Archive for the ‘Just Another Recruiting Start Up’ category

JobLark, Joins the Flock of Employee Referral Tools

February 4th, 2013

JobLark joins the growing flock of employee referral management products that have landed in the market over the past 18 months. Very similar to Zao, Goood Job, Sticky, Select Minds (Oracle) and dozens more Joblark leverages social networks to enable referrers to discover and refer job applicants. And like Zao, Joblark also allows employers to track and reward all the people that help make successful hires, whether they work for the employer or not. Joblark (like Zao) makes money by charging a fee once a hire is made.

Headquartered in Utah, JobLark appears to have around twenty or so employees and claims to have taken 1 million dollars in funding with 9 million more committed by Apple Tree Capital. Not much else is known about the company, the management team or active customers.

The Hiring Sciences Hunch

The employee referral management space is white hot but the space is getting crowded. The editors here at Hiring Sciences agree that ERM is an interesting niche in the HR Tech landscape but the window may be closing quickly for small upstarts like JobLark. Competition from applicant tracking software vendors, many of which already offer integrated employee referral management modules, will force standalone solutions like JobLark to focus on smaller employers with smaller budgets. Also, user adoption will pose challenges for the likes of JobLark as employees are inundated with tools and a standalone ERM solution may not carry the weight of other more mission critical systems. Overall, we believe the ERM space is very interesting and solutions like JobLark are making great use of social networks but it’s still unclear if a majority of employers are ready to adopt these new standalone tools.

If you are interested in learning more about JobLark visit the site at

SayHired: Applicants Pitch Your Products

January 19th, 2013
SayHired: Applicants Pitch Your Products by Hiring Sciences

SayHired: Applicants Pitch Your Products by Hiring Sciences

SayHired, another Bay Area-based recruiting start-up that received a round of funding in July 2012, has a rather unique pitch. Candidates apply to positions by recording responses to pitch prompts or employers can set their own screening questions. The responses are analyzed by SayHired’s engine for the qualities that the employer values most for the position. Responses are then ranked on a scale of 1 to 100 for each individual characteristic. Once processed, the scores are released to both the candidate (nice touch) and the employer.

According to the SEC filing issued in July 2012, SayHired has been in business for 5 years. The editorial staff here at Hiring Sciences found some older collateral from SayHired that indicates a small pivot from their original messaging referring to automated reference checks and phone screens but the general idea seems to remain the same.

As for pricing, SayHired provides the first 25 screens for free. Each additional screen is $.60. Apparently, you can upload candidates to screen via Excel. There is no mention of applicant tracking system integration on their site. A more in depth product review could be interesting and we’ll contact SayHired if we go down that road at some point.

The Hiring Sciences Hunch:

As always, we commend the entrepreneurs and innovators like SayHired that are willing to try something new in the recruiting technology industry. Depending on the accuracy of the scoring algorithms and true ease of use, there may be a good opportunity for adoption in high-transaction hiring environments like call centers, hospitality, insurance sales, etc. These type of employers seem to be the target for SayHired and we like tools that serve traditional industries that are often overlooked by new solutions that purely market to technology companies.

On the other hand, SayHired may in reality have a long road to hoe. Their target employers aren’t necessarily the early adopters and often are not often sophisticated IT buyers. Perhaps SayHired will postion itself as an acquisition target for one of the major pre-employment screening companies or they could be a good fit as an additional revenue source and add-on for a staffing software play like Bullhorn or JobScience. A large RPO or cash flush global staffing outfit could also be interested in putting SayHired in their bag of tricks at some point as an efficiency tool and service differentiator.

If you are interested in learning more about SayHired, visit their website at:

Developer Auction: New Posterchild of the Technical Recruiting Bubble

January 12th, 2013

Developer Auction

The recruiting technology industry has undeniably inflated and officially crossed over into bubble status. Just take a look at Developer Auction, one of the latest of 482 companies tagged with “recruiting” or a similar term on Crunchbase. Launched to “disrupt” the recruiting industry, Developer Auction allows software engineers to create a profile and auction themselves off to venture funded tech companies. To go a step further, Developer Auction awards developers 20% cash back ($3000-$6000+) when they get hired through the platform essentially sharing their service fee (15% of the winning bid) with developers.

Developer Auction shows employers (all cash-rich, venture-backed tech startups in a few cities) a list of elite, vetted engineers that are looking for new opportunities and allows the employers to bid on talent without having to maneuver through a protracted sourcing process. For software engineers, Developer Auction is like an online speed dating service where all the potential matches are hotties but instead of a good figure or charming sense of humor the suitors have a stocked fridge, free lunches and a collegial environment that are reminiscent of the good ‘ol days on the quad at Stanford and MIT.

The idea is unique and essentially digitizes contingent recruiting but with a giant waft of exclusivity. The developers that get vetted and ultimately chosen for the bachelor style developer auction are all from Facebook, Google, Apple, Twitter, Zynga, Stanford, and MIT. It makes sense. Developer Auction is giving elite start-ups in uber-competitive markets access to what they covet most to boost brainpower and company valuation.

The Hiring Sciences Hunch

At Hiring Sciences we love to see new models and encourage further innovation in the recruiting industry. The idea of the reverse funnel created by Developer Auction is thought provoking for sure. But, we can’t help feeling a little “icky” about they’ve created. One of our editors keeps calling the service Developer Kardashians and thinks it reeks of the kind of elitism that insulates technology companies from the real world. He went to public school so it’s probably just his insecurities showing through again. Finally, while the service is certainty different from other sourcing solutions out there, it’s far from being disruptive to the recruiting industry or even technical recruiting yet but we’ll keep an eye on Developer Auction.

If you are interested in learning more about Developer Auction, visit the site at:

Developer Auction was launched in order to disrupt the recruiting industry, and provide a better and more efficient way for talented developers to get exposed to exciting job opportunities at funded tech companies.
As serial entrepreneurs & software developers, we know that the smartest people are already employed, and that they receive numerous emails every month from recruiters and prospective employers that often go ignored due to the enormous amount of time that it would take to interview and negotiate with each company. We thought – “there has to be a better way”.
By reversing the funnel, and having companies submit offers based on work history & experience, we hope to shorten the hiring cycle, maximize efficiency and create transparency in a market that is currently anything but. To go a step further, we even offer developers 20% cash back ($3000-$6000+) when they get hired through our platform.
We believe that we can more effectively match developers with great companies, while driving down financial and “lost opportunity” costs for start-ups.