Secrets to a Successful Sales Recruitment Process

| 4 minutes

On paper, most recruitment processes look pretty similar: create a job description, attract candidates, go through a series of interviews to figure out who’s the best fit. 

But what seems like a simple process, can easily go wrong. Underestimating the recruitment process can lead to a bad hire, high turnover, and a lot of wasted time and money. 

Here’s how to go beyond the fundamentals of the sales recruitment process to boost your chances of finding the perfect new hire.  

Thinking time

The most important part of the hiring process starts before you’ve even written a job description. 

As well as defining the role and recruitment process in detail, invest time thinking about skills gaps and perspectives you’re missing in your team. 

Think about the types of challenges and ways of working that your new team member will need to enjoy, as well as any shared values you want to see. 

Having that clarity before you start the process will enable you to recognise the perfect person when you meet them, leading to faster, better decision making. 

Research the market 

Before going live with your vacancy, spend time understanding how your role, salary, and job title compare to the rest of the market. 

Not only is it a useful sense check, it will also help you understand how you can present and differentiate your organisation in order to attract top talent. 

Job ads that emphasise work-life balance, for example, have increased by 65%, with vacancies that mention culture, flexibility, and wellbeing receiving three times more views and twice as many applications, according to data from LinkedIn

Set aside enough time 

Recruitment is time consuming, and HR Directors spend about a month (27.59 days) recruiting for open positions. 

From reviewing CVs to arranging convenient interview times, make sure you and any other key stakeholders set aside enough time to manage the recruitment process successfully.

If that’s not possible, look for a trusted recruitment partner with expertise in your sector to ensure you can focus only on the most promising people and that candidates have a positive experience that protects your employer brand. 

Target passive candidates

If you’re relying on exactly the right person finding your job listing at exactly the right time for them, you’re going to be severely limiting the pool of potential candidates and missing out on talking to people who could be a great fit. 

Across the workforce, passive candidates make up 37% of the US job market, rising to 45% in the UK. Engaging passive candidates is especially important when you’re hiring for senior roles where there’s less turnover. 

Reaching out to passive candidates is time intensive, so allow extra time in the recruitment process for outreach and work with employees and specialist recruiters to tap into existing networks. 

Be prepared to act quickly

Top candidates will quickly find themselves in multiple recruitment processes, and leaving too long between rounds or taking a long time to make a decision risks losing out to competing firms. 

Half of all candidates have turned down a job offer because the recruitment process was too long, with as many as two-thirds of employers saying they missed out on their top candidate because they moved too slowly. 

If you talk to someone that ticks all the boxes and you’re already imagining them in your next team meeting, make that offer quickly to avoid missing out. 

Though the stages of the recruitment process are simple, getting it right can be hard and a bad hire is a serious drain on energy, time, and budgets. 

From defining who you’re looking for to reaching out to passive candidates, you’ll need to ring fence enough time throughout the recruitment process to give you the best chance of finding your ideal candidate. 

We’ve invested 20 years in understanding the market and building a network of top Fintech talent, getting to know the people behind the CVs and the culture behind the companies. Then we find the perfect match. 

Fintech sales hiring is what we do, what we know, and what we love. Find out more about how we create efficient, successful recruitment processes that help your business grow. 

Nurturing Talent Even in Goodbyes: Finiti’s Guide to Positive Candidate Exits

| 5 minutes

In the rush of finding that perfect candidate and the busy back-and-forth about contracts and start dates, it can be easy to overlook a really important part of the recruitment process: unsuccessful candidates. 

Every aspect of the recruitment process is a reflection of your brand – both as a business and as an employer. 

Though someone may not have been the perfect fit this time, a positive exit makes sure candidates only have good things to say to other job hunters and peers, leaving the door open for a positive return tomorrow. 

Here’s how to build your talent pipeline by handling goodbyes with grace and empathy. 

Insightful Constructive Feedback 

One of the biggest questions a candidate is left with after a rejection is “why?”. But few businesses provide an answer: 94% of candidates say they’d like interview feedback, but only 41% have actually received it. 

Mitigate potential concerns from the legal team by keeping feedback factual, constructive, and forward looking. Communicating any feedback in writing can also help avoid miscommunication and give candidates time to reflect before responding. 

Timely and Transparent Communication

Hiring is a time-consuming process, particularly when you’re inundated with applications. 

Increasingly, that means communication slips. The latest Talent Board report found that over a third of candidates were waiting several months or more to hear about next steps, a 48% rise from 2021. 

Whether it’s good news or bad news, responding to candidates quickly goes a long way towards building a positive employer brand. 

Personable Rejection Messages

Words matter, especially when you’re communicating something you know will be disappointing. 

This isn’t a job for ChatGPT. Make sure the messages you send are warm and personable. Although it might just be one of hundreds of template-based rejection emails for you, it’s a big deal to hopeful candidates. 

If you’re using templates, work with your brand or marketing team to spend time crafting ones that convey the key information and fit with your employer brand. 

It’s their last point of contact with you, so make sure they leave the process with a positive impression. 

Encouraging Future Applications

Be clear that just because someone wasn’t right for this particular role, you’d still consider them for future opportunities. 

Show you really mean it by including a link to your current vacancies page; you could even consider starting an email list to alert them to new opportunities with your organisation. 

Not only are you leaving that candidate with a positive impression, you’re building a talent pipeline of candidates you know are interested in working for you. 

Networking Opportunities and Resources

Whether it’s an online event that you’re hosting or a course you know is particularly useful for your team, consider sharing ways a candidate could usefully progress their industry knowledge to make them an even stronger candidate next time. 

Not only will this attention to detail set you apart from other potential employers, it also shows that you’re invested in your team’s learning and development – even before they’ve started. 

Rejection in Context

Rather than thinking about an unsuccessful candidate in isolation, put it in the wider context of the value of building and maintaining your employer brand. 

A positive employer brand can speed up the hiring process, decrease your average cost per hire by 50%, and significantly boost the number of strong candidates applying for your roles. 

If your team is short on time, find a recruitment partner that’s able to ensure candidates have a positive experience. 

Remember, candidates often won’t differentiate between internal recruitment managers and external recruiters, so make sure you work with someone that knows your industry and business to leave a positive last impression. 

From curating a short list to handling goodbyes, Finiti Search is the only recruitment company specialising in Fintech sales roles. 

We get to know candidates and companies inside out in order to find the perfect match. Learn more about our talent network or get in touch with the team today about your vacancy. 

2024 Fintech Market Outlook: Trends, Challenges and Opportunities for CEOs

| 7 minutes

In the ever-evolving world of fintech, CEOs must remain vigilant and forward-thinking to navigate the shifting landscape successfully. 

As we approach 2024, the fintech industry is poised for significant transformations. Let’s see what trends, challenges and opportunities will shape the fintech market in the coming year.

Trends in Fintech for 2024

1. Digital Transformation Acceleration

The pandemic expedited digital transformation across industries, and fintech is no exception. 

A substantial 92% of finance leaders have already recognized the value derived from AI within their business operations. Additionally, a noteworthy 68% express openness to incorporating AI insights when navigating critical business decisions.

As we move into 2024, we anticipate a continued focus on enhancing digital capabilities, improving user experiences, and embracing automation and artificial intelligence to streamline financial services.

2. Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Integration

Blockchain and cryptocurrencies will play a more substantial role in the fintech landscape. 

With growing acceptance of cryptocurrencies, fintech companies are exploring new ways to integrate blockchain technology into their operations, potentially reshaping the financial industry’s infrastructure.

3. Sustainable Finance

ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) considerations are increasingly important for investors. 

Fintech firms that can provide sustainable financial solutions and incorporate ESG principles into their offerings stand to gain a competitive edge.

According to a recent Morningstar report, the realm of ESG investing has surpassed $2.5 trillion, marking a notable 12 percent surge from 2021 and is predicted to continue growing in 2024.

4. Open Banking Expansion

Open banking initiatives continue to gain traction, enabling greater data sharing and collaboration between financial institutions and fintech companies.

CEOs should monitor these developments and consider how their organizations can leverage open banking for innovation and growth.

Challenges Companies Will Face in 2024

1. Regulatory Uncertainty

The regulatory landscape for fintech remains dynamic, with governments worldwide introducing new regulations to address the industry’s rapid growth. Companies must stay aware of these changes and adapt their strategies and compliance measures accordingly.

2. Cybersecurity Risk

With the increasing reliance on digital solutions, cybersecurity threats continue to evolve. Fintech firms must invest in robust security measures and stay vigilant against cyberattacks, which can have severe consequences for both reputation and finances.

Advanced solutions such as tokenization and biometric authentication effectively address these concerns. Features like digital wallets, wallet push provisioning, and card controls enhance security by eliminating the need for sharing physical banking information.

3. Talent Shortages

As the demand for fintech talent remains high, companies may face challenges in recruiting and retaining top talent. Developing comprehensive talent acquisition and retention strategies will be crucial for staying competitive.

Opportunities on the Horizon

1. Strategic Acquisitions

Decreasing valuations in some fintech sectors open doors for strategic acquisitions. 

Traditional financial institutions are eyeing fintech startups that have weathered the changes and can offer innovative solutions. Companies should consider their organization’s position in this acquisition landscape.

2. Market Resilience

Just as HR and payroll-focused fintech firms have seen steady valuations, companies can identify resilient, growing sectors within fintech and position their companies to thrive. 

Fintech firms in Q1 2022 peaked at a whopping $600.0 million, but saw a decline to $90.0 million by Q1 2023. This suggests a significant shift in investor sentiment, with an increased focus on profitability over growth, and a potentially challenging fundraising environment for growth-stage startups.

By aligning with market trends and focusing on business efficiency, companies can increase the likelihood of success in 2024.

3. The Shift in Hybrid Work Models

The traditional notions of work and office dynamics are undergoing a transformative shift. The rise of hybrid work models, incorporating both remote and in-office work, became the norm rather than the exception after the pandemic.

However, as we approach the new year an impressive 90% of businesses intend to introduce return-to-office guidelines by the conclusion of 2024, as indicated by a report from Resume Builder in August 2023. The survey, which involved 1,000 corporate leaders, revealed this widespread trend.

By aligning recruiting strategies with the principles of flexibility, technology adoption, employee well-being, clear communication, and professional development, fintech companies can not only attract top talent but also build resilient and high-performing teams in the evolving landscape of candidates returning from remote work.

Building the Right Team

Building a team that can adapt to a changing market and achieve sustainable growth is a CEO’s priority.

This upcoming new year promises to be a year of both challenges and opportunities in the fintech industry. CEOs who proactively address regulatory changes, invest in cybersecurity, seize acquisition opportunities, and focus on market trends and efficient operations will be better positioned to succeed. 

In a dynamic environment, having the right talent is crucial. Finiti Search specializes in recruiting top fintech sales talent, ensuring a perfect match between preferences, personalities, and job specifications.

At Finiti, we understand the unique talent needs of the fintech sector and are here to assist you in building the team that will drive your organization’s success. To discuss your sales leadership recruitment or chat about shaping your Sales division, reach out to the Finiti Search team.

5 resolutions to help grow your sales team in 2024

| 5 minutes

Forget going to the gym more often or cutting down on the chocolate biscuits. We’ve been talking to some of our clients about how they’re approaching Fintech sales recruitment in the new year and the changes they want to make. 

Here are our top resolutions Chief Revenue Officers need to put in place to make sure they’re securing top sales talent in 2024.

1. Have a clear budget (and some contingency) 

Budgets are stretched at the moment, but with candidates entering more recruitment processes than ever before, you don’t want to miss out on a top sales performer because of a relatively small amount of money. 

Extending the recruitment process or hiring an underperformer will almost certainly cost more — as much as three times their salary according to the Recruitment & Employment Confederation

If there’s no wiggle room on base salary, really think about what you could offer around equity, commission structure, health and wellbeing and short-term guarantees. 

Clear, compelling incentives not only set you aside from the competition but will make sure your new hire is motivated from the moment they start. 

2. Plan out the recruitment timeline and process

A candidate-rich market has given some companies a false sense of security. 

We’ve seen CROs take their time with the final stages of recruitment only to miss out on their frontrunner because they’ve been snapped up by a competitor. 

Before going live with your recruitment, have the full process and timeline mapped out. Make sure you, and any other decision makers, have key dates in your diary — in pen. 

Having that clear plan will help maintain momentum, avoiding the stop-start stalling that risks candidates losing patience and losing interest. 

3. Ignore resolution number 2

As important as the process is, you sometimes need to be opportunistic when it comes to hiring top sales talent. 

If you’re confident you’ve found a great fit and you’ve covered everything you wanted to… end the recruitment process and make them an offer. A strong offer. 

It shows the candidate how serious you are and how good a fit you think they’ll be for your team, helping you get ahead of other offers and avoid missing out.

It’s also more respectful to other candidates in the process; they may not have been your top choice this time, but if they’re strong enough to be on your shortlist, you want to leave them with a positive impression of your company as an employer. 

4. Apply your sales mindset to the recruitment process 

Before thinking about the job description or where to advertise, make sure you’re clear on the selling points for your company and the role. 

Try to go beyond generic perks or statements everyone’s heard before about growth and being ambitious — be specific. 

Just as you think through what you want from a candidate for the job spec, have a clear list of what your Sales Team and business offers candidates that you can weave into your comms throughout the recruitment process. 

5. Find the right partner

Making a successful hire relies on having the best, most relevant candidates in the recruitment process from day one. 

Rather than hoping your dream candidate just happens to stumble across your ad amongst the 58 million other companies posting on LinkedIn, working with the right recruitment partner can make the process quicker and more successful. 

Industry expertise is critical. The right recruitment partner will be able not only to identify the best-fit candidates but to sell your opportunity to them based on their knowledge of the candidate, the business, and the industry. 

It’s something we do a lot with our Fintech talent network. Very often we’re able to draw passive candidates who weren’t job hunting into the recruitment process by matchmaking their strengths and motivations with the hiring company. 

For help finding your perfect fintech sales hire and making these 2024 resolutions a reality, get in touch with the Finiti team to tell us more about your vacancy, your business, and your dream candidate.

Fintech Valuations: Navigating a changing landscape

| 5 minutes

Sky-high valuations are so 2021. Faced with soaring interest rates and cautious investors, the overnight Fintech unicorn is back to being a myth.

 Fintech firms are facing a new reality, and with it new valuations that cause headaches, create challenges, and present new opportunities. 

The Decline in Fintech Valuations

According to analysts at Jefferies Group, listed Fintech firms saw their valuations plummet by 70% in 2022. 

Even the biggest names aren’t immune. In early 2021, payments giant Stripe achieved a funding valuation of $95 billion, but its secondary market valuation has since dropped by 73% to $52.5 billion

Cautious investors, cooling valuations

The changing valuations in the Fintech industry reflect the uncertain economic conditions. As interest rates rise and the global economy remains unsteady, investors are becoming more cautious and reevaluating their strategies. 

Combined with the high-profile collapse of Crypto Exchange FTX and the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank in March, investor confidence in Fintech has cooled and so have the valuations. 

Disaster or recalibration? 

At first glance, it seems like bad news for Fintech. If valuations are down, does that mean Fintech’s heyday is over already? 

Industry thought leaders and some investors see it differently, framing today’s lower valuations as a much needed recalibration. 

At the end of September the European Investment Fund (EIF) held a VC event in Luxembourg. They made it clear that they see the valuations of 2020 and 2021 as the issue – anomalies – and today’s valuations have got things back on track. 

New valuations, new opportunities

Decreasing valuations open up opportunities for traditional banks to enter the Fintech space through strategic acquisitions. 

JPMorgan Chase, the largest U.S. lender, jumped on the Fintech acquisition opportunity early, acquiring Renovite Technologies Inc, a cloud-based payments technology company, in September 2022. 

Traditional banking institutions have seen the demand for more innovative financial services. They’ve seen which startups have flourished, and now they have a chance to snap them up at a bargain rate. 

Bucking the trend

Like every good trend, there are some exceptions. HR and payroll-focused firms have seen their valuations hold or even increase. 

Despite the collapse of their banking partner, Rippling’s $11.25 billion 2022 valuation held steady in their recent $500M series E funding round.

HR-tech unicorn Gusto saw their valuation increase by 5% to £10 billion, and remote-working focused Deel remains one to watch as long as they continue to prioritise compliance.  

Their resilience is down to their focus in an area associated with business efficiency. As companies prioritise digital transformation and remote work, the demand for streamlined HR and payroll services has increased. 

For Fintech firms that can identify market trends and position themselves in resilient, growing sectors, overnight success could still be a dream come true. 

Building the team

Building the right team to navigate a changing market, fluctuating valuations, and even possible acquisitions is hard. 

Creating a sustainable revenue pipeline is key to achieving that all-important growth and maintaining valuations. 

We only recruit in one sector, for one type of role: Fintech sales. With our talent network, we know the top fintech talent personally, taking the time to match preferences and personalities as well as job specs. 

To tell us about a sales leader recruitment brief or just to chat to us about the shape of your Sales division, get in touch with the Finiti Search team.

Candidates vs. Companies: Navigating a cautious market

| 5 minutes

The current economic climate is influencing people and businesses the world over, and Fintech is no exception. 

It isn’t just the financial pressures that shape the market, it’s a feeling of uncertainty. Workers are questioning their job security; companies are questioning whether it really is the right time to hire and which roles will add value.

With a decrease in funding and a flurry of high-profile redundancies, on the surface it looks like more candidates competing for a smaller pool of jobs. 

But there’s more to it. Here’s what candidates and hiring companies need to keep in mind in today’s market. 

For Candidates: 

  • Nurture your network

Even if you’re not currently job hunting, think long term and proactively build your network. 

Reach out and connect with peers, leaders, and recruiters. According to LinkedIn, 70% of jobs are never published publicly; new roles are often filled via someone’s network. 

Building those relationships when there’s no “ask” will mean you have a ready-to-go network of people you can turn to and who know you when you are looking for something new. 

  • Explore the level of risk

Everyone has a different risk appetite, particularly when it comes to their job. 

For those who are more cautious, mitigate the risk by focusing your search on the most in-demand areas of Fintech, such as anti-fraud, AI, and ESG. 

It can also pay to look more closely at companies that seem like a “risk”. In Fintech, today’s startup, perhaps offering a smaller package, can be tomorrow’s household name. 

  • Avoid knee-jerk applications 

Avoid playing the numbers game when it comes to applications.

Take the time to reflect on your skills, expertise, and interests. Share those preferences with industry recruiters and tailor your applications to the opportunities you’re most passionate about. 

As the only Fintech sales recruitment specialists, we have the largest network of Fintech talent. We get to know candidates, often placing people multiple times throughout their career. Find out more about joining our talent network. 

For Companies:

  • Communicate the long-term vision 

Uncertainty often stems from a lack of clarity or understanding. Proactively communicate your long-term strategy, including funding, internally and externally; this will help reassure and retain existing sales talent as well as attracting new talent. 

This is especially important if you’ve recently made redundancies; sales leaders and their teams will be looking for reassurance, and staying quiet might encourage otherwise happy employees to look elsewhere. 

  • Dig into motivation 

Though it may seem like there are a lot of candidates around, we’re seeing a rise in the “just-in-case” job hunters who dip their toe in the interview process as a safety net just in case they’re made redundant. 

Many candidates are weighing up a whole range of options, including staying with their current company. 

If a candidate’s main or only reason for leaving their current role is money, they’re unlikely to make the jump and take on the upheaval and risk of a new role. 

Partner with a recruitment firm you trust to make sure candidate motivations are properly explored prior to shortlisting and that you’re only spending time talking to people who are really invested in your business and the role.  

  • Act quickly 

With fewer opportunities around, candidates are often involved in many application processes, and top talent can end up getting snapped up by the competition if you move too slowly. 

According to the Jobvite Employ Quarterly Insights Report, the average time-to-hire is four weeks or less. Be flexible and be prepared to respond quickly when you talk to someone that’s perfect for your firm. 

Finding the right person is hard. Finding the right person at the right time is even harder. It’s why we maintain and nurture a network of top Fintech talent, often drawing passive candidates into the process when we see it’s a great match. 

If you’re getting more quantity than quality applications and want to make sure you’re spending your time on the most promising candidates, get in touch with our team today to tell us about your brief and to start the process of finding your dream candidate. 

 

How to tell if you’ve seen a unicorn

| 5 minutes

Having focused on Fintech for almost 20 years, we’ve seen many ambitious startups grow to become industry-defining leaders and been lucky enough to help them build their teams along the way, including the likes of PayPal

We might not have a crystal ball, but over the years there are a couple of key things that make a startup stand out as having true unicorn potential. 

Killer Concept 

If your first reaction to a new product or service is “how does that not exist already?”, it’s a good sign they’re onto something big. 

Whether it’s something that vastly improves an existing product or service or an innovation that fills a gap in the market, a great concept is the foundational characteristic of any potential unicorn. 

It can’t just be a good idea. To reach household-name status, startups will need a well-defined business model with a clear path to profitability and sustainable revenue generation.

A-Team 

The next thing to look at is the people responsible for turning that great concept into a business: the leadership team

Low turnover at senior levels and a clearly articulated vision are must-haves when spotting future unicorns. 

Dig into the background and experience of those in leadership roles. People with expertise and proven experience in both the sector and a startup environment will be best placed to help businesses navigate challenges and successfully scale. 

Sustained growth

If the idea and the team meet the mark, the next proof of unicorn potential is in the numbers. 

A dazzling balance sheet one financial year might help secure that next funding round, but businesses with true long-term potential will show sustained growth over a number of years

Depending on the product or service, this might be growth in the number of users, the number of markets the business operates in, as well as factors like market share or even an active community on social media. 

Funding 

With sites like PitchBook and Crunchbase, it’s possible to look back and see how much funding a startup has managed to secure and who their backers are. 

Problems with cash flow and funding is one of the main reasons startups fail. 

When a business has managed to secure funding from big-name investors and VCs that know the industry and have a track record of identifying winners, it’s a sign they could be on to something big. 

Reputable funding does more than giving the business a short-term cash boost. Having big-name investors on board acts as a form of social proof, encouraging others to invest and shoring up a startup’s longer-term funding pipeline. 

Time 

It may seem simple, but one of the biggest indications of a startup’s potential is that they’re still around. Surviving year one is a big milestone, but the majority (70%) of businesses fail between years two and five

Passing the five-year mark isn’t a guarantee of long-term success, but it gives you confidence that the business can weather changing conditions and continue to grow. 

Finding your future unicorn

Whether you’re looking for the team to lay the foundations for future unicorn status or you’re on the hunt for the perfect role at the next big name in Fintech, Finiti can help. 

We’re a boutique agency specialising in sales roles within Fintech. Our carefully curated talent network means we match opportunities and people based on much more than CVs and past experience. 

Get in touch with the team today to find out more about Finiti Search, how we work, and the opportunities waiting for you