How to Score a Technical Sales Engineer Position with Zero Experience

Woman engaged in a sale

Before you apply to get hired as a technical sales engineer, there are several critical things you should know.

Getting hired for a technical sales engineer job involves a combination of technical expertise, strong communication skills, and an understanding of sales processes. You will get real-world tips, techniques, and proven strategies that will help you score a lucrative technical sales engineer job in this article.

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Opportunity Outlook of Technical Sales Engineer Jobs

But first, the big question we need to answer before discussing that pertains to the viability of the technical sales engineer job field.

Are technical sales engineer jobs the wave of the future or a relic of the past?

After all, nobody wants to work hard to get into an industry that’s shrinking and dying.

Before we dive into the strategies for scoring a high-paying technical sales engineer job, let’s look at the opportunity to see whether it’s even worth pursuing in the first place.

As of 2023, according to Glassdoor, the expected total annual compensation for a Technical Sales Engineer in the United States area is approximately $130,612, with an average base salary of $91,345 per year.

These figures reflect the median values gathered from Glassdoor’s exclusive Total Pay Estimate model, drawing from salary data provided by Glassdoor users.

On top of that, Glassdoor, adding in an anticipated additional pay of $39,267 per year. This accounts for potential cash bonuses, commissions, tips, and profit-sharing.

Now let’s look at the outlook and future of technical sales engineer jobs.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics gives insight on the future growth of the technical sales engineering job field.

According to the bureau, the job outlook for sales engineers looks promising, with a projected 5 percent growth from 2022 to 2032, which is faster than the average for all occupations.

On average, about 5,900 new opportunities for sales engineers are expected to arise each year throughout the next decade. This growth is mainly driven by the need to fill positions left vacant by workers who switch to other occupations or leave the workforce, often due to reasons like retirement.

This gives us a clear answer to the question posed above. Yes! Technical sales engineer jobs are still alive, well, and lucrative!

Factors That Contribute to Maximum Compensation as a Sales Engineer:

Now let’s consider some of the high-level factors that contribute to maximizing your compensation as a technical sales engineer.

 Base Salary: Consider the base salary of the various roles you are applying for. This is the fixed amount paid regularly, typically on a monthly or bi-weekly basis.

Commission and Bonuses: Many technical sales roles include a commission structure or performance-based bonuses.

Industry and Product Type: The industry in which a technical sales engineer works can impact earnings.

Experience and Expertise: Experienced technical sales engineers who have a proven track record of successful sales and a deep understanding of their technical domain may command higher salaries and commissions.

Market Demand: If there is a high demand for technical sales engineers with specific skills or expertise, companies may offer more competitive compensation packages to attract and retain top talent.

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Work Background Barrier to a Sales Engineering Position

As with any job application, getting hired as a technical sales engineer starts with updating your resume with your relevant background, experience, and skills related to the job you’re applying for.

Many professionals learn about the various benefits, perks, and the lucrative pay of technical sales engineer positions and want to transition into these positions from all walks of life.

Of course, the easiest way to get hired for a technical sales engineer position is to already have one.

Having a resume that includes working at one company as a technical sales engineer with millions of dollars of sales you’ve closed is the surefire way to getting your next lucrative sales engineer position.

If you’re one who doesn’t have this picture-perfect background and resume and you still want to score a sales engineer position then you will need to consider an approach we’ll cover next.

Strategies for Transitioning Into a Technical Sales Engineer Job with Related Experience

The truth is that everything worth doing has a level of difficulty associated with it. You know the saying, “no pain, no gain.” This holds true for breaking into a technical sales engineer job, as much as anything else. It’s not easy, but it IS doable and it’s well worth the effort.

The secret to transitioning into a technical sales engineer job boils down to looking at your background and searching for the themes, the threads, and even the shreds of experience that can be highlighted and fleshed out to demonstrate that you have great potential as a technical sales engineer.

An important question that you should ask yourself here is:

What experience do I have that most relates to the functions of the sales engineer job position I want?

College Students: You should definitely try to earn an internship supporting a technical sales engineer in any way possible. This will give you valuable insight into the world of this job and the functions of it.

Engineering Degree: If you’re just graduating and want to go straight into the technical sales engineer field, then you should definitely highlight the classes you took, the G.P.A. you earned, your class projects that gave hands-on experience, and the like, in your resume and cover letter.

Lateral Move: If you’re currently working in a company and want to move into the technical sales engineer department, you are well positioned to do so. You can apply to take a junior role in the sales department and work your way up the ladder of success.

Transitioning Engineer: If you are currently an engineer looking to be trained to sell instead, you’re also well positioned for the transition. A lot of product engineers move up into sales. Product engineers deal with designing, tooling, and launching products.

Having success in this role definitely means having the knowledge, skills, and expertise in the functionality and application capabilities of the products being sold. It’s also a role that deals with stakeholders and end-users to build a product that meets their needs and make their lives better. These are two clear strengths that demonstrate your potential as a high-impact technical sales engineer.

How to Get Hired as a Technical Sales Engineer with Zero Experience

You have to consider various elements of your work background that pertain to the technical sales engineer job and expand upon that experience. Next, you’ve got to be willing to start off in a junior role in the sales department and work your way up. That’s the best way to score a technical sales engineer job with zero previous experience.

Again, it’s a lot of work and it’s hard work, but it’s well worth the effort to land a lucrative technical sales engineer job.

Ready to take your Industrial Sales Career to the Top? Enroll into Industrial Sales University!