As a founder, a large part of my time is spent looking for phenomenal people to share the joy of building Paradime with. People I can respect, I can work with, I can speak with, share a laugh and get shit done. But the biggest bottleneck in being able to do that is finding the right people. And that means for us to have access to talent and for talent to have access to us.
Hence, in this post, I want to talk about Access.
Because we are now licensed to sponsor skilled workers at Paradime 🔥
I moved to the UK in 2013 to study my MBA at London Business School and while studying there I realised that I am pretty good at:
- not being good at anything but knowing a little bit of everything
- socialising and building meaningful relationships
- some bit of coding and solving complex mathematical problems
So I found that exciting world of startups was the most logical place for me post MBA. And then reality hit me.
Only a handful of large tech startups typically Series C+ would sponsor Tier 2 work permits. Seed / Series A — you can pretty much forget. I was an immigrant! My skills had got nothing to do with what job I could do.
I simply did not have access.
Why is this important?
Fast forward 8 years, when we founded Paradime in the midst of a pandemic, we knew very clearly that we wanted to build a global company, with global ambitions and global talent. And that meant we were only constrained by our waking hours or time zones and not geographical boundaries. Talent can be everywhere. We decided, that like GitLab, we would be a 100% remote company.
We needed to unlock access!
How are we doing it?
We signed up on Deel within weeks of starting operations in Nov-2020 and our second founding engineer hire was in Mexico —sourced through AngelList and payroll managed through Deel. If timezone permits and Deel can facilitate payroll, we can technically hire and that pretty much opens up 150+ countries for us.
But there was one piece missing — what about talent that is already within the UK that need work permit / sponsorship to switch jobs or move from student to full-time roles? Additionally I was really curious to know how difficult this process can be when so many startups in 2015 told me it was cumbersome, brought a lot of admin, expensive etc.
So in Q4–2021, I started working with DavidsonMorris to dig deeper and find out how we can become licensed to solve this puzzle.
We put all the docs together (like in any official process) but trust me it’s significantly less than reviewing the docs for a priced round. Getting all the docs together on my part probably took 2 days and submitting through the priority track we managed to get licensed in 10 days!!! Job done!
🎉 We are now licensed to sponsor skilled worker visas 🤘
Reflecting at what founders used to tell me about the licensing process here is the real deal:
- Cost: £5,000 (incl. legal costs) for small companies to get the license and £1,700 per employee hired — that’s dirt cheap compared to paying a 20% recruiting fee on a £70k role. It’s actually cheaper to hire skilled workers in shortage roles than hire them through recruiters in-country.
- Admin: You need to keep a HR record system and track leaves for more than 10 days, absenteeism etc. which you anyways have to do regardless for proper company policies, there is nothing extra-ordinary here.
So it’s really not expensive, not that much of an admin and getting a license is also not cumbersome. 🤷♂️
I always believe that access is the most important enabler for talent and now we are one step closer to that reality. Wherever we are, whatever we do, we are always working towards building new pathways to improve access — in our product, with our customers, in our teams and in our talent pipeline.
🥳 Paradime is open to phenomenal global talent wherever you are.🌎🌍🌏
We are closed to mediocrity, jerks and bullshit.✌️
If you think the above is kinda your jam, DM me on LinkedIn — always looking to speak with nice intelligent people and/or do checkout our Careers page at https://paradime.io/careers — we need smart folks to build great stuff.