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MSTS introduced new requirements in their hiring process and discovered the three most effective tactics for recruiting at scale.

For companies on the rise, the desire to scale fast can be invigorating, but that rapid growth can also be chaotic and challenging.

When a company grows quickly,  the need to have the right people with the right skills necessary to scale becomes paramount. That’s why recruiting top talent is one of the most essential processes to help take the organization to the next level, and the biggest challenge hypergrowth companies face during the scale-up phase.

In order to find out how to create the right recruitment strategy for a fast-scaling company, we spoke to David Adiutori, Senior Director of Software Engineering at MSTS, a financial technology company. Currently, the company has over 600 employees in 4 offices globally, and growing.

“We continued to grow our engineering by double digits during the last 3 to 4 years,” says David. “With that type of growth it only scales so far. You have to work on your processes and mature them. You need to work smarter, otherwise, you are spending a lot of time on less valuable interviewing and recruiting,” he adds.

Based on the MSTS story, here are the 3 most valuable recommendations for improving recruitment strategies for fast-scaling companies.

1. Build Your Company Culture

MSTS started to shift from an engineering culture that was focused on meeting business requirements to a product-focused approach. As a result, they had to establish new requirements for new hires. “In our interviewing process we were looking for individuals that act like an owner, are challenging the status quo, looking for innovative ways to solve problems, and have the necessary technical aptitude to do their job well,“ says David.

The new standards for the company culture set the tone for how the team interacts and how the new hires are made to reflect the company’s focus on the product. As MSTS became more product-focused, hiring managers started to focus on 3 key areas: entrepreneurial spirit, emotional intelligence and technical skill.

2. Standardize Your Recruitment Process

MSTS started with the usual approach – whiteboard exercises. But it quickly became transparent  that it’s inconsistent and unreliable as different hiring managers have different ways of going about interviews. “We’ve got really good at identifying candidates who are the right culture fit during interviews,” says David. “But when we got to the technical aspect, we have been relying on candidates’ ability to speak about their skills, but there was nothing quantitative about it,“ he adds.

MSTS started to look at how to optimize this process and that’s when the technical assessments came in handy. Using a candidate assessment platform like Codility helped them create unified technical tests to be rolled out across the entire organization, ensuring that they evaluate all the candidates fairly, and have consistent and comprehensive results.

“Codility’s assessment makes it really easy to see how well candidates scored – how long did it take to finish , how elegant their solution was, how did they develop it,” says David. Implementing skill assessments was a strategic move for MSTS because now they can focus on quality hires based on technical expertise, and turn these into a standard recruitment process for the entire organization.

3. Use Skill Assessments to Avoid Bad Hires 

With out technical assessments, it is easy to make the wrong hiring decisions when your company is growing so rapidly.

When MSTS was looking for a Test Engineer, they had over 63 candidates who applied, 16 of them were interviewed but it took as long as 194 days to end up hiring one candidate. The rest were just not qualified. “That saved us a lot of bad hires, we were desperate to fill the position,“ says David. “If not for Codility, we would probably pull the trigger earlier on and hire someone who is not as skilled as we need them to be. While it’s really important to fill positions rather quickly to help the team, still, a bad hire is a bad hire,” he adds.

While it may be tempting to get a new team member quickly, in the long run, hiring the wrong person can derail the progress of your product team. Eventually, a mishire can cost more than a late hire.

Interested to Hear More from MSTS? 

Read the full success story and find out how MSTS hires talent that matches their company values. If you want to optimize your hiring process and hire a world-class team in days, not months, request a demo today.

Paweł Szostak is Product Marketing Manager at Codility.

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