Medical Sales Job Search Report

Medical Sales Job Search Report _ Feature
It’s the start of a new year and a new decade, and for many medical sales professionals, it’s time to start fresh professionally. Fortunately, there is no better time to begin a medical sales job search than right now. 
Unemployment rates remain low across all industries, suggesting it’s a candidate’s market, but does that mean the medical sales job search is easy? Recruiters and medical sales hiring managers are certainly eager to fill open positions with qualified candidates, so one might think the thousands of medical sales job seekers would have their pick of opportunities. But finding the right fit — on both sides — still takes time. 

How much time? How many applications? How many interviews? While the science is not exact, the MedReps Medical Sales Job Search Report reveals the latest numbers in order to give medical sales job seekers a better idea of what to expect.

The research began last summer, with the first report published in October 2019. In this second edition, reporting October to December research, the data was remarkably consistent, suggesting there may well be a formula for a successful medical sales job search. 

What does a successful medical sales job search look like?  

  • Found a job

20% of respondents recently found a job.

The average length of their job search was 125 days or just over 4 months. These respondents had an average of 12 phone interviews and went on face-to-face interviews with an average of 10 different companies. One-third received multiple job offers.  

Successful Job Search Averages

  • October 2019
  • January 2020

Length of Job Search

These graphs show the averages reported by users who found jobs since we began publishing the data. Across the board, the numbers were similar in both reporting periods, suggesting a period of stability in the medical sales job search.

Response Time


How many jobs should I apply to?  

In the most recent research, those who found a job applied to about twice as many jobs per month as those who remain unemployed and the employed group of job seekers. 

How many of my applications will get a response? 

The response rate is consistent at 19% across all groups — those who found a job, those who are employed but looking, and those who are unemployed. The results in the October Report ranged from 23% for those who recently found a job to 16% for the unemployed group of job seekers, but the average was also 20% for a 1 in 5 overall response rate. 

How long does it take to get a response?

The overall average number of days to receive a response after applying was 13. However, those who recently found a job reported a slightly shorter period of 12.4 days. The group that remained unemployed reported a slightly longer period of 14.3 days. These numbers are consistent with the first round of research in which the overall average was 14 days.

What are my odds of being contacted?

Consistent with the earlier research, 72% of all respondents had been contacted by a recruiter or hiring manager through a resume database. In a separate survey of active MedReps members, nearly half (47%) of those who uploaded a resume to the MedReps database had been contacted, on average, six times. Ten percent reported receiving an offer from someone who found them via the resume database. 

Where should I look for jobs?

In addition to MedReps (which all survey respondents used), LinkedIn and Indeed continue to be the most popular job search tools.

Who took this survey?

When looking at the different types of respondents, it’s interesting to note that they do not have notably different types or amounts of experience. Their prior incomes are also within a similar range. The main difference between those who found a job and those who did not is the number of jobs they applied to each month. It appears the best thing you can do to increase your chances of job search success is to apply to more jobs. 

The Takeaway

MedReps researchers expected to find those who found jobs to be more likely to have medical sales experience, and while this was true to an extent — not significantly so. In fact, the biggest difference between those who found a job and those who are still looking was the number of jobs they applied to. This statistic is incredibly encouraging as it suggests candidates have far more control over the outcome of their searches than they may believe. 
It’s quite simple:

More Job Applications = Better Odds of Receiving a Job Offer

So, if you are in the market for a new medical sales job, take a moment to set up job alerts, update your resume and cover letters, and be ready to submit applications. Aim for at least one per day, ideally 40 per month. This appears to be the magic number in today’s medical sales job search. 

Data from January 2020 Report was collected September-December of 2019
Data from October 2019 Report was collected June-September of 2019