So You Just Raised Capital!
We’ll walk you through how to build a Sustainable Hiring Engine that will drive growth
New hiring is often one of the biggest line items in a post-capital raise cash burn, but to get the best results you have to spend smart. Just throwing money at hiring challenges doesn’t fix problems and can lead to costly mistakes. We’ll explain what “doing growth-hiring right” looks like in a moment but first it’s important to understand why it matters.
Hiring Roles = Business Goals
Predictable and repeatable hiring strategies make sure that you meet your growth and headcount targets. This will give your organisation the confidence to go out and win new business. More customers need more CX, new features need more developers, meeting higher revenue targets needs more sales staff and so on… Oh, and there is also the nice fringe benefit of keeping your investors happy!
Quantity AND Quality
Hiring the right people means that you’ll have the skills and capacity you need, when you need it. But hiring fast always brings up quality control issues. Mis-hires and quick-fires are morale and momentum killers so you need to balance screening for quality candidates and hiring speed. It’s not a trade-off but you need to do the planning and make the investments in your talent team as soon as possible after the capital raise to get the balance right.
Culture is Queen
Keep your culture strong because it’s the glue that will keep your talent happy, connected and unified behind a common mission. Kombucha fridges and ping pong tables are great and all but they can’t match the value of people who align with your values and will add to your culture as you grow. Growth-hiring isn’t just about increasing capacity and adding skills, it’s about bringing in people who can drive positive business growth.
What Does it Mean to “Do Growth-Hiring Right”?
There is no one-size fits all policy here. Every industry and organisation is going to have a unique blend of talent needs but there are some practices that work across the board.
Job ads, referrals and some agency help may have got the hiring job done when the organisation was smaller but it won’t work at scale. You need to get proactive and that means going out and looking for people, not just waiting for them to come to you. Tools like LinkedIn are one of the most common ways to find people with the exact skills and experience that you need but there are lots of other options too.
The reality is that less than 70% of roles are filled by candidates who apply or get referred. Being proactive also means that, on average, you need to review less than half the number of candidates to fill a role than you would if you were just looking at applicants.
The bigger the job, the more important the plan. For growth-hiring this means knowing exactly what roles you’ll need and when you’ll need to fill them. It means having a clear understanding of the kind of candidate that each of those roles need. It means giving yourself enough time to fill each role.
The median time to fill a role is approximately 33 days but that varies for different job functions. With a lot of roles in a lot of different departments, meeting your hiring goals can get very complicated very fast if you don’t plan properly.
Be Smart With Your Dollars
This connects closely with being strategic and how you use recruitment agencies. Recruitment agencies are specialists and will usually deliver the hiring results you need but they have two key negatives. First, they’re expensive. Over-reliance on agencies could lead to reducing the number of roles you can hire because of the extra costs. Second, you can lose a lot of ownership. They won’t know your organisation’s culture and may not share hiring practices that are important to you.
Recruitment agencies are useful tools, but like any tool they need to be used properly to work. Strong planning, hiring strategies and processes will set you up to only use agencies when you absolutely need to so you can get the most out of your hiring budget.
There are also smarter, more sustainable (and certainly more cost effective) alternatives to recruitment agencies that you can read about here