“Just never forget to be dexterous and deft.
And never mix up your right foot with your left.― Dr. Seuss, Oh, The Places You‘ll Go!
Several companies in our coworking space are headquartered overseas, so fellow member Captivate Talent shared their guide for how-to attract, hire and retain talent from London to New York. As a recruiting company, they know all the ins and outs. Here are the highlights of what you need to know.
MOVING ACROSS THE POND
There are some practical factors to consider when opening an office in the United States:
How far is the commute to the HQ office? While SF may seem like the popular yellow brick road for an expansion, it’s also a 12-hour flight from London and an 8-hour time difference for every-day work. In-person meetings, conference calls, and deadlines just got complicated.
Fortunately, because of the tech industry’s rapid expansion, Austin, Denver, Boston, Philadelphia, and New York are now major epicenters too.
It’s important to consider the fabric of a city and how it compares with your business model. Cities with a diverse economy, for example, can equate to more b2b opportunities for your bottom line. According to Captivate Talent’s expansion guide, “New York City is the largest urban economy in the United States – it’s the nerve center for established industries. Finance, Media, Retail, Real Estate, Healthcare, and now Tech.” In almost a direct correlation to being the nerve center for established industries, many of New York’s startups are disrupting these age-old industries. The Unicorn Class of 2019 is led by NYC-based startups shaking up the status quo.
On the east coast, Boston and Philadelphia are considered cost-effective alternatives to NYC. Noteworthy though, these cities are also 7% and 17% respectively of New York’s population.
New York City salaries are 20 – 30% higher than the national average (but on par with San Francisco and Los Angeles). Here are three ways to offset the high cost of NYC salaries:
TALENT – Hiring the right talent is advantageous for the bottom line. Considering that the talent pool in NYC is roughly 85% bigger than other east coast cities, recruiting in NYC is like having the first draft pick every time.
RETENTION – Time spent recruiting, hiring, and training new talent takes a toll on the bottom line. According to Glassdoor, the average cost per new hire is $8,000 and 40% of your working hours. Captivate Talent found that when it comes to hiring and retention, “there are ways beyond salary opportunities to give companies a competitive advantage too. [The pie chart below shows] the top 10 other aspects employees look for in ascending order of importance.”
CULTURE – Leadership sets the tone for the company culture. Your office environment acts as the supporting player serving – the physical extension of your culture. For some companies, this entails the additional investment of a corporate campus. For others, it could entail a long-term office lease and day-to-day spending on morale-boosters like lunch, happy-hours, and activities.
Design and decor affect the day to day interactions as well. Is the office going to have an open floor plan or a combination of private offices and open space? To offset these CAPEX expenses, NYC has seen a surge of companies choose the coworking space route over the long-term lease option. CBRE projects that the flex space model coworking spaces offer “will account for approximately 15 percent of overall leasing activity through year-end 2019. This massive expansion is credited to larger corporate users embracing the phenomenon.” A flexible lease affords companies the agility to change their layout and office size based on their growing needs. The coworking space team handles the office management and experience, freeing up the company’s time to focus on the bottom line.
NEW YORK STATE OF MIND
Location, location, location. Choosing the right neighborhood is an asset for talent retention.
Centrally located workspaces equate to an easier commute for the team; which is important considering talent commutes in from all over.
In New York City, locations like the Financial District, Flatiron, and Midtown are major transportation hubs. Each neighborhood has a different appeal. The Financial District has the obvious appeal of being close to Wall Street. Flat Iron is dubbed “Silicon Alley”; it’s emerged as the hub for earlier-stage to growth-stage start-ups. Midtown is the nucleus for many different industries and is known as “Silicon Central”, the hub for grown-up startups (largely because of it’s close proximity to subways and train stations which makes it convenient for anyone commuting in from suburbia).
Hiring and retaining female employees means taking into consideration which neighborhoods have the lowest “pink tax” (women spend $50 or more per month than men because of safety concerns). Factors of the pink tax include affordable housing and public transportation.
Location is a physical statement about your company culture. Opening a workspace in a trendy neighborhood that has few transportation options can send an impression of insincerity to employees. Similarly, the rent is often disproportionately high for the value or experience of the space.
POTATO, POTATOH / TOMATO, TOMATOH
The different definitions and connotations of UK versus United States English can be comical, but when it comes to business, it can be dire. For New Yorkers, keywords such as “if you please” or “maybe” often indicate an exploratory phase of work. For Londoners, polite language is used even when conveying a sense of urgency and looming deadlines. It’s important to adapt to the bluntness or politeness of a culture accordingly and to be mindful of other, more subtle, cultural nuances as well.
As Captivate Talent’s expansion guide points out, it’s an inclusive sign of culture if a company adapts some local culture and vernacular:
For a complete guide to hiring and retaining talent, contact Captivate Talent to learn more.
To learn more about how Workville’s coworking space supports growth-stage startups and businesses expanding into the NYC market, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.