4 Startup Hiring Challenges and How You Can Overcome Them
Regardless of the company size, hiring and recruitment is a long-term investment that must be carefully thought out. For a startup in its nascent stages, a hiring expert’s advice is quintessential. You not only want talent with a strong work ethic but also an HR policy that improves retention.
The idea is unique. There’s an opportunity for tremendous growth. The pitch is perfect and the investors have been roped in. Now comes the part for the brains behind the startup to put a team together and scale quickly. However, hiring for startups is easier said than done.
There’s a lot that entrepreneurs need to think about and get right when starting hiring operations from scratch. Let’s take a look at some of the hurdles that most startups face and how they can overcome them.
1. Absence of a Hiring Expert
Businesses that are just starting out will rarely have a full-fledged, on-site team HR team. There is also a slim possibility of anyone already working for the startup that is well-versed in HR practices. And that includes the leaders as well. They have limited knowledge; as a result, they leverage their social networks and skills to find more employees. This can work in the first few months but will not in the long run.
As a startup, you need the foundations to be as strong as possible. And by foundations, it’s the personnel who join up; they have to be extremely talented. But the fact about talent is that it is in short supply. If you cannot retain them, there will always be someone else to prize them away.
By now you must’ve already realized that hiring experts will be required for the job. Startups have two options here: hire an in-house HR professional or outsource the hiring efforts to a staffing agency. And the latter is more suitable as their roles and responsibilities are adapted for startups that deal with the paucity of time and budget. For starters, it can be cost-effective; especially if work is project-based. Moreover, your company can tap into the rich talent pools that the staffing agency possesses. You can also work with multiple staffing partners simultaneously and get work done quickly.
2. Doing More With Less
Most startups will have limited a budget to work with. A chunk of the funds will be diverted towards other areas such as marketing, product development and so on. Unlike established businesses who have cash to burn, startups need to be strategic about employee compensation and must adopt unique methods to attract talent. Employees will only stick around if they’re being paid fairly and are entitled to other benefits.
To ensure that your startup doesn’t lose out on talent acquisition and retention, various tactics can be employed. You can offer equity to make up for a low salary, introduce work-from-home options, provide health insurance, develop employee assistance programs and so on.
3. Fill Vacant Positions Quickly
For startups, time is a luxury that they cannot afford to waste. Unlike bigger players who can bide their time for months to fill a vacant position, startups have to find capable individuals quickly and get them to producing results.
This is where employee screening and skills assessment comes into the picture. The candidate’s background has to be verified, their educational qualifications and work experience vetted, skills and aptitude assessed. Interviews, telephonic, video, or face to face, have to be scheduled and conducted before they’re onboarded, trained, and inducted.
As you may have guessed by now, this is a process that may take anywhere between a few days to weeks. In fact, the turnaround time for selecting candidates for leadership roles is even longer. Since these individuals will be the first few employees helping the startup to take off, there can be no room for hiring mistakes.
Given the time crunch, partnering with a professional staffing agency can help a startup save time, cost, and retain talent. Not only do they possess talent at their disposal who are pre-screened, vetted, and assessed, but also match candidates as per job requirements, manage payroll and employee grievances, offer candidates for project-based roles amongst other things.
4. The Lack of Applicants
Hiring the first employee for your startup? Then you have a decision to make — should you source local or remote candidates?
The problem with opting for local talent is that unless you have the funds and can offer more employee benefits, you can’t outcompete other players in your domain, especially in the tech sector.
Sourcing local talent is even more difficult if you operate out of the silicon valleys and the tech hubs; established giants, startups and businesses with deep pockets offer extravagant salary and benefits packages to sway candidates. For other startups, this translates to a measly applicant pool.
If local talent is not for you (yet), then you can always go after remote talent. We’re living in an age where the majority of the workforce are millennials. In fact, studies suggest that by the end of 2030, the number of millennials in any industry will have increased by 65%.
Most millennials today are all about working out of remote settings. They can offer the same productivity levels as local office-going candidates, if not more. By choosing remote over local employees, startups can not only access bigger and richer talent pools but also capture more applicants.
Without the presence of a dedicated HR, how can they build a team that is invested in taking the startup to new heights? Well, who needs a HR or a hiring partner anyway? So they say and begin hiring anyway which is the biggest mistake that most startups make — Some say that it’s easy, that Running a successful business is one thing, but building a workforce and keeping employees happy
Regardless of the company size, hiring and recruitment is a long-term investment that must be carefully thought out. Keep in mind that for a startup in its nascent stages, a hiring expert’s advice is quintessential. You not only want talent with a strong work ethic but also an HR policy that improves retention.
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