So handbooks are dated and tedious, but startups are modern and fun, right?! Wrong! Looking at things from the angle of Human Resources, handbooks are an absolute necessity, and that's regardless of the size of the company. A company can put all their cards on the table in a handbook, what they expect from their employees, and what they are happy to provide in return. Both employees an employers are protected in this way, as well as providing a go-to base for any situation that may occur. As the company changes and grows, so can the handbook.
It's all about culture! This plays a crucial role in startups, and is actually the probable underlying reason as to why I have no plans to leave the startup world. Being the HR Manager, as well as Office Manager, in my eyes it seems that I often play the role of Culture Minister, or at least Minister of the People. In other words, it's down to me to maintain a fun environment that workers want to stay in. Even though I do work in HR, people should never doubt that they can come and chat to me about anything and everything - we call this policy, open door. Ensuring that people always feel comfortable in giving suggestions or expressing ideas for improvement.
Regardless of company size, hiring the right people is what it is all about. At startup, you just have a handful of employees, making the right hires is vital. You need to know where your company is heading, and hire people who are a good fit in terms of culture, experience and attitude. If there is any time to use the best talent management software and methods, it's now. Granted the likes of Taleo is the best-known option here, but when it comes to price and size, they may not be your best choice. Since it's simple to use, collaborative and free, it ranks as my favorite!
Once the hires roll in, so does the paperwork! At this point you need to get some personal files up and running. Many companies today are working towards a reduction in paper use, meaning they are doing all they can to go paperless, I think this should also be a goal for HR. Use a secure online place, such as DropBox, coupled with password protection and encryption, and get everything online. When it comes to questions about where you put things and how long you keep things, just sign up to SHRM, set aside time to read and get yourself organized!
Communication matters in a start up and can greatly smooth over the HR process. Options such as Neocase are created to help improve the HR process and ensure that things run well. If you are looking to push your start up to the next level, this could be a good consideration.
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