A Career in Technical Sales

As part of our Career in Building Services series, today we meet Mohammad Masud from CIBSE Young Engineers Network (YEN) UAE, who is discussing Technical Sales within his region. If you have any questions about this career path, please contact YEN at  yenuae@cibse.org or the Young Energy Performance Group at yepg@cibse.org

Masud graduated in Mechanical Engineering and has a post graduation in Industrial &
Production Engineering, both from Aligarh Muslim University. He joined Faisal Jassim Trading Co as an Application Engineer in 2016 and had been working in Technical Sales for the past three years. Masud serves as Education Officer on the CIBSE YEN UAE Committee, helping to engage university students with CIBSE YEN through events and discussion.

What do Sales Engineers do? 

Technical Sales by virtue of an engineered product is quite different from normal sales. The aim is to provide a solution to an engineering problem, so in addition to the art of selling, Technical Sales Engineers use their expert knowledge of both products and the system to sell the best solution for the project. Sales engineers have an end to end responsibility among various sales stages i.e. receipt of inquiry, product submission, approval, and delivery. They are directly involved as early as from project design till final handover. Their feedback is also vital in product development and marketing. 

Tell us a typical challenge of your work. 

Sales Engineers are basically a bridge between a technical solution and an engineering requirement. The biggest challenge for me is to successfully coordinate between them both. Engineering products have to meet strict compliance from both consultants and clients, and sometimes it is really challenging to get the product approved. Of late, I have been working towards retrofit and energy optimization project sales, where we offer retrofit with our products in addition to associated energy savings. We have to correctly assess the energy-saving opportunities and related risks. Our sales pitch is based on a good ROI and improved system performance. 

Why did you choose this role? 

A technical sale is directly related to demand; I am working with sales in the construction sector, particularly with building services related products. Globally, not only is the demand for these products set to increase over the years, but this sector is witnessing continuous technology changes with the advent of green buildings and sustainability. I believe it is going to be an exciting journey ahead filled with opportunities to learn new things. Apart from that, project sales have a very energetic aura, the wins and losses are quite frequent, which do result in a multidimensional development. 

What degrees could be suitable for this industry? 

An engineering degree closely related to product application (Mechanical / Electrical) would be a good fit. Specialised skills are usually not required for technical sales, but if you want to develop a highly desired skill of our time ie. emotional intelligence, then sales is the place to go.

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