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Building recruitment from scratch in a Tech Startup

Building recruitment from scratch in a Tech Startup

Posted: 8th June 2021

Viewing 4 posts - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)
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      I am about to start a new standalone role to create a people function from scratch next week. The first tasks they have set out are around recruitment and retention:
      1. We need to build a direct recruitment channel, what are the top 3 things we can do in the next month to accelerate this?
      2. How do we attract the staff we need in sufficient quantity (Implementation Specialists and developers)?

      Can anyone offer any top tips or insights from experience? This is the first standalone role I’ve done but have experience in tech already.

      Thank you, Susi


        Hi Susi – good luck in the new role!

        I’ve been working in a Fintech start-up for almost 2 years and depending on the technology your recruiting for it can be super tough! We recruit mainly Python Developers, QA, BA and scrum/agile.  We have some success with direct applications for more junior develops, and employee referrals (we pay £1K referral fee) but have still had to rely quite heavily on recruiters, especially when  hiring volume and more senior technical. I would recommend sticking with a very limited number of agencies and we have regular updates to make sure they know the relevant info about our business and are ‘selling’ the opportunity to candidates – it’s tough as a start up when candidates have never heard of you etc…

        The market has been particularly tough in the past 6 months or so and speed is definitely a factor, good candidates are getting snapped up really quickly so my first piece of advice would be to really think about your process, you need the commitment up front from hiring managers to agree the process and stick to it – I tend to block book time out in their calendars in advance for when we anticipate to interview.  Also think about technical tests and timing, we ask developers to complete a test after their first video screen – it works well, agencies will try and push back that we’ll lose candidates as they’ve got several opportunities on the go so they won’t take the time to complete the tests, we haven’t had this problem yet and we’ve found is really important in gauging candidates approach to development and skills level.

        We’re using BambooHR as our HRIS system and have the ATS add-on, it works perfectly well but if you’re going to push for direct model then I’d recommend you look at a more robust ATS tool like Workable.

        We have also recently been talking to a company called Cord ( – it’s a direct recruitment platform specifically for tech recruitment – it’s quite London centric at the moment but with the rise of hybrid working etc this is changing.  We’re going to try Cord and see if we can build more direct engagements with candidates.

        Hope that helps!


          Hi Siobhan,

          Thank you so much for your insight, I do not think I will have an HRIS let along an ATS, so that will be top of the list.

          I’m considering doing some “Stay conversations” first as well to get under the skin of the business.

          I’m in Global FinTech at the moment and i think the move forwards needs to include growing our own talent as well.

          Thanks, Susi


            Hi Siobhan,

            Did you get anywhere with Cord? Just finishing my 1st week in my new role 🙂

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