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Starting up? Adding to your team

It's calculated that in the UK there's 5.82 million small businesses, with 0 to 49 employees. Reported on Fundsquire, a survey by CB Insights reported that 23% of startups failed because they didn’t have the right team running the business.

Getting a business off the ground is daunting enough - but who should be part of your initial startup team? 

In this blog, we offer advice on what should be your first considerations.

People are the most important assets

When setting up your business, the people you hire may well become the most important assets in your new venture. They’re your trusted workforce, the face of your new brand and the people you’ve entrusted with launching your business idea and delivering on promises.

With all the pressures (and opportunities) a new business offers, it’s vital that you choose the right talent, the right personalities and the right mix of people for your team. 

As a consequence, a great deal of thought needs to go into how you want your team to look to ensure the business gets off on the right foot.

Operating roles

Consider whether you can carry the business and wear every hat or will you need sales people, marketers, operations managers and shop-floor staff to kickstart your operations? 

With the financials likely to be limiting your choices, you're going to need a core team - one which you believe will be effective yet efficient.

To go in-house or outsource?

You've listed your core roles and have identified the skeleton team. Then there's the important decision to make – which of these roles will be full-time, in-house employees and which roles will be part-time, or outsourced to specialists, freelancers or contractors. 

Employees are a costly resource with monthly salaries, holiday and sick pay and staff pension schemes to consider. It may be worth considering an outsourcing option - hiring in talent and resources as you need them. This offers flexibility and cost efficiencies, not to mention specialist support.

Search your network for talent

We all know word of mouth and networking is a great way of finding new talent. Use your social media networks to let people know that you're adding to your team. Keep focused on your recruitment needs to ensure applicants fit your criteria.

Writing short, clear job descriptions for each role is a good way to outline the position, attract the best candidates and filter out the weak applicants. 

Check out our blog Get your recruitment ad to yield results to ensure your ad sparks interest in the job market and it attracts candidates which are a good fit to your startup. 

Consider using a recruitment agency or a jobs website to help spread your net wider and remove some of the admin workload - shortlisting candidates can take an significant length of time. 

Applicants should share your vision and values

A job interview is obviously about more than just running through the skills on a CV. 

The successful candidate is going to be working very closely with you and will be critical to the success of the business, so not only do you need to know that they can do the job but also that they’re a good fit for the team.

Ask yourself these questions during the selection process:

  • Do they share your vision for the product/service and the future of the company?
  • Do they seem driven, with the right kind of can-do attitude?
  • Are they engaged by your company values and the WHY behind your business model?
  • Do you get on with them as a person?

Having the best mix of personalities and talent in a team is so important; getting the mix right creates a tight, well-focused team. 

Get it wrong and you’re looking at disharmony, a lack of productivity and a team short on energy, drive and vision to make your startup the success you desire as the business founder.

Measure performance and fit

You've recruited the core team but how do you measure the team's success? Ongoing performance management and review is critical - as a team and as individuals. 

Teething problems may need to be eradicated, communication to be fine-tuned and individual employee performance, targets and goals will need to be tracked.

How can Q&A help?

Getting a startup off the ground is not easy but with a positive, well-engaged team behind you, you give your new venture the best possible chances of success, growth and long-term prosperity.

Our team at Q&A People Matter have expertise and experience delivering people management services including payroll and recruitment. 

Get in contact with us - outsourcing certain elements of your business will provide you with expert advice, giving you flexibility and peace of mind at a critical stage in your business's development.


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