• Patsy van Winden

The raw, unedited story of One.

Every company has its own story. It's own challenges, defeats, goals, and achievements. To get where we are now - supporting scale-ups in their quest to find the best people in the industry to scale their business - we've had challenges and ''growing pains'' ourselves.

But isn't that the beauty of building a business? Without these, we wouldn't have been able to help founders in their mission as efficiently as we can now. And so we asked one of One's co-founders Tim Goedhart about our own f*ups, roadblocks, and learning along the way.

It all started here.

At the end of 2017, our now Head of Recruitment Tim Goedhart was at a forced halt in his career. When working as a freelance content marketer for a while, Tim worked with a few clients and had met Kaan Anit - our dear founder - at one of those clients: Yearn. It was during this time that Tim learned the ins-and-outs of recruitment and the start-up world, but unfortunately, they've had to pull the plug on Yearn. One thing Tim was certain about was how much he liked working with Kaan. So, wherever he’d go next, Tim wanted to be there.

Kaan & Tim's story.

And so it started. Kaan reached out to Tim at the start of 2018 about a project he was starting with Digital Insurance Group. Day in, day out they'd work together at Digital Insurance Group's office, finishing the day with a meal at Kaan's family's house. It took a lot of hours, hard work and dedication, but Tim soon started screening candidates and managing end-to-end projects at scale-ups.

Every week there was a new break-through and soon they were working on more projects; from various roles at 50five, to building a website, to setting up systems and processes. Tim soon learned why many companies hated recruitment agencies and subsequently what it took to take that away: by delivering great service through strong partnerships. Here he could really make an impact. And so he found his passion.

The tipping point.

Together, they decided they needed more people to keep up with the rapid growth of One. They held a speed-date recruitment event to hire people, and quickly. The sky was the limit, but there was no plan. Nothing was based on data or forecasts. This was a crucial time at the start of One, as though Tim had done 48 hires in his first year, at the end of 2018 One nearly ended as quickly as it had started. But not quite.

What's the crux?

Its near downfall meant that they had to swiftly make a plan, based on real data. Getting the right tools and processes in place was crucial. As Tim says, as long as you are willing to put in hard work and are eager to learn, your past experience isn't relevant. Together, they started learning every day; about the business model, common challenges that clients are facing, setting up processes and everything they needed to know to make a shift.

And that’s what happened. From June 2019, One was finally in a place where we had an extremely tight team. The roadblocks meant they started looking with a critical eye at who joined. At the same time, they made big steps into reporting and got all the systems in place. Building a working machine is not easy, but when you do it's important to build something in which everyone can be successful. It's Tim's responsibility to grow the team while ensuring that everyone can work towards their own personal goals and that all active partners receive a great service. And that's exactly the mantra that has made One the way it is today, with all its norms, values and open culture included.

Key takeaways.

So, like every fast-growing start-up, we've also encountered some growing pains ourselves. In our case, this has only helped us deliver a better service to our partners, lay down our own company's culture and know the importance of having the right people in place. For others currently facing similar problems, Tim has a few tricks up his sleeve.

1. Be human, the candidate is king. Make sure you create a great candidate experience. Every start-up is talking about employer branding, focusing on gym memberships, free lunches, and laptops. But candidates just want to be treated well. Call them to say thank you for applying, and give them a nice feeling about your brand. Building up a network is essential when hiring the right people.

2. Map out the project or process. To be successful, define a process and make sure not to deviate from it. To see and understand the problem, know the needs and the road to get there is crucial. If you don't have that expertise in-house, then we can help you map it all out, help you see the problem, and solve it quickly. Clear agreements from the start mean an easy partnership. It's like having your own in-house recruitment team. We all have the same goals.

3. Beware of the costs of not hiring. Hiring the wrong person is costly. But the costs of not hiring a person is an often-overlooked and unnecessary cost. Making sure you're always one step ahead and taking actions when needed, that's what's crucial in recruitment.

If you don't have the time or resources to take the candidate by the hand, to set the right processes in place and to juggle your time between projects, we are here to help.

As we now have a team of 20+ Onesies and are soon moving to a bigger office to accommodate further growth, we have a multidisciplinary team at your service. From talent business partners to content, to marketing and growth, to data science, to customer success, we've got your back. Ready to make waves or, join our team in our new office on the Prinsengracht next month?

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