Series A startup hires SDRs to scale GTM team

Tracee Aliotti
August 19, 2022

EdSights is helping higher education improve student dropout rates by bolstering student engagement and support through AI-powered chatbots. Co-founders (and sisters) Claudia Recchi and Carolina Recchi started the company in 2017 and successfully raised Series A funding in 2020 as the COVID-19 pandemic spurred a surge in demand.

With new funding secured it was time to scale up from our founder-led sales motion and begin investing in building a GTM team. We hired two full cycle account executives (AEs) and tasked them with sourcing, prospecting, pitching, and closing all new business.

In short, they realized the full cycle AE approach wasn’t going to get them where they needed to be fast enough. To hit their revenue goals they would need to double the number of meetings they were currently booking per AE. They decided to hire sales development reps (SDRs) to full time source and prospect new business. The job descriptions were drafted and posted, SDR recruiting started, and the applicants rolled in.

We were getting plenty of applicants to our SDR openings, but not finding anyone who was a match for our business.
- Carolina Recchi, EdSights' Founder & Co-CEO

My team was spending countless hours reviewing SDR applications and holding interviews only to meet someone who looked good on paper, but fell woefully short in-person.

EdSights, like many startups, is building a product that’s disrupting its market. On the surface it looks like “just another chatbot,” but it’s far from it. They needed to hire SDRs who could clearly articulate their unique value proposition while creating connections with senior academic leaders like provosts and deans.

We serve the higher ed industry and our audience is very academic. It was important for us to hire SDRs with strong sales skills who could also bring a mature, polished, and executive presence that our audience expects. Because the soft skills are difficult to assess via a resume, I wasn’t entirely sure how we were going to efficiently find this sales talent. I knew there had to be a better way than sifting through hundreds of unqualified applications, so I went to my browser and that’s when I came across Satellite.

The Satellite team met with EdSights to better understand the talent they wanted for their open SDR roles. EdSights shared that they wanted to hire two SDRs so that the pair could partner and would have the ability to compare notes and learn from each other, which they felt would help them scale more effectively. Within 72-hours of onboarding they were introduced to five prospects all of whom had recently completed the Satellite Career Accelerator program, which vets, trains, and prepares professionals specifically for the role of SDR.

I liked that Satellite is founded and run by people who have led and managed sales teams. I also appreciate the rigor and selectiveness of their admissions process, which gave me confidence I'd be interviewing highly qualified SDR talent.
- Carolina Recchi, EdSights' Founder & Co-CEO

Finally, the process was easy! Interviewing the Satellite Certified Talent was like a breath of fresh air after spending far too long buried in unqualified applications and disappointing interviews. Honestly, the hardest part was deciding which of the five we’d make offers to.

EdSights ended up extending offers to two of the Satellite SDRs that they interviewed. In the end, what they’d previously spent months trying, and failing, to accomplish, they completed in less than four weeks. Their new SDRs ramped within two weeks and have consistently exceeded their quota. In fact, their new hires were booking so many meetings that they had to hire a third AE to keep pace with the demo demand!

We aren't a recruiting firm. We don't necessarily know exactly what qualified SDR talent looks like. Satellite does, which took that burden off our team.
- Carolina Recchi, EdSights' Founder & Co-CEO

There isn’t an easy way to quantify the ROI of our decision to hire through Satellite, but I know it’s significant. We saved time recruiting, our new hires ramped quickly, delivered results early, and continue to do so. Running a successful business requires the ability to know where you’re going to invest your time and where you’re going to invest in the expertise of others. When it comes to hiring SDRs, investing in Satellite is an easy choice for me.

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Article Author
Tracee Aliotti
Tracee leads the marketing program at Satellite. She is an executive level marketing leader with expertise in building scalable marketing programs within edtech and B2B/B2C SaaS markets for both startup and mature brands. While her career has granted her experience in most marketing disciplines, her passion is brand strategy, positioning, and storytelling. She has a talent for distilling down core brand components, creating processes and plans, aligning teams and tools for effective execution, and developing strategies that showcase market dominance while allowing customers to engage in meaningful and memorable ways.

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