From Teaching Graduate To Sales Career At A Global Software Company

How Claudia Dalla Palma found her dream sales industry 3 months after graduating from a primary education degree.

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University Graduation
2023
Prior Sales Experience?
No
Professional Background
Retail
Software sales is all about building relationships with customers, believing in your product, believing in your business and delivering impactful solutions to your customers.
A professional headshot of Claudia Dalla Palma
Claudia Dalla Palma
SDR @ Attentive
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The Challenge

As a new university graduate looking to start a career in sales, she felt lost trying to pick an industry amongst the sea of options.

In 2019, Claudia started her university degree in primary education.

Alongside university, Claudia picked up work in the retail industry and started to discover her passion for sales.

She enjoyed the target based nature of the role and saw the potential for a long term career where she was rewarded for her effort.

By the time her degree was coming to an end in late 2023, Claudia had her mind set on sales, but there was a problem (or a few).

Finding an industry to build her sales career proved to be more difficult than expected.

The pressure of comparison with peers of a similar age who had their career “sorted out”, coupled with the surplus of information on the internet (all providing contradictory opinions), left her confused on where to start.

Moreover, when she took action to meet with sales reps in real estate, insurance and solar, she felt as though the role didn’t align with her values.

They worked unsociable hours, sold products they didn’t believe in, and weren’t compensated fairly in commission only positions.

She thought there must have been a better industry and kept researching.

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“Not having a sales background, I want to be well prepared, well equipped and ready to go hit the ground running when I started my sales career”
Claudia Dalla Palma
Claudia Dalla Palma
SDR @ Attentive
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The Solution

Enter, software sales.

After researching a myriad of industries, Claudia discovered the business-to-business software sales industry through her partner.

In particular, what piqued her interest was the high starting salary, flexible work culture, structured career progression and selling products that she believed in.

Here’s more context.

In Australia, entry level software sales roles earn an average of $95k per year*.

Within 4-5 years of starting in software sales, you could be selling to 1000+ employee companies and have a total package north of $250k+ per year.

Screen shot from our FREE weekly workshop on an Intro To Software Sales Careers.

But why are packages in software sales so high?

It all comes down to what you’re selling - business-to-business software tools (ie: UberEats).

The increased adoption of software in recent years has seen employee count in the software industry grow twice as much as any other industry in Australia during the last decade (Tech Council of Australia, 2023).

Sales is the second most in-demand role for software companies (behind engineers) as reps are responsible for finding new business customers to adopt their tools.

Yet, there’s a distinct skill shortage as many job seekers think they require a technical background or previous sales experience to get started - which simply isn’t true.

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Leveraging tech software to engage customers and improve customer satisfaction really resonated with me being a creative person
Claudia Dalla Palma
Claudia Dalla Palma
SDR @ Attentive
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Leveraging tech software to engage customers and improve customer satisfaction really resonated with me being a creative person
Claudia Dalla Palma
Claudia Dalla Palma
SDR @ Attentive
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The Results

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Became one of the fastest reps to ramp in the history of a 1000+ employee, $3B+ valued MarTech company based in New York.

Claudia joined us as a fellow in our JAN’24 cohort of Earlywork Academy and was the recipient of our inaugural Women's Scholarship, sponsored by Archangel Ventures.

She progressed through the three weeks of live workshops and decided that she wanted support in landing her first software sales roles.

To conclude her job search, Claudia was tossing up between multiple offers and decided to join global marketing software giant, Attentive.

Since starting in March 2024, Claudia has become one of the fastest reps to ramp in the history of Attentive and is an active participant in Sales Club.

Where to from here

Unsure if software sales is for you?

Continue your learning journey with Earlywork by attending one of our free live workshops run for 30 minutes and we’ll help you learn if software sales is the right career for you.

Fellow Admissions Manager, Ben Horwitz, will take you through all things job security, career progression and compensation.

Hosted every Monday from 5:30pm - 6pm (AEST).

> Save your spot <

NOTE: Also check out our Wall of Love to see 100+ other graduate stories from our school, such as Claudia.

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