Learn about the SAP Services Account Executive salary, sales culture, and job responsibilities.
What type of work experience do you need for this role?
Most people with less than 4-5 years of experience enter through the SAP Sales Academy. The SAP Sales Academy generally requires 1-3 years experience in sales or a customer facing role. The SAP Sales Academy is an 8 month intensive sales training program after which you will start as an Industry Account Executive, Solution Sales Executive, Services Account Executive, or General Business Account Executive.
Experienced hires for the Services Account Executive role generally have 3 or more years experience in consulting (MBB or Big 4) or in another services sales job.
How is the sales org structured?
SAP segments their sales org by product, account size, and geographic location.
The two main sales orgs are license (software) and professional services (services).
The license side is very complex, as there are many different sub-orgs. For example, you will have an industry account executive who sells SAP’s full product suite into a particular industry, General Business Account Executives, and product specialists / line of business account executives who specialize in one product (Concur, Ariba, Hana, etc.).
Depending on the line of business, SAP also has SDR’s and inside sales reps.
The services side sells only consulting services, so they don’t have specific consulting product specialists, but they do have subject matter experts they bring in to engagements. Their org is further divided by account size (mid-market, enterprise) and location. Services reps don’t have inside sales reps or SDR’s.
What does a Services Account Executive do at SAP?
A Services Account Executive sells SAP’s consulting services to businesses that need help implementing their SAP environment. They only sell to accounts with an existing SAP install.
Services Account Executives, in normal times, are expected to be at the client site Monday through Thursday, so there is a lot of travel involved.
Note: Services Account Executives were formerly known at SAP as ‘Client Partners’.
Which SAP offices do Services Account Executives work at?
Since Services Account Executives are field sellers and traveling multiple days per week, most reps work from home.
Culture and Daily Life
What's the SAP sales culture like?
While the Services sales culture is intense, it is also known for being a collaborative and employee centric culture. You are also granted a lot of autonomy.
Sales rep turnover in Services is also low. It is not uncommon to see people working as Services Account Executives for 10 or more years.
How many hours per week do Services Account Executives work?
When it is end quarter or there is a big deal coming in, you might work 50 to 60 hours per week. On the flip side, you will have many weeks (beginning of fiscal year or quarter) where you only work 20 to 30 hours per week. On average, you can expect to work 40 hours per week.
Salary, Commission, and Quota
How much does an SAP Services Account Executive make?
SAP levels generally go from T1-T3 for individual contributors. Within each T, there are 3 sub-levels (T2.1, T2.2, T2.3). Salespeople will be anywhere from T2.1 to T3.3. Comp depends on level, location, and account size.
For detailed compensation data, visit our dedicated SAP company page.
How are the quotas structured?
Services Account Executives quotas are based on annual bookings and revenue (consumption), and these are split 70-30. For example, if a rep sells a $1,000,000 consulting deal, there will be $1,000,000 to the booking right away. The revenue part of the quota depends on how much the customer consumes from that booking.
What is the interview process like?
The interview process really varies manager to manager. As an outside experienced hire, generally, you’ll have a phone screen with a recruiter followed by an interview with your direct manager. You might also have an interview with the SVP, or the hiring manager might invite the SVP to the interview.
Some managers will pepper you with typical sales interview questions, and others might just want to get to know you on a personal level. Their main goal is to see if you are a good fit for value selling.
What are the interview questions?
- Walk me through your resume
- Tell me about your past sales roles
- What did you previously sell
- Why SAP
- Why services/consulting Sales
- Describe your Sales Process
- How do you handle a complex sales process
- Times you dealt with a difficult customer
- Times you had success
- Times you experienced failure
Tips to Succeed
How big of a role does territory play in your success?
SAP’s sales operations emphasize creating equal territories so that territories don’t play a large role in a salesperson’s success. If you feel that your territory is unfair, you can escalate this to management to get your territory realigned.
What is the SAP sales training like?
SAP has an intensive 8 month training program known as the SAP Sales Academy for people with 1-3 years sales experience.
You will develop a foundation for a career in sales. The Academy develops your sales, product, and presentation skills over the course of the program. You will get the opportunity to network and learn from senior sales reps and managers. You can learn more here.
Outside experienced hires do not go through the sales academy.
What advice would you give to a new rep?
- You will be drinking out of a fire hose for the first six months after starting as there are so many products in the portfolio
- Learn as much as you can about value selling
- Find a mentor
- Learn from the experienced reps
- Even if you’re not hitting your number, if you have pipeline and can show you’re working hard, you won’t be put on plan or fired
Is now still a good time to join SAP as a sales rep?
Yes. SAP is growing their SAP Sales Academy and putting more emphasis on their ‘Early Talent’. The Services org is also growing as SAP has recently expanded the org to now include mid-market accounts on top of their enterprise accounts segment.
Who do Services reps compete with?
SAP Services Account Executives compete with the other IT consulting firms such as Accenture, Deloitte, IBM, etc.
SAP’s consulting arm is known as the premium value player for implementing SAP environments, so if a rep can get the value across of having SAP’s own consultants implement their SAP environment, it is an easy sell, although more expensive.