Nailing Hiring as a Startup

Published on
April 8, 2024
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Startups don’t have time, money, or employee morale to waste with poor hires. Unlike established ecosystems of larger, more tenured businesses, startups need to hire quickly and hire right, the first time. To do this, startups need to follow a proven roadmap to hiring success:

1. Treat Hiring like a Sales Process: Approach hiring with the mindset of a sales process, focusing on qualification (is there a mutual fit?), discovery (what matters to the candidate?), and closing (why should the candidate choose this job now?).

2. Run a Structured Interview Process: Establish a clear and structured interview process that includes defining must-haves and nice-to-haves, creating a job description (JD), setting up an interview loop with a scorecard, and having regular check-ins with recruiters.

3. Align First on Internal Must Haves and Nice to Haves: Before starting the hiring process, ensure there is internal agreement on the must-haves and nice-to-haves for the role. Utilize scorecards for alignment and assessment across all interviewers.

4. Write a Compelling Broad Job Description (JD): The #1 way to lose good candidates is by a weak job description. Craft job descriptions that are broad and compelling, avoiding overly restrictive requirements that could deter qualified candidates, especially from underrepresented groups.

5. Maximize Signal:Time in Your Interview Funnel: Optimize the interview process to maximize the information gained about candidates while minimizing the time spent. Structure the process to put interviews with higher rejection rates first.

6. Train Your Interviewers: Provide training for interviewers, including pitching the company, and have them shadow experienced interviewers to ensure consistency and quality in interviews.

7. Always Be Closing: Adopt a proactive closing strategy that includes creating persuasive offer presentations, outlining clear career pathways, and providing personalized attention through gifts or meetings with key company figures.

8. Speed Makes Hires: Accelerate the offer process to create a sense of urgency and appeal. This includes making same-day offers and setting reasonable deadlines for candidate responses.

9. Ask Better Reference Questions and Backchannel: Improve the quality of reference checks by asking probing questions that reveal the candidate's true nature and potential fit for the role.

10. Expand Your Talent Aperture: Look beyond traditional talent pools to find candidates with exceptional skills who may not fit the typical profile or have been overlooked by larger companies. That's where Moonhub comes in.

Bottom line: hiring isn't easy and takes time to nail. That's why so many startups turn to external recruiters like Moonhub to help them find and hire the best talent with confidence and efficiency. If you're in the midst of hiring, talk to our team and find out how we can help.