Hiring is hard, not to mention daunting. It’s a slow, painful process and mistakes are hard to rectify. But crucially, don’t rush in. People, especially the wrong people, are really expensive and nothing in a startup will cost more money or take up more of your time and attention than hiring people.
We’ve put together our five top tips to bear in mind when you’re starting to consider making your first hire.
Whatever position it is you’re hiring for, do the job yourself first. Learn to do ALL the things! If you know the job, the priorities, the skills needed, and the difficulties yourself, you’ll be better equipped to write an accurate job description and identify the right person for the job.
Stay small to stay nimble, for as long as you can. Inevitably, as your team grows, meetings have to be coordinated and scheduled and communication slows down. Appreciate how quickly you can make decisions and take action while you’re still a small team.
Don’t hire too early. Concentrate your focus on what matters: building a product that people love. Spending your time on hiring activities - creating compelling job ads, resume/CV screening, phone interviews, in-person interviews, drafting job offers, new employee induction and onboarding – none of these directly affect your business. What matters first is finding product-market fit with a product that people love and getting your customers to pay you money.
Conversely, don’t hire too late! By the time many companies think about hiring, they are already in a tight spot. The downside of a small team is that they can’t stretch to support the product’s development and maintenance and can fall behind on fulfilling the orders of their customers.
To make matters worse, when you’re in that tight spot, recruitment eats up more of your team’s time, while they’re still fighting the everyday fires. So wait until you know you really need to. When your current processes are at breaking point and you can’t expand and accomplish your goals without more people, then don’t wait. Once it’s time, make it your #1 priority.
If you’re in need of some sage recruitment advice or training, just hit reply on this email and we’ll get back to you ASAP. Or feel free to join the chat with us on twitter and add your top tips for successful and efficient recruiting.