What are "Outsourced Services" Sales Jobs?

Business people with headsets working at computers in office
Paul Bradbury / Getty Images

There are many trends in the sales industry and business as well. One of these trends is the move for many businesses to outsource some or all of their non-core functions. An example of a non-core function that a business might consider outsourcing is a law firm that contracts with a document management company to manage, supply and staff their copy and print center. Another very common example of outsourcing is when a business pays another business to manage their payroll.

Before a business contract with another to take over a specific business function, a sale must be made. And the professional who is charged with closing the sale is an Outsourcing Services Representative.

A Quick Explanation of Outsourcing

Consider any business and think about what the main purpose or "core function" of that business is. Any function that is not directly related to their core function and considered "non-core" or "non-mission critical." If a company realizes that much of their resources (including capital) is involved in managing their non-mission critical functions, they may consider hiring an outside person or firm to take over the function.

In more outsourcing arrangements, those employed to manage a specific function are not considered employees of the company hiring the outsourced company but are either independent employees or are employed by the outsourced company.

Selling Services

Selling services is significantly different than selling a tangible product. When a customer or prospect can see and feel a product, they tend to have significantly fewer questions as compared to the number of questions they have when considering purchasing something intangible. It means that your sales skills will need to be a consistently higher level of polish to be successful in selling outsourcing services. You should also fully expect that the sales cycle will be longer when selling services.

Looking for a Job

Your job search will take a bit more effort and time than compared to searching for a more traditional sales career. You will need to find a service-oriented company that sells outsourced services and that, while seemingly obvious, can pose quite a challenge.

There are, however, several industries that you could explore to help focus your job search. Examples are payroll services, food services, janitorial, travel agencies, print shops, insurance and financial service companies, mail and logistics businesses, training and telesales companies.

Expected Compensation

In general, sales professionals who sell outsourcing services are highly compensated reps. Reps usually earn a higher than industry average base salary and usually have a very lucrative compensation plan that rewards them with high commissions for closed sales.

The salaries are often high to compensate for the extended sales cycles and, in many outsourced service industries, to compensate for the fact that there are fewer potential customers to which to engage in a sales cycle.

You should also expect that your competitor will be highly skilled and highly motivated to sell their services. Realize that if your sales cycle is long and your prospects are few, so too are your competitors. Keeping your sales skills strong and your professional network broad are critical success factors.

Location, Location, Location

As a final note, where you live, and work will probably have a significant impact on both your success in selling outsourcing services and how many employers you will find. If you plan to look for a job selling services in a rural area, you may be in for quite a challenge. In general, the bigger the city, the more outsourcing services sales position there will be. It doesn't mean that you won't find opportunities in all areas of the world, however. So if selling outsourcing services is what you passionately want to do for a career, then polish your resume, hone your skills and get ready for a wonderful and rewarding career.