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Success Story – Itai Erez, Phone Sales Representative, Clal Rishon / by Hadas Shimoni

As a communicative person with persuasive abilities, 23-year-old Itai Erez has always loved sales. He learned the profession at several jobs, both in Israel and abroad, and after returning from an extended trip to the Far East following his military service he started looking for work. A short time after sending out resumes Itai found his job as a phone sales representative at Clal Rishon via the Jobnet site.

What do you find is special about sales?
“The sales process is dynamic and fascinating since it challenges the employee in many ways. In our job and due to customer resistance the salesman has to present the product – through creative solutions, a personalized approach and building trust – as one that meets the customer’s specific needs. The salesman also has to constantly think of new ways to market the product in the most appealing way possible, with the final goal being to close a deal.”

What kind of job did you look for upon your return to Israel?
“Before the trip I worked at a travel agency at a job that was geared more toward service and less toward sales. A short time after coming back to Israel I managed to land a job at Clal Rishon in a position that met my expectations. As someone with experience in sales I was looking for a challenging job at a large, stable company where I’d be able to advance and develop. And since I was returning from a long trip abroad it was important for me to find a convenient shift job close to home.”


Itai Erez – phone sales rep

How did you conduct your job search?
“I went to Google, entered the search words ‘chipus avoda’ and ‘drushim,’ and one of the first links was the Jobnet site. On the site I discovered numerous positions in sales at a range of companies in the Central Region and sent my resume right away.”

What tipped the scales in Clal Rishon’s favor?
“Clal Rishon was the first company I went to for an interview. I was interviewed twice and during those two visits I fell in love with the friendly atmosphere, the nice managers who interviewed me and the content of the job. When I came in for the first interview they took me on a tour of the company offices and the scheduling department and I immediately liked what I saw of the workers and the way the department was run. During the second interview I displayed motivation and a love of sales, and a few days later I started on the job.”

How is your work as a phone sales representative carried out?
“I’m part of the phone scheduling department, which has 60 employees working in shifts. My job is to arrange meetings with field sales agents and to liaison between the company’s sales personnel and our commercial and private customers. The job includes arranging meetings with salespeople in various areas of insurance and locating potential customers.”

Which products and packages do you market?
“We market everything related to health insurance, e.g. insurance covered for medication, implants, operations or disability, life insurance and every other type of insurance designed to protect the individual if, God forbid, he is no longer able to take care of his own needs. That’s where our job as an insurance company comes in.”

What kind of a company is Clal Rishon in terms of the atmosphere and character?
“Despite my young age I’ve worked at several jobs and I can say that Clal Rishon is very unique, especially because of the exceptional way the management treats the employees and works to accommodate them. My immediate supervisors are people who look out for my best interests, support me professionally and encourage me wholeheartedly. Also, the atmosphere among the employees makes me happy to get up in the morning and I go to work with a smile. I’ve made real friends here and I’m very pleased with the job.”

Shirli Bar, human resources manager of Clal Rishon, how has your collaboration with the Jobnet site contributed to your recruitment process?
“In an era in which the Internet is a significant factor in communications, this channel – especially working with Jobnet – definitely contributes to the recruitment process and allows us to reach every potential candidate.”

Has Clal Rishon been affected by the world economic crisis?
“As an organization where the platform is built on sales representatives, all sales are always affected by external factors, but the product we work with cannot be cut from the budget since it provides protection for the individual and his life and his family’s life. Private insurance will always be especially important in a situation of world economic crisis when uncertainties increase.”

Itai, although this is an entry-level job, do you see yourself developing at the company and advancing over time?
“When I first got started at the company the content of the job didn’t sound particularly intriguing to me since it was related to health insurance, statistical figures, etc., but today, four months later, I can say with confidence that I’ve been exposed to an interesting area that I think is important for all of us to be familiar with. The insurance field has a wealth of information so I’m learning new things every day and have gotten to know many types of insurance.”

How do you look at the issue of health insurance today?
“Now I often take training courses on insurance, e.g. types of policies, and on the art of sales. I’m happy to have gotten hired here and even happier that I chose an insurance company that for me is like a school for marketing and sales, and exposes me to new fields. I’d like to get promoted to the job of field salesman and develop professionally as a salesman and insurance agent.
I feel working at Clal Rishon is very worthwhile and I feel the job has contributed to me from every standpoint.”

Do you have any advice for jobseekers during this period?
“I think that even today someone who wants to find work will eventually succeed in realizing his or her goal. There are a lot of jobs in the market, especially in the field of sales, and people who enjoy and feel an affinity for this field can easily get hired at a new company. In light of the difficult economic situation I recommend searching for work intelligently via the Internet, focusing your search according to certain criteria, such as field of business, type of work, etc. Good luck!”

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For the Hebrew Article

 
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