Building Unicorns with RPO On-Demand 

Written by Danny Brier  •  Recruitment  •  10 February 2023

The so-called ‘bleak’ tech winter, which resulted in mass layoffs mainly from the big tech giants, has however added to the supply of talent and enticed some to join exciting new start-ups as they transform through a period of growth, helping shape their brand and culture.

But to propel growth, tech founders must attract the right talent amid fierce competition coming from all sectors. So, how can they source the skills they need quickly and how do they maximise hiring cost efficiencies in the process?

The UK has forged a strong reputation for tech hubs. According to recent figures published by the government, 144 ‘unicorns’ (companies that surpass a $1bn valuation) have been created with 237 ‘futurecorns’ set to join the ranks. Eight cities, including Edinburgh, Nottingham and Oxford, have more than two unicorns. A survey by Digital Horizon found that almost two thirds of venture capital firms (62%) are planning to increase their investment with over a third (35%) eyeing the UK’s thriving tech scene (only North America fared better).

The biggest challenge that tech start-ups face is having to combat severe skill shortages; where everyone is vying for the same specialist skills to support various business lines and transformation. Given the very high demand, organisations need to differentiate themselves by creating a compelling employee value proposition (EVP) that entices candidates to join their company. As well as offering competitive salaries and benefits, this involves getting the messaging right about their mission, culture and values, which are so important to candidates – a lot to consider for anyone, let alone a founder with little or no recruitment experience.

The big advantage that start-ups have is that they can offer exciting opportunities, particularly for younger workers. Being able to influence business strategy from the off is a major selling point with fast-tracked career progress another differentiator for these fledgling companies. This gives them a much-needed edge over bigger more established companies as they typically won’t have the financial firepower to compete on salary given their focus on other key business priorities.  

Let’s face it, hiring is time consuming. Finding the right fit for your start-up is a skill in itself. There are many different parts of the hiring process to think about, from brand, technology, processes, advertising, and offer management. Finding talent is one thing but ensuring that they remain engaged and are the right fit for your business is another. With limited budgets and only a fraction assigned to recruitment it’s essential that scaling companies get hiring right the first time.

Like fundraising, hiring tech talent is very competitive, getting it wrong can slow down or kill your start-up. Resorting to external support in the form of recruitment agencies can result in hiring costs spiralling out of control and budgets slipping; especially when volume hiring is required to ensure key teams can function to expected levels. Bigger organisations with regular hiring volumes often lean on the support of a recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) provider for their hiring needs. 

But beyond traditional recruitment agencies, what help can start-ups leverage? Cue RPO On-Demand from Resource Solutions.

Secure talent on demand with Resource Solutions

In short, RPO On-Demand is a subscription based recruitment service, ideal for scaling organisations who are yet to build an internal talent acquisition function. For a low monthly fee you can leverage resource and expert tech head-hunters who will manage everything from sourcing to offer management on your behalf.

Utilising the extensive knowledge of our tech recruiters, Resource Solutions can provide the sourcing savvy to locate the permanent or fixed term hires needed, reducing hiring costs and time to hire. Our industry experts will embrace your brand and culture. Hiring goes beyond technical skills, as each start-up will have its own unique values that will attract certain individuals and vice versa. Decisions when hiring leaders and senior staff are critical in building strong culture that drives future success – you can’t afford to get these decisions wrong. As well as securing the best talent, you need to maximise time and minimise costs, given fluctuating budgets. When hiring tech talent, market intelligence is essential in ensuring hires are made at a rate required for scaling businesses to stay on track with growth expectations. 

Our on-demand subscription model can be ‘switched on or off’ to manage the financial challenge of budget realignment. Aside from the expert knowledge and experience of its people, another huge advantage of engaging with an RPO provider is the market leading recruitment tech stack and subscriptions they have at their disposal. Programmatic Advertising, AI, Market Intelligence and building talent communities are all features that scaling organisations can benefit from. With regular reporting and communication you’ll have full visibility over the hiring process, covering various metrics including cost per hire and diversity – two key measures for cost-conscious start-ups who rely on innovative and creative people to fuel growth. 

Any tech start-up will have a lot on their plate. Particularly, if you want to grow quickly and lay strong foundations. What you haven’t been told is the hardest part of scaling your start-up isn’t securing funding, it is securing high-impact talent. Getting your hiring wrong can slow down or kill your growth ambitions. But it doesn’t need to be this way. When hiring at volume, support from an expert outsourced provider is probably the answer. An ‘on demand’ RPO can tick those time, cost and quality boxes. 

Want to secure the best tech talent to accelerate your start-up’s growth? Cue RPO On-Demand

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