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Recruiting for a scaling business

Article by Jamie Beaumont

Scaling a business can be incredibly exciting but, it can also present a unique set of challenges – not least that of recruitment.  A successful scale-up relies on a business having not only the right number of employees but ensuring that those employees have the right skills and experience to take the company to the next level.  While this may sound simple, in reality, it’s a little more complicated.  One of the biggest challenges faced by businesses is striking a balance between budget and recruitment.  

Tip the scale

For most businesses – and particularly startups and SMEs, keeping costs down is extremely important and they often find that they’re constantly looking for ways to stretch the budget just that little bit further.  While this is important, many make the mistake of skimping when it comes to hiring staff.  Without the right – and right number of – staff, a scaling project will almost certainly fail, costing the business a significant amount of time and money.  The following guide will walk you through a successful recruitment strategy for scaling your business and finding the right people to make it work: 

Squad goals

Your first step is to analyse your business’s unique challenges and goals both now and in the future.  By doing this, you’re able to create a strategy for growth which takes into account the current size of your company and the kind of resources that you’ll need in order to take the business to the next level.  

Getting personnel

Next, working from your strategy, it’s time to figure out who you need, when you need them and for how long.  If you’re looking to scale fast, it may be that you need to hire a number of short-term employees to help you achieve your goals within a certain time-frame.  If your growth is going to take a more slow and steady approach then making a couple of strategic, long term hires is going to be your best bet.  Making this decision at this stage is vital as it will not only help you to keep costs down but it’ll also give your scale up the best chance of success. 

Hire and seek

When looking to hire long term strategic staff, you need to be focusing on making impact hires which means finding people who not only have the skills and experience that you require but also share your company’s ethos and will play a pivotal role as the business moves forward.  While this role requires skill, so too does the process of finding potential candidates who tick all the boxes. Jamie Beaumont founder of PlayterPay says, ‘Recruitment presents a strange paradox in business.  It takes skill and experience to get it right, yet many businesses will deploy someone lacking recruitment expertise to handle it and end up making bad hiring decisions’. 

Getting it right

The first step to attracting the right people is to showcase your company culture.  Values such as inclusivity, diversity and transparency are all important when creating a culture which appeals to high value candidates.  Successful companies tend to focus on this by including a section on their website which includes information regarding what it’s like to work there and how existing staff feel about it.  These days, valuable employees are looking for so much more than a job – they’re looking for a nurturing environment which will reward their commitment, so your business should reflect this by appealing to the right kind of candidate. 

Strength through diversity

Finding the right talent to help move your business forward is about so much more than sections on a person’s CV.  Once you’ve moved past the initial stage of recruitment, and sorted through all those CVS, you should be looking for candidates who are able to look at your business from a different perspective in order to add value and depth not just for your scaling but for the long term future of the company.

A wise investment

We’ve talked about striking a balance between keeping costs down and talent high and, unless your business employs dedicated, experienced recruitment personnel, it’s well worth considering professional help in finding the top talent to take your business further.  A lot of businesses mistakenly believe that hiring a recruitment agency is an expensive endeavour but, on the contrary, this can save you a significant amount of time and money in finding the perfect candidate for your needs – leaving your staff free to focus on growth. 

Scaling is one of the most important parts of any business and, having the right team is essential in making it work. Think of your scale up as a living, breathing creature powered by the people within your business.  For this reason, recruitment should be your number one priority as when it comes to scale ups, second chances are rare. 

    Jamie Beaumont, founder and CEO of the world’s first hiring accelerator for startups and scale ups Playter Pay

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