Startups Ireland

You know what you know – but you don’t know what you don’t know!


You know what you know – but you don’t know what you don’t know!

You know what you know – but you don’t know what you don’t know! So, employ a person to do the job and let them get on with it.

When you start out it is not easy knowing when to hire someone to work for you when you are used to doing everything yourself. But, this can be an excellent way to expand your business. You know what you know, but you cannot know everything or do it all yourself. There comes a point where you need to hire someone to help and trust them to get on with it.

Employing someone can be a tough job. If you hire too early you risk having that person sit around without anything to do at times. Or, you may not have enough cash flow to pay them. And, there may be things you struggle with like keeping up with your accounts.

You may feel fear at trusting someone else. What if the person you hire does not do a good job? But, if you put it off for too long, you could miss out on growing your business.

So, how do you know when it is the right time to hire someone to help with your business?

When you should not hire

There are times when you should not hire, so keep the following in mind:

  • When you are desperate for help. Avoid employing someone when you are desperate for help. When you are under stress, employing someone may not be the right decision. If you are hiring because you are desperate, this could hinder rather than help you in the long run.
  • When you do not have a clearly defined job role. A big mistake when employing someone to help out in your business is not having a clearly defined job role. Avoid employing someone if you do not have a clear set of responsibilities for the person and expectations for them to meet. When you hire someone without these, a new person cannot be effective and it will be a waste of money.
  • Avoid hiring the first person who applies. While the first person who applies may be the best candidate for the job, avoid hiring them on the spot. Do your due diligence and interview other candidates to find the right person for the job. While that first person may seem a good fit for your business, there may be someone more suitable waiting to talk with you.

Hire specialists that make the business money

In any new business making money is the key focus so hiring someone needs to either make or save you money. When you are sure that hiring someone can do one of these things, it is the right time to bring someone else into the business.

You need to decide what terms you will offer such as project-based, part or full-time, or casual work. In the beginning, it is important to get this right as you may only need someone for a few hours a week or for a specific project.

Here are some things that can make it easier to know when to hire someone. You need to decide what you need done and what you do not have time or the skills to do yourself. Here are some things you may need outside assistance with:

  • creating a new product
  • marketing your products and website
  • customer support.

When you need work done in any of these areas it is time to hire someone to help out.

Employ a contractor instead

Before you look for a permanent employee, a contractor may fit the role better. Or, you can try someone out by putting them on a contract. This can be a much easier way to go about getting the work done without a long-term commitment. You can test people out and then offer full-time work if it works out.

You can find contractors to complete almost any job your business needs. Make sure you set out parameters for the role such as:

  • the length of a contract or hire people based on project needs
  • write out a set of tasks before you start such as a web developer or a digital marketer to raise your business profile on the internet.

Check references and business reviews

Regardless of whether you hire a staff member or a contractor, check their references and business reviews before offering them a job. You want to know what other people have to say about their professionalism. This is really important. Be objective in what you ask and only ask questions relevant to the job.

Hiring staff is a big step. While it is daunting, you cannot do everything yourself and expect your business to grow. When you employ the right person for the job, it is a good long-term investment.


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