So, you've set up your brand new business and things are looking good. You have a steady stream of customers and orders, a bustling working week and you're wondering why you never began your start-up idea sooner. Well then, what's next on the agenda? Any more sales and you'll be overworked, so it looks like you may need to get some help in.
However, do you choose a data entry intern, an IT specialist or a professional tea and coffee maker? Well, none of them actually. Who you should be hiring before any of these is an HR consultant and here are 4 smart reasons why.
The first reason you should consider hiring an HR consultant, before anyone else, is so that they can deal with all the ins and outs of recruiting or outsourcing. Recruitment is a tough and lengthy process, which involves putting together in-depth job descriptions, whittling down dozens of applications and then eventually interviewing and picking the best candidates, who can live and breathe your values and help you grow your business. The time you spend on these processes will take time away from your business (and your profits) which is why getting someone to do it for you will be a huge benefit. The same goes for outsourcing work, which is another process that can take a lot of time and effort; especially if you don't know how the freelancing world works. With a professional on your side you can concentrate on running your business and still find talented hires to have on your team!
2. Make sure you're a law-abiding citizen
There are a lot of laws surrounding hiring people, training people, paying people and firing people. Unless you've got a good few months (or years) to read up on all these laws, then you're probably going to need some help. Let's face it, the last thing you want is a huge lawsuit against your new start-up. An HR consultant can sort out all the contracts, make sure you're following employment laws and generally keep you on the straight and narrow. It’s their life and they love it! Trust me, hiring an HR consultant to do it right first time is a lot more cost effective than hiring a solicitor when something hits the fan!
3. Make use of an outsider's perspective
When you run a small start-up business you will find that most of your time is spent on your own, or with a business partner. What happens with this is you have no one to bounce ideas off of, when it comes to the type of staff you should be hiring and employment policies. You may be able to hire the best people, but how do you retain them, how do you engage them? In a small start-up your team is everything! An HR consultant is a fresh mind, that can give you great ideas for the type of people to hire, training and retention strategies, company policies and much much more. The best way to succeed in a start-up is to be fresh, innovative and forward thinking; a good HR consultant can help you do just that.
4. Because time is money
Okay, so this one may sound like a bit of a cliché but it's dead right. All three of the things mentioned above are going to take you time. Time that you could be using to draw in new customers, increase sales, schmooze or whatever else is at the top of your priority list. The more time you're putting into HR tasks, the less time you're putting into growing your business and making the £££. You could just bypass HR altogether and run this small start-up on your own forever, but then how are you going to get to where you want to be (there's only so much money one man, or woman, can make on their own). If you really want to make it big in the world of business then expansion is a must. And so is an HR consultant. They go hand in hand! Your competitors will know this already!
These are just 4 of the smartest reasons for hiring an HR consultant for your start-up, although there are plenty more. Before you hire in that person who makes a cracking cup of tea and is really nice, think about how you really want your business to grow and develop!
Author: Andy Selway MCIPD, HR Consultant