always be a demand for medical sales professionals.


In addition to great opportunities, medical sales offers some of the most competitive salaries in sales. Income can serve as the key to attracting the best talent to medical sales. After all, 71 percent of medical sales professionals surveyed in our 2015 Best Places to Work in Medical Sales survey said that competitive compensation is the most important value an ideal employee can offer.

The average income in medical sales is $141,464, with an average base salary of $80,681, our 2015 salary report found. These numbers vary based on experience, job title, company type and size, and other factors.

When presenting medical sales jobs to talented professionals from other industries, offer a competitive salary. If the base salary is lower than what the professional expected, explain how the number can increase with time and more experience. In addition, explain the commission program and how bonuses are earned and determined. Present a clear and accurate picture of what the professional can expect to make, to bring them over to medical sales.


In addition to high compensation, medical sales jobs also offer top benefits. Among medical sales reps surveyed in our salary report, 84 percent receive health benefits and 79 percent receive a 401k plan matched by their employer. Although new and creative perks are popular, a survey of recruiters conducted by Jobvite this year found that 63 percent of respondents said medical and dental benefits are still the most attractive perk for job candidates.

Other perks such as expense accounts, gas cards, mileage reimbursement, and company cars are also common in medical sales. Benefits and perks may seem secondary to the job itself, but they are appealing to professionals. Detail the many extra perks of medical sales jobs, to entice professionals in other industries.


Working in medical sales can also give professionals a sense of purpose. In the LinkedIn survey, 47 percent of respondents who moved to a job in the healthcare industry said they did so because they believe in the direction of the company, while 43 percent said they felt proud to work for the company.

Medical sales professionals are proud to work for their employers and in the industry as a whole because they are working with products that have a direct impact on the lives of patients — their work is meaningful.

When speaking with sales talent in other industries, tell them the mission of the company and how their work would make an impact. Focus on the value the products bring to patients and the effects they can have. Sharing patient and provider stories can help professionals feel connected to the company and motivate them to make the switch.

Medical sales jobs are highly desirable, but sales professionals from outside the industry might not know everything the field has to offer. Highlight what makes medical sales an attractive industry, to reel in promising sales talent from other industries.

What do you think? Why do sales professionals move to medical sales?