One of the questions manufacturers need to ask themselves before starting a rep search is, are we really ready and prepared to go to work with a network of professional sales company partners? Jumping in before you are ready could have disastrous consequences. We’ve prepared the following questionnaire to help guide you to a realistic decision.
- How many years experience does your company have in outsourcing the sales function?
- Are you willing to consider using an agreement that is fair and balanced and protects the interest of both parties?
- Will you consider sharing the costs of developing business in territories where there is no existing business?
- Will you provide exclusive territories to your reps (no house accounts)?
- Will you co-insure your sales agents against product liability lawsuits by including them in your own product liability policy?
- Do you have a complete marketing support plan in place to support your outside sales program?
- Is the top management of your company committed to the use of reps? Are they willing to demonstrate this?
- Are you willing to make a long-term commitment to a fair and competitive rate of commission?
- Do you understand that attaining mutually agreed upon goals rather than arbitrary quotas is the best way to work with your outsourced sales partners?
- Do you understand that regular, written reports tend to destroy the strategic advantage that a multi-line sales professional has over his or her direct competitors and are you willing to accept timely verbal and short e-mail communications instead of call reports?
- Do you agree that your company and your reps should operate as Partners in Profits rather than employer/employee?
If you answered “no” to more than just a couple of these questions, don’t despair, we can help. Please call MANA toll-free at (877) 626-2776 and we’ll be happy to discuss ways for you to overcome these concerns.