The tech world runs on processes; carefully placed and flawlessly executed systems that ensure that everything runs as it should, when it should. But, when it comes to hiring the right employee for your fast-growing SaaS business, do you really have the time and resources to consider what’s going to work – and what isn’t? It’s all too easy to coast along, or simply copy the SaaS-next-door but, in the highly-competitive business world of SaaS, that really isn’t good enough. At Abika we know that chemistry is everything when it comes to hiring the right employee for a SaaS job, which is why we’ve come up with the winning formula for hiring the right employee for your software as a service business. Here’s Abika’s tips for recruiting for SaaS jobs:
1. Decide What You Want For Your Business And Your Team
Having new hires who don’t ‘get’ your business and your ethos, is just as bad as having no employees at all, so it’s important that you’re super-clear on what the big picture is for your business; what your guiding principles are, and how your hiring plan is going to fit in with that.
Hiring for the right roles and reasons is going to be key. Before you even start thinking about advertising or writing a checklist for employees, or even getting a recruitment consultancy to do it for you, you need to know which SaaS role you need to fill and why. It’s not sexy we admit, but you need to get down to the nitty-gritty of specifics if you want to find the perfect candidate to fit in with your business and its existing team.
2. Advertising Your SaaS Jobs
Do you really need to advertise in this day and age? Surely qualified and talented individuals are beating a path to your door as we speak, without you having to lift a finger
In a word, yes, you do have to advertise.
While it’s true that SaaS is a much sought-after career path, not all candidates are going to have been created equal. In order to find the right SaaS employee for you, you’re going to have to have a really clear idea of who you and your team need, why they need them, and what results you want to gain from the role being filled.
Yes, we’re back to those unsexy specifics.
Instead of simply listing the responsibilities a new hire will have, offer potential new employees an understanding of the position on offer – and its purpose. This shows candidates from the outset how their skills will impact the success of your business. Simply listing a rigid set of requirements you expect a candidate to have can be the quickest way to shoot yourself in the proverbial foot, and you could end up turning down the perfect candidate because there’s one measly box they didn’t tick.
If there really is a ‘must-have’ requirement for your SaaS role, list it as a bonus skill or a plus. For example; ‘….a Masters degree would be a plus.’ That way you’re not instantly shrinking your candidate pool – it’s always better to be spoilt for choice when it comes to new SaaS hires!
Saying that, of course there are going to be deal-breakers when it comes to hiring someone to fulfil a specific SaaS role, so you just have to work out where you’re willing to be flexible and where you’re not. You might ideally want someone with five years experience, for example, but you’ve found a star candidate with only three…so what do you do? Perhaps for the role you’re advertising, those extra two years experience are essential. Or it could be that for someone who is the perfect fit in all other respects, you’d be willing to let them learn on the job. Be clear in what you’ll compromise on and what you won’t, and it will save both you and potential employees a lot of time.
And then there’s the sordid subject of coin. In this day and age candidates admire companies who are transparent enough to be upfront when it comes to pay, so while it can be tempting to leave salary out of job descriptions, again, it’s only going to save everyone time if you’re upfront about what you’re offering.
As much as there is a wealth of SaaS talent out there, just waiting for the opportunity to be hired by a company just like yours, they’re a drop in the ocean compared to the amount of competitors you have who are also looking for the perfect new hire. If you want to give yourself the edge when it comes to welcoming the next big thing in software sales into your fold, make sure that your ads are inclusive, jargon-free, and packed with clear, accessible terms. Companies with inclusive talent practices have a 30% higher revenue per employee than those that don’t, and 67% of job seekers in any industry care about a company’s diversity statistics, as well as their policies on social equality and environmental sustainability – so don’t let an archaic, stuck-in-the-stone-age attitude get in the way of the perfect match for your company.
3. Give The People What They Really Want
‘Pay’ is definitely up there when it comes to winning candidates, but income alone (somewhat surprisingly) isn’t always enough. You’ve proven through your company branding and the banging job ad you’ve put out that you are a business that cares about its employees, and is inclusive; offering equal opportunities and support for all.
So, what more do they want? The answer is: sweet, sweet benefits.
A lot of candidates, especially millennials and younger, are more likely to accept a lower base salary if they’re offered certain benefits. And this goes for those working in SaaS as well.
Some benefits to think about (if you don’t offer them already!) are:
- Inclusive benefits. For example, maternity leave is cool – but offering paternity leave as well is cooler. The same goes for child care benefits and flexibility for both mothers and fathers
- Acknowledging cultural differences and being flexible accordingly. Allowing employees to take days off work when it is relevant to their culture, rather than when it’s relevant to yours
- Allow remote working. In today’s technological age it isn’t always necessary for your SaaS business to have everyone working in the office all of the time. Remote working has become even more popular in the wake of the pandemic, and businesses are reaping the rewards of lower costs, higher productivity, increased profits, and happier, more motivated employees
Make sure you’re offering candidates the ‘good stuff’, rather than ‘empty’ benefits. For example, it’s no good exalting the qualities of the fancy free-to-use coffee machine in the break room if employees are so under the cosh they can’t take more than a five minute break!
But you don’t have to go nuts here – there’s no need to see what other SaaS companies are doing and they try to one-up them by offering all of that PLUS one. Focus instead on what your individual candidates want and go from there. One single, personalised benefit that will improve the life of an employee will have more of an impact on their productivity, loyalty and happiness than a dozen frivolous ‘benefits’ like pizza Friday and dress-down Tuesday.
4. Make Sure You’re Looking In The Right Places
(Very) long gone are the days when you’d stick a ‘wanted’ ad in the local paper and then wait by the phone for eager hopefuls to call or drop in their CVs. Thanks to advances in technology, particularly those that have made with regards to social media, you now have an unlimited pool of talent – local and otherwise – right at your fingertips.
Companies of all shapes and sizes, including SaaS businesses are finding their hires online through sites such as Linkedin, job search websites like Monster Jobs, and even platforms like Facebook and Instagram. But, if you’re looking to hire help for your software as a service company, one of the best hiring tips we can possibly give you is to work with a recruitment consultancy that specialises in hand-selecting the perfect candidate for you. Abika has one of the biggest pools of SaaS talent around, and taking a dip could save you time, effort and money – AND give you the very best results.
5. Find Out What’s Below the Surface
However you go about finding the right employee; a recruitment agency, online ad, or through industry contacts, when it comes to the interview stage don’t make first impressions that be-all and end-all. Of course, they’re important, and they can tell us a lot, but they should never be set in stone.
The nervous-looking person who shuffles into the office in the cheap suit could be just the software-whizz-come-genius that you’ve been searching for your whole life, whereas the confident interviewee in designer threads might be able to talk the talk, yet might not actually have the skills they’ve boasted about. Ok, so it’s a cliched and extreme example, but the point is, dig a little deeper than first impressions during the interview process if you really want to find out if the person before could be the right employee for your SaaS job.
6. Don’t Hire Someone You Wouldn’t Buy From Yourself
SaaS: the clue is in the title – SALES. And when it comes to new technology that a lot of people don’t know about yet, being able to actually sell it is a skill and talent all of its own – and it’s exactly what you’re looking for in your reps.
Marketing and sales are undoubtedly the two departments that keep your SaaS company going, and you don’t want to be handing over those all-important positions to someone who doesn’t seem convincing enough to you. CVs, personal recommendations and years of experience don’t mean diddly if your instincts are telling you that you personally wouldn’t buy from them – so trust those instincts.
7. Let The Candidate Interview You
As we said earlier, finding the right employee for your SaaS job is all about chemistry – and that has to be a two-way street.
A great tip for recruiting the ideal employee for your SaaS business is to flip the script and allow them to interview you. You’ll be able to tell a lot about the potential employees knowledge and skills by the questions they ask and the language they use, much more than you can ascertain from a written resume or the answers they give to your carefully thought-out questions.
8. Only Recruit If You Really Need To
It seems obvious, but there are companies out there – SaaS included, that do a big recruitment drive every year whether they truly have SaaS jobs that need to be filled or not. Unsurprisingly this ends up leading to hiring the wrong people simply because hiring has become the norm.
It can also result in a high turnover of staff, as candidates could end up using your company as a ‘stop-gap’ job (‘I’ve been offered it, so I’ll take it’), before moving swiftly on to somewhere else. If you want to build a scalable and loyal team, you need to ensure that you are hiring the very best match for YOUR business, someone who wants to build their career and share their experience and expertise with you and your team for the long-haul.
9. Make Sure You Can Sense Their Passion For The Role
If you’re hiring help for your software as a service business, chances are that the majority of your candidates are going to be passionate about software sales and marketing, and are looking forward to a long and prosperous career, and it’s easy to spot those who are just ‘trying it on for size’.
Of course, everyone has to start somewhere, and one of your criteria might not necessarily be someone who has years and years of experience and glowing references under their belt. But, whether a potential employee has been in the industry for aeons, or is shiny and brand-spanking new, their passion should be palpable. You don’t want to recruit someone who is unsure that this is the world for them, nor do you want an employee who is burning out and losing enthusiasm for SaaS after doing it for so long. You want passionate and dedicated individuals who are going to bring their own special brand of enthusiasm to the company and be a real asset to your team.
Which brings us to our tenth and final tip for hiring the right employee for your SaaS job…
10. Let Abika Consulting Do The Hard Work For You
Running a business is an all-encompassing task that requires a lot of balls in the air and spinning of plates. Recruiting the right candidate for those all-important SaaS roles can often fall by the wayside, or be undertaken in a hurry, leading you to not hiring the right person for the job in question.
Why not let Abika handle this delicate process for you? We already know who the most passionate SaaS candidates are. We know what lies beneath the surface, who has the skills and experience you require, and what they want to glean from the role.
Because they come to us, trusting us to find the very best match for them in order to start along and potentially lucrative career in the world of SaaS. We have matched tens of thousands of SaaS clients and candidates around the globe through our unique selection and matching process that focuses on the chemistry between businesses and employees, and our untouched pool of SaaS talent continues to grow. Follow our tips for hiring and join our extensive list of clients who trust us to help them hire the right employee for them, today.