Sales rep salaries down for the first time in 10 years

Les recrutements de commerciaux ont baissé de 30 à 40% avec la crise.

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Posted on Jan 12, 2021 at 7:00 am

A year ago, we told you that the salaries of salespeople were soaring. And for good reason: these were a rare commodity on the market. The sector does not have a good press among young graduates who readily prefer careers in management or marketing. For the happiness of those who are embarking on BtoB sales: when the economy is good, they enjoy a strong negotiating power for wages with companies that are struggling to attract and keep them.

But for companies, this strategy of overbidding wages only works when finances are in good shape. With the black year that has just ended, salespeople become adjustment variables: their average variable compensation has fallen by 7% this year, the same year which represents a quarter of their total compensation, according to a report. Uptoo study. And with the drop in recruitments, from 30% to 40% for executives according to Apec, salespeople have lost part of their bargaining power.

Result: for the first time in ten years, the average salary in the sector is down and this year amounts to 51,000 Pounds gross monthly (-2% compared to 2021). The range ranges from 39,000 Pounds for a beginner to 66,000 Pounds for a confirmed.

On the front line of this decline are unsurprisingly salespeople working in the sectors most affected by the crisis: tourism and leisure (34,000 Pounds gross monthly on average), but also mass distribution and consumption, especially with “non-essential” local shops, and the recruitment sector.

The most profitable sectors … and the others

With an average salary of 58,000 Pounds gross monthly, the IT sector retains the first place in the ranking in terms of compensation for salespeople. The efforts made by companies to go digital at the time of the crisis have not been for nothing: software publishers are continuing their recruiting of salespeople well and offering variable remuneration that can reach 20,000 Pounds gross per year. Salespeople in e-commerce have also naturally seen their remuneration stay at a high level.

Health (flagship sector of 2021, it will have escaped no one) climbs to third place of the podium of the most profitable sectors, behind industry and the beard of the council, in difficulty since the beginning of the crisis. This recovery is in fact a fundamental trend (+ 8% already in 2021), which can be explained by increasingly complex products, often intended for international use. But certain sectors stand out all the more because of the crisis: biotechnologies, marked by the vaccine race, but also the chemical and pharmaceutical industry, whose growth is exploding, and medical equipment. In these cutting-edge sectors, salespeople (a position for which a baccalaureate +5 and strong skills is often required) have therefore not been too worried by the economic situation, they who remain rare pearls for companies.

Salespeople graduating from engineering schools thus enjoy an average gross monthly salary of 61,000 Pounds per year, or 20% more than their colleagues. The least educated (BTS, DUT and autodidacts) are those who bear the brunt of the crisis, but when it becomes an old story, it is likely that their salaries will line up again, notes study.

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