How Can Startups Hire Better?


A few tips to help you hire the best talent for your startup.

We all get excited by the idea of starting our own company, despite knowing that there are a zillion challenges in the startup world. One such challenge is hiring. You need to find that perfect someone who matches the startup’s culture and has those much-desired skills that can take it further. The recruiting process gets even more challenging for startup firms as they have to compete with multinational companies with high brand visibility and reputation. Also, big corporations have the resources to offer their employees, for instance, ‌much heftier compensation and other perks like longer-paid parental leave. 

According to InnoVen Capital’s latest survey, the top challenge for Indian startup founders is to find good talent, and managing talent is their most important goal for 2022. Besides, according to a CB Insights study, 7 percent of startups fail because of disharmony among the team. As an entrepreneur, hiring employees, especially the first team members, will greatly impact your startup’s culture and how well you run day-to-day operations. Getting this step wrong could be the downfall of your startup, so knowing where to start is key. A diverse team with a wide range of skill sets is essential for a firm’s success. 

Here are five hiring strategies to put into practice when hiring for your startup:

Hire from your network

Hiring candidates within a tight budget and limited resources is very difficult for a start-up company. Therefore, it is wise to build the initial talent pool by hiring candidates from your existing network. You may look for professional networking platforms, like LinkedIn, to attract potential talent. This has many merits—you can gauge your candidates’ strengths, personality and potential before offering them an interview. 

Once your initial team is set up, you may even expand your team by mining for potential candidates from your employees’ network. Employee referrals can be an effective way to get your word out and hire new workers with higher retention rates, and it can also make the hiring process much quicker and cheaper.

Focus on employer branding

Conventionally, the hiring process puts the highlight on ‌the abilities and experiences of potential candidates for the opening positions. Well, maybe it’s time to switch to new recruitment strategies to attract quality candidates. 

Enter employer branding. Coined by Tim Ambler and Simon Barrow, the term “employer branding” refers to “the package of functional, economic and psychological advantages supplied by employment that the employing firm recognizes.” A strong employer brand attracts top talent, making it a simple way to influence its overall success. A way to impress your potential employees is to showcase your company’s unique attributes that make it worth applying to—from your company’s values to on-the-job perks, such as birthdays and corporate parties—through social media channels.  

Outsource the hiring process

Let’s face it—a startup firm often lacks the capital and expertise to build an in-house team on their own. Besides hiring freelancers, outsourcing the recruitment process is another practical option for budget and time constraints. It can be done by going to, for instance, headhunters, recruiting firms and staffing companies. Choose the provider that can link your company’s goals with your hiring needs. 

Offer attractive benefits

To successfully attract and keep top talent, don’t just offer money. Offering the right benefits package will attract much-needed talent to your startup. Flexible working conditions, using telecommuting options or an unlimited vacation policy are all great perks that will attract top employees. These perks may also be used to encourage your staff to work hard and do well financially as your company expands. 

According to a Comparably survey, Google, Peloton, Microsoft and LinkedIn are some of the top 25 companies that offer the best perks and benefits. For instance, Google provides generous compensation packages and numerous job perks, such as free gourmet food and getting to bring your pets to work. These can be the reference points for startups, which usually run on a much smaller scale with a tighter budget, when considering what employee perks to offer.

Hire people who are on the same wavelength as your startup

Startup hiring is a little different from hiring in other industries because it isn’t about hiring people to fill a particular role—it is about recruiting people who can fit into the startup culture and mindset. This means hiring people who think like the startup, share the same passion as your business, and fit into your startup culture. If the wavelength of the potential candidate aligns with your startup, then, without a doubt, go for them. 

Don’t make your decision based only or predominantly on the candidate’s qualification and experience. You want to hire employees who are trustworthy and passionate about your work because they will be responsible for the growth and success of your startup.

We all know how overwhelming it can be to find the right team members for your startup, but with these few tips and a thirst to hunt for the apt candidate, nothing is impossible.

Header image courtesy of Unsplash


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