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How Nordics Innovator MapsPeople Tackles the Hyper-Growth Challenge

MapsPeople Sales Recruiting

MapsPeople teams with Peak Sales Recruiting to grow U.S. sales and doubles sales projections

At this year’s South by Southwest (SXSW) conference, we were reminded of the power behind the Nordics startup community. Danish MapsPeople is a great example. With established markets in Europe and North America, MapsPeople is making the world more accessible by creating easy-to-use, innovative software to help you virtually find your way. Through MapsPeople’s Indoor Navigation product and Google Maps platform, the company makes the transition from outdoor to indoor navigation seamless. From virtually navigating your way through hundreds of exhibit booths at one of the largest women’s lifestyle events to checking out stadiums in advance of hosting sports events, the consumer and business use cases are endless.

MapsPeople is a spinoff of the original, traditional mapping company founded in 1887, but as Chief Operating Officer Jonas Berntsen explains, “Our heritage in mapping goes back more than a century but today we operate as a fast-paced startup that is literally five-years young. Our focus is leading the future of mapping through constant innovation.”


MapsPeople teams with Peak to grow U.S. sales

The company’s operational plan for 2019 includes a major focus on growing U.S. operations. For Jonas, building MapsPeople’s first U.S. salesforce was a key element and timing was critical as significant projects were underway with several Fortune 500 clients. “To land these bigger deals, we normally need a team of 3-4 people, including a regional manager, sales engineer, and project manager,” he explains. “We didn’t have this type of team established yet in the U.S. and with my limited bandwidth, I really needed to work with a B2B sales recruiter who I could trust to quickly bring the structure and process to find the right candidates.”

Jonas turned to Peak Sales Recruiting.


Proven sales skills + customer lens were top criteria

After meeting to understand MapsPeople’s criteria for the hires, a dedicated Peak client manager was assigned to work closely with Jonas on all aspects of the project. The mission was to identify, recruit, screen, evaluate, and help hire three top-performing regional sales managers and a project manager.

Jonas had very specific criteria for the sales roles.  “We never look for the classic sales type,” he explains. “We need people who really understand the psychology of the clients and take the time to understand their business and needs. At the same time, we want people who can challenge the clients. Ask why they are taking a certain direction or strategy and gain new insight about their needs. This also engages the customer and builds a better foundation from the start. This experience doesn’t always happen using a traditional sales approach.”


Structure, communication, and results

Jonas had worked with other recruiting firms in the past and high on his list was one point of contact. “For me, it’s about the quality of my 1:1 contact and the structure, organization, communication, and trust throughout the process.”

Peak’s talent acquisition process relies on a  4-step sales recruiting methodology that includes determining corporate objectives, identifying the profile of an ideal candidate, targeted headhunting to find the top candidates, and scientific assessment.

“Working with Peak, I had the advantage of one dedicated client manager who was well-structured in her approach, organized, and reliable. This made the ultimate difference in our results. When you outsource something as critical as employee recruitment, you need to ensure you have a quality process and one that you can trust. Our Peak client manager proved that every day.”

– Jonas Berntsen, COO, MapsPeople

Within a very fast timeline, three regional sales managers and one project manager were hired, all aligned with Jonas’ criteria and the MapsPeople culture.


What’s next for MapsPeople?

If you ask Jonas, MapsPeople is now well-positioned to support large U.S. deals in the works as well as global growth. “It’s an exciting time for our company,” he says. “I believe we now have the right team to take MapsPeople to a new level this year and beyond.  We are doubling our sales estimates each year and proving our projections through the work we are doing with major brands like JP Morgan, KPMG, and Kohls, along with new product innovation.”

On the heels of hiring its U.S. sales team, Jonas reflects, “It was very important to build the right foundation in the U.S.  If we don’t have the right people, it takes a lot more time for onboarding and results.” In the coming period, MapsPeople will be hiring 20 sales, marketing, engineering, and administrative positions to support new deals in the works – and at the same time, moving some of its European team from its Aalborg and Copenhagen offices to its Austin office.

As for those deals with the big brands, watch for news very soon.  For now, MapsPeople’s U.S. sales team has hit the ground running through a great partnership with Peak.


Are you ready to take your talent acquisition to the next level? Learn more about Peak’s services or contact us today to recruit top sales talent.


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Eliot Burdett

CEO at Peak Sales Recruiting

Before Peak, Eliot spent more than 20 years building and leading companies, where he took the lead in recruiting and managing high performance sales teams. He co-founded Ventrada Systems (mobile applications) and GlobalX (e-commerce software). He was also Vice President of Sales for PointShot Wireless. Eliot received his B. Comm. from Carleton University and has been honored as a Top 40 Under 40 Award winner. He co-authored Sales Recruiting 2.0, How to Find Top Performing Sales People, Fast and provides regular insights on sales team management and hiring on the Peak Sales Recruiting Blog.