Start-up culture is booming in the UK: 38,240 tech firms were incorporated in 2021, up from 23,579 in 2020, and when it comes to the skills required, it is easy to imagine that it is purely technical proficiency that is going to be the order of the day.
Your hard technical abilities can’t be underestimated, but you can certainly expect to require other skills in a small, hungry business that’s bootstrapping its way to viability. According to Fundsquire, 23 per cent of tech start-ups fail because they don’t have the right team running the business.
Soft and hybrid skills are equally important pieces of the puzzle. Here are three key skills you’ll also need to succeed at a start-up.
#1 – Being comfortable with change
Start-ups are just that. They’re new companies, scaling rapidly, often suffering from growing pains. Because the processes and procedures – and often departments such as HR – haven’t been put into place, things can be chaotic. Prepare for things to chop and change constantly and go with the flow.
#2 – Communication
Being a good communicator is a soft skill that cannot be underestimated. Not only is it valuable in keeping all stakeholders updated and involved, but knowing how to effectively communicate means that you’re not afraid to have the hard conversations too. And these are going to be necessary at the startup stage as people and projects don’t work out the way you’d planned, and you have to rapidly reorganise.
#3 – Planning, strategising – and patience
When you’re reacting all the time, it can be hard to step back, look at the bigger picture and draw up plans. Being the person in the business who can oversee strategy and planning is really important as it will help to drive forward your shared goals and define your purpose. Having patience is also vastly important – things will change, and it’ll be a case of taking deep breaths and rolling with it.
If you’re ready to look for a new job, whether it’s in an established business or an up-and-coming firm, we’ve got lots to choose from, and plenty more on the Job Board.
IT Specialist (IP Services squad), IBM
The Role: The IT Specialist job a leadership role in IBM’s Strategy and Architecture domain in CIO Network Engineering.
The Responsibilities: You will define and establish a modern, automated tooling landscape for a DDI (DNS, DHCP & IPAM) environment and help develop, establish and run applications which augment and integrate the existing Infoblox DDI environment into other network and hosting environments.
The Requirements: You will need a minimum of five years’ practical experience as an IT specialist with a focus on network engineering, ideally in a DNS, DHCP and IPAM environment. Demonstrated expertise in building automation and tooling at scale in a modern environment and applied knowledge as a Linux system admin is required.
Senior Software Engineer – Payment Systems, SaltPay
The Role: The Senior Software Engineer will implement SaltPay’s integration with payment schemes such as Faster Payments, SEPA (Single Euro Payments Area) and SWIFT. You will be responsible for leading the technical aspects of these projects, influencing team processes and overall delivery.
The Responsibilities: You will design APIs, write clean, secure, and well-tested code to solve business problems and incorporate automation best practices to reduce the chances of repetition/waste and human error. And you will collaborate and communicate effectively within the team and across the organisation to achieve the team’s goals.
The Requirements: You are highly proficient in one of the following programming languages: C#/.NET, Java, Kotlin, or Go. You must have built (not just maintained) payment solutions implementing SWIFT (MT 103, MT101, MT202, MT202 Cov), ISO 20022, Faster Payments Services, BACS, and SEPA schemes.
Senior Database Engineer, MessageBird
The Role: Working remotely in the UK (or the Netherlands), the Senior Database Engineer will play a key part in the engineering team. You will be working closely with the wider team to design and implement highly available and scalable database solutions, whilst also ensuring sufficient monitoring and alerting solutions are implemented and maintained.
The Responsibilities: You will scale and automate database infrastructure with a focus on the performance, availability, reliability and growth needs of the company and improve and optimise database administration and management with coding and automation.
The Requirements: More than five years of experience scaling and automating MySQL databases is required as is experience with replication, failover and disaster recovery in a globally distributed environment. You’ll understand scalability challenges and performance of a distributed database infrastructure.
Kirstie McDermott works for our job board partner, Jobbio. Based in Dublin, she has been a writer and editor across print and digital platforms for over 15 years.