A career in tech sales, particularly as a technology sales representative, is especially appealing in this day and age. Jobs in this field come with lucrative salaries and employers tend to value your abilities over your educational or professional background, making it a career you can successfully launch very quickly. It's not surprising so many people are wondering how to become tech sales reps.
This comprehensive guide is tailored to equip you with the essential steps on how to get into tech sales. We'll delve into key aspects, such as tech sales rep job responsibilities, qualifications, average salaries, and where you can get the training you need to launch a high-paying tech sales career in just a matter of months.
Technical sales representatives are responsible for promoting and selling tech products or services to potential clients, effectively communicating their value and addressing customer needs to drive sales and revenue growth. To land a tech sales position, you’ll need a deep understanding of your company’s products and impeccable communication skills.
Technology sales jobs promote a wide range of tech-related products for specific organizations or independent sales agencies. These might include goods from the medical, pharmaceutical, or tech industries. They also represent companies and strive to build good relationships with clients. Entry-level tech salespeople will work with a team to gain field experience and build technical knowledge. This job also presents an opportunity for commission.
While the sales process may vary depending on the company, the tech sales job description is almost always similar across the board. Below, we will break down what is expected of someone in a technical sales job and what tasks they carry out on a day-to-day basis. Here is a closer look at a tech sales job description.
Grow company sales. This is the main purpose of a technology sales representative. It is essential that they are able to pitch a range of technical products to customers in an appealing way, explaining how their company’s services or products will fill a customer’s needs better than anything else on the market.
Relationship-building. Companies expect these professionals to maintain long-term business relationships and industry contacts. A tech sales representative acts as a liaison between the company’s sales team and potential clients, and tech sales reps are ultimately responsible for ensuring customers build long-term brand loyalty.
Expand market awareness. Another reason why communication skills are vital in technology sales jobs is that these professionals, combined with digital marketers, help spread the word when new technology becomes available. Professionals might need to lead a product demonstration to improve customer knowledge of the products.
Identify and resolve customer concerns. Tech sales reps help resolve customer queries and concerns. This includes recommending a course of action to alleviate these issues. Tech sales representatives must be patient in stressful situations and should be able to work with clients to come up with solutions that work both for them and the company.
Tech sales roles are unique because their most important requirements include communication, problem-solving, and interpersonal skills. While you will need enough background knowledge in technology to be well-versed in the products or services you are selling, tech sales reps do not need experience in computer programming or coding.
In terms of education, tech sales requirements can be fairly flexible. Most employers are willing to hire people with the right skills and experience, regardless of whether or not they have a bachelor’s degree in a related field. Here are some of the requirements of a tech sales job.
Prior experience working in sales. Unlike most technical jobs, working as a tech sales rep does not necessarily require formal education. However, most recruiters may prefer candidates with previous sales experience in a related field.
Excellent communication and presentation skills. Sales reps must communicate information to customers either verbally or in writing. For such reasons, organizations will prefer job seekers who can successfully demonstrate effective communication.
Proficiency in common sales software. Technical sales representatives are expected to know the A to Z of a product to be able to sell it well. For this reason, you are also expected to have sufficient industry knowledge and be proficient in common sales software like Salesforce.
Must be able to travel. Some tech sales positions require employees to travel frequently. You may be required to meet prospective customers or attend seminars on technical products. As such, a valid passport or driver’s license may be needed.
Ability to take initiative. While this is not a part of tech sales job requirements, it is always beneficial to take initiative in this line of work. That means going beyond your daily tasks like cold calling customers. A good tech sales rep makes the extra effort to guarantee sales success.
Since it is a field that places such high value on relationship-building, it makes sense that launching a successful career in tech sales requires a mix of technical skills training and networking. Because there are fewer barriers to entry in comparison to other jobs in the tech industry, the path to break into tech sales is reasonably straightforward.
Here is a detailed guide, perfect for anyone wondering how to get into tech sales:
To break into tech sales, you’ll need the right mix of natural skill, passion, and determination. The first step is to research specific tech sales careers and opportunities in your area. Find out what companies seek from tech sales reps and assess if you have what it takes to fill those positions.
Review your professional and educational credentials and identify your strengths and what transferable skills you can bring to the table. This process will also help you locate the gaps in your knowledge and determine what level of tech sales training will be necessary in your situation.
The level of education you’ll need to get into tech sales will largely depend on your professional experience. If you have work experience in sales, marketing, or customer service, shorter training programs might be all you need. Consider a tech sales bootcamp or series of online courses to learn tech sales skills.
Although you are not required to have formal education to break into tech sales, a bachelor’s degree can still be helpful. Common majors include engineering, marketing, or business. If you are hoping to progress into upper-level roles or managerial positions eventually, gaining a relevant bachelor’s degree will be worth the time and effort.
Most employers prefer hiring workers with hands-on or sales experience. Consider applying for tech sales internship programs or volunteer work that offers on-the-job skills training. You can also familiarize yourself with tech products and build a background in technology or engineering.
One of the benefits of attending a training program like a tech sales bootcamp is that you might be able to gain real-world experience as part of your course. For example, Careerist students complete a three-week internship simulation before graduating.
To increase your chances of becoming a tech sales representative, a strong portfolio is highly recommended. A good portfolio should highlight your credentials, skills, and experiences. More importantly, it should highlight your achievements or sales data that reflects your professional skills. You can also sign up for a certification course to boost your portfolio.
A great tech sales resume can help you make a better impression on the hiring manager and give you a competitive edge over others. Educational requirements don't matter as much when you can present yourself well. Treat the hiring team like a prospective client, present your technology sales resume in a clear manner, and market yourself like you would their products.
The best way to prepare is by familiarizing yourself with possible tech sales interview questions. Considering your answers ahead of time will give you an upper hand during the interview. You can also look up questions to ask in a tech sales interview to ensure a smooth two-way engagement. Below are some questions that can help you prepare for your tech sales representative job interview.
Describe your sales process from beginning to end.
How do you handle disappointments in sales, especially when you fail to seal the deal?
When and how did you know that sales was your career path?
What system do you use when organizing or maintaining client information and sales?
What are your career goals?
Do you have experience in sales?
The final step is to apply for tech sales representative jobs. There are a lot of platforms that you can use such as LinkedIn, Monster, and Ziprecruiter. Meanwhile, sites like Glassdoor and PayScale can give you an idea of the skills and certifications needed for certain roles, as well as the average salaries. Ensure that you have your resume and portfolio ready before applying.
The tech sales career path is interesting and steeped with opportunities for professional growth. Most newcomers start out as technical sales representatives, but this position is far from the only career in the field. Below, you’ll find more information about the best tech sales jobs you can strive for.
Tech sales engineers bridge the gap between technical knowledge and sales expertise. They work alongside sales representatives to provide technical insights, product demonstrations, and solutions tailored to meet customer needs.
Tech sales engineers also collaborate with customers to understand their technical requirements and ensure that the proposed technology solutions align with those specifications. This is one of the best tech sales jobs because of how well these professionals are compensated. The average tech sales engineer salary is $135,690, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Inside sales representative is a common entry-level tech sales job. These employees primarily engage with clients through phone, email, and online communication channels. They proactively reach out to potential customers, qualify leads, and guide them through the sales process. Inside sales representatives excel in articulating the benefits of tech products or services, addressing inquiries, and closing deals remotely.
These experts support the sales team by analyzing sales data, monitoring performance metrics, and optimizing sales processes. They often work with customer relationship management (CRM) systems to track leads, opportunities, and sales performance.
Sales operations analysts help identify trends, streamline workflows, and provide valuable insights to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the sales organization. For this role, you will need a background in data analytics as well as sales.
Tech sales development reps play a crucial role in generating leads and identifying potential customers. They research and prospect for new clients, often using outbound calling, emailing, and social media outreach.
SDRs aim to qualify leads, set up initial meetings or product demos, and hand off warm prospects to account executives. They are instrumental in filling the sales pipeline with potential opportunities. This is a role to consider if you want to enter tech sales at an entry-level since you will have plenty of opportunities to improve your relationship-building skills through hands-on practice.
Account executives in tech sales are responsible for managing existing client accounts and fostering relationships to drive revenue growth. They work closely with clients to understand their evolving needs and propose tailored technology solutions. Account executives also identify opportunities for upselling or cross-selling products and services while ensuring client satisfaction and retention.
The average tech sales rep salary is $109,950, according to BLS, but this number will vary significantly depending on your job title, employer, location, and level of experience. Glassdoor reveals that the average entry-level tech sales salary is $55,814, though most sales professionals make additional income through commissions.
Your tech sales salary will grow significantly as you explore more senior roles like account executive or customer success manager. The employment growth for sales reps in the tech industry remains steady. BLS reports jobs in technology sales are expected to grow by four percent between 2022 and 2032.
Because tech sales representative education requirements are so flexible, there are a wide variety of resources available for you to gain the training you need to launch a career. Your choices range from short classes all the way to four-year degrees. Here is a breakdown of some of the best tech sales training programs for you to consider.
While you can usually access entry-level tech sales jobs without a degree, some employers may prefer hiring professionals with credentials like bachelor’s degrees. Those looking to progress to advanced roles may find it worthwhile to invest in a degree in marketing, communication, or business. If you are looking for a faster and more affordable option, consider attending a community college to earn an associate degree.
A tech sales bootcamp is a short training program designed to train you in all the hard and soft skills you need to succeed in your chosen sales career as efficiently as possible. Coding bootcamps are known for their extensive career services and project-based curricula, all aimed at creating job-ready graduates in a few short weeks or months.
The best tech sales bootcamp programs will even provide you with real-world experience through internships or short tech sales apprenticeships. This will help improve your customer relationship management skills and will look good on your resume. Here are some of the most popular tech sales bootcamps:
Taking tech sales courses online is a great option for newcomers, as they are usually short and affordable. You have a variety to pick from depending on your interests, career goals, and capacity. Some tech sales courses are more extensive than others, delving deeper into crucial topics. Meanwhile, others are short, specialized courses with a focus on a single topic at a time.
Below, we recommend three online tech sales courses that can help you get one step closer to your dream of becoming a tech sales representative.
University of Cape Town via edX
Experience in sales
This certificate course is designed for sales professionals considering career progression and sales managers hoping to validate their skills. Topics covered include how to perform cost analysis, select the right CRM system, identify pricing strategies, and accurately track the impact of your operations.
Pathstream and Salesforce via Coursera
Free enrollment with a Coursera subscription
Learners will be exposed to a popular CRM tool, Salesforce, and its applications in B2C and B2B businesses. You will go over four courses in this certificate program including sales and CRM overview, lead management in Salesforce, and opportunity management. This program can lead to a professional certificate that validates your competency in using Salesforce.
In this course, students will master a range of tech sales soft skills, including building rapport via body language and tonality, handling rejections, and closing deals effectively. The only requirement to join this tech sales course online is to have an open mind.
It can take between a few months and four years to become a tech sales representative. Those who wish to acquire formal knowledge with college degrees will take four to five years. Others will only spend a couple of months in a bootcamp program. You can still get a job in tech sales with an entry-level education.
No, tech sales is not hard to get into, because it has a low barrier to entry. All you need is a strong determination and willingness to learn on the job. It would be beneficial if you have a background in technology or engineering because it can grant you more technical skills. You will also need an aptitude for interpersonal communication.
Yes, becoming a sales rep from home is highly possible. You can enroll in a bootcamp offering online tech sales courses and learn on a virtual platform. After completing such programs, you can find tech sales jobs that allow you to work from home.
Yes, you can work most tech sales jobs remotely. While some employers will require that you come into the office, it is becoming more and more common for sales positions to be virtual. The freedom to work from wherever you prefer helps many professionals in tech sales manage their work-life balance.
Tech sales is a broader term that encompasses all careers in technology sales. This includes software-as-a-service (SaaS) sales, otherwise known as software sales. Technical sales representatives and software salespeople both build good relationships with customers, find ways to reduce customers’ pain points, obtain sales success, and ensure overall customer satisfaction.
Yes, a career in tech sales is perfect if you are looking for a well-paying job that values soft skills like communication and problem-solving. As a technology sales representative, you will have the opportunity to meet new and interesting people on a regular basis and experience job satisfaction as you help customers find the products they need.
If you are wondering how to get into tech sales, you are in luck. There are numerous ways to gain the skillset you need, and you can land high-paying roles even if you don’t have a degree. A tech sales rep position is one of the few tech jobs that don’t require coding, so you can thrive in this field even if you don’t have an extensive background in programming or technology.
Yes, you can. Here is how to get into tech sales without a degree. First, research the potential company you are interested in and discover their requirements for the sales role. Next, learn the exact skills and improve your interpersonal skills by enrolling in a bootcamp or certificate program. Having some credentials would boost your chances of landing a job in sales.
Yes, tech sales is a good career for people looking for a non-programming job in tech. It is an interesting career path because it offers lucrative pay, added benefits like commission, and networking opportunities. Some credentials and experience would help but you do not need a degree to become a tech salesperson. This makes it accessible to many job seekers.
Here is how to get into tech sales with no experience. First, do some research on core requirements for tech sales roles. Next, consider enrolling in sales training programs commonly offered in bootcamps and community colleges. You should also consider an entry-level job that does not require a lot of experience to land sales contracts and get on-the-job training.
Yes, a bootcamp can help you become a tech sales representative. Coding bootcamps are great for students looking to pick up tech skills fast. These programs are often cheaper than traditional education and take just a few weeks to complete. In addition, specialized programs like a tech sales bootcamp can prepare students for this specific industry.