For most start-ups, recruitment is an ongoing and significant challenge. Finding the right candidate for a role is one thing, but it’s also vital that they can fit into the culture of that start-up and even more important that you can put together the right package to tempt them, including salary, opportunity, the right working culture and much more.
As start-ups begin to think about their recruitment needs in 2023, it’s wise to think about talent retention, as well as acquisition. Providing the right environment for employees has never been as important or complex as it is now.
Here are our five key learnings for successful start-up recruitment in 2023 and beyond.
- Establish the right hybrid working policy
This is an issue companies of all sizes are still wrestling with – how often should they ask employees to come to the office? Most people no longer wish to commute to the office every single day. So for employers, it’s a question of balancing that requirement with the benefits that arise from people spending time with each other in person.
Intentionality is everything. The world of work has seen such disruption over the past two years and is still in flux heading into 2023. If people are not provided with clarity about working culture, they will fill that gap themselves and interpret things in their own way.
That’s what we are trying to do at Deazy. We recognise that there are times when working at home is highly productive, but we always want to maintain that face-to-face interaction – it’s too important not to. We have a company-wide meeting every quarter to ensure everyone gets to see each other properly. We also aim to approach the working week to ensure that people’s days in the office overlap as much as possible.
- Prioritise talent identification
An initial point should always be to consider whether you really need to hire someone. Recruiting great people for unnecessary roles will still create problems and waste money.
Equally, employing the wrong person can be a costly and time-consuming mistake. There are never guarantees with recruitment, but start-ups can make it easier by looking for the right people in the right places and establishing proper processes.
Processes are hugely important. Every Deazy candidate gets told that we take our time and always follow the same process because we care about our culture and ensuring that we add great people. Candidates may be involved in other processes, be considering other offers or simply be impatient but never skip a step or rush a decision.
- Be creative when it comes to benefits
People have more flexible lives than ever, and the standard benefits can fall short of what is required. What sets an organisation apart in a candidate’s mind are benefits that reflect the reality of their life. For example, if someone’s partner travels a lot with their job, there’s no reason that person can’t travel with them. As long as there’s a place to work effectively, why not be flexible?
Clarity is also important. Salary ranges, expected days in the office, potential progression routes, share options, parental leave, benefits packages, organisational structure, mac or windows (amazingly important) – these should all be decided ahead of time and shared in the job advert or early stages of the interview process, even if they don’t ask.
- Walk it like you talk it when it comes to values
Retaining talent is always important but becomes even more pressing once finding the right people is difficult. Employers must therefore do their best to create a work environment that ensures more people want to stay than leave.
Critical to this are a company’s values – and living those values, not just talking about them. For Deazy, they underpin everything we do.
Take some time to identify the most valuable traits that your best people share. Some key traits for Deazy people that excel include the ability to “see a problem, solve a problem” and being excellent at giving and receiving feedback. Once you identify these keys, ensure that you evaluate these in your recruitment process.
- Don’t be rigid about recruitment
In 2023, with all the potential uncertainty it may bring, there will be times when an obvious and pressing need for more headcount or a specific skill set arises. This is when flexibility must come to the fore. There are ways of filling a gap temporarily that will achieve the desired results and will not affect the company culture.
There are modern and effective ways to address a skills gap, new models for resourcing talent from a vast ecosystem of vetted and certified teams. Such models – talent marketplaces – provide access to talent as and when an organisation requires it but also offer great flexibility.
Start-ups will have to work harder than ever in 2023 to find and attract the right people for their business. This doesn’t just happen and requires effort, resources, and commitment, but with the right approach, any start-up can make a success of their recruitment.
Ben Morris is Head of People and Culture, Deazy, the developer marketplace platform which connects enterprises, scale-ups and agencies with high-quality development teams.