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The HR Digital Strategy Guide for Startups

Gašper Pleško, HRM Project Lead at Agilcon
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I started my career in a startup where every role includes multiple titles. Job Opening Ad may as well be Sales Consultant, Office Coordinator, Project Lead, Marketing Expert, and Chief Coffee Maker. I still remember when I got involved in planning a marketing event, tender application, and a few spreadsheets of client’s data on my first day. But, hey, I’ve got my first company laptop, a cozy workplace and I was as happy as ever.

The HR Digital Strategy Guide for Startups

Limited resources at the startup phase make employees use the bare minimum to present the company as a lion when, in fact, it is a little mouse. This means no real HR role is present and HR is equaled with the employee and organizational data. Tools in use: paper and office applications that were already preinstalled on a company computer. It works for quite some time. With growth, however, it gets more cumbersome. One day you find yourself having a real organizational structure with proper middle management and by then, it definitely won’t work anymore.

That is why small companies should have a kind of an HR digital strategy, especially if you plan to become a lion in the future. 

HR digital strategy may sound a bit too much for some. The one I’m referring to, however, is a three-slide presentation focusing on key employee areas and how they will be managed digitally when your company grows out of a startup phase. 

Before you start searching for apps and best practices, remember, digital is not a goal by itself. It should be seen as a vehicle that will facilitate your existing employee activities while also enabling you to create new and grow. On the first slide, try to summarize your existing activities and tools used for each area in a sentence or two.

For the second slide, draw a four-box with <Analog> and <Digital> on the X line and <Not Good> and <Good> on Y line. Include each area in one of the boxes according to your assessment. And for the last slide, pinpoint all areas that are in boxes 1A, 2A, 1B and try to describe, again in a sentence or two, what would make you move the area into the 2B box. While describing, take into consideration your limited resources as a small company also, but don’t get discouraged either. 

Example of a startup HR digital assessment:



At Agilcon, we often get questions on what is most beneficial when considering digitalizing different HR areas. We strongly believe that for a small growing company the most important thing to fully digitalize is Recruitment.

Two key aspects: This area uses a lot of resources and is the first touchpoint for our future employees and, secondly, recruitment activities are largely done in the same manner no matter what the company business or size is. This means that the existing recruitment apps will by large be ready to use without costly customizations. Some recruitment apps also offer ready to use Personal and Employment Data modules and much more for the time you’re ready. One such app is our Gecko HRM, a friendly app ready for you to become a lion when you are.