Hiring Plan for Startup

Are you looking for a simple hiring plan for startup success? Look no further as the goal of this article is to provide you with some tips on how to create an effective hiring plan for your startup.

Introduction: How to Build a Hiring Plan for Start-Ups

Depending on your startup, there are a few different stages of having people working for you. You may have a small, tight-knit team or be all on your own.

Your startup will demand more people on the team at some stage. Regardless of your current situation, you’ll need to prepare for that eventuality and plan ahead.

What is a hiring plan?

A hiring plan is a document that outlines the company's hiring goals and necessary steps to achieve those goals. It also outlines the time frame for achieving those goals, which can be weekly, monthly or yearly.

This plan can be used by startups as they grow and need to hire new employees. The process of creating a hiring plan will help them maintain a strategic focus on their hiring needs and get the right talent in place as quickly as possible.

Why do startups need a strong hiring plan?

Startups need to have a strong hiring plan to ensure that they are able to grow their company. Hiring the right people is important because it can make or break the company.

The right people are vital for success. A well thought out and strong hiring plan will ensure that they are able to find the best candidates for their positions.

Startup hiring is different

Unlike established companies who are able to hire as positions open up or grow, a startup hires very differently. When filling your first major positions, there is much on the line with every hire.

It's definitely beneficial to start with the right people on board and be mindful of what the company culture is like from the beginning.

Filling skills gaps

Take stock of the skills you already have and identify the skills you are lacking.

Every startup founder has their own background knowledge.

For example, you may be great with marketing but not finance-related tasks or vice versa. When starting out it's best to employ fewer people with a wider range of skills that you need as soon as possible. This will help you fix any gaps in your operations and keep things running smoothly.

When you're looking for the best people to help you get started, think about what skills are needed from that position in order to fill it properly. If you know now that your team will be lacking in specific skills, then use this to your advantage.

Define clear roles and responsibilities as early on as possible to prevent any gaps in the future. For example, if marketing is going to be a priority soon and you don't currently have enough people with the necessary skills, start recruiting for this role so that it takes precedence.

Strike a balance between hiring leaders and doers.

There are many ways leaders can take initiative in their company. They can be innovative, creative, and strategic thinkers. They also have the ability to delegate tasks, set goals, and create an environment where employees feel valued.

When it comes to hiring for leadership positions, it is important to find someone who has both qualities of being a leader as well as being ability to execute tasks.

As a startup founder, sometimes it’s tempting to hire your junior-level staff first and assume they will work under your direction for a while. But this can leave you stretched thin, trying to get your business off the ground while you simultaneously manage your team and provide day-to-day direction.

On the other side of the coin, you could hire your department leaders first, and surround yourself with team members who can offer guidance and expertise of their own. However, this approach could leave you shorthanded when it comes to actually put those great ideas to work.

When making recruitment decisions for your company, it's important to consider both the most top-level positions and the most entry-level ones. This way you'll be developing talent from every angle. The main thing is to maintain a balance of leaders and doers in your team.

Developing your top and bottom teams is a crucial first step to recruiting talent. Investing in top-level personnel will immediately make your company seem more established and can help you attract quality employees. At the same time, you want to also create an environment fostering growth among ambitious up-and-comers who will hopefully rise through the ranks as they develop their skills.

The best way to approach management is by striking a balance between delegating and doing the work yourself.

Approving employee budgets and salaries

When it comes to your recruitment budget there are important things to consider. What is your budget for payroll? How do you decide on salaries for different positions? Here are some useful tips:

The creation of a budget and salary can be a complicated process. It is important to have an understanding of the company’s financial situation, the work environment, and the labour market.

Your budget should also include factors like expected inflation, future business growth, and other unforeseen expenses.

When budgeting for payroll, it's important to take into consideration the size of your company and what positions you're able to offer. In general, the average salary varies depending on experience level and position.

Next, we'll talk about why a salary package is so important and give you guidelines as to how much money is appropriate for different types of positions.

Deciding budgets

When you start a new business, knowing where the money is going on day one is important. That way, you can figure out your payroll costs and prepare for the future.

There is a balance between competing with other companies and lowering your operating costs. Aim to offer competitive salaries for executive-level positions without putting too much of an impact on the bottom line.

When determining executive-level salaries, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Bear in mind your executives will pave the way for the company's success.
  • One of the big worries for leaders of established organisations is the volatility of startups.
  • Your executives will need to take on larger roles to cover any skills gaps initially.
  • A reward program is a great way to incentivise staff to stay with your company. This can help keep continuity within your organisation.

Having top-level executive talent is really important to any new company. You might not be able to offer competitive salaries, but it’s worth considering that other companies might be in the same position.

Finding a middle ground without putting pressure on your business may seem impossible but there are ways to do this. One way would be to offer competitive compensation without going out of pocket.

It’s common for small businesses to find themselves at a crossroads where they want to provide competitive compensation but still need to maintain the financial security of their business. There are a few ways to offer competitive compensation without putting unnecessary pressure on your business:

Set employee salaries based on their contributions

As a startup, you’ll need your people to do more than just their usual jobs. It’s understandable that certain skill gaps will emerge and team members will need to step out of their comfort zone. So it's best to be ready for anything.

When it comes to setting salaries, remember that there are many factors which can affect how much an employee contributes at work, so base wages on how they will help your organization. For example, this may mean taking into account their skills and experience.

Mitigate employee fears of joining a startup

Startup employees are often difficult to find, but it can be equally as hard to persuade candidates to join your startup.

Only 1 out of 10 startups are a success, making the decision for candidates to join your startup even scarier.

How can you convince a candidate to join your early-stage startup? What are some ways that you can show them that the opportunity will be worth their worry and improve the risk profile of the company?

1. Offer attractive compensation

If you're not able to offer competitive compensation, it's still important that you understand your employee's circumstances and what makes a company appealing to them.

2. Persuade them in favour of your company

When you get into interview mode, it can be tough to weed out potential candidates. This is why it's important to paint a full picture of your company and your future before interviewing. Showcase what makes your business unique: Business plans, infrastructure, vision and values.

3. Persuade them in favour of their role

If there’s one major selling point of working at a startup, it’s the amount of responsibility they are given. This can be a challenge at first, but many people find that they enjoy having their work challenged every day.

Give your candidate a sense of what the role entails and how they’ll add to the whole of the company. They should feel there’s a real opportunity to help transform the business with their input, skills and experience.

4. Offer unique and exciting opportunities

Your company may not be able to offer comprehensive benefits packages right now, but that doesn’t mean there’s nothing you can do.

Offering flexible schedules and the ability to work remote are ways to help offset some of the disadvantages.

Consider company culture

Once you get to the point of finding executives to join your company, you have probably been around for a while and have had plenty of time to establish a company culture. As you hire people for the executive suite, make sure they fit in well with everything else. Be sure to include what you are looking for from a values and cultural perspective in the job description.

One way you can ensure you have a well-balanced team is by prioritising candidates based on both their expertise and their personal qualities.

Do it yourself or hire an agency?

The hiring process can be really tough and it often feels like you’re burning the candle at both ends. That’s why many startups work with a recruiting agency. They help find top talent, making your life as a founder even easier

That being said, hiring can be difficult for many startups. It is hard enough to find candidates that are qualified, but it's even harder when you're lacking the expertise or experience. Luckily, thanks to new technology and platforms, most startups have access to recruiters at an affordable cost.

Beginning your Hiring Plan for Startup

Putting the work in now for a detailed and well-thought-out hiring plan will maximise success for your future hires. Who you employ in a startup is crucial to its success.


For more information on the hiring process please see our past post here: 10 Steps of the Hiring Process.

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