Get your team strategy right in Grocery to keep you agile while always being there during peak periods. Fixed term vs Permanent teams: Two experts views from the sector

22 June 2022
Author: Kirsty Whyte

As the retail environment changes, so too do the needs of a brand. In the past, field-marketing options were limited and came in the form of a permanent year-round or activation teams - often planned well in advance. As new external factors and trends come to the forefront, it has brought with it a challenge for brands to react fast enough. Thankfully field marketing has also evolved and now there are more team and resource types available than ever – this ensures we give brands maximum agility while offering the security that we’ll always being there during peak periods.  

Today, fixed term teams go head-to-head with permanent teams as we get an insight from experts in retail. We spoke to Denise McKechnie, Agile Manager and David Easson, Activation Controller from our Wave agency to find out what a fixed term team is, why brands are choosing it and how they compare to their permanent counterpart. 


First of all, what is a Fixed Term sales team? 

Denise explains, “Fixed term teams are sales teams that are set up at pace at the point of need for our clients. They can be seasonal teams, for example just for Summer or Christmas, or when a client needs to upscale resource round an activity like driving distribution or new product launches. Typically, we send these teams into Convenience symbol and independents or Grocery Multiples. 

From your experience, why do brands choose a Fixed Term sales team? 

It allows clients access to put feet on the street as and when they need support. It gives them the flexibility of not being tied into long field-marketing contracts, while not comprising on quality. Clients want quality Territory Managers but on a short-term basis and this is the solution. 

Fixed term sales teams can support with new product launches, execution or distribution support to boost sales. They can also allow brands to sample a field marketing service before committing to a 1 - 3 year contact.  

It’s a very seasonal service. Clients know they will experience spikes during certain times of the year seasons, so these teams are perfect because they only pay for the service when they need it and not all year round when it’s not busy. This is true for any brand.  


How does a fixed term sales team compare to a permanent team? 

David says, “Fixed term sales teams can provide the same capability as a permanent team. We’re building up a skilled community of people who we train on the job, so the capability and skill set is growing organically - it’s a highly skilled community on tap and they cover every area across the country. We carry out internal training and accreditation to colleagues in the same way we would with permanent colleagues. 
A thorough recruitment process is carried out when adding to our community to ensure we recruit the same standard of skilled candidates as we would for a permanent team - there is no compromise on quality or service. 

Previously, the only option available was either a permanent team or activation. There was no middle ground, but that’s what we are able to offer now. We have the resource to step in and offer this to brands at any time. Whether they require high scale for a point in time or for particular events we’ll be there.  


What are the benefits of a Fixed Term team in key sectors such as Grocery? 

David comments, “It can support or supplement an existing sales team, which means that they aren’t taken away from their main objectives in stores. The fixed term sales team are brought in for a particular sales activity, allowing the permanent team to focus on their day-to-day tasks.  
As the retail environment continually changes, we are able to provide a service based on clients’ needs as and when required. It allows for more flexibility as trends change in the Grocery sector and gives brands the confidence to adapt their activity as they see fit.” 


From getting the right mix of permanent and agile teams in place, to support with delivering winning execution, our Group of Sales and Marketing agencies are ready to help your brand thrive in Grocery and every key retail sector. 

Talk to us to find out more: Contact | Avidity ( 


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