Startup Guide Amsterdam in partnership with Adams Multilingual Recruitment


About Startup Guide

Founded by Sissel Hansen, Startup Guide published its first guidebook in 2014 in Berlin. The publishing
and media company has books in over 30 cities across Europe, North America, Asia and the Middle East, as well as a regional guidebook spanning the Nordics.

Startup Guide Amsterdam

Best known as the “Venice of the North” for its picturesque canals and top-notch museums, it’s not a surprise Amsterdam hosts a vibrant and international startup ecosystem. The Dutch Capital is a true magnet for startups and young entrepreneurs, recently ranking #15 on Startup Genome’s list of Top 30 Global Ecosystems 2019.

Netherlands’ most populous city is also home to more than 1,600 tech companies, with 1,346 home-grown companies. Furthermore, many foreign tech companies have established their European headquarters here, adding to the city’s attractiveness as an investment destination. With an increase in local action programs focusing on the business sector’s commitment to social responsibility, the city has also shown progress in the social entrepreneurship field. As Amsterdam continues to show the world that it’s an ideal place for startups of all stripes to flourish, its future looks bright.

Startup Guide Amsterdam is packed with expert advice, insightful interviews and essential resources.
Whether you’re looking to get connected with an entrepreneur, startup, investor, program, school or
coworking space, it has all the tools you need to build your business in this fostering ecosystem.

Interview with Laura Quick and Florin Buduroi

The Amsterdam book was made in collaboration with StartupAmsterdam and supported by various local partners, including Adams Multilingual Recruitment. Our Executive Director and Managing Director were interviewed by Startup Guide about common challenges startups face when hiring for their team. Below you can read the article that was originally published in the book and find out our tips on how startups can recruit top talent. If you want to read more insightful stories and tips and you’re interested in the current startup ecosystem we recommend you to order your copy of the book.

Laura Quick and Florin Buduroi

Hiring is challenging, but it’s particularly challenging for startups. Young companies often don’t have the reputation to attract talent yet are inexperienced with the ins and outs of recruitment and have a limited budget for salaries.

“For startups that don’t have much previous experience with recruitment, the entire process of hiring someone can be very time consuming,” says Laura Quick, Co-owner and Executive Director at Adams Multilingual Recruitment. “From putting together a job advertisement and screening applications to interviewing people and making an offer, it takes a lot of time. I think most entrepreneurs would prefer to spend their time doing other things, like developing a concept or selling the product.”

With more than twenty years of experience in the recruiting industry, Adams Multilingual Recruitment is a professional service that specializes in matching multilingual jobseekers with positions in international companies across various industries and of all sizes (including startups and scaleups). So, if you need a salesperson that speaks German or an accountant that speaks French, Adams Multilingual Recruitment can help.

Typically when working with startups and scaleups, Adams Multilingual Recruitment begins with several discussions with the client to understand their needs, give them an idea of whether their expectations of the desired candidate are realistic and advise on salary numbers. Then the team at Adams Multilingual Recruitment will begin looking for candidates using their various sourcing tools, and its recruiters will eventually screen and interview promising candidates before the client is in touch with them.

Currently, Adams Multilingual Recruitment’s twenty-five-person team, which consists of seventeen different nationalities, is spread across the firm’s two offices in Amsterdam and Rotterdam. Each of the consultants can speak multiple languages and focuses on a particular business area, such as marketing, finance, sales, customer service, IT, HR or logistics and supply chain.


Most important tips for startups:

  • Before you start the recruiting process, clearly outline your goals. One of the most common mistakes that entrepreneurs make is hiring a team without a plan. Make sure you have a clear idea of your timeline and what you want to achieve.
  • Inform yourself on how to effectively interview a candidate. Don’t forget that a big part of hiring the right person involves asking the right questions. Not only that, you’ll need to be able to talk about your company and what it does in a succinct way that sparks interest.
  • Give potential employees a taste of your company culture. Since startups often have limited funds for salaries, they need to attract candidates in other ways, such as through their company culture and vision. Be sure to give people a sense of your unique work culture and environment during the interview.

In the early stages of starting up, every single hire will affect the DNA of the company and its culture. Since you won’t have the funds to pay big salaries, you’ll need to ensure your mission and vision are clearly communicated and attractive to potential employees.

“Every startup or scaleup is unique in their own way,” says Florin Buduroi, Managing Director at Adams Multilingual Recruitment. “It’s very important to find people that match your company culture. In the beginning, the major challenge is to define the company culture – we can help you with that and translate your company culture into market-relevant information to find suitable candidates.”

For founders looking to attract top talent, Laura and Florin shared some insights about how to navigate the process of hiring a team. Oftentimes entrepreneurs dive into hiring people without a solid strategy, Laura advises against that. “Before you start the recruiting process, you should have a clear idea of what you want to achieve, your expectations for the process and the timeframe you have for it,” she says. Startups might be used to moving quickly, says Florin, but when it comes to hiring, they need to be realistic and remember that it takes time.

Another thing to keep in mind is your interviewing capabilities. Laura says that many qualified candidates lose interest because inexperienced interviewers don’t do a good job of talking about their company and what it does. “I would really recommend founders to do some interview training beforehand,” she says. Don’t forget that you need to convince the candidate about your startup’s vision and values as much as they have to prove to you their qualifications and skills.

Related to that, Florin says it’s important to give candidates a taste of your company culture during the interview. “Startups are known for their lively company culture, so be sure to give potential employees a sense of your buzzing workplace atmosphere to get them excited – and to see if they’re the kind of person who would fit into that environment.”

Hiring the first employees is a big step for a company. If you are a startup and need some advice on how to get started with recruiting – you can schedule a free call with us, during which we will go through a checklist of things you need to do in order to ensure that the hiring process goes as smoothly as possible. 



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