Killing the Headphone Jack for Sales Hiring

After a lot of speculation, leaks and poorly kept secrets Apple announced the newiPhone 7 today. The big reveal: it doesn’t include the familiar analog headphone jack. There’s already much controversy and opinion on this potentially bold, if not risky, move for Apple. Not that they haven’t done it before.

Innovation always comes with risk. But sometimes it takes much longer than you may think for mainstream adoption.  It took about 3 years for the New York Times to mention the Wright brothers after their first flight — and that was for the accomplishment of enabling humans to fly.

The ways in which salespeople discover jobs and employers find salespeople is in need of the some serious innovation, particularly in regards to “the headphone jack of sales recruiting”: the resume.

James Martin/CNET

James Martin/CNET

We’ve been reading post after post about how the resume is going to disappear in favor of social media, LinkedIn or some other medium to connect talent to hiring companies. Yet most recruiting websites and platforms out there still depend on an attached resume or lead with experience.  This enables hiring teams to continue to rest their top of the funnel talent decisions on mostly text-based, experiential information.

It may take us a few months to adjust to a lightning adapter on an iPhone, but salespeople don’t have the time it took for the media to acknowledge the Wrights’ accomplishment. Apple’s announcement reminds us that sometimes you just have rip the band-aid off.

At Upsider, we’re taking a similar approach by ripping off the resume band-aid. Instead of a resume or job description we are building a careers marketplace that puts data first, period.  Salespeople use verified historical sales performance data to connect more efficiently with the right employers who can upgrade their career at the right time. Our platform is always on, continually scoring them against the best employers on our platform so it’s efficient and useful especially if you are not actively interviewing / job searching.   It’s also easier to update a few data points of historical data than it is to write more of the same old B.S. bullet points.

The feedback we’ve received early on from top salespeople has been encouraging. For the first time, there is the promise of using data to measure the risk of forgoing the creature comfort of predictable yet slow growth commission at your current role, for a big time move with huge upside.  In addition, because we consider sales cycle and deal sizes, we can help to show a path to a more complex deal profile, for added career growth possibilities.

Employers are now starting to easily harness the power of data to connect with the pools of salespeople that have the highest propensity for success. The best part is we only have to reveal a minimal amount of data to make a great match. Protecting our salespeople’s privacy is an important part of making their accomplishments available as our algorithm and the data works it’s magic as the centerpiece of our careers marketplace.

So just like removing the headphone jack, we’re making a move away from the resume. We are excited to say we have B2B salespeople signing up daily and employer partners jumping in and giving us feedback to tailor the experience to their liking, including finding ways to add industry, tenure and other important contextual information to help bridge the gap. Who knows how long it will take, but we are already seeing a difference in speed and quality of match that are getting people excited, all in less than a year. Either way it goes we are committed to continue the push for a better, more efficient and transparent way to connect the right sales talent to the perfect opportunities, even if means eventually cutting the cord on the resume.

If you’d like information on becoming an Upsider Employer Partner — please email us at If you are in sales, are data driven and in NYC — you can apply for exclusive beta access by entering your sales metrics at


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