I’ve done a few presentations titled something like, “HR Tech Buyers Guide”, “How to Buy HR Tech”, etc. The presentation is designed for HR and TA practitioners to help them become better buyers of HR Tech. To understand the crap that HR and TA Tech vendors do and say to get you to buy stuff you might not need, want, or will use.
The interesting thing about these presentations is that half the audience turns out to be the actual vendors themselves wanting to hear what it is I’m telling the real HR and TA leaders! It’s smart for the vendors. It helps make the better sellers as well. Well, at least some that actually listen!
Based on these interactions I decided to build a series of what has come out of interactions with the vendors themselves, aptly named “Notes to HR Tech Vendors”. Look I don’t alway have to be creative! Enjoy!
Notes to HR Tech Vendors #7 – Stop It Already With All These Titles!
I went to an HR Tech vendor website the other day. I wanted to get a demo. You see, I’m in the market for a new ATS. Something specifically designed for staffing firms, but that also has some really modern CRM functionality (let the emails pitches begin!).
The crazy part was that this vendor had nowhere on their site where I could schedule a demo, or have someone contact me for a demo! I could see a 3-minute video demo and I could try their product for free for two weeks, but not just schedule a demo.
So, being a headhunter by trade, I go searching for a Sales Pro from this vendor. They had about 100 employees on LinkedIn and crazy enough, I couldn’t find a sales pro listed! But, here’s a list of titles I find:
Strategic Account Mgrs
Pre-Sales Solutions Consultant
Enterprise Sales Leader
Lead Renewals Mgr.
Commercial Sales VP
Now, I’ve been around the game for a while, so I figured this organization was using “Account Executive” instead of some other way to identify who the heck was actually selling. To confuse matters, they also had people with the title “Commercial Sales” and “Enterprise Sales”. I’m not sure what the difference was! I also couldn’t figure out what the hell a ‘Renewals’ person was vs. a ‘Lead Renewals’ person.
I didn’t even write down all the titles I found, but out of 100 employees, there had to be at least 50 different titles! I’m wondering if this is that millennial trophy thing I’ve been hearing about?! Let’s throw out titles to the crew like a rapper making it rain at a strip club!
The only thing you really need to do in selling HR software is let people know how to go about buying your software!
What “titles” would I prefer? How about:
- Sales Rep
- Solution Sales Rep
- Call Me to Buy Our Crap
99.9% of organizations aren’t going to just sign up for the free version of a major HR/TA software. It’s great that you’ll let me use it for free, but I don’t have time to hassle around with that. I want a demo. Then, I might play in your free sandbox a little. I’ll compare against others. Then, I’ll make a decision.
So, we all think this one example of this poor company is funny, right? The problem is, it’s most HR Technology companies and many of the companies that I love! Can we stop it already with these freaking titles!?
Why do you want to spend the time dealing with sales people, can’t you just go to the ADP marketplace and buy a new ATS?
Find your view interesting, since Human Resources practitioners have been the biggest proponents of the title mega confusion game during the past few years. Try to find a “human resources” professional in many organizations. Not only is there the need to abbreviate functions to initials (e.g. HR, TA, HRS, ATS) but there is a penchant to move to obscurity. Close to home, for example, Talent Acquisition Specialist evades most applicants and even employees. In many organizations employees are roaming the halls looking for a human resources manager to help them, passing offices for “Advanced Human Capital Leaders”.