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How to Hire a Sales Development Representative?

February 9, 2023

Getting new leads and converting them to your customers is the only way your business can prosper. Hence, sales and prospecting together form a crucial part of every organization. As acquiring customers is a journey you need to optimize at every step, a dedicated team of Sales Development Reps (SDRs) must be at the top of your priority list.

Your entire business including the growth trajectory will depend on the quality of leads you generate, which further is driven by your SDRs. If you’re a sales or recruiting manager, hiring SDRs is one of the most vital responsibilities you have to take on. 

However, SDRs are entry-level positions in most cases. So you can’t evaluate candidates based on their experience. Here’s where the hiring gets a little tricky. After all, SDRs will drive crucial functions like prospecting and qualifying leads, engaging with them, and driving prospects down the sales funnel.

How do you ensure hiring the right SDRs for your sales team? What skillsets and personality traits should you be looking for in an ideal candidate? How to approach hiring the top SDRs for your company? 

We answer all of the above, and more in this blog. Stick around for insightful coverage on hiring a Sales Development Representative. 

What is The Role of a Sales Development Representative?

At the ground level, an SDR is responsible for identifying potential customers, generating new business opportunities, and managing leads throughout the sales pipeline. While this is a broad overview of the role of an SDR, let’s dive in to break down the role further.

The performance of SDRs is usually evaluated based on their ability to seamlessly move leads through the sales pipeline. Their primary responsibility is to nurture leads and act as a go-to problem solver for them, much like a consultant.

Unlike other sales reps or BDRs who are evaluated based on the number of leads they close, SDRs focus on the top of the funnel. It should be noted that both roles go hand-in-hand, and the sales team cannot function with either of them.

The sales cycle starts with the marketing team sending lead information to SDRs, who then engage and nurture the leads. During the initial part of the sales cycle, businesses need to educate the leads effectively and build a positive relationship with them – SDRs are responsible for leading such efforts.

Here are the primary roles and responsibilities of an SDR.

  • Source, qualify, and prospect new customers: An SDR should priorly research the prospect’s industry, competition, requirements, pain points, and decision-making factors.
  • Inbound sales prospecting: Nurturing leads who have already shown interest in your offerings and engaged with your company’s marketing channels initially.
  • Outbound sales prospecting: Reach out to potential customers who have never engaged with your company.
  • Lead effective conversations with prospects: SDRs should proactively communicate with potential leads through calls, emails, and social media. Ideally, an SDR should listen to prospects and provide appropriate solutions for their concerns.
  • Set up high-intent meetings and appointments: SDRs should position value-addition and solutions in such a way that leads are convinced to have a detailed conversation or demo of the offerings. Helping sales executives to effectively prepare for such high-intent calls must be taken up by an SDR too.

How to Hire a Sales Development Representative: Step-By-Step? 

As you grow your business and aim to accelerate your sales through a steadily flowing pipeline, hiring a full-fledged SDR team becomes the primary requirement. A well-defined sales process, a fast-moving pipeline, and a plan for nurturing those leads are the primary expectations from your SDR team.

The first approach of anyone looking to hire a Sales Development Representative would be to look at a candidate’s work experience of a few years and a sales degree. However, most SDRs having rich experience reach senior-level positions in a few years. 

So the position of an SDR naturally becomes entry-level where you don’t have the luxury of looking at candidates’ past performances.

It’s evident that hiring an SDR is challenging and requires a deep evaluation of candidates. Before kickstarting your hiring efforts, the best thing you can do is to lay down a clear and concise recruitment plan. 

What Should You Look for in an Ideal Sales Development Representative?

When hiring SDRs with less or no experience, you’ll need to evaluate them through the identification of relevant traits and skills.

Here are the top 6 traits you should always look for when hiring SDRs:

  1. Willingness to learn: The role of an SDR revolves around researching and learning about the prospect’s business as much as possible. An ideal Sales Development Rep would be more than willing to learn and gather feedback to maximize the chances of conversion.
  1. Team player: After adaptivity, collaboration is another important trait to look out for in SDR candidates. The performance of a sales team is driven by collective productivity more than individual excellence. You primarily need people who work well with others, especially with BDRs in this case.  
  1. Drive for more: As per Dr. Christopher Croner, a renowned sales expert - “Winning salespeople always share one critical psychological trait, and that is drive.” A great SDR would always strive for more no matter what. From amplifying the numbers to optimizing processes for better ROI – the drive will enable a candidate to push beyond the ordinary and bring success.  
  1. Stress-handling: Sales is stressful, there’s no doubt about that. Continuous rejections are a part of everyday routine and SDRs need to learn from it rather than breaking down under pressure. Being calm and composed even under terrible situations is a characteristic of a great Sales Development Representative. 
  1. Confidence: Where there’s no confidence, there are no sales and hence no business. As a problem-solver for prospects, SDRs need to be comprehensively confident with their communication and actions. Especially for people who are new to sales, having enough confidence can always make a difference.  
  1. Commitment: From managers to BDRs, and clients – an SDR needs to fulfill commitments regularly. An optimal way to find out if the candidate will be able to do it effectively is to dig deep into their future plans. Find out where the candidate sees himself in the next 5 to 10 years in sales.

As far as the skill requirements are concerned, here are the top skills you should primarily look out for when hiring an SDR:

  • Customized outreach
  • Video prospecting
  • Following up
  • Organizational skills
  • Relationship-building
  • Coachability

Step 1: Frame Your Role Requirements and Decide on Your Recruiting Process   

To start things off, identify your industry standards when it comes to the role of an SDR. Additionally, communicate with sales managers, VPs, and other stakeholders for learning about the company’s unique requirements. 

Ask questions like

  • Why are you looking to hire Sales Development Representatives at your company?
  • What are the key roles that need to be performed by these candidates? 
  • What type of sales and communication approach an ideal candidate should have? 
  • Which skills are must-haves for your target candidates?

Framing the role requirements comprehensively with clear criteria for skills, knowledge, personality traits, and relevant industry work is immensely important initially. 

Moving on, decide on your hiring timeline and outline the recruiting process. Also, finalize the evaluation parameters using which the candidates will be considered for further rounds.  

Step 2: Document Your Job Description

A job description is much more than a formal document covering the roles and responsibilities. An appealing JD would not only help you attract the right SDR candidates and optimize the further recruitment cycle but also helps you save a lot of time and effort.

  • Introduce the Sales Development Representative role - requirements, expectations, and ideal candidate persona.
  • List down the responsibilities, skills, experience, and day-to-day tasks
  • Highlight the special skills required for the job role
  • Mention the tech stack and knowledge of different frameworks required for the role

Apart from the roles and responsibilities, you must cover the perks and benefits associated with the role. Do not forget to add your company’s vision and mission in order to drive your candidates’ expectations in the right direction.

Sales Development Representative Job Description Sample


SDRs are inside sales representatives who focus on outreach, prospecting, and lead qualification. SDRs don't focus on closing deals, but rather on identifying if leads are good candidates for sales. An SDR moves leads through the sales pipeline.


  • Search and prospect for new potential customers in the assigned region and target accounts, with the market research team - Manage the sales pipeline (e.g., generate emails for outreach, make cold calls to accounts on the assigned bounty list)
  • Handle lead management and CRM activities using Salesforce.com
  • Make cold calls to accounts on the assigned bounty list that express interest in the company's product or solution
  • Nurture and qualify leads who express interest in the company's product or solution
  • Provide account executives with detailed notes regarding prospect interaction and deal insights to ensure quality lead meetings
  • Report on territory updates, industry trends, regional insights, competitive landscape, etc
  • Participate in sales development projects, programs, and processes
  • Update territory data, industry trends, and competition information on a weekly basis
  • Consistently achieve assigned lead generation quotas and performance goals


  • Have solid experience in outbound and inbound lead generation, account management, or sales ideally within a SaaS environment
  • Comfortable working with Microsoft Office suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint)
  • Prior experience in Sales, Sales Development, or Inside Sales
  • Demonstrated ability to articulate value propositions of the product to prospective clients with a customer-first attitude and an ability to build relationships

Soft Skills

  • Strong verbal and written communication skills and excellent presentation skills
  • Good negotiation skills


  • Experience in CRM

Step 3: Source SDR Candidates

Once you have a thorough understanding of your sales team’s requirements and the job description ready with you, it’s time to source candidates. Start with creating a compelling job post highlighting the following:

  • What is it like to work at your company?
  • Why should candidates apply to the position?
  • Include the learning and growth opportunities in the team
  • State the company vision and mission
  • Tell them about the recruitment process

Prepare an impactful job post and job advertisement assets if required. The next step would be posting your jobs on various job boards and hiring platforms. You can leverage the following platforms for hiring Sales Development Representatives:

  • LinkedIn
  • Indeed
  • Instahyre
  • ZipRecruiter
  • Monster
  • GlassDoor
  • CareerBuilder
  • Dice

Step 4: Screen Profiles and Interview Shortlisted Candidates

At the beginning of the blog, we discussed the top characteristics to look out for in an ideal Sales Development Representative. Here’s where we analyze those parameters.

From profile screening to phone screen rounds and further interviews, keep the following tips in mind while evaluating candidates:

  • Study your market and sales cycle thoroughly to extract the true requirements. 
  • Involve multiple stakeholders from the sales and business development team in the evaluation and selection process
  • Give more weightage to personality traits like coachability and performance under pressure as those prove to be beneficial in the long term
  • Choose your interviewing panel wisely – get multiple senior professionals from sales, growth, and management.

Step 5: Share the Offer Letter with Selected SDRs

Connect with the selected SDRs and decide on the compensation and commission. Ensure you understand their payroll expectations and negotiate accordingly. 

Next, extend your offer letter to all the candidates who have been selected. In the case of passive sourcing, extend to only those who were aligned with you on the compensation and are willing to move forward. 

Not to forget – Always have a deadline for the joining date and mention the necessary documents required by your recruiting team. 

Step 6: Onboard Candidates Who Accept the Offer

  • Get the required documents and set up the offer agreements with candidates.
  • Organize an orientation session for the onboarded candidates. 
  • Introduce them to the entire team and the teams they will be working with.
  • Guide the new candidates about your HR tools and communication channels
  • Onboard them to the sales management tools you use internally. 
  • Provide candidates with forms for benefits and perks like Health Insurance.  

Supercharge Your Hiring for SDRs with Nurturebox 

Hiring skilled Sales Development Representatives is crucial but challenging at the same time for organizations. 

To find the best SDRs who would further drive your prospect engagement and sales cycle, – leverage automation for accelerating passive talent sourcing and engagement. 

Nurturebox is a one-stop talent sourcing and engagement automation platform. Take a look at how you can source SDRs from LinkedIn using Nurturebox:

  • Install the Nurturebox Chrome plugin and sign up.
  • On your LinkedIn profile, begin searching for Sales Development Representatives with boolean searches stating the required experience from targeted locations and including other criteria.
  • Add qualified candidates to your sourcing campaign pipeline with just a click.
  • Automate candidate engagement through email, Whatsapp, and LinkedIn direct messages for reaching out and nurturing candidates at scale.  

Amidst today’s noisy digital world, brands find it challenging to create meaningful connections with their customer base and target audience. Getting the target consumer’s attention and persuading them to buy from you gets even trickier. Hence, content marketing has become more crucial than ever for brands to attract, educate, and retain customers.

Content creation is a top priority for 80% of marketers, and there is no reason it shouldn’t be. Consistent, high-quality, and engaging content impacts your audience’s decisions through education and persuasion.

Depending on your business goals and requirements, the role of Content Marketers you hire will vary. The primary responsibilities revolve around forming consistent brand messaging and deciding upon a unique and identifiable voice, style, and pitch across various distribution channels.

From raising brand awareness to attracting a relevant audience to your website, boosting social media presence and engagement, generating leads, and building brand loyalty – content marketing drives all the growth efforts for your brand. When done effectively, it can help you:

  • Build positive brand awareness
  • Make your audience stick around for longer
  • Get better traction on social media
  • Gain more trust of your audience than ever
  • Generate qualified leads
  • Improve conversion rates
  • Boost business visibility with SEO
  • Position your brand as an authority
  • Cultivate loyal brand fans

While content marketing is a broad role with numerous areas of expertise involved, it’s vital to thoroughly understand your company’s current marketing goals and the related requirements. In this blog, we will dive deep into the step-by-step approach to hiring a Content Marketer.

What is The Role of a Content Marketer?

A Content Marketer must be deeply passionate about telling your brand’s story to the world. The objective is to educate and nurture the target audience to establish brand authority using thought-leadership and drive more people to buy from you.

As a candidate is expected to be a mediator between the brand and the target audience, they are primarily responsible for planning, creating, and sharing valuable content to grow their company’s awareness and engagement to bring more business.

To be more specific, the role of a Content Marketer requires a perfect blend of creativity and attention to detail in an individual. It’s a balancing role, as they need to ensure creating content that resonates and strengthens business relationships, using strategies that position your business as authentic and problem-solving.

Take a look at the core responsibilities of a Content Marketer that most businesses expect them to take over:

  • Research and Competitor Analysis: The first and foremost step to creating a content marketing strategy is effective initial research. It not only helps a Content Marketer understand the nuances of the industry through competitor analysis but also study and understand the target audience thoroughly.
  • Building Content Marketing Plans: Once the competitor research and target audience analysis is done, a Content Marketer needs to work on the different plans for all the business objectives, targeted channels, segments of the audience, and the bigger marketing strategy. A content marketing plan typically consists of:
  • Specific goals along with a pre-decided timeline
  • Various channels to be targeted for content distribution
  • Types of content to be created
  • Budget for the entire staff, outsourced services, and paid promotion (Collabs and Ads)
  • Creating Editorial Calendar: Creating, managing, and maintaining a content calendar is one of the most crucial responsibilities of a Content Marketer. It is a centralized visual document that enables effective collaboration among the marketing team and helps Content Marketers ensure on-time production and delivery.
  • Content Creation: Once the strategy and calendar have been approved by relevant stakeholders, Content Marketers need to do the on-ground work. This task usually depends on the scale of your company and content marketing strategy. Suppose an organization already has a set of writers, then the Content Marketer doesn’t need to create content by themselves.
  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO): Producing quality content that educates your target audience and resonates with them, isn’t enough. You need to optimize your content creation to make it search engine-friendly. While most companies need a dedicated SEO specialist for keyword research and planning, Content Marketers need to closely collaborate with them and should be well-versed in the basics of SEO.

While the practices discussed above are primary responsibilities of a Content Marketer, they also need to be proactive with

  • Content editing and ensuring adherence to a certain style guide    
  • Continous publishing and distributing content
  • Measuring and analyzing performance

How to Hire a Content Marketer: Step-By-Step?

Content marketing has become the key to driving growth for businesses. Unlike a few years ago, it’s not possible now to get away with a one-person team for content marketing. You need deeply trained individuals for specialist roles.

Let’s now dive into the step-by-step approach of hiring a Content Marketer. But before you even source your first candidate, you should have a clear expectation of the skillset and experience to look out for top content marketing candidates.

Top Must-Have Skills in a Content Marketer

Apart from having relevant industry experience, a good Content Marketer must possess the following skills.

  1. Excellent Writing Skills

A Content Marketer’s prior skillset should be writing excellent attention-grabbing content. From long-form blog posts to website copy, ad copies, social media content, video scripts, emails, newsletters, e-books, whitepapers, and more – a Content Marketer should be able to adapt to the business’s specific requirements and create quality content.

  1. Audience Research

Identifying user behavior is vital for framing the story in the right direction. So a Content Marketer must know how to identify and analyze the needs and pain points to develop a buyer persona. User research can be performed through social listening, relevant communities, in-person calls with customers, analyzing sales call recordings, and more.

  1. Keyword Research

Creating valuable thought-leadership content isn’t enough. Researching the right set of keywords is an essential skill to further educate your target audience on the Whys, Hows and Whats of your business, and have your website rank on Google.

  1. Data-oriented Content

Content that’s not backed by relevant data points does not build enough trust. Experienced content marketing professionals would always prefer data over hollow claims. No doubt that only data doesn’t help a content piece succeed, but it’s essential..

  1. Project Management, Planning, and Publishing –

A Content Marketer is also expected to break down and analyze the pain points to turn keyword research into content ideas. So a professional must be able to identify and solve content gaps.

Further, they must know how to create a content calendar, decide the different types of content, and choose relevant platforms to publish and schedule marketing campaigns.

  1. Content Promotion

Creating a valuable content piece, for example - an ebook, isn’t enough. Your content marketing team needs to promote it proactively for bringing enough attention and engagement.

  1. Performance Analysis

Setting up goals and plans is one thing, but continuously executing, measuring, and analyzing content performance is another. A Content Marketer should always be monitoring key performance parameters to figure out the upcoming plans with the necessary updates required.

Not to forget - stakeholders and marketing heads need the performance reports regularly. So Content Marketers must be able to collect and comprehend all the data to make it worth presenting.

Step 1: Create a Candidate Persona

Let’s sort out the priorities first, and decide the type of content marketing candidates you want to recruit. From exceptional research skills to storytelling, communication skills, relationship building, audience engagement, and more capabilities must be comprehensively considered. Identify and break down the skill requirements for Content Marketers:

  • What are the educational qualification criteria for the role?
  • How many years and what type of work experience do you want in candidates?
  • What are the specific skill sets you’re looking for?
  • Which industry experience would you primarily prefer?
  • Are there any tools your candidates should be hands-on with?
  • What are some personality traits that will fit your company?
  • Where do they look for a new job?
  • What are their career and life goals?

Forming a candidate persona by answering all these questions would ensure you are not shooting in the dark while sourcing candidates. Further, it helps you determine the traits of the ideal candidate, and plan your sourcing and recruitment strategy further.

Step 2: Document the Role Requirements and Decide on Your Recruiting Process

Next step is determining your role requirements suiting primarily to organizational needs and business goals. A content marketing professional is expected to own the entire content strategy, creation, and distribution. But what about your business’s unique requirements?

You might need someone comfortable with frequently creating long-form content pieces like blogs, ebooks, or whitepapers, or creating engaging video content based on your industry trends.

Talk to various relevant stakeholders for seeking the complete detailed company requirements for the role.

Before you enter the recruitment funnel, outline your talent acquisition process. Identify various strategies, channels, and other informational insights you would need – and maintain a collaborative document.

As you update the tactics and tweak your recruitment process for meeting hiring requirements optimally – keep your document up to date.

Step 3: Prepare a Content Marketing Job Description

Once you have finalized the role requirements with respect to your current content marketing goals and team, you can start sourcing candidates. Preparing the job description is the first task you’ll need to do.

Here are the necessary components you must have in your job description:

  • Job Title: The position you’re looking to fill. For example - Content Marketing Specialist or Content Marketing Manager.
  • Roles & Responsibilities: An outline of the candidate’s day-to-day activities. From ideation to implementation and the impact on the organization, everything should be covered.  
  • Skill Requirements: Skills and abilities a candidate must have to perform the job successfully.
  • Perks and Benefits: The compensation details, perks of the job, and any other benefits.
  • About the Company: Why should a candidate consider working with your company?

Content Marketer Job Description Template


The job of a Content Marketer is to perform competitor research, create user persona, and write plagiarism-free content for blog articles, social media, and the company website. They need to stay updated on the latest SEO techniques.


  • Develop, write and deliver persuasive copy for the website, email marketing campaigns, sales collateral, videos, and blogs
  • Build and manage an editorial calendar; coordinate with other content crafters to ensure standards
  • Measure impact and perform analysis to improve KPIs
  • Include and optimize all content for SEO
  • Contribute to the localization of processes and content to ensure consistency across regions
  • Review and implement process changes to drive operational excellence


  • Proven content marketing, copywriting, or SEO experience
  • Working knowledge of content management systems like WordPress
  • A well-maintained portfolio of published articles, blogs, copy, etc
  • Proven experience of working under pressure to deliver high quality output in a short span of time
  • Proficiency in all Microsoft Office applications, Google Suite
  • Fluency in English or any other required language

Soft Skills

  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Excellent writing and editing skills
  • The ability to work in a fast-paced environment
  • The ability to handle multiple projects concurrently
  • Strong attention to detail and the ability to multi-task projects and deliverables

Step 4: Source Candidates

Once you have the tailored job description in hand, it’s now time to do the groundwork and source candidates. Create an attractive job post to promote your job across job boards and social channels.

  • Begin with what to expect from the role at your company?
  • Why should candidates apply for the position?
  • Highlight the growth opportunities
  • State the company vision and mission
  • Briefly describe the recruitment process

Prepare an impactful job post and also execute paid job ad campaigns if required. The next step would be promoting your jobs on various job boards and hiring platforms. You can leverage the following platforms for hiring Content Marketers:

  • LinkedIn
  • Indeed
  • Instahyre
  • ZipRecruiter
  • Monster
  • GlassDoor
  • CareerBuilder

Not to forget - almost 3/4th of the workforce includes passive candidates, so you cannot miss out on passive talent sourcing as well. Reach out to qualified candidates on communities, LinkedIn, Twitter, and even Facebook to offer them suitable opportunities.

Step 5: Evaluate Candidates and Interview Shortlisted Ones

Once you have filtered candidates based on their experience and skills listed on their profile, it’s time to evaluate them deeply. Ask them to create a content strategy for your website, along with a value-adding content piece like a small blog. The topic of the article must fall within the scope of the strategy.

Interview the candidates whose profiles got shortlisted. Keep in mind the parameters covering skills, relevant experience, and personality traits of candidates.

Step 5: Make the Hire

Reach out to selected Content Marketers and communicate about the compensation.

Further, extend your offer letter to all the candidates who have been selected. In the case of passive sourcing, extend to only those who were aligned with you on the compensation and are willing to move forward.

Ensure having a deadline for the joining date and mention the necessary documents required by your recruiting team.

  • Get the required documents and set up the offer agreements with candidates
  • Organize an orientation session for the onboarded candidates
  • Introduce them to the entire team and the marketing teams they will be working with
  • Guide the new candidates about your company management tools and communication channels
  • Provide candidates with forms for benefits and perks like Health Insurance.

Supercharge Your Hiring for Content Marketer with Nurturebox

Inbound candidate sourcing doesn’t work effectively anymore. Do you also find challenges in closing quality candidates through job posts even after spending on ads?

Don’t worry, passive candidate sourcing can be an optimal solution for hiring top content marketing candidates.

Nurturebox is a one-stop talent sourcing and engagement platform which is powered by automation. Here’s how you can source product managers from LinkedIn using Nurturebox:

  • Install the Nurturebox Chrome plugin and sign up.
  • On your LinkedIn profile, start sourcing Content Marketers with boolean searches stating the required experience from targeted locations and including other criteria
  • Add the qualified candidates to your sourcing campaign pipeline with just a click
  • Automate the candidate engagement through email, Whatsapp and LinkedIn direct messages for reaching out and nurturing candidates at scale.

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