Aaron Wallis Sales Industry News

Welcome to our News Page. Discover more about the UK Sales Industry and recruitment trends together with links to quick tips and sales advice. Meet the Editorial Team

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

Great News - the Upturn is here!

By Wayne Bly

Businesses have been boosted by the news that the UK has seen the best October sales for seven years, according to new research.Figures released by the British Retail Consortium (BRC) and KPMG Retail Sales Monitor for October 2009 showed a like-for-like rise of 3.8 per cent on the same time last year, when sales had fallen by 2.2 per cent in the face of the financial markets crumbling.

Overall, sales rose 5.9 per cent against a 0.1 per cent decline in October 2008.Stephen Robertson, director general of the BRC, said that the results were "encouraging" for people in sales jobs, illustrating the best like-for-like and total October sales growth since 2002. "With less than 50 days to go before Christmas, retailers will be hoping improved consumer confidence will be sustained during the festive period and beyond. Shops have already started to battle it out for customers with a string of promotions and discounts," he added. Mr Robertson also commented that 2010 had many uncertainties in store for people in sales jobs, including the likelihood of rising taxes.

Earlier this month, the BRC reported that consumer confidence had risen to its highest point for 18 months, with indexes showing an increase to 75, a ten point increase from the all-time low of 65 in April.

Tuesday, 10 November 2009

Sales professionals embrace changing technology.

by Charlotte Chelsom-Pill

Of all the challenges faced by UK sales professionals, a survey has found that changing technology is considered the least difficult aspect of sales.

The sales industry is increasingly adopting ever advancing technology. The use of social networking and viral marketing in sales is becoming common place. Yet, fewer than 3% of respondents to ‘The State of Sales 2009’ are intimidated by changing technology and changing sales methods.

The survey which was conducted by Aaron Wallis, a Sales recruitment company asked 644 sales professionals what they considered to be the most difficult aspect of the. Of the eight possible answers, changing technology and sales methods was the least popular response by a large margin.

Women were found to be the least intimated by changing technology, with less than 1% of female respondents selecting this as the most difficult aspect of sales. This compares to 3% of men. None of the respondents who earned over 100K a year found changing technology and sales methods the most difficult aspect of the role.

Overall, getting clients to make decisions, followed by cold calling and sales admin/paperwork were cited as the 3 most difficult aspects of selling in 2009. Finding new prospects, chasing money, and meeting clients expectations were among some of the other possible answers to the question.

The survey was conducted in July this year and was live for six weeks. Respondents to the survey were from a broad age, salary and geographic range. The survey results are available for free download from

The Old School Ways Still Work!

by Charlotte Chelsom-Pill
Traditional sales methods are still considered the most effective, a survey has revealed.

The sales industry has been revolutionised in recent years by business potential in the digital market. Social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook are increasingly being used for viral marketing and business generation.

It may come as a shock therefore, that a survey conducted by Aaron Wallis, a sales recruitment agency has revealed that sales professionals almost unanimously favour conventional methods of selling. When asked to rate in order of one to five which methods of sales were the most effective, 94% of sales professionals placed non-digital methods the highest, at number one.

Of the 644 respondents only 3% would consider social networking the most effective form of selling. A further 3% favour online meetings/webinars and teleconferences.

By contrast, an overwhelming 82% still believe that that the best way to make a sale is through a face to face meeting. This research may raise questions in the sales industry about whether the internet is as integral to the modern sales industry as many would have us believe.

Rob Scott, the Managing Director of Aaron Wallis has done considerable research into the use of online methods of business generation. He said: “The Internet is without doubt one of the most powerful tools available to any sales professional for research and managing contacts. However the adage ‘people buy from people’ still remains. With the advent of Twitter, Facebook and the likes for business development we are on the cusp of change in the way that we develop business but this survey confirms that face-to-face selling is still the most powerful method”

Exhibitions, Telesales Networking Events, and Marketing campaigns all received a higher proportion of respondents who rated them above social networking as a method of business development.

The number of sales professionals who consider exhibitions as the most effective form of selling has in fact risen since a similar survey was conducted in 2007. Surprisingly, exhibitions have replaced telesales as the second most effective method of business development

Sunday, 18 October 2009

Sales Professionals Want More Training

by Charlotte Chelsom-Pill

More than half of UK sales professionals are unsatisfied with the amount of training they receive per year, a survey has revealed.

58% of 644 UK sales professionals questioned in a recent survey answered that they are unhappy with the amount of training that they are offered in their current role.

The survey which was conducted by Aaron Wallis, a UK sales recruitment company revealed that 36% of people had zero days of training throughout 2008. This figure has risen from 2007 when a similar survey conducted by Aaron Wallis’ Managing Director, Rob Scott, revealed that 32% of respondents had received zero training days a year.

Similarly the number of people who claimed that they had received 8 or more days of training in the previous year has decreased from 17% in 2007 to 14% in 2009.

Evidence compiled suggests that a lack of training is impacting on performance and job satisfaction amongst sales professionals. There was a correlation between those who scored their career highly out of ten and how many training days they received. Incidentally, 36% of the respondents who scored their career to date ten out of ten got eight or more days of training a year. This is almost triple the general trend.

Of those that felt that they don’t receive enough training, 77% were actively looking for a new role compared to 68% of those who are satisfied with the training. A further 91% of people that feel that they don’t get enough training answered that they felt that the sales industry is getting harder compared to 80% of those that do.

In additional comments, one respondent said: “The business environment is constantly changing so the sales team need to be updated and trained on these changes regularly.” Another said: “I have been promised professional sales training since my interview, this is yet to materialise.”

The top three training requirements cited were ‘new business generation/cold calling’ (26%), ‘Time Management and Planning’ (15%) and ‘Motivational Training’ (12%).

The Managing Director of Aaron Wallis, Rob Scott said: “There is a direct correlation between training, success and employee satisfaction which this survey confirms. Lack of training is also one of the most common reasons cited by candidates when they register with us to look for a new career move”

Sales professionals are working harder than ever

by Charlotte Chelsom-Pill

UK sales professionals are working longer hours as only a third of people feel secure in their current employment, a survey has revealed.

With unemployment at an all time high, 66% of those currently in employment were found to believe that their position was under threat.

Evidence collected from the survey conducted by Aaron Wallis, a specialist sales recruitment company suggests that the increased threat of redundancy has caused sales professionals to work harder.

Of the 644 respondents, 79% were found to work in excess of 40 hours per week. 8% of those work 60 hours a week or more.

90% were found to have taken work home at the weekends. 36% of whom answered that they worked every weekend, and 43% regularly work at weekends. This is a dramatic increase from results collected by a similar survey in 2007, when 22% of people answered that they never worked weekends.

The survey also found that more than half of UK sales professionals didn’t take their full holiday entitlement.

Rob Scott, the Managing Director of Aaron Wallis stated “sales people in my experience have always worked hard and most I know work in excess of 50 hours per week, it’s the nature of the business, we’ve got to be there when the clients need us!”

Monday, 5 October 2009

What Motivates Our Sales Teams?

Largest survey of sales professionals in the UK is published by Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment

We’ve just completed the largest survey of sales professionals in the UK and it has produced some really positive and fascinating results. The survey of 70 questions covered all aspects of sales from remuneration through to sales targets to key motivators to work-life balance and everything in-between.

The survey was fully completed by 642 sales professionals and partially completed by a further 140. This has enabled us to provide a powerful insight into the ‘State of Sales in the UK in 2009’ and the report is the most substantial survey of its kind. The aim of the survey was to give us all greater understanding on how to manage and motivate our sales teams through tough financial times and beyond.


The survey was launched in late July 2009 and was live for 6 weeks. It was promoted across a wide range of media including major sales job boards, sales forums, social networks and sales related magazines. The survey was also promoted by our survey partners that included sales trainers, sales training companies and specialist job boards. The survey was similar to another that I commissioned back in 2007 so it has been a great exercise to compare attitudes and perspectives between the buoyant economic times of 2007 and the tougher ones of 2009.

The response was a generous spread across all industries and across the whole of the UK; relevant to this publication 18% of responses were from the South East, 8% from the East Midlands and 9% from London. 6 out of 10 respondents were experienced sales professionals with over 10 years experience and 84% earned in excess of £25,000 p.a. The responses were from a general spread across all industry sectors.

Key Findings

* 96% of the respondents enjoy working in sales. Of the remaining 4% only 1 in 10 had planned to embark on a career in sales.
* Getting clients to make decisions, cold calling and sales admin/paperwork were cited as the 3 most difficult aspects of selling in 2009
* A whopping 72% judged their career to date to be ‘7 out of 10’ or more
* The two biggest motivators to keep sales staff (or what they’d look for in a new job) , was i) opportunities for progression/career development, and ii) Their employer’s products, reputation and competitive edge
* The way that the respondents personally measured success was i) ‘being respected by friends, boss and peers’ followed by ii) ‘loving relationships’ and iii) ‘peace of mind’. Status and material wealth was deemed as the major success measure by just 13% of the sales professionals surveyed.
* 70% of those that were unemployed had been recently made redundant
* Only 11% of those in employment felt that their employer was dealing well with the financial crisis
* Over 4 in 10 of the female respondents were Sales Managers, Sales Directors and Managing Directors, almost a two fold increase on 2007’s results. However all respondents that earned over £100K in the last 12 months were male.
* 53% had been 100% honest in every interview they have attended throughout their career
* 44% were educated to HND or higher
* Despite the economic situation 52% were given an increase on their 2009 targets
* 56% of respondents felt that sales was the most influential department/division of their business
* An impressive 31% are currently over target. And as 28% of respondents were non-targeted that left only 41% that were either ‘on target’ or ‘below target’!
* 65% felt that they could perform their line manager’s role more effectively than them (84% of these were male!) even though more than 8 out of 10 described their relationship with their boss as average or better!
* Surprisingly three quarters of respondents did not feel that an increase in green initiatives by their employer would have any positive increase on sales
* More than 8 out of 10 of respondents considered themselves to regularly work under stress levels of medium or higher.
* 79% of respondents typically worked in excess of 40 hours per week with a third of the total working in excess of 50 hours
* ‘Aggressive and Dictatorial’ were the most popular words to describe their line manager’s style though this was thankfully followed by ‘Supportive and Empowering’
* 58% felt they did not receive enough training in their role and 36% had not received a single day of training in the last 12 months
* The majority, 64%, would prefer the opportunity to earn £10,000 in commission than a straightforward £5,000 basic salary increase.
* Half would not accept a 50% pay rise if it would severely impact on their ‘work-life’ balance
* ‘Better management and direction’ was cited as the biggest way to make a salesperson more successful (2nd was ‘Increased Marketing’, 3rd ‘Better Work/Life Balance’ and 4th ‘Training’)

What can we learn from the survey results?

Sales professionals are hard working, looking for stability and looking for companies that respect the contribution that they make to their organisations. They are looking for reputable employers with good management and solid direction that offer good products/services that are backed by a genuine ‘competitive edge’.

Over half of the sales professionals surveyed have taken on the responsibility of increased targets in tough times and a third is exceeding them. Despite what the media likes to portray only 41% are either ‘on target’ or ‘below target’! 44% felt that their employers should increase their sales and marketing initiatives to see them through the current economic situation and 45% would take on additional responsibilities without additional pay to enable this. Thankfully, 3 in 4 of the respondents had not been asked to take a pay drop or a cut in benefits in the last year.

It still astounds me that many employers feel that sales people are solely motivated by money, material status and their potential to earn. Sure, sales people to a large extent have to be ‘money motivated’ to ensure they have the drive and purpose to put themselves on the ‘front line’ each day. However, for the majority it is the thrill of the sale and the achievement and recognition that they’ll receive as much as it is about the reward.

The survey highlights that the best way to motivate and retain your sales staff is to offer training and development together with opportunities for career enhancement. There is an undeniable and obvious link between ‘training days received’ and ‘performance against target’ yet it’s incredible that over half of the sales professionals surveyed had less than two training days over the last year. This is particularly poor bearing in mind the various government initiatives available to most employers to fund training. The top three training requirements cited were ‘new business generation/cold calling’ (26%), ‘Time Management and Planning’ (15%) and ‘Motivational Training’ (12%).

Having met thousands of sales professionals looking to leave their employer the most commonly cited reasons for leaving are ‘not being recognised’ or ‘not being respected for the contribution that they make’. This is once again corroborated by the 2009 Survey and backed up by other similar surveys that I commissioned in 2007 and 1999. A little recognition and the occasional ‘thank you’ go a long way to ensure your sales team upbeat and engaged with your business!

Our fear was that companies would have become more ‘finance led’ over the last 12 months so it was great to see that 56% of employers were still deemed to be ‘sales led’ and that the ‘sales department’ is retaining its status of being the most influential department within a business.

To conclude, don’t think that bonus and financial incentives are the sole way to motivate your sales teams. Rather invest in training for your sales staff, regularly appraise them and recognise the hard work and long hours that contribute to your business. Remember that a regular ‘thank you’ and the occasional ‘slap on the back’ of recognition costs little and goes a long, long way.

The report ‘The State of Sales in the UK, 2009’ is available for free download by visiting

Aaron Wallis is a specialist sales recruiter that offers the best recruitment service available to UK employers that’s backed by a 12 month rebate scheme. To find out more call 01908 764280 or visit

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Unique Opportunity for UK Companies to Profit from Export sales into Europe.

Whilst the pound remains low against the euro, UK industry is in a prime position to capitalise on export sales.

Since the financial crisis began the sterling has devalued by over 30%. Although this has raised the prices of imported goods sold in the UK, the export market is poised to benefit. By exporting to Europe, UK manufacturers will profit from the current exchange rate which today stands at 1.16 Euro to the Pound.

This rate is heavily down from the beginnings of 2007 when the pound was equal to 1.53 Euro. Whereas in January 2007 a £100,000 GBP sales order would cost a European buyer €153,000 the same order can be placed today at €116,000, almost a third cheaper. British manufacturers therefore have the opportunity to both sell at lower costs and increase the profitability on their overseas orders.

Euro to Pound Sterling Exchange Rate Graph - Sep 16, 2003 to Sep 12, 2008

With France, Germany, Japan and Hong Kong emerging from the global recession, experts are claiming that a recent surge in overseas trade has contributed to their economic growth. An increase of export sales in the UK could similarly rejuvenate the UK’s economy bringing an end to the recession. Now is therefore the prime time for UK companies to expand into export sales.

Exporting has always had the added potential of boosting turnover and lessening your dependence on the UK market. However, with language barriers and cultural obstacles the route to entry to the export market has always been difficult.

As experts in export sales recruitment, Aaron Wallis has commission numerous articles containing authoritative advice on how UK sales companies can enter into overseas markets and understand potential trade barriers.

By entering our free online business library you can access a range of facts and advice concerning international business and setting up international links. It will help you identify promising markets and customers and ensure that you can optimise the lucrative overseas opportunities that the current economic climate has to offer.

http://www.aaronwallis.co.uk/client_advice_library.php and click on ‘Doing Business in Other Countries’ for further information and articles on:

* Exporting: Doing Business Overseas
* Buying a European Business - The mysteries explained
* Everything you need to know about the euro
* A Charter for Small Enterprises in Europe
* Doing Business in Australia
* Doing Business in Barbados
* Doing Business in Canada
* Doing Business in China
* Doing Business in France
* Doing Business in India
* Doing Business in Malta
* Doing Business in Oman
* Doing Business in Pakistan
* Doing Business in Panama
* Doing Business in Russia
* Doing Business in South Africa
* Doing Business in Spain
* Doing Business in the Isle of Man
* Doing Business in The Netherlands
* Doing Business in the United Arab Emirates
* Doing Business in the United States of America
* Doing Business in Turkey
* Business Etiquette - Doing Business Internationally
* The Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA)
* EU Services Directive
* Proposals for a European Private Company (Societas Privata Europaea)
* Glossary of EU Terms

We hope that you find these free articles on international trade useful to your business.

For further information and to place an export sales vacancy call 01908 764280 or visit http://www.aaronwallis.co.uk/

Thursday, 13 August 2009

Salespeople – Take Steps to Avoid Swine Flu at work.

Although there has been a fall in the number of newly diagnosed cases of Swine Flu this week, it is still important that businesses protect themselves from the virus.

The Government is predicting that 12% of the workforce could be affected by September so employers need to be prepared.

Sales employees are potentially at a higher risk of contracting the disease than staff from other sectors by the very fact that they are regularly meeting and shaking hands with new clients and colleagues, increasing their chances of contracting the disease which can be transmitted by hand contact.

Frequent travelling across the country could also mean that sales professionals are more at risk of being exposed to the strain.

To prevent the transmission of the virus in the work place, take note of the following guidelines provided by the NHS.

Advice for Employers:

The more your employees know about how to prevent infection, the more resilient your business will be.

It is advised that information on the virus and how to protect yourself should be circulated to all staff.

If workers in the office contract the virus, employers may also want to consider temporary home working.

Be careful not put pressure on staff to come in, especially pregnant workers who are thought to be more at risk. Employment lawyers are already warning of personal injury claims.

  • To protect your office and staff, you should:
  • Have a business continuity plan to ensure your business continues to operate effectively
  • Have a policy to cover all staff. The HR Dept can provide this for you
  • Impress on your cleaners the need for extra care to keep surfaces germ free
  • Remind staff of your absence policy
  • Keep up to date with government guidelines and adjust plans accordingly

Advice for Employees:

  • To prevent the spread of the disease in the work place, the NHS is using the catchphrase ‘catch it, bin it kill it’.
  • Always cover nose and mouth with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.
  • Dispose of dirty tissues promptly and carefully.
  • Maintain good basic hygiene. It may be worth considering carrying an antibacterial gel in your car post meetings, or getting into the habit of washing your hands with soap and water after every meeting.
  • Clean hard surfaces, such as door handles, often and thoroughly using a normal cleaning product.

If you think you have Swine flu, DON’T self-diagnose - employers will not appreciate you speculatively deciding you have swine flu without proper medical advice.

Although going to the doctor for a diagnosis is not advisable, it is easy to get information by calling the NHS helplines on 0800 1 513 100 or going onto the NHS website.

If a health professional diagnoses swine flu then ring your employer and stay at home.

Find out more about avoiding swine flu from this government advice site aimed at the business community

Fewer redundancies are expected – Is it too early to say that ‘green shoots’ are sprouting?

The number of redundancies in the UK jobs market is expected to decrease, according to a recent survey. Following the dismal start to the year, which has seen the unemployment rate rise to 2.4 million, a new survey conducted by KPMG and The Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development is now suggesting that the private sector is stabilising.

The Labour Market Outlook Survey has shown that a significantly lower amount of employers are expecting to make staff redundant. The results collected from over 900 employers, covering all sectors of the economy also revealed that the scale of planned redundancies has reduced.

Although signs of a full recovery still appear a while away, it seems that the results of the survey are by no means unfounded.

Rob Scott from Aaron Wallis, a specialist sales recruitment agency, has noted a gentle but positive upturn from employers in recent months. He said: "Back in February we received through our website 1900 speculative CVs which was three times more than we'd typically receive. The majority of these candidates had unfortunately been made redundant as companies restructured and cut costs for the New Year.

“This huge spike of speculative CVs has now settled but our July candidate registrations still remains double that the same month last year. Aaron Wallis have had calls from tens of employers that didn't replace positions vacated in September, October and November last year but are now realising that the position needs to be filled in order for them to maintain and improve their market share"

How to stand out in a job interview – calm and collected, or quirky and memorable?

It is fair to say that competition for jobs is fierce. Yesterday’s announcement that unemployment has reached its highest point since 1995 is enough to instil fear into even the most confident of job searchers.

Yet despite these horrifying and well publicised statistics, many professionals within the recruitment industry, including ourselves, are reporting a quiet but significant increase in the number of jobs that are becoming available. So, never a better time for those looking for work to pick themselves up, dust themselves off and refine their interview technique.

Employment success is often down to the applicant standing out in the interview. In recent months we are hearing of more jobs applicants who are going into interviews with a quirky strategy to get themselves remembered.

I have heard of one applicant that was so determined to stand out that he began the interview by ceremoniously presenting the interviewer with a pineapple. Sure, he was remembered - but not necessarily for the right reasons.

A sense of humour and a creative idea may only serve to evoke a quick chuckle from the interviewer before he stumps you with question on company policy. Having said this, a well thought out gimmick which is quirky, but RELEVANT could potentially work in your favour.

When applying for a marketing job with a major pizza restaurant chain we have heard the tale of an applicant who went into the interview with a pizza box which contained his CV, ‘brag file’ and a detailed presentation and business plan for the role. Needless to say, the interviewer was impressed and he got the job.

The candidate demonstrated initiative and enthusiasm as well as a strong knowledge of company branding. BUT, it was for a marketing and branding job and creative ideas such as this are not the only way earn success in an interview.

Merit alone can be far more appealing to a potential employer than a random gimmick which could scream of the candidates’ desperation.

Above all, interviewers are looking for applicants who are well versed, professional and enthusiastic. Therefore, make sure you are prepared, appropriately dressed and engaging and you will stand out far more than if you go to an interview with a well rehearsed comedy routine.

Stand out for the RIGHT reasons, and take advantage of increasing employment opportunities.

For further interview tips visit our Career Tools section with tens of ideas to increase your interview skills and sales success.

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Are Facebook and Twitter preventing you from getting a job?

With more companies signing up to sites such as Twitter and Facebook, it is becoming general practice to search applicants through these social networking sites.

Potential employers can have unlimited access to moments of your personal life by simply searching your name on Google.

Drunken photos or an inappropriate ‘status’ can quickly undermine a good CV or a successful interview.

Recently an applicant sent a CV to Aaron Wallis and detailed ‘social networking’ as one of her hobbies.

Upon sending the CV to the client they refused to meet with the candidate even though she was ideal for the role.

When we told her that unfortunately things are not going to move forward she said ‘I bet they’ve been looking at my facebook account’.

The employer of course did not use this as a reason for declining to meet with her but upon looking at her uncensored facebook account it was riddled with drunken photos and profanities!

Suffice to say we recommended that she took appropriate steps to clean up her facebook presence!

With the ability on Facebook and Twitter to limit your profile so that only ‘friends’ or ‘followers’ can have access to your private thoughts, its seems odd that applicants can be found publicising opinions such as: “What a f***ing s*** interview with a s*** company, I don’t know why I bother.”

Although it is not expected that candidates remain pious while sending out jobs applications, it is probably advisable to consider that photos of you sprawled over a bar with a traffic cone on your head may not be quite as funny to a potential employer!

Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Aaron Wallis conducts largest survey of UK sales Professionals.

The UK’s largest survey of sales professionals promises to reveal a fascinating insight into the condition of the British sales industry and the impact of the recession.

Previous sales surveys conducted by Milton Keynes based recruiter Aaron Wallis have been the largest of their kind and were extremely well received by the sales industry, media and academics.

This year, in light of the current economic situation Aaron Wallis are expecting the results to be even more interesting.

So far 550 professionals have completed the survey and with two weeks remaining over 1,000 responses are expected in total.

The responses cover a wide demographic of ages, industries, and areas of the country.

For this reason they will be extremely credible and will give a real understanding how the sales industry is fairing since the last survey was conducted in 2007.

Reponses so far are extremely interesting and include a few surprises. It seems that the sales industry and its workers are surprisingly upbeat despite the current economic climate.

The 2007 Survey revealed fascinating statistics including the finding that only 23% of female respondents were in senior management roles compared to 46% of male respondents making for an interesting comparison two years on.

Results are eagerly awaited by several industry publications including ISMM’s Winning Edge which has dedicated several pages in its Autumn/Winter edition to the surveys’ findings.

The survey is also being promoted across most of the major sales related web sites, sales job boards, sales magazines, social networks and the employer and candidate databases at Aaron Wallis.

To participate in this survey and for the chance to put forward your opinion about working in the industry, candidates should be directed to http://www.survey2009.info/

The survey consists of just over 60 questions and will take around ten to twelve minutes to complete. The questions are designed to be a mixture of work related and life related questions.

As an incentive Aaron Wallis are offering to everyone that takes part the chance to win an ‘ultimate experience’. This is a choice of over 100 experiences ranging from a 30 minute ‘Tiger Moth’ flight to an overnight golf break for two to a racing experience in a Lamborghini.

Official results will be released on 24th August.

To view “The State of Sales in 2007” survey, please visit http://www.aaronwallis.co.uk/The%20State%20of%20Sales%20in%20the%20UK.pdf

More under 21’s are found to have lied on their CV’s.

More young people are lying on their CV’s as competition for jobs heightens, a survey has revealed.

Almost one in five under 21’s were found to have been lying or hiding information on job applications making them the most likely age group to be untruthful.

This is an increase of 29% from last year when under 21’s were considered the most honest.

In a survey of 4,735 job applications made to financial firms between June last year and May this year, it was found that of the 307 belonging to under 21’s, 18% contained false information.

The Survey conducted by Powerchex revealed that people educated in state schools were 25% more likely to lie on their CV than those who went to private school.

The most common lie was to claim a 2:1 university degree when they had been awarded a 2:2.
Others exaggerated menial jobs to make themselves sound more important.

These results come as this year’s university graduates are facing the highest levels of unemployment in a generation.

The Guardian reports that Alexandra Kelly, managing director of Powerchex said: “The pressure of the recession on job markets seems to have led to more applicants to believe that they should lie or make embellished claims to get jobs.”

Overall, 19% of candidates lied on an application, up from 17% in 2008.

In response to falsified applications, many companies now appoint credit referencing agencies to conduct a thorough CV Verification.

Rob Scott, Managing Director of leading Sales recruiter, Aaron Wallis, commented: “Lying on your CV is really very short-sighted as lying about your education is extremely easy to check and confirm.

“We recommend in our CV advice that it is important to sell your achievements and career highlights but to always be able to substantiate any claim at interview.”

Follow this link for free PDF and MP3 downloads on CV and career advice .

Sunday, 19 July 2009

Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment Opens Three New Branches

Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment, the UK based sales and marketing recruitment specialists have announced the opening of three additional offices in London, Leeds and Bristol.

Having enjoyed continuous growth over the past two years Aaron Wallis feel the time is right to further strengthen their position in the market. With their head office in Milton Keynes, Aaron Wallis have successfully launched a number of new divisions to include Finance & Accountancy, HR, Operations and Office Support. A structure that will be replicated across all four locations.

Already offering the most inclusive recruitment solution on the market Aaron Wallis boasts an impressive client portfolio and feel that a UK branch network is an essential ingredient in effectively servicing client needs.

Rob Scott, Managing Director says “This is an exciting time for Aaron Wallis and we are delighted to announce the opening of three additional offices. Although we are currently experiencing so-called “tough times” I believe this positive move demonstrates that if recruitment is delivered effectively then growth will continue to follow. We have chosen these three locations carefully based on both client and candidate needs and recognise the importance of being both a national and local recruitment provider.”

The new Aaron Wallis locations are:

Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment, Leeds, Yorkshire
100 Wellington Street LeedsLS1 4LT
01132 373034

City Centre location in Leeds with consultants covering the North of England, the North West, the North East and Yorkshire

Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment, London
1 Warwick Row
0207 808 7215

London Victoria location, SW1, with consultants covering London, the City, the West End, the Docklands and the South East

Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment, Bristol
Aztec Centre, Aztec West
BS32 4TD
01454 203363

Based on Aztec West, a few Miles North of Bristol with consultants covering the South West, Southern England and Wales

The Milton Keynes HQ will continue to recruit across the West Midlands, East Anglia, East Midlands and the Home Counties.

For further information contact
info@aaronwallis.co.uk or call 01908 764280

Thursday, 2 April 2009

Recession is over, long live the sun!

On the 15th March the UK recession reached its lowest point. Why, because the sun came out and everyone’s stories turned from ‘doom and gloom’ to a faint hint of optimism. Aren’t the warming rays of the sun just a fantastic tonic!

Talking of the sun, our global leaders today signed us all up to $1.1 Trillion of debt which at today’s $/£ exchange rate is just a measly £681BN! Apparently this is the equivalent of $1 bills laid from end to end all the way from here to the sun!

Put another way our leaders at the G20 have today signed us up to the gross domestic output of Spain, Australia AND China combined!

Let's put this into context with a bit of history! According to US treasury figures, from 1776 to the year 2000 the USA borrowed a trillion dollars from financial institutions and foreign governments combined. From 2000 the Bush administration then borrowed a further trillion dollars, and today after the G20 summit, as a global economy we’ve borrowed yet another trillion.

As half of this is going to the IMF where and from whom are we borrowing from? The old US debt clock is up to $11 trillion dollars tonight so it’s fair to say that the world’s greatest economy isn’t shoring up this agreement.

But cross fingers it’ll work and as long as the sun continues to shine we can breath a hopeful sigh of optimism that everything in the end will be alright again.

April’s had a glorious start and for the first time in some months more people than not are saying things are looking a little brighter, so cross fingers we’re through the worst of it. Summer’s coming and let us all hope that the negativity of the last 6 months has disappeared with the passing winter.

We can only hope that our leaders at the G20 and their advisors have got it right and let’s once again look forward to making hay whilst the sun shines!

Happy selling

Sunday, 8 February 2009

Staying safe when searching for a job

Aaron Wallis has written a comprehensive guide to help job seekers stay safe when searching for a new job. With identity theft rife in the UK and candidates perhaps not realising how sensitive a document their CV can be, Aaron Wallis have written a no-nonsense guide detailing precautions to take to help protect you against identity crime.

As Rob Scott, Managing Director explained, “most people regularly shred their bank statements and utility bills yet happily send their CV containing their full name, address, date of birth, career and educational history to complete strangers. This information is just one or two pieces of data away from opening a bank account in their name. With a few searches of social networking sites this additional missing information can be found in minutes”.

The guide goes on to detail recruitment scams and the dangers of social networking when looking for a new job. Download the free article ‘Staying safe when job searching

Thursday, 22 January 2009

Gaining referrals and getting the most out of business networking

Once again it was a fantastic ‘hints and tips’ session at Business Breakfast Milton Keynes, a Buckinghamshire networking group on Tuesday 20 January. The topic was how to get the most out of networking, gain greater numbers of referrals and gain more referrals for fellow business networkers.

Here are some fantastic ideas to make business networking more profitable and worthwhile for both you and your fellow members of networking groups.

54 Great Hints to help you become a more successful business networker

1. ‘Perceived value’ and the uniqueness of a gift to say thanks for business or a referral is often greater than the cost. For instance, a single red rose is remembered longer than a £50 store voucher
2. A referral is ‘someone who likes what you do and takes the effort to tell someone else what you do’. The responsibility on you from this point is to deliver
3. After a networking session follow up the contacts that you made with a handwritten note or postcard – say ‘great to meet you’ and don’t overtly ‘sell’ in this message. This is far more powerful than a standard ‘selling’ emailed c.c. to all!
4. After making a verbal referral follow it up with a complete email containing all of the contact information, why you’re referring them and ‘complete the circle’ by copying in the person that you are referring – then it’s no surprise and they can prepare accordingly.
5. Always send an agenda before every customer meeting, for example 1) Your understanding of their current requirements are, 2) Overview on what you do and how you can increase business/reduce cost/maintain stability, etc. ,3) Your solutions 4) What they look for in a service provider 5) Moving forward. Always ask what they’d like you to prepare beforehand and bring with you. After every meeting ask if they know anyone else that could benefit from your products/services and follow up every client meeting with a ‘thanks for the meeting’ mail.
6. Always thank the person that gives you a referral with a written note, bottle of something, a personal gift or whatever – just say thanks
7. Ask every client at the end of every project whether they’d refer you to others. If not, what could you have done better and learn from it! If, yes – great ask for the referral!
8. Ask for referrals at every opportunity. Have a prompt on your order forms/fact-finding sheets to remind you to ask if your prospect knows of others that could be interested in your product s and services (leave it until the end when you have begun to establish credibility)
9. Ask for referrals from people that have used/purchased your products and services. For a win-win offer a financial incentive, discount or gift in return for referred business
10. At networking meetings, and when meeting clients, listen to what they are really saying – be genuinely interested in their business and take the time to understand their challenges to gain a real insight into their business and objectives.
11. Be consistent and always project yourself in a way that you would like your business to be projected
12. Be honest with people – deliver what you say that you are going to do – no surprises! If you say that you’ll call them at 6:30PM – do it!
13. Be proactive – "give to receive" – most human beings are predetermined to give back to those that have given to them!
14. Be specific with the leads and referrals you would like to gain from fellow networkers. Detail why you should be referred and the kind of introduction that you would like made.
15. Be very specific – ask for a referral into a specific name into a specific company – as they say you’re only 6 degrees of separation from every human being on the planet in a local networking group it’s highly likely that one of your co-workers will know someone who knows someone!
16. Belong to networking groups! Belong to different networking groups – perhaps in different geographic areas or industry specific sectors. That way you have a wider contact base to gain transfer referrals with and for
17. Carry your contacts on your PDA or in a business card folder. If a contact is relevant then offer the details there and then and back it up with an email or note at a later point.
18. Celebrate successful leads and referrals that you’ve converted with your fellow networkers. Shout it from the rooftops – isn’t this the whole point of business networking!
19. Consider every opportunity as a networking opportunity – both inside and outside of ‘work’
20. Detail a discount/gift for referrals at the bottom of your invoice – make it bright prink or yellow to stand out.
21. Develop a ‘power circle’ within networking groups made up of complimentary businesses that can pass leads within each other to provide a complete solution to their clients for the mutual benefit of all (including your clients as the scale and low ‘cost of sale’ could reduce the overall project cost to them). For instance, a copywriter, graphic designer, editor, photographer, web designer and SEO consultancy could form a mutually beneficial ‘power circle’. This relationship could be based on a legalised strategic partnership or simply on the basis of karma – what comes around, goes around!
22. Develop an ability to talk to anyone about anything! Prepare a few current and relevant topical ‘small talk’ stories that you can utilise to ‘break the ice’
23. Develop relationships at networking groups to build ‘rich’ and trusting relationships. The great thing about regular business networking groups is that charlatans will only get away with it once!
24. Ensure that you have your picture on the BBMK website. Guests will remember your face longer than your name!
25. Get your message out with clarity! Work on your ‘elevator pitch’ so straight away fellow networkers will quickly grasp what you do and how they may be able to help you
26. Give feedback on all referrals/leads that you are given. Update the ‘referral giver’ on progress and action taken.
27. Have 1:1’s in a networking group to get to know the person and their business. Understand how their business may be able to help your contacts
28. Have a mindset shift. In the way that selling is helping people that have a need, referring your contacts is helping your clients. Most people would prefer to deal with a supplier that has been recommended than one that has no known working history/credibility and in referring your fellow co-networkers you are genuinely helping them. Ask deeper questions to understand your customer’s current challenges. By having a fuller insight into their business you might be able to refer a fellow networker to help them.
29. Have a referral strategy. Action Coach offer a
free ebook on referral strategies that includes a few tips to get you thinking about your own strategy
30. Have different ‘hooks’ and ‘angles’ to describe your business. Talk about current challenges and recent successes to get people to understand all of the facets of your business.
31. If you offer a diverse range of products and services change your one minute ‘elevator pitch’ every few weeks and over a period of months your co-networkers will have greater insight into the range of services that you offer
32. If you’ve enjoyed the service delivered by a company then link from your website to theirs – links will help boost their search engine rankings. Similarly write testimonials for your suppliers and ask them to place it on their website with a link back to yours. Link to fellow networkers and ask for reciprocal links back.
33. Keep your ears open to opportunities for your fellow networkers. Spot opportunities for how you can help your client by referring your co-networkers
34. Make sure that your customers are happy before you ask them for a referral!
35. Networking groups are not the only place to ‘give and receive referrals’ – always be looking for referrals
36. One you trust your co-networkers have confidence in referring them – it’ll be hard for them to turn up week after week if they haven’t delivered to your contact!
37. Perseverance is king. There may be people in a networking group who don’t quite ‘get’ what you do. Try different angles and keep ‘telling and selling’ your message.
38. Read trade magazines, business papers, etc. for articles on recent business wins, contracts won, successes, job promotions, etc. Send ‘stand out’ postcards congratulating them on their success (don’t sell) and make it memorable. Track the progress of this exercise
39. Referrals can take a long time to come to fruition – be patient.
40. Sell a ‘complete service’ by building strategic partnerships with businesses offering complimentary services. You can then deliver a total service together with your trusted partners
41. Sell your networking group! If it works for you tell others
42. Set up your contacts on outlook so that you can attach the electronic business card (VCARD) of the person that you are referring
43. Set weekly targets for referrals and leads as part of your business development strategy
44. Successful networking takes time. Don’t become disillusioned if you walk away from your first few networking sessions without a fistful of referrals. It takes time for people to place trust in you before they will refer you to their coveted contacts. Networking is a slow but highly fruitful business generation method.
45. Take the time to find out about your customers and co-networkers on a ‘human level’. They may not need any help in their business from your contacts at the moment. However, they may need a carburettor for their 1967 Triumph Dolomite 1850HL – and you might, just might, know the right contact!
46. Tell people that you rely on referral business and ask for it
47. The value that you will gain from a networking group is in the long term. It will take time for group members to understand and trust you before there is a connection and they feel comfortable referring you
48. Three is a powerful number. Always ask if your happy customer could name three people that they could refer you to. That way you’ll get at least one, normally two and occasionally three!
49. Treat all business like it was referred to you by your top client.
50. Trust the people that you refer before you refer them – remember, by referring them you are from this point associated and if they are unable to deliver it could potentially tarnish your relationship with your contact
51. Turn up early to networking sessions as it’s a great opportunity to informally network and gain a greater insight into people’s businesses Of course, the early bird always catches the worm!
52. Use your ‘five and ten minute’ showcases at networking sessions to let others find out more about you at a personal level. That way when they refer you they can paint a picture of you to their client, i.e. climbed Everest, starred in Brookside, spent 22 years in the New Zealand air force, sang in a rock band called ‘Armitage Shanks’, once had dinner with Bonnie Langford (who was that again!), etc.
53. What is a referral and what is a lead? Should you treat them differently? Shouldn’t you treat leads in the same positive way as a referral?
54. When reading newspapers, trade magazines, websites – print/copy/cut out information that could be useful and send it to your prospects and customers

Once again, great thanks and credit must go to all of the members of
BBMK who contributed these fantastic ideas and tips.

We hope that you find them useful. HAPPY NETWORKING!