Ultimate Guide For an Early Stage Startup Hiring in India

Sanchit MalikStartup Basics2 Comments

When you are building your startup, you realise that startup hiring is one of the most important things to do.

Hiring the right candidate is a key to your company’s success. Building the team consisting of right talent is very crucial during the infant stage of your company. A great team of first 10 employees can take it to the next level. Hope you know about Paypal Mafia

Paypal Mafia (Image Source: Telegraph)

Paypal Mafia

You should invest a good amount of time for hiring the right candidate. It becomes a steep task to give your time for the hiring process as well as drive the company business. But yes, that’s the bitter truth, you will have to strive hard during the hiring phase.

During the initial days, you might have angel funding and today the value of a smart hire in terms of money is high. Also, in India very few people value ESOP’s. So, now the challenge is how to hire the right candidate when you don’t have that much money + candiates don’t value the importance of shares.

Startup Hiring in India

Startup Hiring in India

Traits of a good startup hire:

Apart from being technically sound and having all the required skills, a startup candidate should have a right attitude and also should be a perfect fit in the company culture.

– Passion to make it really big: You are passionate to make it big but everyone in your team should have the same level of passion. People who prefer working for fixed 8-9 hours are not the right hire for a young startup.

– Importance to learning than money: Yes! Money is important for everyone to sustain in life. But as you give more importance to building the company, the candidate should also think the same for the company. As the company grows everyone learns.

– Self Learner: The candidate must have an attitude of a self learner. You need to keep on innovating all the time to cop-up with market. You don’t have time to keep on training people all the time. The right hire should be a proactive self learner, who is always humble and wants to do achieve more from life.

– Collaborative: Collaboration skills are important. Being an early startup all the team members should work as a team. Individualism can screw up your startup.

How and from where to hire the right candidate:

– Hire via your network:

If you are socially active, this is a very effective strategy. The reason why this is the best option is that your network recommends the employee and you know the the candidate really well.

Hire using Angel list:

Angel list has been one of the best ways to hire for us at Townscript as you can find startup oriented people there. The effective way to use Angel list is post the jobs and start browsing for the candidates. Use filters to browse relevant candidates who are looking for startup jobs in India. There’s an option of “get intro” on angel list, which helps you get introduced to the candidate.

Angel List recruiter dashboard

Angel list recruiter dashboard

When you post the job, different candidates show interest in the job post. But I prefer to do a rigorous research and approach the best candidates. Angel list has been quite effective for us in hiring for all type of roles.

Hire using Linkedin:

Linkedin is another way of hiring. But they don’t have a feature to get introduced to the candidates who are looking for a job. You can get introduced to many people but if they are not looking for a job then you might not be able to get the results.

One way is to approach candidated who have completed 1-2 years in their current company. But this process requires a lot of hard work and the outcome is not very effective.

Other way of using linkedin could be posting a sponsored job. It requires INR 1700 + 2500 (to post a sponsored job). This will get you a lot of applications. It has worked for us in hiring a software developer but it didn’t work out for us when we were hiring for Digital Marketers.

Hire using recruitment websites:

There are few websites where you could definitely find some good employees who are also startup oriented.

For Sales & Business Development iimjobs.com has been impressive. You can find a lot of good candidates there.

For Product development, you should try out talentpad.com. You can find technically sound developers with a good job experience there.

For designers, you should check out dribble.com, behance.com

Other websites which you could try out for different roles would be: hasjobs.com, jobs. socialsamosa.com and few local city sites like for example bangalore startups, punestartups.org, punetech.com etc.


We know hiring is important but hiring the right person is painful and requires hard work in the right direction. Hope you find this article useful.

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2 Comments on “Ultimate Guide For an Early Stage Startup Hiring in India”

  1. Nikunj

    Great advice here. Network hiring is often the best way for startups. Unfortunately, it’s chaotic and largely luck based – with no organized way to go about it.

    We are trying to change that with SocialHelpouts (www.socialhelpouts.com). Would love if you could try and add it here if you like it.

    Look forward to more articles from you!

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