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Senior Key Account Manager

Application Deadline: Friday 24th January 2020
Senior Key Account Manager

Bookspeed is an imaginative, energetic and very customer-focused place to work. Everything we do is geared to our customers’ success because we can only thrive if they do.

We are a market-leading supplier of books, stationery and games, providing customised product ranges to suit individual retailers’ needs – from independent businesses and multi-site national companies to cultural heritage enterprises and specialist retail sectors. We are committed to delivering a highly-personalised and responsive service to our customers and, through our relationships with publishers and the gift and cultural sectors, we are uniquely positioned with industry insights that allow us to keep ahead of up-coming trends. We apply this insight and knowledge to create themed product collections which consistently prove successful for our customers. We’ve been doing this for over 30 years and we’re good at it because we love what we do.

The Position
Bookspeed has experienced very significant growth over the last three financial years despite challenging conditions in the general retail trade. One of the key factors in this growth is the depth of skill and knowledge of our sales team. The position of Senior Key Account Manager is responsible for the continued growth and management for some of our largest and most prestigious accounts whilst also working to develop our top-level sales and marketing strategies.

In this role, you will be critical to the growth and continued success of Bookspeed. Using your understanding and experience of our markets to identify the best opportunities to grow sales, you will work with the Business Development Director and the Sales Operations Manager as a part of the Sales Strategy Group, the team that develops the strategies to deliver our overall business goals, as set by the company’s board.

As a member of the Selection Group you will be central to Bookspeed’s maintaining its leading position in the market through our product selection and marketing output. This group decides on the items selected for our product range and the themes and focuses of our web collections, catalogues and trade show stands. From the overall collection you will develop the best appropriate bespoke range of products for each of your individual customers, ensuring that Bookspeed continues to provide a unique service within the industry of single-source book and gift provision. Presenting and demonstrating the benefits of this unique offer to customers is critical for our continued growth.

The Role

Your responsibilities will include, but not be limited to:

Key Account management:

  • Building close and lasting relationships with individual customer contacts; these are the foundations of your account management

  • Knowing and working closely with your contacts you will develop and present the most appropriate range of products to ensure continued success for both parties

  • The senior key account manager position goes beyond just offering excellent customer service to our most important customers. A core part of the position is the ability to conduct ongoing business reviews that will include but are not limited to:

  1. Identifying areas where we can increase business with the customer and create a 3/6/12 month plan to deliver this.

  2. Identifying areas of concern or danger with the account, eg unprofitable conditions or advances from competitors, and creating a 3/6/12 month plan to address this.

  3. Establishing the frequency of visits needed (where appropriate) and goals for these meetings.

  4. Working with the senior managers to ensure that discounts and profitability are within acceptable ranges.

  5. Noting and recording unique customer requirements and communicating them to the sales support team with appropriate training and explanation ensuring that the sales support team are comfortable with the implementation of these

  6. Reviewing payment issues and credit limits with the Credit Control Manager

Sales Strategy:

  • Working with the Business Development Director and the Sales Operations Manager to contribute to and execute the Sales Strategies that will achieve our business goals.

  • Identifying opportunities, within our sector and areas of expertise, where we can maximise growth

  • Working within a team of Senior Key Account Managers that shares, develops and respectfully critiques each other’s ideas, to develop the most robust and creative strategies possible

  • Being a leading part of the planning and execution of these strategies throughout the entire sales department

Selection Group. This meets regularly to:

  • Review new product submissions from suppliers

  • Identify the themes and trends that will become the core of our marketing output, including our web collections, catalogues and trade show displays, in keeping with our sales strategy.

  • Review ongoing marketing output and ensure its continuing suitability.

Business Development:

  • Working within the Sales Strategies and in collaboration with the Business Development Director to:

  1. Identify opportunities for growth within the existing customer base

  2. Seek out new business through new individual accounts and/or across new sectors by creating your own leads


  • Sharing your knowledge, experience and advice with others in the Sales Team

  • Working alongside Sales Account Managers and Key Account Managers on proposals and Business Review Documents

The successful candidate will:

  • Have significant previous experience in b2b account management of large customers, or several years’ experience of general b2b account management

  • Be an excellent negotiator

  • Demonstrate exceptional time management and the ability to re-prioritise as business dictates

  • Take great satisfaction in meeting and exceeding sales targets

  • Have previous experience in the UK retail market

  • Have a full, clean driving licence and be willing and able to work away at tradeshows and make customers visits as needed

  • Be able to demonstrate a good knowledge and understanding of all Microsoft Office applications, most specifically Excel, however training can be provided.

  • Have a good phone manner and get on well with people

  • Handle data under GDPR guidelines

  • Be willing to undertake any other reasonable duties required by the company

This position reports directly to the Sales Operations Manager.

As your day to day work will be focused on customer contact, ensuring the best service to all your customers, you will be supported by the sales support team who will carry out administrative tasks such as entering orders, issuing credits or dealing with missing deliveries etc for you.

You will have a monthly individual meeting with the Sales Operation Manager to discuss your performance against your personal target and your own Business Review Documents. This meeting will also be a space for both parties to raise any queries or concerns and discuss requirements for training that may be needed. You will have a yearly appraisal where your overall performance will be discussed and recorded, and a plan for progression towards your individual and professional goals updated and monitored. To ensure that progress is maintained throughout the year towards your professional goals, shorter quarterly catch-ups will be held to ensure progress towards these.

Terms and Conditions
Bookspeed is an equal opportunities employer. Company Rules, Health and Safety information and a Contract of Employment are issued at the start of employment. Full-time staff receive 30 days holiday per year, pro-rata for part-time staff.

This position is full time, 37.5 hours per week. We operate Monday to Friday; from 9.00am to 5.00pm. Full-time staff have two paid breaks of 15 minutes each and an unpaid break of 30 minutes at lunch-time.

A company car, laptop and phone will be provided.


£30,909 or higher DOE + Competitive sales related bonus

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