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Created on 27.09.2019

How and where do I find the right employees for my start-up?

Start-ups that grow will sooner or later have to think about recruiting more employees. But where do you find the right team members? We asked three winners of the “start-up space” workplace competition. Start-ups, SMEs and large corporations have one thing in common: they are all looking for employees who fit the company and complement the team in just the right way. But what do start-up companies pay particular attention to?

Soft skills before hard skills

“Commitment, empathy and the ability to learn a lot in a short time are more important to us than specialist knowledge”, says Christian Greis, founder of Derma2go. After all, know-how can be acquired more quickly than personality traits. Tobias Oetiker of TONI Digital shares this view: “Initiative, teamwork, entrepreneurial spirit, and believing in the idea are the most important criteria for us.” Of course, specialist knowledge in certain areas – in the case of TONI Digital, for example in the field of claims or in IT – is important. Ultimately, however, determination and motivation are more important than any particular specialist knowledge. But how can you make sure that your team is put together in just the right way?

How do you assemble a powerful team?

“It is important that the employees in the team complement each other perfectly,” says Thilo Pfrang, co-founder of behamics. Because a team needs different types of people who take on different roles, such as the creative mind, the strategist or the salesperson. It is important that first of all you think about what strengths the team should have. Once the requirements for the new employees have been clearly formulated, the second step is finding the right employee. But where do you find them?

Where do you find the achievers who fit in with your start-up?

Behamics uses platforms such as and social networks such as LinkedIn for personnel recruitment. “On top of that, we search directly at universities and use our personal networks,” says Thilo Pfrang. TONI Digital relies primarily on recommendations. “For us, this is still the most important channel for finding the right employees – who also fit the company culture,” says Tobias Oetiker. At Derma2go, recommendations likewise play a major role, and Christian Greis adds: “As a young entrepreneur, unique opportunities are presented not only by our network but also via specialist events. This has resulted in some very exciting contacts.”

Where start-ups frequently turn for recruiting employees

  • Personal network
  • Reommendations
  • Social networks such as LinkedIn, Xing, Facebook
  • Platforms such as
  • Events and trade shows
  • Specialized job portals
  • Associations and organizations
  • Own website
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