Can Procurement Select The Right Sales Training Provider?


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ESR’s approach to evaluating sales training providers enables our clients to select training partners who will most positively impact their sales performance.

ESR’s core buy-side service is our evaluation process for selecting sales training providers.  We are almost always called in by a senior sales executive from a client’s company.  Occasionally it’s the learning or sales ops organizations that contact us.  Every once in a while, we’re contacted by representatives from procurement or HR organizations, who believe ESR is a sales training company.  I’m not sure how they would think that unless they didn’t visit or read what’s on our website.

I had a good conversation with a savvy procurement guy from a big insurance company this week about what it takes to effectively evaluate sales training providers and the risks associated with making any of the most common mistakes.  I was encouraged by his intelligence, insight and openness to a different approach, but unfortunately his understanding of the challenges associated with sales trainer selection is rare among the procurement people we’ve dealt with.

If you’re a sales leader and are required to source a training provider through your corporation’s standard procurement process, the likelihood of you winding up with a company that will be a strategic partner and guide you through years of ever increasing sales effectiveness is minimal.  In literally every case in which we’ve been involved procurement didn’t have the knowledge or ability to get the job done with respect to sales training provider evaluation and selection.  Procurement does a good job in negotiating pricing, terms, and conditions, but of what use is a well-negotiated contract with a training provider whose capabilities don’t match the customer’s requirements?

What should you do?  At a minimum, manage the evaluation and selection process yourself.  If procurement needs to be involved, leverage their skills for final contract negotiations with your chosen provider.  Shortly ESR will publish an e-book on this subject with the key components of our 7-step approach.  Stay tuned.

Photo credit: Thailand Holiday Homes

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Dave Stein
Dave specializes in helping his clients win critical B2B sales opportunities as well as helping them hire the best sales talent.Dave is co-author of Beyond the Sales Process. He wrote the best-selling How Winners Sell in 2004.


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