There are many sales jobs in Germany available. What do you do in sales in Germany and how do you get a job here?
What do you do in sales jobs in Germany?
The job of sales is to sell a company’s products and services to customers. The actual sale is only one side of the job. The other side is ensuring internally that the products and services can be sold. To do this, you have to coordinate between different departments in the company. For example, you have to clarify:
- Is there enough manpower to handle a new order?
- What are the current internal costs and prices?
- Which (potential) customers have we already approached and which ones should we still try?
Structured are the typical processes in sales with this:
- Sales planning
- Analyze sales situation
- Determine sales targets
- Determine sales strategy
- Negotiate and determine sales budget
- Carry out sales measures
- constant coordination within the company
- Monitoring success.
What is special about jobs in sales?
Sales jobs in Germany offer unique opportunities and come with distinct characteristics that set them apart from sales positions in other countries. In this chapter, we will explore what makes jobs in sales in Germany special and highlight key aspects that contribute to their uniqueness.
- High Standards of Professionalism and Expertise Sales professionals in Germany are known for their high standards of professionalism and expertise. German companies value individuals who possess in-depth knowledge of their products or services and can effectively communicate their value proposition to customers. Sales professionals are expected to have a strong understanding of market trends, customer needs, and competitive landscapes to drive successful sales outcomes.
- Emphasis on Long-Term Relationships Building and maintaining long-term relationships with customers is a central focus in German sales culture. Sales professionals prioritize establishing trust, providing excellent customer service, and fostering strong connections with clients. Rather than pursuing short-term gains, the emphasis is on cultivating loyal customer bases and nurturing enduring partnerships.
- Technical and Product Knowledge Jobs in sales in Germany often require a deep level of technical and product knowledge. Sales professionals are expected to have a comprehensive understanding of the features, functionalities, and benefits of the products or services they represent. This expertise enables them to address customer inquiries, offer tailored solutions, and effectively demonstrate the value of their offerings.
- Structured Sales Processes German sales organizations typically follow structured sales processes that emphasize systematic approaches to selling. This includes steps such as prospecting, qualifying leads, conducting thorough needs analyses, presenting proposals, and negotiating contracts. Sales professionals are expected to follow these processes meticulously to ensure efficiency and maximize sales effectiveness.
- Collaboration and Teamwork Collaboration and teamwork play a significant role in sales roles in Germany. Sales professionals often work closely with cross-functional teams, including marketing, product development, and customer support, to deliver integrated solutions to customers. The ability to collaborate effectively, share insights, and align strategies across departments is highly valued in the German sales environment.
- Continuous Learning and Professional Development German companies prioritize ongoing learning and professional development for sales professionals. They encourage individuals to stay updated on industry trends, attend sales training programs, and seek certifications that enhance their skills and knowledge. This commitment to continuous improvement ensures that sales teams remain competitive and adapt to evolving market dynamics.
- Focus on Ethical Practices Integrity and ethical conduct are highly valued in sales jobs in Germany. Sales professionals are expected to operate with honesty, transparency, and fairness in their interactions with customers. German companies place a strong emphasis on ethical practices, ensuring that sales processes are conducted with integrity and respect for all stakeholders involved.
In conclusion, jobs in sales in Germany offer a distinctive professional landscape characterized by high standards of professionalism, emphasis on long-term relationships, technical and product expertise, structured sales processes, collaboration, continuous learning, and ethical practices. Understanding these unique aspects can help sales professionals thrive and succeed in the dynamic German market.
How much do you earn in sales jobs in Germany?
The starting salary for salespeople without experience is around 2,500 euros gross. Depending on the region, industry and size of the company, it can be a little more or less. After a few years of professional experience, you can quickly reach a monthly gross salary of around 3,500 to 4,000 euros.
As a really experienced salesperson in a good medium-sized company, you can easily get up to 10,000 euros gross per month. From around 4,000 euros, it is also possible that you will receive a bonus for sales. There are different models for this. A bonus system is designed to motivate salespeople even more to make sales.
How do you get into sales?
Most companies in Germany don’t have exact requirements here. Business economists are often hired. But you can also easily switch to sales from other areas, such as human resources.
What is important to most companies is that you:
- understand the requirements of the company
- work reliably
- are self-motivated in approaching potential new customers
- are not afraid of people
- are good at mental arithmetic.
In sales you start either as an assistant or as a junior sales manager in Germany. The next level is Sales Manager (usually with a specific area of responsibility). As a Senior Sales Manager, you then already take on partially coordinating tasks and direct others. At the top of the sales service is the Head of Sales. As an intermediate level there may still be team leaders.
You can find plenty of vacant sales jobs on the pages of the employment agency. Other job boards also offer plenty of sales jobs. If you have experience in a particular industry, you can also look directly at the career pages of companies in that industry.
Who should not work in sales in Germany?
In our experience, you should not work in sales if:
- you do not like to talk on the phone
- you find negotiating difficult
- you are not good at remembering numbers
- have difficulty responding to people
- can’t keep many balls in the air at the same time
- want to work in peace and quiet.
Which software is in use in sales in Germany?
In the sales industry, software plays a crucial role in streamlining processes, improving efficiency, and maximizing sales effectiveness. Germany, being a highly competitive market, utilizes a range of software solutions to meet the specific needs of sales teams. Let’s explore some of the commonly used software in sales in Germany.
- Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Software: CRM software is widely adopted by sales teams in Germany to manage customer interactions, track leads, and streamline sales processes. Popular CRM platforms include Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics 365, and SAP Sales Cloud.
- Sales Force Automation (SFA) Software: SFA software focuses on automating and optimizing sales activities, such as lead management, contact management, and opportunity tracking. German sales teams often utilize SFA solutions like Pipedrive, Zoho CRM, and HubSpot Sales.
- Sales Performance Management (SPM) Software: SPM software helps sales organizations monitor and improve their sales performance. It encompasses functionalities such as sales forecasting, territory management, incentive compensation, and analytics. Well-known SPM tools in Germany include Xactly, Optymyze, and Anaplan.
- Sales Enablement Software: Sales enablement software equips sales teams with the necessary resources and content to effectively engage with prospects and close deals. These tools often include features like content management, sales training, and analytics. Some popular sales enablement platforms used in Germany are Seismic, Highspot, and Showpad.
- Configure, Price, Quote (CPQ) Software: CPQ software simplifies the quoting and proposal generation process, allowing sales teams to create accurate and customized quotes for customers. In Germany, CPQ solutions such as Salesforce CPQ, Apttus CPQ, and PROS CPQ are widely employed to streamline sales quoting workflows.
- Sales Analytics and Business Intelligence (BI) Software: Sales analytics and BI software provide valuable insights into sales performance, customer behavior, and market trends. These tools enable sales teams to make data-driven decisions and optimize their sales strategies. Popular sales analytics and BI platforms in Germany include Tableau, Power BI, and QlikView.
- Sales Engagement Software: Sales engagement software helps sales representatives automate and optimize their communication and outreach efforts with prospects and customers. These tools typically offer features like email automation, sales cadence management, and sales call tracking. German sales teams often leverage sales engagement solutions like Outreach, SalesLoft, and Groove.
- E-commerce Platforms: As online sales continue to grow, e-commerce platforms have become vital for businesses in Germany. These platforms facilitate online product catalog management, shopping cart functionality, and secure payment processing. Well-known e-commerce platforms used in Germany include Shopify, WooCommerce, and Magento.
- Sales Forecasting and Demand Planning Software: Sales forecasting and demand planning software assist sales teams in predicting future sales trends and optimizing inventory management. These tools utilize historical data, market analysis, and predictive algorithms to provide accurate sales forecasts. German companies often rely on solutions like DemandCaster, Logility, and Blue Yonder for sales forecasting and demand planning.
- Collaboration and Communication Tools: Effective collaboration and communication are essential for sales teams to work together seamlessly. German sales teams often utilize collaboration tools like Microsoft Teams, Slack, and Asana to enhance internal communication, share documents, and coordinate sales activities.
In conclusion, the sales industry in Germany relies on a variety of software solutions to drive sales growth and enhance sales performance. From CRM and SFA software to sales analytics tools and collaboration platforms, the use of these software solutions empowers sales teams to operate efficiently and effectively in the competitive German market.
Questions and answers about jobs in sales
Do you have to speak English in sales in Germany?
It depends on your employer’s customers. If your employer also has international customers, then you should have a good command of English, above level B1, if you also have to conduct negotiations. If your employer’s products and services are only sold in German-speaking countries, you usually need German only – but on level B2 or higher.
What is the internal sales department?
The internal sales department usually does not have direct contact with (potential) customers, but prepares the work of sales people with customer contact and helps with follow-up. In particular, this involves checks, calculations, formatting documents and keeping lists and overviews.
How many sales job openings are there in Germany?
In Germany there are currently at least 50,000 vacancies in sales. The federal employment agency already lists nearly 50,000 sales-related jobs, plus many jobs that are not advertised.
What is the German term for sales?
In German, the term ‘sales’ means ‘Vertrieb’.
Can internationals work in sales in Germany?
Yes, internationals can also work in sales in Germany. Many German companies are internationally active and are particularly looking for personnel with sales experience and a good command of English. French, Chinese and Spanish are also often very welcome. However, since most German companies communicate in German, as a foreigner you will also need to speak really good German to be able to perform your duties.