Pre-employment tests for Telemarketers


Even in this age dominated by the continued growth and utility of the Internet, businesses rely on telemarketing agents to generate leads and sales. Hiring individuals who can communicate effectively over the phone and hit sales targets is of the utmost importance. Successful telemarketers rely on a nuanced balance between listening to a caller's needs and recommending the best possible course of action. Today's workers are no longer the stereotypical telemarketer relentlessly hounding potential leads at inconvenient hours. Callers must be efficient, savvy communicators who know that it can often take time before a sale can be made. Telemarketers need to immediately establish themselves as warm, approachable, and trustworthy people.

In the past, most telemarketing leads were generated via cold calls. While cold calling is still an option, recent federal regulations have restricted this practice. Telemarketers can still cold call in some situations, but they have many other tools in their arsenal. Business contacts can be incredibly useful, as they can act as a potential lead source for telemarketers. Industry events can also be productive lead generators. The success of telemarketers often depends on the success of other marketing efforts, including print and radio. Above all, telemarketers must be cheerful, persistent, trustworthy, and resilient.

While there is no explicit education requirement to become a telemarketer, many employers require a high school diploma and some additional schooling or training. Hiring managers should consider applicants with strong sales records. They should also consider score reports from a sales aptitude test, such as the Sales Achievement Predictor (SalesAP). The SalesAP evaluates an applicant's relevant personality traits, such as willingness to cold call and motivation to close a sale. The SalesAP provides a psychometric profile and a recommendation regarding the applicant's likelihood of success in a sales role.

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Fast Facts

Rank in HireSelect:
23 out of 1,100

Median wage in U.S.:
$25,800/year or $12.41/hr

Expected growth rate 2016-2026:
-1% to 1%

Number employed (2016): 215,290

Education level of Telemarketers:

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Top 5 Skills and Abilities to Look For in Telemarketers

  • Selling or Influencing Others
  • Oral Expression
  • Oral Comprehension
  • Communicating With Persons Outside Organization
  • Interacting with Computers

Top 3 Tasks for Telemarketers

  • Deliver prepared sales talks, reading from scripts that describe products or services, to persuade potential customers to purchase a product or service or to make a donation.
  • Contact businesses or private individuals by telephone to solicit sales for goods or services, or to request donations for charitable causes.
  • Explain products or services and prices, and answer questions from customers.
Source: U.S. Department of Labor

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