Vice president (VP) of sales is a very focused executive position that typically requires a high level of education, experience, and leadership. In addition, VPs are phenomenal communicators who run point on big-picture tasks to set expectations early and often throughout the organization. It adds up to a lot of work for typically commensurate pay.
A Vice President of Sales typically performs on a regional level (such as East or West coast) or a countrywide level. Since they work on such a large scale and with a typically exceptional skillset, a VP of sales may perform various duties. Generally, these duties revolve around meeting revenue goals and supervising sales managers to ensure that product development and sales strategies are implemented on a company-wide scale.
In addition, Sales VPs also report to a company’s board of directors on revenue on a monthly, quarterly, and annual basis; thus, this position requires an ability to interpret numbers and statistics and develop strategies to increase sales and staff efficiency.
While these general responsibilities often cut across the board, what is required of sales VPs can vary significantly, depending on the size, hierarchy and structure of the company- and the particular industry in which they operate.
Every year, corporations in the US make mind-bending profits from direct sales of goods and services. For perspective, it’s worth noting that:
Whether they work at a startup or a Fortune 500 company, Sales VPs play a massive role in realizing these business profits. This is particularly so because of their leadership in:
Thus, Sales VPs are critical players in any organization – and in many industries, it is not uncommon to find more than one per company. This directly impacts why VP/Sales in the US have the potential to earn up to $200,000 annually in commissions and bonuses – that is minus base pay, which according to Glassdoor, is $100,000 across all industries and experience levels.
Overall, the middle 57% of VPs of Sales make between $300,000 and $510,000, with the top 86% earning $950,000. A little more focus on industry nuances will reveal that even with the excellent averages, how well VP/Sales is paid will differ depending on factors which include:
There’s usually a substantial base salary and varying bonuses depending on the company and the industry. For instance, Sales VP positions are not particularly unique in the financial services industry, and a huge firm may have two or more VP/Sales positions. Conversely, there may be just a few — or only one for software companies or manufacturers. As a result, total compensation including OTE, On-Target-Earnings for Sales VPs in some industries is lower than you might expect.
The average VP of Sales in the US makes $301,370, according to this report. The average bonus for a VP of Sales is $119,607, representing about 40% of their salary, with 92% of people reporting that they receive a bonus each year. Sales VPs in the tech industry make the most in San Francisco at $337,120, averaging total compensation 12% greater than the US average.
According to research from Comparably, The average Vice President, Healthcare Sales in the US makes $180,500. Vice President, Healthcare Sales make the most in New York at $180,500, averaging total compensation 0% greater than the US average.
According to Zip Recruiter, the average annual pay for a VP/Sales in the US is $99,599 a year – An estimation which appears to be quite conservative compared to other available figures. Nevertheless, the industry seems strong, looking at the profits made from how it rallied so well during the worst of the Covid pandemic.
Currently benefiting from increased demand for healthcare supplies, the uptick is expected to be a significant trend, as mass therapies (blockbuster drugs) give way to highly tailored individualized treatments – creating a fast-moving marketplace.
Most big financial institutions, especially banks, have multiple VP/Sales, literally spreading the wealth among a more significant number of executives. As a result, the industry has been doing remarkably well, even as questions loom about possible industry disruptions.
VPs of Sales in financial services make $135,000 on average. Higher averages revolve around $230,000 compared to $57,000 at the lowest, averaging total compensation of about $391,000 across the country.
Some of the significant drivers of consumer services were dented by restrictions and anxieties around coronavirus: profits in travel, hospitality and recreation took severe hits. However, money is, slowly and surely, easing back into the Consumer Service industries, particularly with the down-surge in Covid hysteria. Thus, the amount of services spent in the overall economy is reflected in higher pay for VP/Sales positions in the industry.
On average, Sales VPs in Consumer services earn $172,000 annually. However, lower percentiles average $113,000, compared to $249,000 in the more prominent companies. In this report, for example, a Head of Sales reported a yearly salary of $225,000 with +$50,000 in additional cash compensation.
Competition for top sales talent is particularly fierce in the current business-driven market. As a result, the Covid pandemic essentially poured fuel on an already hot marketplace as the digitalization of business practices and new digital services transformed the business landscape.
With an annual growth rate of 10%, the demand for more business services — especially digital tools — shows no sign of slowing. The median annual wage for sales VPs in Q1 2022 was $142,000, with some earning as high as $296,000 and as low as $64,000.
At Cowen Partners, our sales executive recruiters are exceptionally skilled at delivering in-demand candidates, no matter the need and across all industries. Backed by a proven executive recruiting process, we have been the partner of choice for startups, corporations, small businesses, non-profits, and more, meeting unique and critical recruitment needs across the entire C-suite, including CEOs, CFOs, COOs, CMOs, CIOs, CTOs, CHROs, VPs, directors, and several other leadership roles.
With our executive recruiters, you get senior partner-led searches, due diligence-run networking, meticulous candidate vetting, and so much more, all geared towards one goal — placing the very best talent as VP sales as soon as possible, all while ensuring a seamless fit with your company culture, your big-picture objectives, and other factors. Plus, we have one of the highest candidate retention rates in the industry while consistently delivering world-class talent faster than the competition.
That’s how Cowen Partners has become a leading executive search firm nationwide, and it’s why our executive recruiters have a reputation for excellence and success.
Contact us to see why we are continually ranked as one of the best executive search firms around and why we have so many repeat and long-term clients, as well as referrals.
We also invite you to continue exploring more executive recruiting insights from our team: