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The Cost of a Bad Sales Hire

6 September 2022

The Cost of a Bad Sales Hire


It may surprise you just how much bad hiring can cost.

Not only is the business investing in a salesperson who hasn't delivered results, but it also impacts the company's bottom line. Several other costs may also arise, such as the cost of recruiting, reduced productivity and lost revenue.

The stakes are high, so hiring the right people is crucial. Keep reading to find out how much poor hiring decisions can cost a business and what companies can do to reduce the risk of a bad hire.


What Constitutes a Bad Hire?

An indication of a poor hire is when work quality and performance fall below expectations. A sales recruit who falls under the definition of a bad hire has a low level of commitment and engagement. For instance, they have a habit of arriving late and leaving early.

Bad hires often have a negative work attitude and aren't a good fit for your workplace environment. They may also demonstrate poor judgement or lack the ability to learn quickly. Moreover, you may find that their claim of having a particular skill isn't backed up by their performance.

Usually, these qualities become apparent within a few weeks of the candidate joining your company.


What Is the Cost of a Bad Hire in the UK?

27% of companies in the UK estimate that they lose up to £50,000 on bad hires. Wrong decisions can lead to anything from reduced employee performance to revenue losses.

Hiring costs include not only the costs associated with advertising and hiring but also the time and resources spent on screening and selecting candidates. Each hour spent on candidate search takes time away from your primary responsibilities, potentially costing you revenue.

According to Oxford Economics, it costs an employer on average £30,165 to hire one employee. An average of £5,433 is spent on recruitment and absorbing productivity losses. All these can add up fast if you have to constantly hire high performers to replace underperformers.

The hiring process may also entail other hidden costs impossible to quantify. If a new hire displays toxic behaviour, this can negatively affect their co-workers. Consequently, a business may suffer in terms of culture, employer brand, and financial losses.


Risks of a Bad Hiring Decision

Financial consequences

Bad hires can have devastating financial consequences. Costs add up throughout the recruitment and onboarding process. When the employee can't perform effectively and needs to be replaced, this wastes time and resources.

Negative impacts on brand and reputation

Hiring the wrong people, especially those who will interact with customers, can lead to damaged customer relationships. Furthermore, recruiting and attracting new employees with a tarnished brand can be difficult.

Reduced employee morale

A bad hire can undermine morale in the workplace, leading to high turnover and dissatisfaction. If the new hire can't seamlessly fit into the existing team and get along with colleagues, this can create a negative work environment. As a result, employees may be less happy at work and more likely to leave the organisation.


Hire the Right Talent Through Sales Recruitment Agencies

Selecting the right candidate can be difficult, but Talent Wing can assist you in the sales recruitment process. Our teams of sales recruiters in London, Cardiff and Bristol can help you screen candidates properly to determine the best fit for a particular position.


Contact us now.


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