Career as a Sales Engineer


Summary

Sales engineering is a hybrid of sales and engineering that exists in industrial and commercial markets. Buying decisions in these markets are made differently than those in many consumer contexts, being based more on technical informa;on and ra;onal analysis and less on style, fashion, or impulse. Therefore, selling in these markets cannot depend on consumer-type sales methods alone, and instead it relies heavily on technical informa;on and problem-solving to convince buyers that they should spend money on the seller's products or services, in order to meet a business need (that is, to sa;sfy a business case).

A sales engineer is thus both "a salesperson that understands and can apply engineering" and "an engineer that understands how to sell engineered systems". They thus not only sell but also provide advice and support. They provide this service to various internal or external customers, and they may work for a manufacturer (servicing its industrial-account/business-to-business customers), for a distributor (which in turn services the industrial-account/business-to-business customers), or for a third party such as an engineering consultancy or a systems integrator.

Sales Engineers are a cri;cal sales team member in many companies and industries around the world. They are more than just technical experts in their respec;ve industries. Highly successful sales engineers must build and maintain parallel exper;se in "soJ skill" disciplines such as business acumen, presenta;on skills, building customer rela;onships, developing an engagement strategy, and having a thorough understanding of the targeted industry. Many companies have difficulty finding people who possess these quali;es, plus have extensive technical knowledge. The essence of the sales engineering role can be called by various names. Which name is most apt can even depend on which industry it is used in. Some common job ;tles that involve the essence of sales engineering include Sales Engineer, Solu;ons Engineer, Systems Engineer, Customer Engineer, (pre-sales) consultant, Technical Account Manager;[1] Applica;ons Engineer or Field Applica;ons Engineer, and others.

Work Environment

Sales engineers oJen work under stressful condi;ons because their income and job security depend on commission from successfully comple;ng sales. Some sales engineers may work addi;onal and irregular hours to meet sales goals and client needs.

Entry Level Education

Sales engineers typically need a bachelor’s degree in engineering or a related field. Successful sales engineers combine technical knowledge of the products or services they are selling with strong interpersonal skills.

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