Recruitment Success Story:
Virtual Forge

  • Featured
  • 6 May 2020
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  • Case studies
  • by Ben Brook

“Launch Global helped us solve our hiring challenges in Germany, by finding and most importantly attracting very niche sales candidates with expertise in SAP Security SaaS products in southern Germany. I would highly recommend their services as they did a wonderful job!
Kate Kraemer, Head of Operational Excellence at Virtual Forge (now Onapsis)

Virtual Forge is the leading provider of cybersecurity solutions for SAP. Our solutions enable companies to run their SAP applications securely. Companies from sectors such as banking, insurance, defence, pharmaceuticals, automotive and healthcare rely on our solutions.

In 2019 Onapsis acquired Virtual Forge, the leading provider of solutions to automatically prevent, detect and remediate cybersecurity and compliance risks in customisations and extensions of SAP® applications. Together, Onapsis delivers the cybersecurity industry’s first and only comprehensive business-critical application cybersecurity and compliance platform.

Addressing Virtual Forge’s hiring challenges

Virtual Forge had struggled to successfully hire into a variety of roles, from technical SAP Security Consultants to Senior Sales professionals. There was a variety of challenges which we assisted them in solving.

Here are some of the challenges:

  • Identifying high-quality candidates with niche SAP security experience
  • Attraction challenges due to proximity with SAP who have the market share of high-quality candidates in and around the Heidelberg area. Difficulties due to the SAP HQ being located 15KM away in Waldorf. 
  • Developing a recruitment strategy to keep up with rapid business growth

Building a successful sales team in the DACH region

We started by addressing the requirements of Virtual Forge by embedding our team into the businesses and taking detail briefs from each stakeholder across multiple business functions (sales, HR and operations). We also spoke to senior c-level leadership to understand Virtual Forge’s growth plans and how the hiring requirements align.

Virtual Forge planned to expand out of their current target market in the DACH region (Germany, Austria, Switzerland) into other geographies across Europe and the Middle East.

The challenge was to build a team of sales and technical specialists who had experience across the EMEA region, with SaaS and SAP security experience.

We developed benchmarking against their current top performers and developed ideal candidate profiles from our rigorous briefing process. We will be posting about how our briefing process enables our team to deliver the best quality candidates on the market.

How to find high-quality candidates in Germany?

Finding and attracting senior sales professionals and senior technical consultants both with niche technology experience is difficult. In Germany, it can feel like an impossible task at times. As mentioned in previous posts, from our experience, these candidates can get approached up to 5+ times per week, it is very much a candidates market. Finding and attracting these candidates with a unique, personalised approach is critical.

Another difficulty is that we had a small number of candidates that match the requirements perfectly. We were looking to build a team, so we first looked at competitors, and through research, found similar companies with customers and partners across Virtual Forge’s new target geographies.

We used our Candidate Searching, Sourcing and Attraction Engine to locate these potential candidates across a multitude of digital and physical locations, which allowed us to make hyper-personalised, unique approaches by embedding our team in the candidate’s eco-systems and developing conversations.

As an example, by starting a conversation through a SAP Security Community is unique and personal, versus competing with 20+ recruiters a month via LinkedIn.


Successful hiring enterprise team in EMEA

Through our conversations, we developed a relationship with a senior SAP Security sales expert at a competitor who was making redundancies and managed to attract a small team of sales and technical experts from the competitor and migrate the team smoothly into Virtual Forge.

The first senior hire ended up becoming the VP Sales globally for Virtual Forge and soon after Virtual Forge merged with Onapsis to expand their global presence into the US, Europe and Middle-East and broaden their technical solution. We also completely eradicated the need for agency reliance and set up legal entities in new countries across Europe.

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