How To Recruit Top Technical Talent When You Are A Startup or A Small Business Enterprise

Recruiting for top technical talent can be a cut-throat occupation. And that is especially true now when tech startups and Internet companies are cropping up anywhere and everywhere. Plus, it’s not just the tech-related businesses that are looking for great technical talent; all the companies out there need sound tech teams in today’s technology-run business world. In fact, it’s practically business suicide not to have a hand in the tech-talent cookie jar in this century (businesses must at least have them in the form of consultants and/or contractual employees related to the field).

So, yes, it’s been established that all companies need good technical talent as a part of their team. And while the number of such technically skilled people out there is growing, there is still a scarcity of good technical talent.

But what do you do when you’re hiring technical talent for a startup or small business? You need to hire the cream of the crop. And you don’t want to settle for those who’ve scraped the bottom of the tech barrel and simply added one or two basic skills to their repertoire while not trying to learn or do anything further.

However, as a startup or small business, you can’t hope to compete with big-shots in the realm like Google, Amazon, and the like: Such companies can reel in the top technical talent out there with their brand names and incredible perks and a whopping good offer on the pay scale – None of which a startup or much smaller business can compete with.

Or can it?

Today’s workforce and skilled job seekers are actually as versatile as the variety and numbers of software out there. And that means that their goals and what they’re looking for in a job or career are equally versatile as well. So yes, recruiters of small businesses and startups can compete with the bigwigs for the top technical talent out there. You just need to work a little harder to get these recruits.

How to Attract Top Technical Talent to Join Your Team

So now that you know this dream is possible, it’s time to get down to the “how”. And, the very first thing you need to know is: Be prepared to fight for the top technical talent you want.

You need to attract them to pick your job opening over the other (seemingly or truly) more glamorous job openings they could accept. And the best way to do that is to understand what the potential technical hire in your sights is looking for in a new job.

Is he or she looking for more growth? Or is it to learn new skills or the more hands-on skills? Is the mission and goals of the company that you are hiring for, at par with his own goals for a meaningful career? Can you offer them the pay package that they’re looking for even if you can’t add any extra perks with it? Are there perks and advantages that you can offer them to make up for a slightly lower pay package as compared to other offers? Do you think this talent will fit into the position’s work culture and the overall goals for the business in general? Will the company’s work culture and goals beneficially fit the talent you’re hiring in turn?

In short, know what you’re potential recruit wants deep down, and then offer it to him or her. And then be prepared to convince him or her that the team you’re hiring them for, is the best fit for them.

Here are the various ways with which you can do so:

Offer your job position as a smart career move for the tech recruit:
Does the position you’re offering, has new learning opportunities and the full potential for career growth? If yes, then offer that to your potential hire. Show them what they can benefit from picking the position you’re offering. Even if it’s a startup, tell them that smaller teams mean smaller pay divisions and larger opportunities to move up due to less competition. Explain the hands-on approach the business takes and the opportunities to learn more that such a position entails.

Offer the startup’s work culture and goals as a match to the technical talent’s own:
In the past, people went to work to pay their bills and found meaning in the things they did outside of work and with their family and friends. However, a lot of talent today is looking for meaning and a purpose within their work life as well. They don’t even mind if their work sometimes spills into their personal lives either, for if their work gives them a sense of purpose, they don’t mind spending some of their personal time to forward their professional goals.

Offer work flexibility and a transition stage to the top technical talent you’re hoping to recruit:

If you’re going after top technical talent, then it’s likely that they’ll have more than one offer, and that they might be skeptical about joining a much smaller business or startup. In such cases, it’s a smart idea to suggest a more flexible recourse: Offer them the opportunity to work contractually with their company or as a freelancer. This way, they get an idea of what it is like to work with the team while still having the freedom to consider other job offers and checking out the scenario in other companies.

Remember, though, that you’re not just trying to recruit this person because he or she is a good fit for your job position’s needs, but also that you’re doing this because you know the job and the business will fit the talent’s work culture and goals as well. (If it is a one-sided need, then you’ll most likely lose the recruit sooner or later.) Because, once the talent sees how well he or she works with the team and with the company’s overall goals, they’ll be much more inclined to make a move to a full-time position in the same company.

In essence, you’re working so hard to convince top technical talent to choose your job position because you are already convinced that he or she (or them) will do splendidly there – And not just because of their talent and credentials, but because of what the business you’re hiring them into offers them as well.

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