Growth can be exciting, but it can also present a number of challenges. Over the past two years, some businesses in the life science sector have had to scale up rapidly due to increased demand relating to the coronavirus pandemic. However, no matter how urgent your hiring needs, we suggest that taking the time to develop a well-thought-out hiring strategy is crucial to successfully bringing onboard additional team members, whether they number in the tens or in the hundreds.
Here are three points to consider when planning hiring strategy in the context of a growing team.
1. Use organisation charts to visualise growth
The first step is to create an organisation chart that represents your business as it currently stands: it could include just you and a partner, or you and a handful of employees. Present your chart in such a way that it includes details like names, positions, and the reporting structure.
The second step is to develop a second chart which reflects how you would like your business to look in the future. You could use a colour system or dashed boxes to show who and where you would like to hire, and don’t forget to use and expand the existing structure to show where each new position would fit in the organisation. This gives you a high level overview of where you want your organisation to be.
2. Think about seniority levels
Has creating an organisation chart identified new senior positions which need to be filled? In a previous blog on senior hires in the life science sector, I acknowledged in the difficulties that start-ups and less established companies can face when looking to hire talented senior staff. However, I also noted that smaller players can be in a position to offer incentives to potential future employees: think in advance about what you might have to offer if you’re planning on attracting more senior candidates.
3. Don’t skimp on the detail in your hiring plan
It can be difficult to estimate hiring needs, especially when accounting for rapid growth. But putting a plan together should encourage business leaders to pause and reflect on their long-term goals. When developing your hiring plan, you want to cover the four points below:
The general knowledge area of those you are looking to hire
Areas of expertise within this which you would ideally like to cover
The educational and professional background you are looking for
The desired timeline of hiring (particularly important for HR)
Once these details have been put on paper, you can then refer back to this document during the hiring process should things get off track. The process of putting together a hiring plan should also bring together both HR and hiring managers, instigating a smooth collaboration between the two parties throughout the hiring process.
If you’d like to hear more about what we offer when we partner with life science companies looking to grow, please feel free to contact a member of our team.