Hiring Trends in Startups and Scaleups

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There is no denying that the job market has changed drastically over the past decade - especially during the coronavirus pandemic. And for early-stage startups who may feel like new kids on the block, scaling the hiring process can feel like a daunting task.

As startups scale, they face several key challenges, including hiring, finding and keeping talent, along with growing the team at speed.

So, how can you attract the best talent to your business when you are a relatively unknown employer?

Steve Jobs once said: “When you’re in a startup, the first 10 people will determine whether the company succeeds or not.”

Although it may seem like a lot of pressure to set the success of a company on the shoulders of 10 individuals, we cannot deny that these people will have the most impact and influence.

At the very core of any early-stage high growth business, you will find it is the people that drive the business forward with their ideas, dedication, and talents. These initial hires will influence and set precedence for your employer brand, meaning those first few hires will establish a standard for your recruiting processes for years to come. 

Scaling goes far beyond filling vacancies as a matter of urgency to keep up with the business growth and demand. You need to make sure the people you hire align with your company mission and values and fit within the culture as you will be far more likely to retain these employees and have a thriving working environment. 

The hiring process is both costly and time-consuming after all, so for your business to succeed, it is essential that you follow the correct process to hire the right people.

We’ve listed the top four trends to think about when attracting new talent:

1) Attitude over experience

Since startups, scaleups, and established enterprises look within the same talent pool for recruitment, it comes as no surprise that many companies lose out on the right, qualified candidates as they are often snapped up quickly.

In order to recruit top talent, startups need to get creative and think outside the box, and that’s why you should consider attitude as a key component alongside skills and experience when looking for a candidate that will bring something extra to the table.

Often, scaling companies look for the most experienced, knowledgeable individuals to take their business to the next level. However, you need to hire people who are passionate about your business offering and are eager to take it further.

It's no surprise that a role at a scaleup is more than just a 9-5. This is an opportunity to build something truly exciting and can mean a lot of extra work. Passion and attitude can't be taught, but they are invaluable to a growing company, hence, you must look past the perfect candidate’s skills and experience because those with a can-do attitude can drive innovation in a growing business.

 2) Passive candidates

A passive candidate isn’t actively seeking employment and hasn’t submitted an application for an open position, but an employer will consider them as a good fit for a particular role and invite them to consider the position regardless.

Passive candidates have in-demand skills and experience, which makes them desirable to employers, and can often make better hires because they are intrigued by the opportunity presented to them.

3) Data-driven recruitment 

With data-driven recruitment, you can conduct quality-led recruitment. This innovation allows you to analyse and select candidates based on their skills, experiences, and characteristics and removes any biases from the recruitment process. This is a tremendous benefit as it can improve efficiency, productivity and can help you reach your diversity and inclusion goals in the process.

4) Strong EVP 

An Employer Value Proposition, or EVP, is similar to employer branding, and it is one of the ways companies can attract and retain top talent. For scaling tech businesses to gain a competitive edge when it comes to recruiting tech talent, they need to highlight what makes them unique to attract the skills and employees they’re looking for.

Growing businesses present additional advantages to tech talent, particularly for millennials and Gen Z, as they offer a whole new way of working. Flexible hours, greater opportunity for development, even a social company culture are appealing to the tech talent of today more than ever.

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