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Technical Sales Specialists - Wholesale Trade

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NOC:6221
Occupation:Technical Sales Specialists in Wholesale Trade
Category:Sales and Service

About the job

Nature of work:

Technical sales specialists, wholesale trade, sell a range of technical goods and services, such as scientific, agricultural and industrial products, electricity, telecommunications services and computer services, to governments and to commercial and industrial establishments in domestic and international localities.

They are employed by establishments that produce or provide technical goods and services, such as pharmaceutical companies, industrial equipment manufacturing companies, grain elevators, computer services firms, engineering firms and hydroelectric companies, or they may be self-employed technical sales specialists/agents who contract their services to other companies. Technical sales specialists who are supervisors are included in this group.

Job duties:
Technical sales specialists perform some or all of the following duties:
  • Promote sales to existing clients.
  • Identify and solicit potential clients.
  • Assess clients' needs and resources and recommend the appropriate goods or services.
  • Provide input into product design where goods or services must be tailored to suit clients' needs.
  • Develop reports and proposals as part of sales presentation to illustrate benefits from use of good or service.
  • Estimate costs of installing and maintaining equipment or service.
  • Prepare and administer sales contracts.
  • Consult with clients after sale to resolve problems and to provide ongoing support.
  • Troubleshoot technical problems related to equipment.
  • May train customers' staff in the operation and maintenance of equipment.
  • May conduct sales transactions through Internet-based electronic commerce.
  • May supervise the activities of other technical staff and sales specialists.

Technical sales specialists usually specialize in a particular line of goods or services.

Sample job titles:
  • computer equipment sales specialist
  • customer support representative
  • heavy equipment salesperson
  • medical equipment and supplies salesperson
  • pharmaceutical sales representative
  • sales broker
  • technical sales consultant
  • technical sales specialist
  • technical support specialist
Skills:

This work requires excellent interpersonal and communication skills. You must be aware of the customer's needs and give careful attention to detail. You will be required to gain in-depth knowledge of the products you represent. Fluency in a specific foreign language, and/or foreign work or travel experience may be required for technical sales specialists seeking employment with companies that import or export technical goods or services.

Job requirements:
  • A university degree or college diploma in a program related to the product or service is usually required.
  • Extensive company training programs for technical sales specialists may be provided by employers.
Other considerations:

Earnings will often depend upon the type of product being sold and the volume of sales made. People in these jobs will have to keep abreast of technological changes in the products they sell. Experience in sales or in a technical occupation related to the product or service may be required.

Progression to sales management positions is possible with additional training or experience.

Labour Market Information

Work Prospects:Fair

The employment outlook over the next few years for this occupational group is “average”, which indicates the chances of a qualified individual finding work is comparable to the average for all occupations in Nova Scotia. This is a fairly large occupation in Nova Scotia so job opportunities occur fairly regularly. The number employed in this occupation is expected to grow slightly over the next few years, which should provide some additional opportunities for employment. With a large percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are expected to be a key contributor to employment opportunities over the coming years. Technical Sales Specialists in Wholesale Trade most commonly work full-time hours. Furthermore, the jobs are typically permanent positions.

The median employment income for 75% of Technical Sales Specialists in Wholesale Trade who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $66,343. Across all occupations in Nova Scotia, 59% of those who worked full-time year round had a median employment income of $43,600.
(Source: 2016 Census)

OccupationEstimated employment in 2018Estimated change in employment between 2017 and 2019Estimated openings due to growth and retirements, 2017-2019Estimated rate of unemployment in 2018 Estimated hourly earnings in 2015 (learn more)Estimated annual earnings in 2015
Technical Sales Specialists - Wholesale Trade1,580Weak growth155Moderate
Minimum: $12.15
Median: $20.00
Maximum: $38.46
Minimum: $18,617
Median: $59,119
Maximum: $133,282
Occupations in Sales and Service102,605Decline slightly5,260Moderate
Minimum: $10.70
Median: $12.50
Maximum: $21.17
Minimum: $2,949
Median: $16,629
Maximum: $45,086
Technical Sales Specialists - Wholesale TradeCompared to: Occupations in Sales and Service
Percent employed full-time94%59%
Percent self-employed0%6%
Where will I likely work?
Area of EmploymentTechnical Sales Specialists - Wholesale TradeCompared to: All NS Occupations
% EmployedMedian Annual Income% EmployedMedian Annual Income
Southern7%$37,69512%$30,581
Northern9%x16%$33,660
Cape Breton6%x13%$32,974
Halifax69%$78,14147%$41,209
Annapolis Valley9%$60,29713%$32,958
What are the workers like?
AgeTechnical Sales Specialists - Wholesale TradeCompared to: All Sales and Service
% Employed% Employed
15-246%x
25-3422%36%
35-4425%29%
45-5428%x
55-6412%21%
65+6%x
Median Age4637
GenderTechnical Sales Specialists - Wholesale TradeCompared to: Occupations in Sales and Service
% Employed% Employed
Female27%60%
Male73%40%
EducationTechnical Sales Specialists - Wholesale TradeCompared to: All Sales and Service
% EmployedMedian Annual Income% EmployedMedian Annual Income
Less than high school4.2%$28,18918.8%$9,486
High school24.5%$27,49640.4%$12,982
Trades certificate7.9%$47,0578.0%$18,797
College certificate or diploma21.5%$45,60019.9%$19,514
University certificate or diploma1.5%$61,7231.6%$18,279
Bachelor's degree36.6%$62,91910.0%$20,807
University advanced certificate or diploma1.2%x0.5%$15,716
Master's degreeN/A$52,1610.8%$20,769
Doctorate2.7%x0.0%$17,318
Medicine, dentistry, veterinary, optometryN/Ax0.1%$17,368
Total100%100%
Wage Disclaimer

Hourly earnings data are from the Labour Force Survey by Statistics Canada. Data are not available for all occupations. Hourly earnings are calculated based on usual hours worked per week. This is how an annual salary, for instance, gets converted to an hourly rate. The data include full and part-time workers along with new and experienced workers. Self-employed workers are excluded.

Annual employment income data reported in the Work Prospects section, are from the 2011 National Household Survey by Statistics Canada. Much of the data (around 70%) came directly from tax records. The data relates to the year 2010 and includes total wages and salaries and net income from self-employment.

Sources

Employment Requirements & Contacts

Regulations:
No regulating bodies were found under this occupation profile
Useful contacts:
Canadian Professional Sales Association
655 Bay Street, Suite 400
Toronto, ON M5G 2K4
Tel: (888) 267-2772
Fax: (416) 408-2684

Training Paths & Education

Program Name:Business/commerce - General
Education Level:This program may be offered at the college, trades, or university level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program that focuses on the general study of business, including the processes of interchanging goods and services (buying, selling and producing), business organization, and accounting as used in profit-making and non-profit public and private institutions and agencies. The program prepares individuals to apply business principles and techniques in various occupational settings.
See all institutions providing this program+
Dalhousie University
Office of the Registrar
Halifax, NS B3H 4R2
(902) 494-2450
admissions@dal.ca
University of King's College
6350 Coburg Road
Halifax, NS B3H 2A1
(902) 422-1271
admissions@ukings.ca
Universite Sainte-Anne
Siège Social: 1695, Route 1
Pointe-de-l'Église, NS B0W 1M0
(902) 769-2114
Blanche.Theriault@usainteanne.ca
Saint Mary's University
923 Robie Street
Halifax, NS B3H 3C3
(902) 420-5400
admission.status@smu.ca
Cape Breton University
PO Box 5300 1250 Grand Lake Road
Sydney, NS B1P 6L2
(888) 959-9995
registrar@cbu.ca
Program Name:Computer engineering - General
Education Level:This program is typically offered at the university level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program that generally prepares individuals to apply mathematical and scientific principles to the design, development and operational evaluation of computer hardware and software systems and related equipment and facilities; and the analysis of specific problems of computer applications to various tasks.
See all institutions providing this program+
Dalhousie University
Office of the Registrar
Halifax, NS B3H 4R2
(902) 494-2450
admissions@dal.ca
Program Name:Electrical, electronic and communications engineering technology/technician
Education Level:This program is typically offered at the trades/college level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program that prepares individuals to apply basic engineering principles and technical skills in support of electrical, electronics and communication engineers. These programs include courses in electrical circuitry, prototype development and testing; systems analysis and testing, systems maintenance, instrument calibration, and report preparation.
See all institutions providing this program+
Nova Scotia Community College - Cumberland Campus
PO Box 550, 1 Main Street
Springhill, NS B0M 1X0
(902) 597-3737
cumberland.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Kingstec Campus
236 Belcher Street
Kentville, NS B4N 0A6
(902) 678-7341
kingstec.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Pictou Campus & School of Fisheries
PO Box 820, 39 Acadia Avenue
Stellarton, NS B0K 1S0
(902) 752-2002
pictou.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Marconi Campus
PO Box 1042, 1240 Grand Lake Road
Sydney, NS B1P 6J7
(902) 563-2450
marconi.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Waterfront Campus & Aviation Institute
80 Mawiomi Place
Dartmouth, NS B2Y 0A5
(902) 491-1100
waterfront.info@nscc.ca
Program Name:Information technology
Education Level:This program may be offered at the college, trades, or university level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program that focuses on the design of technological information systems, including computing systems, as solutions to business and research data and communications support needs. These programs include courses in the principles of computer hardware and software components, algorithms, databases, telecommunications, user tactics, application testing, and human interface design.
See all institutions providing this program+
Success College
800 Sackville Drive
Lower Sackville, NS B4E 1R8
(902) 865-8283
Acadia University
15 University Avenue
Wolfville, NS B4P 2R6
(902) 542-2201
agi@acadiau.ca
Dalhousie University
Office of the Registrar
Halifax, NS B3H 4R2
(902) 494-2450
admissions@dal.ca
Mount Saint Vincent University
166 Bedford Highway
Halifax, NS B3M 2J6
(902) 457-6117
admissions@msvu.ca
St. Francis Xavier University
PO Box 5000
Antigonish, NS B2G 2W5
(902) 867-2219
admit@stfx.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Annapolis Valley Campus
50 Elliott Road
Lawrencetown, NS B0S 1M0
(902) 825-3491
avc.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Burridge Campus
372 Pleasant Street
Yarmouth, NS B5A 2L2
(902) 742-3501
burridge.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Institute of Technology Campus
5685 Leeds Street
Halifax, NS B3K 2T3
(902) 491-6722
it.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Marconi Campus
PO Box 1042, 1240 Grand Lake Road
Sydney, NS B1P 6J7
(902) 563-2450
marconi.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Truro Campus
36 Arthur Street
Truro, NS B2N 1X5
(902) 893-5385
truro.info@nscc.ca
Nova Scotia Community College - Waterfront Campus & Aviation Institute
80 Mawiomi Place
Dartmouth, NS B2Y 0A5
(902) 491-1100
waterfront.info@nscc.ca
Program Name:Selling skills and sales operations
Education Level:This program may be offered at the college, trades, or university level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program that prepares individuals to possess the skills associated with direct promotion of products and services to potential customers and to function as independent sales representatives and managers. These programs include courses in consumer psychology, image projection, public speaking and interpersonal communications, sales organization and operations, customer relations, professional standards and ethics, and applicable technical skills.
There are no schools in Nova Scotia offering this program.
Program Name:Specialized sales, merchandising and marketing operations - Other
Education Level:This program may be offered at the college, trades, or university level.
Program Description:
This instructional program class comprises any program not listed above that relates to Specialized Sales, Merchandising and Marketing Operations.
See all institutions providing this program+
Nova Scotia Community College - Kingstec Campus
236 Belcher Street
Kentville, NS B4N 0A6
(902) 678-7341
kingstec.info@nscc.ca
Additional resources:

There are no additional resources for this occupation.