Sales Force In Leeds Dead Set On Salary

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Sales specialists in Leeds are single-minded in pursuit of their salary goals, according to research by specialist recruiter Randstad Sales, Marketing and Retail.

In a poll of 10,728 British workers – including 630 sales professionals – as part of the annual Randstad Award, almost seven in ten sales professionals (69%) put competitive salaries and employee benefits in their top five factors when deciding on jobs. This is more than the average across Leeds overall, with 62% considering salary to be a crucial factor. Sales professionals also overtake both financial workers (68%) and technology workers (57%).

In Leeds, the average sales specialist earns £28,583, almost 13% more than the typical wage in the region (£24, 951) across all professions. Interestingly, sales workers are more single-minded in their financial motivation than those who work in IT, who are actually the highest earners in the region (£37,863).

Across all UK workers as a whole, salaries and employee benefits are in the top five job considerations for 63% of employees.

Ruth Jacobs, managing director of Randstad Sales, Marketing and Retail, commented:

“Sales professionals in Leeds are led by their financial aspirations when it comes to careers – and they aren’t afraid to show it. The sales sector in Leeds may not be the most lucrative industry at face value, but is attracting the most determined individuals. “The sales sector within Leeds has been growing quickly, benefiting from its central position within the Northern Powerhouse and candidates are benefiting from increasing vacancies in the sector, numbering more than 5,000 in the current climate. More people than ever are looking to start off their careers in sales, and they can afford to demand their market value. The dogged financial ambition of the city’s sales specialists can’t even be rivalled by financial and technology workers and employers need to be ready to cough up to ensure company commitment, as non-financial perks just won’t cut it.”


But sales specialists in Leeds are looking ahead to long-term career prospects, more so than the average worker in the city. Over two-fifths (42%) believe that the opportunity to progress in their job is a crucial factor in employment decisions. Amongst city workers this was not a widespread belief, with only 34% including this as one of their five influences.

Professionals’ promotions and progression don’t have to be limited to the Leeds region, 14% of sales people say global career opportunities are important to them in a job. In contrast, across the city only 10% of employees overall rate this factor.

Ruth Jacobs, commented: “Leeds’ sales employees are determined to advance their careers – and ultimately their pay packets – with progression and foreign opportunities rating highly. This reveals that although being single-minded in pursuing salaries, these professionals have one eye on long-term advancement and progression up the salary scale. Sales workers are keener to explore and venture further from home than most in the region, in order to improve their job prospects and are fortunate that the industry has universal global appeal, which other industries in Leeds may lack, providing exciting travel options for both starters in the sector and seasoned professionals.”


Money-minded sales professionals are prepared to sacrifice “softer” features of a company in order to prioritise their pay including diversity and CSR. Furthermore, sales specialists are less concerned with training opportunities in the workplace, and only a quarter (26%) say it would recommend a company to them, compared to a third (34%) of respondents across the region’s workers as a whole. On average, only just over half of salespeople polled (55%) value long-term job security as a top five concern.

Factors which didn’t have any influence over financial benefits of pay also proved unappealing to these single-minded sales specialists. Of these factors seen as less important, the softer elements of a company were overlooked by the city’s salespeople. Regarding CSR, an average 7% of sales specialists surveyed ranked it as an important factor, in contrast to 10% of  Leeds workers overall.

The promotion of diversity within the office environment also holds little sway among professionals – less than one in ten (8%) rate it as important – in contrast to 12% of workers in Leeds. This divergence was repeated concerning the traditional desirable job feature of convenient location which showed a 5% difference between sales workers and the average Leeds employee.

A company which embraces innovative technologies appealed to on average one tenth of the Leeds workforce, but just 8% of financially motivated sales people.

Ruth Jacobs concluded: “Sales workers are extremely focused on financial rewards and benefits when making job decisions. They are willing to look past a whole host of secondary factors such as training, CSR and diversity to reach the financial finish line. They certainly scoop first place as the most focused workforce in Leeds – but this may start to feel like a hollow victory if they continue to ignore other important features of a workplace. In today’s climate, finding the right work environment doesn’t have to veer you off course, It’s more than possible to clear the monetary jumps you want, while also being supported by training opportunities, CSR schemes and flexible working along the way.”

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