Best Hiring Practices for the Startup Business Owner

In the early stages of your startup, your most important decisions are your hiring decisions. Hiring is one of the most important aspects of any business, but it’s even more crucial for a startup.

business owner

Your startup company will have to overcome obstacles that established companies don’t have to deal with, like building a steady cashflow, earning a solid reputation for the brand, and raising awareness about the product or service that your company offers. To overcome these obstacles, you’re going to need employees who are absolute warriors. They need to be smart, driven, and passionate about what your startup does.

It’s not easy to find those kinds of employees. If you’re going to obtain a staff that’s going to lift your startup—and not sink it—you’re going to have to employ the right hiring practices. Here are some of the best hiring practices for a startup business owner.

Write a Great Job Listing

It all starts with the job listing. Every job listing needs to list the basic qualifications a candidate needs to perform the job well. But if you’re going to find great startup employees, your listing needs to go beyond that. It should emphasize that you’re only looking for employees who are willing to work long hours, and who are ready for the blood, sweat, and tears-hard work that it takes for a startup to survive.

Furthermore, the job listing for each position should feature a very broad and diverse set of required skills. Startup companies don’t have money for a large staff, do it’s important that your employees have a wide skillset so they handle doing multiple roles in the company. For example, it’s great to get an employee who can do sales, but who can also start a blog for the business.

A networking site like LinkedIn.com can be your best friend. The site allows users to claim certain skills, which can be verified by colleagues within their professional circle. It’s a great way to scope out prospective job candidates, and learn whether or not those candidates are as qualified as they claim to be.

Pre-Employment Screening

A pre-employment screening is a must-do for every business. Have a screening company run a background check on each of your prospective job applicants. They’ll provide you with a background check report that will let you know if a job candidate has a criminal record. Pre-employment screenings are one of the easiest and most effective ways to make sure you’re only hiring employees who are responsible and who won’t cause any safety concerns in the workplace.

Have Your Job Candidates Audition

Sometimes, the standard interview isn’t the best way to discern the most driven employees. Try having your employees audition for the roles they’re applying for. After they’ve submitted their resume, have them perform a task that would be similar to what they’d do in their position at the company (for example, have a copywriter write a sample blog post for the website). This is a great way to evaluate the real skills that your job candidates have.

Run a Group Interview

Group interviews are a great way to see which employees are going to bring truly unique ideas to the table. It’s important to remember that a group interview shouldn’t be a “who’s the loudest and most outgoing?” contest. There are lots of quieter people who won’t be super outgoing when they’re interviewing with others. Use the group setting to find employees that have unique perspectives that are different from the pack.

Experience Matters

Lots of startup companies opt to hire younger and less-experienced employees because less-experienced employees are cheaper. The logic is that these employees are more hungry for success, and they’ll work extremely hard. That may be true, but when it comes to management positions in marketing or business development, it’s more important to have experienced professionals who know what works and what doesn’t work in their fields. You can’t afford to have inexperienced employees in those kinds of leadership roles. If you have budget concerns about hiring industry veterans, learn how to negotiate salaries as a startup.

Choose Freelancers

For a startup company, it might be cheaper to hire freelance workers than to hire in-house professionals. The positions you can freelance include:

  • Copywriters
  • Graphic designers
  • Website management
  • Social media management

You might even be able to hire freelancers to work in sales. You can find a strong pool of freelancing professionals on a freelance app like Upwork. There are lots of available freelancers on those apps, but finding the best ones can be difficult because you have so many options. If you need some tips, read our article on how to choose freelancers for your startup.

Freelancer

Now you’re ready to go! If you use these hiring practices, you’re sure to get employees who are going to take your company from startup to success.

About Mohit Tater

Mohit is the co-founder and editor of Entrepreneurship Life, a place where entrepreneurs, start-ups, and business owners can find wide ranging information, advice, resources, and tools for starting, running, and growing their businesses.

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