Congratulations! You have gotten to the stage where you need extra hands to keep things going smoothly in your business. As your startup gets bigger, the need arises to bring on people to join your team and it’s important to think about not only the kind of person you’re hiring, but also the role they’ll play in your growing business. In the few months when I worked as a Human Resources Administrator at a Startup one thing I realized quickly was the difficulty startups face in attracting and retaining the best people for the job.
Many top graduates from good schools want to work for multinationals where they can get paid lots of money or go back to school and it can be really hard to get smart, intelligent people to work for you as a startup. Startups face the challenge of not being able to pay their employees a lot of money or offer many benefits such as official cars or free lunch; yet they shouldn’t be denied the benefit of having good people work for them. In the endless ocean of graduates and unemployed persons in Nigeria, the struggle startups face in getting and retaining good employees is real!
Another challenge the founder of any startup faces is how to actually conduct a productive recruitment without paying huge amounts outsourcing it to HR recruiting firms…we are here to help!
In the next few posts, we would be addressing how to employ the right employees for your startup, subscribe so you don’t miss any article. Once we are done with this series, we would focus on how to retain employees at your startup.
The first stage is the Preparing to Recruit Stage.
This is the most important stage in your recruitment. The level of time, attention and care you give to this stage would determine in the long run whether you have the right people working for you or not. The aim of startup recruitment is to recruit the best people for the right job in the most efficient manner.
This stage involves lots of brainstorming and decision making as to who and what you are recruiting for. You need to know;
- What roles you want to recruit into and why? (Why is that role important? Can you do without recruiting into that role for now? What roles can be combined to save cost?)
- How many people you want to employ in total (and if you truly need that much?)
- How much you are willing (and able) to pay them?
Think carefully about this and write your answers down.
The next step is to Create a Job Description.
A Job Description states in summary what the role entails, responsibilities of the person bearing the role, reporting relationships. This is important as it helps you clearly outline what this person would be doing, who they are reporting and who is reporting to them. This document takes care of the For WHAT part of your recruitment process. Even if you decide that your company won’t have job descriptions, writing one will help you clarify what the position entails and its necessary qualifications.
The 3 most important part of a Job Descriptions are;
- Purpose: Not what they do, but why they are there, the reason the job was created.
- Key Responsibilities: What you are paying them to accomplish.
- Typical Activities: The things they are expected to do in order to accomplish these responsibilities.
For example: “Solve issues raised by clients” might be a key responsibility of a customer care agent. Typical activities could be: take note of issues raised by customers, smile and greet clients by name as they come in door, resolve issues within 15 minutes etc.
After preparing the Job Description, look carefully over it to check if the responsibilities of the role are big enough to warrant the recruitment. Can these responsibilities be shed to another role? Have these responsibilities arisen due to a genuine need for it or just a projection? And is the projection backed up with actionable data?
The next thing is to Prepare the Job Profile.
A Job profile is simply a profile of WHO you want to recruit. Remember you are essentially recruiting someone to join your team and act/think for you in situations. You are going to be trusting these people to do something you would have normally done in your place. Take time to write this.
Your Job Profile should include sex, age range, nationality, educational qualification, technical and performance skills, certifications, personality type, and specific abilities. Your Job Profile should describe your ideal employee to a T. Remember, all these would determine how well your recruitment goes, so take your time and be as detailed as possible.
Identify competencies (knowledge, skills, and abilities) that will be required to do the job.
What technical abilities such as ability to use a machine/software or ability to do a specialized task will be required in this job e.g. ability to use Microsoft Office Tools efficiently, ability to write Java Code or ability to design graphics etc. You’ll have to decide if previous experience in these technical skills is important or if you will train the successful candidate.
What performance abilities will you require in this job? Performance skills reflect a person’s ability or desire to do something. They may include being able to meet deadlines, adapt to change, anticipate problems and solve them. They can also include working with or managing other people, making decisions, following guidelines, or dealing with the public. Clearly outline what you need.
The next step is to Create Job Benefits.
Job Benefits include salary, other benefits, allowed leave days, allowed sick days, perks of the job (what makes the job interesting and why would someone want to apply) and downsides of the job (such as having to work weekends or on short notice)
After all these is done, Create an Application FAQ.
Brainstorm and think of 10 questions an applicant would be likely to ask you before applying for the job. Think up questions and write out detailed answers for them. You want to make sure your applicants have all the information they need.
Your FAQ may include;
- When is the tentative date of resumption
- Would you accept NYSC students (if you haven’t already addressed that in your Job Profile) etc.
We have put together Job Description and Job Profile templates for use in your next recruitment and it’s totally free.
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