How to find the best startup jobs?
So, having read our previous post, you know that you want to work for a startup. But that’s only half the battle… The next questions are: how do you go about finding the right startup for you? And, in the competitive world of startup hiring, how do you put yourself in the shop window?
Let’s dig a little deeper to unearth where you can find the best startup jobs … This entry is for candidates that are new to startups. But it could help you switch jobs if you’re already familiar with the market.
Where are the best startups located?
We know that great startups tend to be found where the conditions are most favourable for them to thrive. The most important of these conditions are the presence of a supportive ecosystem, low cost of living, proximity to higher education, access to funding and the presence of potential mentors. Inc. goes into more detail about why these 5 traits are so significant in this article.
The startup ecosystems of the main global powerhouses have exploded due to the advantages these attributes provide. If you’re looking for a startup job in tech, it’s highly likely you’ve considered relocating to one of these global hubs, if you haven’t taken the plunge already.
Startup hiring tends to be on a low or no budget basis… So how will I find a startup job?
Well, it’s not easy. But one point we can’t stress enough is, if you’re spending most of your time looking at the big job boards – stop. The startup jobs market doesn’t operate in the mainframe. It plays by its own rules. So to find what you’re looking for, you have to adapt your behaviour. Think of it as the coolest party in town in comparison to its corporate counterpart – if you know, you know.
Networking, networking, networking
Perhaps not the big eureka moment you were expecting. But the truth is startups often don’t know how to get their jobs noticed or in front of the right audience. So they revert the most affordable analogue option: they use their connections. They turn to the people they know and trust for recommendations. They use their network.
Your startup job search will be less about CVs, cover letters and applications and more about networking.
We work in the same way at PitchMe. Our AI looks beyond the limitations of a CV to build a complete, dynamic and real-time profile of candidates. This enables employers to see their full potential in terms of the role and the culture – and it enables the candidates to do the same. This results in a better match across the board. Essentially we’ve condensed and digitalised the process of networking.
It’s worth remembering you’re playing the long game here. So don’t get disheartened with you don’t get immediate results. But if you put the time in to grow your connections, you’ll not only find the right one that will result in a job, you’ll have a network you’ll be able to utilise again in the future.
If networking is a new concept to you, here are three ways you can get started:
1.Seek out startup events
As a starting point, we’ve compiled a list of startup events for this month (July 2022) that are definitely worth your attention.
But aside from that, a Google search should always be your first port of call. Using this method just now, we found Silicon Milkroundabout, a two-day London event that connects seekers to startups. Employers like Megaslice and Starling Bank will be attending and actively recruiting. And the focus is on product, design, marketing, developing and data science.
An indirect result of googling is that you’re also likely to notice ads appearing on your social media feeds that relate to startup recruitment. That algorithm is working for you for once.
Meetup is another great source of startup events. We’ve just searched “startup” and “London” and found a ton of events and groups. But by all means narrow your parameters to hone in on that specific area of interest. Then once you’ve started attending events and meeting professionals, you’ll be able to tap into their networks, enabling you to cast your net even wider.
These connections will help you sharpen your skills and stay up to date with the most recent industry activity, making you a more desirable candidate in the process.
2. Connect with startup recruiters
There are now many recruitment agencies that specialise in hiring for startups. It’s an increasingly competitive market. The need to match a specific type of talent with young companies that often don’t have the resources to find them has become big business.
London’s thriving tech scene has companies like Hired By Startups, Hanover and Salt Digital Recruitment all competing for a market share. And that’s great news for you because you can seek out the ones that specialise in your area of expertise. Whether it’s sales, marketing or operations – from Foodtech to Fintech, they cover it all.
As industry insiders, startup recruiters have their finger on the pulse in terms of what companies are hot, who’s hiring, and the people you should be talking to. Build a good relationship with them and it’s highly likely you’ll land your dream startup job before long.
3. Reach out to startups directly
Create a list of startups in your locality and start contacting them. You can use online business directories, like Google My Business, as well as startup specific sites like Crunchbase, Feedough and Killer Startups. Your research will take you further than just finding out the companies’ geographical location in relation to your own… You’ll also get a greater understanding of their history, values and purpose.
Once you’ve found the right fit for you, contact the leaders directly. Explain why you’re interested in connecting with them and why you’d be a great fit for the company.
In many ways, ‘the why’ is the most important. Startups love engaging with people who share their passion and are emotionally invested in what their company does. Remember, a culture and character fit is often more valuable to startups than qualifications on a CV.
Getting in front of a startup leader is also hugely beneficial, as they’ll be far more likely to keep you on the radar for future job openings.
Networking is a time-consuming pursuit, there’s no doubt about it. But the juice is totally worth the squeeze if your ultimate endgame is plying your trade for a startup you love.
And there’s good news… the landscape is shifting. Recruitment platforms like AngelList, Otta and *ahem* PitchMe are making it faster and easier for seekers and startups to connect. More and more, recruiters are turning to these to attract the top talent out there. And that means you. So why not get on board!