MaRS Library Recruiting tech talent for your startup
Finding and recruiting the right talent for your tech startup is critical. A tech startup must be lean and every hire must count. During early stages of growth, filling key technical resources is often a high priority.
But in recruiting software developers and scientists, startups may find themselves competing with more established, larger companies that have greater resources and ability to pay. And so candidates with the technical skills you seek may be scarce.
The good news is that you have the opportunity to create excitement and a buzz about joining a young upstart tech company. When considering a startup, tech talent will look for a compelling vision. Build this into your recruiting strategy and use multiple channels to attract the right talent.
Tips for recruiting for tech positions in your startup
When recruiting for technical positions, keep the guidelines below in mind.
Define your requirements
The market for tech talent is very competitive. Candidates will quickly ignore postings that do not clearly define the role and how this position fits with the vision of the company.
Craft a clear, concise job posting that conveys a compelling message
Clearly articulate your tech startup’s vision and passion in targeting a market opportunity. In your recruiting efforts, include examples of technology your company uses that may appeal (e.g., HTML5).
The tech talent you want to attract are those that embrace that a startup environment. Remember that these candidates want to be able find and apply to jobs easily, so it’s wise to use online job boards and social media.
Choose online job boards carefully to optimize your candidate pool
Explore job boards, including mainstream sites such as Monster and Workopolis. While one of the more expensive routes, these mainstream sites will also produce a higher volume of candidate response (be prepared for more screening effort). Niche sites provide a more targeted recruitment option and attract candidates within a certain technical profile.
Leverage social media to post positions and increase your company presence online
Candidates are more likely to apply for companies they follow on social media such as LinkedIn. Use social media to generate a buzz about your company.
Explore sites such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. Participate in discussion groups and forums to interact with like-minded professionals to expand your network.
This opens the door to contacting these peers directly about potential opportunities or to spread the word within their own network.
Use mobile platforms to target candidates in a more timely way
Tech talent might not respond to postings right away via tablets or phones, but they’re quick to seek, bookmark and save live vacancies via mobile.
Use your employees to find and attract technical candidates
Create an employee referral program that provides incentives to refer qualified candidates. Great talent often is part of a network of other great talent. If your employees love their job and your startup, they will number among your best salespeople and will promote your brand to others.