A big part of attracting the best talent for your business is writing a compelling job description. The next big part is making sure you hire the right person. Here is our advice on writing a job description and making the right hires, plus how to ensure your job offer is legally compliant.

Writing a Clear and Effective Job Description

Job and Person Specifications tend to be focused on the skills and experiences a company requires from a new individual. Sometimes these can be cut, pasted and copied from others and then amended which tends to come across as confusing.

Taking time out to think about the role and person you require can be highly beneficial. As an organisation scaling up, your job description needs to be more than a list of duties and responsibilities. The key question remains, what is going to attract your company to an individual over and above a recognisable and stable brand that can provide predictable but stable employment?

Before considering a move, a candidate will want to see a compelling, well-written job description that sells the company, the role and the vision.  You want to attract the best candidates for your role giving you access to top talent rather than fielding out candidates who are unsuitable.

Show candidates that your role could be career-changing and strategic for their future, help them visualise their input and align their goals and aspirations to your company.

Your job description must consist of the following things-

  • Role definition
  • Person specification Skills
  • Experience and relevant  qualifications
  • Company Culture & Environment
  • Salary, Benefits and the opportunities

Top Tips for Making the Right Hires

At Talent Spark, we are regularly asked by small companies and start-ups to advise them on their recruitment process for growth. This is the perfect time to advise as the people who are working with you at the start, while they might not be with you all the way through, are the people that help you build the brand and ethos that will define your company.

We get asked to assist with scoping out team structures, writing job descriptions, refining interview processes and advising on salaries & benefits packages. In doing this work we have identified our top hiring tips for the start-up with lofty ambitions.

Always plan for the future but don’t forget your current needs

This is a difficult balance to strike. As a growing company, you need to be aware of the shape your company will take in the future and need to hire the right skills and people to help you get to this. However, you also have an immediate requirement that you need to meet.

Take time to think about how you can strike the best balance between these two situations – for example looking for a CTO who will eventually be able to manage a technology product and lead team won’t help with the current requirement of someone who is hands-on to help to build a product. Hiring a Senior Engineer who has the capacity to grow into a CTO role but can get stuck in solving your current problem might be a happy medium.

Be Competitive

Finding the right person-fit for a company which is scaling up can be difficult. The fact that a lot of skills are currently in high demand, mixed up with lower salaries typically offered by smaller companies and your vacancy suddenly seems very difficult to recruit.

You don’t have the cash to provide huge salaries – so what else can you offer? We are increasingly seeing candidates asking about other non- financial benefits; additional holidays, options to buy/sell holidays, flexible or home working arrangements, extended maternity/paternity leave and equity in the company.

Really think about what you have the ability to offer and speak to candidates about what’s important to them.

Don’t Create a Wish List

Be realistic in what you expect from candidates. Think about which skills and experience are really essential and which ones could a good candidate probably learn? Which ones could potentially be put on hold until the next hire?

Ensuring you are Legally Compliant with your Job Offers

For start-ups and small businesses, recruitment can be a daunting process with the key to avoiding pitfalls being preparation. You need to do the following things in order to be legally compliant in your hiring process-

  • Before you get started, organise employer’s liability insurance, set up a payroll system, register as an employer with HMRC, and check with the Pensions Regulator whether you need to set up a pension scheme.
  • When advertising the role consider the main tasks and objectives, and the qualifications and skills required of any candidates, as well as job title, salary range, and hours. To avoid discrimination, use neutral language (salesperson, rather than salesman) and avoid loaded terms (such as ‘youthful’, or ‘active’).
  • After the interview, you can issue a job offer conditional upon getting references and evidence of the right to work in the UK. Check that the salary is in line with the national minimum wage.

If you’re an early-stage business interested in securing the top talent to build your business or are interested in working in an exciting innovative business, let’s talk.