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How can I make a small company stand out to candidates?

How can I make a small company stand out to candidates?

Does size matter? Many people are lured by the big brand businesses with offices around the globe, but when it comes to recruiting, a small company can actually be a big advantage.

There are plenty of things you can do to attract the top talent to your small business, and thankfully it doesn't require big company budgets.

Think small
There are big company people and small company people; your job is to find the ones that are naturally attracted to your environment. Working for a big company can be terrific for the right person, but the fact is there are many people who prefer the intimacy of more modest companies. Actively promote the fact that you are 'a small company that does big-time projects'.

Don't try to hide the fact that you are small, embrace it. To most jobseekers a company that thinks they're bigger than they are might be off putting as they may set unrealistic goals. Emphasize to candidates the clients whom you serve and the quality of the work that you do.

Display your company cultures
Typically, small companies have a more laid-back, less corporate work environment. If that is true for you, let that 'un-corporate' attitude come through in your job postings.

You can afford to be more personal in your tone as your company guidelines will be less rigid so use the opportunity to match the personality of your writing to the personality of the people you're trying to recruit.

Have your job interview in a coffee shop and let the applicant know that they don't have to come dressed in the usual suit and tie. It's a powerful, non-verbal way to communicate the advantages of a small-company culture.

Use your own authentic, distinctive characteristics to appeal to applicants. Let them experience you and your company, and see who responds to your culture. The people who respond positively are likely the ones who will fit your company best.

Provide flexibility
The world is filled with people who are looking for flexible work arrangements. There are people in all professions who would do anything for a job that lets them use their skills and still have a life outside of work

Design a role for these people, let everyone in your network know about it, and see if you get any referrals. Remember that time and flexibility can be more important to people than working for a big company for big money. If you design and promote different roles with this in mind, you will be pleasantly surprised at the quality of people you can attract.

Some applicants will still expect large pay packets for their services, however it's possible to provide all round packages incorporating more holiday time, company cars, subsidised travel, etc that can put your wages on a par with the big brands.

If candidates aren't attracted by all this, don't blow your budget trying to persuade them. Move on and find other people who are the right fit for your environment.