Series A startup hires SDRs to scale GTM team
We interviewed Carolina Recchi, Founder & Co-CEO of EdSights to learn more about their experience hiring SDRs in order to scale the go-to-market team for their Series A startup.
by Tracee Aliotti
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.
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.
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!