SMBs (small and mid-sized businesses) move through several stages during the early days of their journey. At some point when a startup launches a product, it hopefully, begins to obtain customers and generate revenue. They may get a small round of funding from an angel investor and/or friends and family, which helps them immensely. The product starts to gain traction within the market, revenues increase and the SMB starts to hire more employees. They are often nimble, strategic and focused on growth. Under typical circumstances, a growing SMB adds new resources (capital/funding, new employees, and even technology tools) while revenues also increase. It’s often a linear relationship; rising revenues increase linearly as resources and costs increase. At some point, the strategy needs to change. It changes to a focus on scaling the company, and this means that increasing revenue is achieved without incurring additional significant costs.
There are many ways that a company can scale. A couple of immediate strategies and activities may include:
- Investing in technology – the idea here is that leading software tools can do things more efficiently and effectively than humans can in specific areas. Examples include marketing automation, recruitment of new employees, budgeting and financial forecasting, and customer success (e.g. chatbot).
- Develop leaders – one of the biggest areas of opportunity at tech SMBs is the skills of their leaders. Investing in leadership development will have a massive positive impact on business growth and scalability.
- Develop new business development channels – there are many ways to sell, and broadening your reach and horizons through developing alternative channels is a very smart way to scale.
- Operations and process improvement – this one is obvious but needs to be mentioned. Improved clarity and standards will always yield positive results when leading a growing company. A 50+ employee company can no longer operate as it once did as a 15-person company.
HR teams at scaling companies also need to jump on the bandwagon and scale their operations. The majority of growing tech SMBs run pretty lean HR teams; a leader may have a team of 3-5. Scaling HR at an SMB is not easy. They’re still building HR infrastructure, which is an extremely difficult task, and they often don’t have the time or the depth and breadth of experience to do it all well. This is where the “HR Vendor” community comes into play. It’s important that SMB leaders have access to experts at their fingertips when they need it. Of course, hiring employees is part of it but creating a diverse, well-rounded and trusted community of external experts is smart. For HR, external expertise could relate to HR technology, executive recruitment, tech recruitment, employer branding, HR strategy, leadership development, and so forth.
A core component of ScaleHR’s unique business model is our group of trusted and strategic partners. We work with many vendors on a variety of initiatives; client requirements, event sponsorship, content creation, community building, and networking. With SocialHRCamp Toronto 2023 around the corner, we have assembled a phenomenal group of sponsors; all organizations that we love working with. They are experts in their respective domains and they work with thousands of growing SMBs to scale their HR operations and strategies.
We shine a spotlight on a select group of vendors.
- Hibob (hibob.com) – resilient, agile and modern HR platform for modern business: a user-friendly tool that touches every employee across a business.
- Teamtailor (teamtailor.com) – recruitment and employer branding ATS: a new way to attract, nurture and hire top talent.
- Oyster (oysterhr.com) – all-in-one global employment platform: hire compliantly, pay instantly and provide localized benefits to your team in 180+ countries.
- WilsonHCG (wilsonhcg.com) – premier global talent solutions: recruitment process outsourcing, contingent workforce solutions, talent consulting and executive search.