Working in Telesales: What you NEED to Know

1 Minutes

As a recent graduate or early-career professional, it can often be a daunting challenge to u...

By Pareto Team


As a recent graduate or early-career professional, it can often be a daunting challenge to understand what you need to know to secure that all-important role as a telesales executive. Should you take advantage of telesales training on offer from various organisations or use the services of the telesales recruitment agencies that have been in touch with job opportunities?

In this guide, we’ll take a closer look at the field of telesales, meaning that you can understand precisely what telesales is in the modern workplace and the core competencies that organisations are looking for when interviewing for a telesales executive position. Alongside this, our article also explores how telesales training works and how telesales recruitment agencies can make a significant impact on your job hunt.

What is Telesales?

Whilst they might not be spending all of their working days on the phone in 2023, a telesales executive is still expected to be a professional communicator and problem-solver—and with Salesforce data showing that 92% of client interactions still take place over the phone, it’s as important as ever to make certain that you understand the field and its key aspects, ensuring you can be successful in telesales jobs. So what is telesales in the modern working environment?

Interchangeably referred to as telemarketing, telesales, or telephone sales, the sales techniques which underpin telesales jobs relate closely to sales within other sectors. However, businesses involved in telesales have evolved to adapt to advancements in technology and dynamic customer preferences and market conditions, with a telesales executive often expected to master multiple communication channels, from phone conversations to email and video conferencing to chatting via social media platforms. 

The key aspects of telesales will be familiar to those who are aware of the sales lifecycle and include the following requirements: 

  1. Generating leads. A telesales executive will be expected to use the strategies and tools they’ve gained through telesales training to identify potential customers, gauge their interest, and gather the relevant information necessary to allow for future outreach efforts. 

  2. Engaging customers. Telesales jobs require professional salespeople that can engage with potential customers through persuasive and personalised communication, building rapport and highlighting the benefits of the product or service being advertised.

  3. Consultative selling. Telesales employees can’t rely on a script and hope to reach customers any longer. A telesales executive in 2023 will be expected to actively listen to potential customers, ask relevant questions, and provide solutions that are specifically tailored to address their pain points.

  4. Customer relationship management. Expert salespeople are skilled in using the latest sales tools and CRM software to manage customer data, gather insights from patterns and trends in this data, track interactions with customers across multiple communication channels, schedule follow-ups, and understand at a glance where a lead is within the sales funnel.

  5. Compliance and regulation. A telesales executive needs to ensure that they’re always adhering to their local regulations and privacy laws, such as GDPR, or industry-specific guidance—such as when the products being sold are medical devices.

Telesales plays a crucial role within the modern business environment. As expert communicators, these salespeople are able to help businesses to scale and reach a wider audience, build strong relationships with their leads and customers, and drive revenue growth through positive interactions. 

If you’re interested in learning more of our insights on the professional world of sales, explore our article on how a recent graduate can get a job without experience and see how you can take advantage of your existing skillset to meet your career goals.

What Are the Core Competencies for a Telesales Executive?

So, now we know more about the field, we can ask: what are the core competencies for a telesales executive to possess, and how do they help them to effectively engage with customers, drive sales performance, and contribute to the overarching success of the organisation that’s employing them? 

The skills that telesales employees need are holistic, meaning that one competency will often feed into another and that all of these skills rely on a clear understanding of the sales process.


First and foremost are communication skills. The success of a career as a telesales executive hinges on their ability to communicate—verbally and in writing—with their clients. If they can’t articulate themselves clearly, they can’t hope to sell their product or service to their client. Of course, crucial to these communication skills are active listening skills, without which they cannot address the concerns, pain points, and preferences that a lead will approach them with. 


Alongside this, just as with any other top salesperson, a telesales executive needs to be able to negotiate, handle objections, and persuade leads to move along the sales funnel towards becoming loyal customers. As we’ll explore in the next section, these skills can be gained from telesales training, but it’s important that salespeople possess the ability to influence customer decisions and effectively overcome their reservations, which will help to ensure they can close the deal. 

Product Knowledge

Without a thorough understanding of their product or service, a telesales executive won’t be able to handle objections nor highlight how the features and advantages of what they’re selling outperform the products and services of their competitors. This in-depth understanding will allow them to adapt their pitch and consultancy to ensure they can build strong relationships with—and meet the needs of—customers working in diverse industries and sectors.


Meticulous planning is vital to success in telesales jobs since the volume of communications across various channels with customers within the modern business environment will often mean that these roles are fast-paced. Knowing how to prioritise tasks and remain persistent despite rejections will allow a telesales executive to excel quickly. With it taking—on average—around six calls to really connect with a prospect, candidates for telesales positions need to make sure they’re experts at managing their schedule.

As we’ve mentioned, the telesales environment is one of constant change, with new opportunities to connect with leads arising regularly as a result of technological innovation. This means that it’s vital for career success that salespeople working within the telesales environment are committed to their continuing professional development, taking advantage of any learning and development offered by their employer. This is where telesales training enters the picture.

How Telesales Training Works

Telesales training is a structured process which focuses on developing the communication, negotiation, and closing skills of employees within the industry. A robust course will be focused on the learner’s real-world environment, aiming to tackle problems that they encounter in their day-to-day responsibilities by enhancing their knowledge and abilities. 

Most telesales training will begin with a thorough assessment of that candidate’s needs—or the needs of their employers—which will help to identify gaps in their understanding of the product or service being sold, highlight skill deficiencies, and note areas that can be further improved. There will then typically be several aspects of the telesales process explored through the training programme, including: 

  • Sales strategies. Data-driven insights will inform telesales training on impactful sales strategies, helping learners to understand why they’re being asked to work in a specific way.

  • Call handling. This aspect of the training will be focused on practising telesales techniques in a “live” environment, allowing a telesales executive to understand how to open calls, probe for more information, and handle different customer scenarios through natural and charismatic conversation.

  • Relationship building. A salesperson needs to understand how to build rapport and foster trust if they want to secure loyal, repeat customers. Telesales training will help them to identify opportunities for improving customer relations, keeping external stakeholders abreast of any developments, or handling complaints professionally and conscientiously. 

  • Objection handling and negotiation. A telesales training course can provide learners with valuable advice on how to effectively handle objections to their product or service, with most courses now focused on the consultative process, providing salespeople with effective skills in active listening and providing solutions.

  • Closing techniques. Securing a sale is the hardest part of the process, but telesales training aims to make this easier by giving salespeople the ability to identify buying signals, create a sense of urgency, and build the confidence to ask for the sale.

Telesales training programmes will often aim to be as realistic and natural as possible, meaning that they will involve plenty of role-play and practice sessions which can reinforce the theoretical learning and coaching that takes place in the classroom. This allows telesales professionals to gain immediate feedback from their peers and trainers, helping them to further refine their techniques. 

Reflecting the increasingly diverse nature of telesales jobs, telesales training will often take place remotely or in a hybrid environment, with additional lessons and resources offered to allow the salesperson or sales team being trained to continue to develop and reinforce their skills in their own time after the programme has been completed.

Telesales Recruitment Agencies Help You to Discover Roles

Now we’re aware of the expectations that an employer will have of a telesales executive they hire and the training opportunities that are on offer for these professionals across all milestones of their careers, we’ll discuss how telesales recruitment agencies can help you discover roles and take that next meaningful step in your sales career. 

Telesales recruitment agencies are a valuable resource for candidates at all levels of seniority, from early-career graduates to director-level salespeople with decades of proven experience in the industry. With the average job post receiving around 250 applications, candidates often need the insights of an industry expert to stand out from the pack.

These agencies will employ specialist consultants who have a track record of placing candidates with market-leading companies, meaning that the candidates they put forward for roles often have exclusive access to that specific vacancy since it won’t necessarily be advertised on your typical telesales jobs page. By partnering with a recruitment agency, telesales executives can gain access to a broader pool of employers than they would if they went it alone. 

At the same time, the expert consultants working for telesales recruitment agencies will understand the requirements, competencies, and qualifications sought by telesales employers for their roles. They can provide candidates with specific guidance and job interview coaching, ensuring that any role a salesperson is put forward for is a good fit. A good telesales recruiter will have the ability to screen candidates, identifying roles that match their specific skill sets, meaning less time is spent applying and interviewing for roles that aren’t likely to lead to a placement. 

Telesales recruitment agencies will work closely with their clients and candidates to ensure that a satisfactory range of benefits, a competitive salary, and onboarding support are available if a job is offered. This means that salespeople don’t need to worry about managing the offer process themselves and can instead focus on preparing for the role they’ve just secured.

For recent graduates and early-career professionals looking to enter the telesales industry, understanding the field and acquiring the necessary core competencies—communication skills, product knowledge, and relationship building—is vital to long-term career success. 

In this article, we’ve answered the common question of “what is telesales”, exploring how the field has changed and what skills are required for professional advancement and a fruitful job hunt. With telesales jobs requiring candidates to adapt to technological advancements and leverage all communication channels to close the deal, adaptability and a meticulous focus on scheduling are necessary. 

Navigating the job market can be daunting, which is where telesales recruitment agencies prove especially valuable. These agencies offer candidates access to exclusive opportunities and can also provide guidance and coaching, which can help them to excel in the hiring process. 

Over 25 Years of Helping Candidates Realise Their Potential

At Pareto, we’ve been assessing, placing, and training candidates for telesales roles for over two decades. Just as the industry has moved with the times, so have we—and our specialist consultants are ready to support learners and jobseekers with meeting their career ambitions, whatever they might be. Contact us to learn about how Pareto can help you, or alternatively, see our candidate tips for more insightful advice from our sales experts. 

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