In this article, authored by Sam Pardy from The HR Department, we explore the unique advantages small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) possess when it comes to recruitment. It sheds light on how SMEs can leverage their distinct qualities to attract top talent and compete effectively with larger corporations.
Responsibility, opportunity, community
Job interviews are a two-way process. While you are certainly interviewing candidates, they will also be sussing out whether they would like to work for you. It’s all about finding the right fit for both employer and prospective employee.
When they may also be being interviewed by bigger companies, make sure you emphasise the opportunity they will have to make their mark in your SME. The smaller workplace and workforce means that SMEs tend to offer more opportunities at an earlier stage, and afford more visibility and recognition of each individual’s achievements. This, in turn, may help employees gain more skills and experience in less time, helping them on their career journey.
SMEs often have a strong purpose
SMEs often sit distinctly in the marketplace because they were founded to solve a specific problem. Reflecting their founder’s passion, they may have a strong ethos around serving a particular demographic, or a quality like innovation, or a cause like reducing plastic waste.
Whatever your passion is, make sure it shines through in your recruitment, and it will help you hire people who are aligned with your vision.
The backbone of the economy
From big oil to big tech, it is FTSE 100 companies that normally steal the headlines in the news, but SMEs are the backbone of the global economy. It is a similar story here in the UK, where they are the engine room of the economy. They are often innovative, fast-growing and dynamic places to work.
So, far from being a sideshow, when people come to work for you, they are at the main event. Do you portray this with confidence?
Collaboration with other SMEs
Share that one of the most exciting parts of working for an SME is the opportunity to collaborate with other SMEs. Unlike much larger firms, SMEs tend to focus on what they do best and outsource non-core functions to the wider SME community. Not only can this produce innovative and efficient solutions, but it also exposes your staff to new industries and skill sets, and helps them expand their network.
These are really valuable benefits of working for an SME that shouldn’t be undersold when hiring. The alternative for a prospective employee may be to become trapped in a corporate bubble, unable to reach their full potential and connect with a broad base of people.