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Talent Acquisition

Why You Should Consider Sales Talent For Your Real Estate Team

Expanding your search to top sales talent—not just licensed real estate professionals—significantly speeds up hiring of buyer’s agents.
A few years ago, you worked solo as an agent. Now you’re running a successful real estate team that has too much business to handle. Even after hiring an administrative assistant, you don’t have time to nurture every lead that comes your way. When leads start pouring in, real estate teams immediately think about hiring a licensed buyer’s agent as quickly as possible. The reality of this job market? It takes time to hire a qualified and licensed candidate for this role. Expanding your search to top sales talent—not just licensed real estate professionals—significantly speeds up hiring of buyer’s agents, along with other benefits. In this post, we’ll highlight the six main reasons to consider broadening your recruitment process to include sales talent when you need a buyer’s agent. Let’s dive in!

1: Time-to-hire is much faster.

Hiring a buyer’s agent usually doesn’t happen within a few days. Without outside help, hiring a buyer’s agent can often take three months, if not more. The process is lengthy because the hiring pool for real estate sales is somewhat small. Currently, there are more than 20,633 resumes for “real estate sales” across Indeed’s entire database. Compare that figure to the 59,768 resumes for “inside sales” and the 31,880 resumes for “outside sales.” In total, that’s 90,648 resumes for inside and outside sales versus 20,633 for real estate sales. By considering the best salespeople from a variety of sales backgrounds, you have 339% more candidates to consider for your opening. With a larger hiring pool including those with sales experience, you’ll be able to find top talent  for the role much quicker than if you only consider licensed buyer’s agents.

2: Sales professionals can get their license in no time.

Say you find a high performance sales professional who you’d love to hire, but your real estate sales team needs them to start handling the buyer’s agent tasks that require a license—like negotiating with clients—relatively quickly. Luckily, the process for getting a real estate license typically takes no more than three months. If you hire a sales professional in the fall or winter, they can be a licensed buyer’s agent by the time spring busy season hits. A sales professional has already built many of the necessary buyer’s agent skills, such as negotiating offers with clients, through their past experience. With this background, the right person will be able to hit the ground running in no time once they have their license.

3: Sales professionals can accomplish a lot while they get their license.

When your new hire is in the process of getting their license, they can still do meaningful work for your sales team. If they have a background as an inside sales agent, they can take care of nurturing your leads, both old and new. While you attend a closing and work on a new listing agreement, your ISA can:
  • Make outbound calls to find seller leads
  • Attend a sales meeting
  • Follow up with older leads
In most states, a professional with an outside sales background can also help your team with consultative client work. They can:
  • Guide clients to help them meet their property needs
  • Host open houses
  • Serve as a liaison between your seller and potential buyers
Even without a license, your new sales hire can help your real estate team by communicating with clients, attending meetings, and more. All of these activities lay the groundwork for future sales performance. When they lighten the load for other team members, they’re contributing to a positive, more harmonious company culture as well.

4: Sales professionals are easier to teach.

What’s your team’s sales style? Whether they’re licensed or not, your new hire will need to learn your team’s sales style. Sometimes though, it can be difficult to teach licensed agents how your team works with clients because they have already formed habits around working in real estate. You might hire a buyer’s agent, for example, that comes from a team that negotiated a bit more aggressively than yours. Or the buyer’s agent might be used to responding to leads within one business day, while your team prefers to respond within minutes. A sales professional who doesn’t have a license can learn about your sales style quicker. They may have general sales success habits that they’ve developed, just not in a real estate context. Working in a new environment, they will most likely be more open to adopting your sales team’s tactics than a seasoned agent who has worked differently with other teams.

5: Sales professionals share DISC traits.

How do you know you’re hiring a future top performer for your open sales positions? You compare the results of their DISC personality assessment to a typical real estate agent profile. After administering assessments to over 5,000 real estate brokers, we learned what a great DISC typically looks like for a real estate sales agent: Real Estate Sales Agent DISC Profile  

  • D (Decisive) – Mid-range (52)
  • I (Interactive) – High (81)
  • S (Stable) – Mid-range (58)
  • C (Cautious) – Low  (20)
Inside Sales Agent DISC Profile  

  • D (Decisive) – Mid-range (52)
  • I (Interactive) – High (81)
  • S (Stable) – Mid-range (58)
  • C (Cautious) – Low  (20)
Outside Sales Agent DISC Profile  

  • D (Decisive) – High (90)
  • I (Interactive) – High (90)
  • S (Stable) – Moderately Low (25)
  • C (Cautious) – Low  (20)
When you compare the three patterns, the ISA profile is identical to that of a successful a real estate sales agent. If you hire individuals with this ISA pattern, they have all of the right traits to transition to becoming a buyer’s agent. If you hire an people closer aligned with the Outside Sales profile, note the High D/I. This is the pattern of a true Hunter/Gatherer salesperson. They prefer a role where rewards are tied directly to performance, like lots of freedom and naturally like to be in charge of the sale. They tend to have a more aggressive selling style. Here’s where extra training in your company’s sales style will pay off. Offering a DISC assessment as part of a comprehensive hiring process will help you to identify which candidates have the raw skills needed to become top performers in sales roles. Knowing candidates’ DISC personality profiles allows you to conduct a more insightful interview process and make more informed hiring decisions. With a DISC profile that closely matches that of a successful real estate sales agent, both inside and outside sales professionals have the necessary qualities to guide clients and support them through a purchase.

6: Many agents enter real estate with a sales background.

Even with the reasons above, you might still be wondering whether the transition from sales to real estate is possible for your new hire. Don’t worry! Many other agents have made this exact same career change before. According to the 2017 Texas Association of Realtors Report, sales is the second-most-common prior career for U.S. Realtors. 16% of the surveyed Realtors had a background in sales and retail.  Interestingly, it’s more common for an agent to start in sales than to have only worked in real estate. Just 4% of Realtors reported that real estate is their first career. Considering how many agents have switched to real estate from sales, your team has every reason to hire a sales professional. Help them learn your team’s style and get a license, and they’ll be a successful buyer’s agent and sales leader in just a few months.

A sales professional today could be your buyer’s agent for years

It doesn’t matter whether they’ve worked in real estate before—a  sales professional could become the next great buyer’s agent on your team. They have a background in negotiating and lead nurturing, so they’re equipped to help out your team as a new hire while they work to get their license. In a few months’ time, they’ll be able to help you and your team even more as a licensed buyer’s agent by settling offers, handling agreements, and more. Instruct your hiring managers to widen your pool of applicants by seeking top sales candidates from diverse sales organizations. Your sales team will thank you! Ready to hire?


Kathy Bentz

Find your people. Grow your team. Meet your Wizehire.