When it comes to hiring, small company owners prioritise personal qualities above professional ones

Share This Post

According to a recent study performed by iwoca, as small company vacancies reach record highs, owners are increasingly seeking for personal skills rather than professional ones when recruiting.

The results of a recent poll indicate the most significant qualities that small company owners seek for in new workers, as well as the factors that influence their hiring decisions.


In the fight for jobs, personal qualities outweigh professional and educational qualifications


The findings demonstrate the importance of personal qualities in the recruiting process. Almost half of small company owners (49%) say that honesty is one of the most essential qualities to look for when recruiting, while two-fifths (38%) prioritise a positive personality.

These are followed by more typical professional traits such as skill sets that fit the job description (37 percent), experience in a similar role (37 percent), and solid verbal communication skills (37 percent).


Top 5 attributes SME owners look for

Percentage of respondents



Good personality


Skill set which matches the job description


Experience in a similar position


Good at verbal communication



Having an undergraduate degree was ranked as one of the least significant traits, with just 6% of small business owners believing it is crucial when hiring for roles in their company.


For a firm to succeed, it is critical to get the recruitment process right


The influence of hiring the proper individuals on a company may be enormous. Poor hiring prevents future firm development, according to one in six (15%) small business owners. Furthermore, one in ten (11%) claim it results in less sales.

According to the report, one method to ensure that your new workers reach their full potential is to allow them to work from home. Nearly half (42%) of those that do provide flexible working indicated that it had a good influence on productivity, compared to only 7% who thought it had a negative impact.

Millennial company owners are 8% more likely than earlier generations to provide work from home options (43 percent compared to 35 percent ).


Small firms are seeking ways to expand their workforce


These findings come at a time when small firms are on the search for fresh talent, with 575,000 open positions indicating that there may be more jobs than individuals to fill them. This figure has risen by 72 percent over the same time previous year.

“Small companies employ nearly two-thirds of the nation’s workforce,” stated Seema Desai, Chief Operating Officer of iwoca. Some of the apparent hurdles to getting a job, such as obtaining a degree, may not be as significant as some job searchers believe. Our findings show the relevance of excellent personal qualities when applying for jobs, as well as the importance of recruiting for a company’s future success.”

Managing recruitment? See how HealthBoxHR can help your business manage and track your applicant and vacancies with our Recruitment Management feature!

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Get updates and learn from the best

More To Explore

AI & Automation are changing the workforce.

Preparing your workforce for the impact of AI & Automation

Should HR leaders see the increasing adoption of AI and automation technologies within the business as the single biggest threat to their workforce?

It’s very unlikely that those who predicted this technology would decimate the workforce will be proven right.


firms facing a digital skills shortage

According to a new study from The Open University, 69% of firms are having difficulty finding employees with adequate digital skills.

According to the study results, the majority of employers (77%) believe they have a digital skills gap in their organization and are struggling to hire new personnel with suitable digital abilities and upskill their present employees.

Evolution of HR

drop us a line and keep in touch

meeting in office