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If you want to become a sales support representative, pay close attention to the qualifications listed in employer’s help wanted ads and job postings. The job duties of those who work in sales support vary greatly, so you may find wide variances in educational and experience requirements. In general, however, you will likely find that most employers will want you have at least a high school education, a pleasant phone manner, and sound keyboarding skills. You should also have some experience with computers. Job experience in customer service or office administration can also be very helpful, as you may be expected to operate in both roles while working in sales support.
The basic skills necessary to become a sales support representative usually include the ability to effectively communicate with both customers and sales prospects, as well as other members of the sales team. As is true of anyone working in sales, having a winning personality will likely increase your chances of both getting hired into a sales support position as well as progressing in your career. In some cases, you will be expected to function in an administrative support role as well, so having expertise in common database, spreadsheet and word processing software is often essential.
The education required to become a sales support representative depends on your job duties. If you hope to become a sales support representative for a company that sells highly technical products, a college degree or other formal training in that industry can be immensely helpful. For example, if you become a sales support representative for a company that sells computers, having a degree or a certificate in computer science may be a hiring requirement. In situations where you will be working with products or services that are not particularly complex or technical, no higher or specialized education may be needed. Keep in mind, however, that if you want to advance within the company, you may need to eventually complete an undergraduate or postgraduate degree.
Required job experience may include an employment history in sales, customer service or office administration. Since many employers may expect to promote their sales support staff into regular sales positions, you may wish to emphasize your enthusiasm for sales during interviews or in your cover letters. Since you will often be dealing with the public, a potential employer may want to talk to your previous employers about your ability to work interact in a positive way with customers and colleagues.