Attracting graduates to sales positions and the role of recruiter knowledge: A reexamination

Michael A. Wiles, Rosann L. Spiro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


The recruiter plays a critical role in the success of recruiting students for sales positions. Yet there is ample evidence to suggest that recruiters do a poor job of meeting student information needs during the interview. In 1992, Weilbaker and Merritt conducted a study that addressed this issue. They found significant differences between student and recruiter importance ratings for more than half of the 44 job attributes the study considered. Today, because of the increasingly strategic nature of the sales position, effective recruiting and selection has become an even higher organizational priority than it has been in the past. Therefore, the purpose of our study is to replicate the Weilbaker and Merritt (1992) study and to compare our results with their results. Specifically, this research (1) determines which job, company, and recruiter attributes are important to students today and whether these attributes are different from those reported ten years ago; (2) determines whether there are significant differences in the attribute importance ratings based on student demographics and whether these have changed in the past ten years; and (3) determines whether or not recruiters have accurate perceptions of what is important to students and whether the recruiters are more accurate today than they were ten years ago.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)39-48
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Personal Selling and Sales Management
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2004
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Management of Technology and Innovation


Dive into the research topics of 'Attracting graduates to sales positions and the role of recruiter knowledge: A reexamination'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this