Tips For Recruiting The Right People For A Startup

Hiring the right talent to expand an entrepreneurial venture successfully is one of the biggest challenges that most young start-ups face today. If you are one of them, here are some tips that can help you sharpen your recruitment strategy to hire smarter and faster.

Preeti Sharma

In today’s competitive world, young organisations hardly get any time to put down their roots before the pressure to expand and create more and more value starts building. Often, in a hurry to grow, the founding teams of such organisations make rookie hiring mistakes and pay heavily for them. The total recruitment and training cost incurred by a company for a new employee is usually quite large - almost to the tune of six to nine months’ worth of salary. A bad hire, therefore, comes with a significant penalty which is best avoided. Bringing the most suitable people onboard by using tools and techniques that can hasten the recruitment process without diluting its efficacy is an art that every founding member should perfect before racing towards the alluring goal of expansion. Here are some tips that can help startups hire the right people without wasting precious time.

1.       Give Artificial Intelligence A Shot – AI tools can simplify the recruitment process for recruiters and the managers, thereby saving time and money. Chatbots like Mya can parse resumes, schedule interviews, and even give instantaneous updates to the candidates. More complex tools like Eightfold can automatically create a pipeline of most suitable candidates using every talent pool available. Smart algorithms can help you screen resumes faster without the need for too much human intervention.

2.       Consider Hiring Freelancers – Independent contractors and freelancers are an excellent low-cost option when it comes to seasonal jobs or fixed-term assignments. Such resources are highly productive as they work with you on projects that have clear targets. You can hire them whenever the need arises and keep them on for as long as it lasts. Websites like Upwork and Guru are a treasure trove of talent looking for freelance assignments.

3.       Involve Multiple Team Members In The Hiring Process – When assessing a potential candidate, it is always a good idea to involve several existing employees in the process. This practice will help you get a variety of opinions from those who are eventually going to work with the new hire. It will also give you a feel of how well the candidate will fit in with the team. This method helps you make sure that you do not hire the wrong person. Even if the hiring manager fails to discern an unsavoury trait in the candidate, several others may catch it and point it out.

4.       Use Social Media To Find Interesting Candidates – No matter how new-fangled or absurd it may sound, hashtags can actually help you find interesting people who are related to your area of work and who may be great additions to your team. Instead of sourcing resumes and scanning them, try looking for people on your social media feed. Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram are great places to start with if you are planning to use social media as your source.

5.       Do Not Undermine The Power Of Referrals – An employee referral program usually works well for most organisations – old or new. The success of such a program is based on the fact that it gives you access to local talent through your existing employee base. An excellent example is that of Appstem, a San Francisco based app development startup. Despite being a small boutique firm amid behemoths like Google and Twitter, Appstem manages to hire great people through an employee referral program that they established a couple of years ago. CEO, Robert Armstrong says that not only does the program help them attract talent but also retain existing talent.

Hiring is one of the most critical responsibilities shouldered by founding teams. It is vital for young entrepreneurs to take this task seriously because, on the one hand, the right people can help a fledgeling startup soar to the pinnacle of success, but on the other hand, even a single bad hire can prove to be a major setback for the overall health of the organisation.


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