In today’s competitive world, hiring the right talent for your startup may seem like a herculean task, given that you are not just competing with the industry giants with vast resources for the best, but also that quick advancements in technology has changed the hiring landscape. Nevertheless, a company that takes the time to carefully consider and tweak its hiring process and strategy stands to gain much from recruiting the best talent the world has to offer.
You have just formed your startup and are looking for like-minded, highly motivated and skilled individuals to be members of your startup team or family. However, you are also gradually becoming aware that you are competing not just with other startups in your space, but also larger, more established giants that have deep pockets, for the best talent. What’s more, these behemoths have way more resources and capital at their disposal, enabling them to provide customised training programs and internship programs, pay much higher salaries and offer a whole host of other benefits, both traditional and new. You may also come to realize that it’s not just the industry leaders in your space that want the same talent as you do; other large companies from various industries and businesses such as trade finance are also looking for the same skilled people as you are.
It is vital that you treat the hiring process as a key business practise. Yes, as a young and growing startup with just a few people onboard filling multiple roles, it may be tempting to delegate the hiring process to, say, your startup’s sales manager. However, the simple truth is that your team members probably do not have the necessary experience in talent acquisition – unless it really is their area of expertise – and due to the fact the everyone is filling multiple roles within the company, there’s just not enough time or resources to develop a viable, well thought-out hiring program or strategy. A well-developed recruitment plan needs to be established right at the very beginning, and there are several ways to go about it; outsourcing to hiring experts, creating a dedicated internal team with the proper expertise, or using the right tools and platforms to help along the hiring process.
Today’s young and brightest minds are usually brave and want to make a difference, whether it be in their communities, their countries or the world. Your small, up and coming startup may actually be the place for them to flourish as startups are usually innovative and dynamic by nature, compared to the larger, more established organizations where change and innovation may come about at a slower pace. Today’s young talent want to work at places that align with their core beliefs and values, and which drive innovation and change. Working at startups is a more attractive choice for them because they have a real opportunity to contribute and make a difference, and the impact they create is driven by a sense of purpose.
To attract the right kind of talent for your startup, you may also consider developing benefits and rewards packages that offer perks and benefits that are tailor-made for them. Nowadays many employees value the convenience and flexibility afforded by working remotely. In fact there are many project and team management tools such as Slack that make working remotely a seamless process. If your startup is looking at talent from universities, you may offer student loan assistance as part of the perks for joining. And of course, let’s not forget free food; your startup can provide tasty free breakfasts or lunches for your workers. In short, by providing the convenience, flexibility and opportunities that are important to your hires, you create a nurturing, supportive workplace for your startup that is far more appealing to potential hires compared to what the other companies may have to offer.
When going up against these larger companies, your startup is likely going to lose the hiring war if you’re competing based on who can offer the highest salary. Instead, the way to win the right talent is to portray your startup as the company of choice to work at. A good way to convey that is to develop and nurture a company culture that reflects its values and best practises in the marketplace, and which will resonate deeply with those whom you want to hire for your startup. During the hiring process, put your startup’s best foot forward and let your potential hires know about your company’s culture as a great place to work.
It may seem impossible for a startup to win the talent war in today’s highly competitive world, but with the right understanding and preparation it need not be so. By treating the hiring and recruiting process with much care and thought, your startup will be able to compete with even the largest companies and organizations for the best talent.