A medical device associate sales representative job is one of the best ways to get started in the industry. It is a feasible and reproducible route to breaking into the profession at a young age. Associate sales roles are for those with limited outside sales experience. An ideal candidate may have a couple of years of outside B2B sales experience.
What Do Medical Device Sales Associate Reps Do?
An associate sales rep supports a full line rep in covering a territory. It is viewed in the industry as a sales support role. An associate rep gets an opportunity to learn from an experienced rep and contribute to the team. This may include covering cases, education sessions, prospecting, and helping to manage inventory. Most associate reps do not have their own designated territories. They contribute to the sales of the full line rep.
The goal is get promoted to a full line rep position. If an associate rep performs well over time and the company has opening, the associate rep will be the first in line to fill the position.
There are some risks with an associate sales role. This is more geared towards those earlier in their careers. The transition into a full line rep position is based on timing and a position opening up. Also, it can be challenging to leverage associate sales rep experience for a full line rep position at another company.
Medical Device Sales Associate Salary
At the end of the day the medical device associate sales representative position is a support role. Young reps grind in these positions for the opportunity to earn a full line rep position. Therefore, the pay in these positions is much less. There is typically a salary component, but minimal commission opportunity. A new associate rep will have a base salary around 60k or 70k. After time in the role, they may be able to earn in the 100-130k range.
Difference Between A Full Line Sales Rep And Associate Sales Rep
A full line rep owns the quota for the territory. This is what sales is all about. Carrying the responsibility and stress of a number to the hit. The benefit of this is the sales commission that comes with good performance. An associate reps does not carry this pressure or the potential upside compensation. Also, a full line reps own the relationships. It is up to them to make sure key customers are supported. In addition, they have to handle the negotiations and the difficult conversations with customers.
Things To Consider For An Associate Sales Rep Role
The Medical Sales Authority team recommends associate sales positions for anyone early in their career. It is a great way to break into the industry. According the Stryker Career Blog, “these roles typically do not require sales experience and are an excellent place to begin your journey into sales”. Still, there are a couple of things to consider and look out for.
First off, do not stay in an associate position for an extended period of time. We get that timing can be tricky. Good positions do not come up everyday and sometimes it can pay to be patient. But you do not want to be waiting year after year for a tenured rep to leave.
Second, these role may not be ideal for someone later in their career. The roles pay less and it may be difficult for someone mid career to justify a pay cut. Also, waiting around for a full line position is not always suitable for someone that already has professional experience.