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CEO Podcast: Mike Hard, BountyJobs

BountyJobs: Building the OK Corral for Headhunters and Corporate Recruiters.

Michael HardMike Hard

Online Headhunter Marketplace Notches Three-Year Revenue Growth of 881% Despite Worst Job Market in 50 Years

What's a feller suppos' to do? You're the deputy of recruiting and you've placed Help Wanted posters everywhere. It's been weeks — well, maybe even a few months — and nothin'. The sheriff is gettin' real twitchy. She wants action now. Time to face facts: you ain't gonna catch this purple squirrel. Time to call in the hired gun: the headhunter. But... who?

Okay, enough with the corny cowboy lingo. Welcome to an Talent Acquisition Channel Podcast on TotalPicture Radio. This is Peter Clayton reporting.

BountyJobs is an online marketplace that connects employers with a national network of seasoned headhunters, and is one of only seven HR industry companies to make the Inc. 500 list for 2011; and the only one to focus on improving the way companies find and work more effectively with specialized headhunters. The company’s revenue jumped 881 percent from 2007 to 2010, the three years tracked by the Inc. editorial team. Joining us today is the CEO of BountyJobs, Michael Hard.

"BountyJobs is filling VP’s of sales. We are filling chief marketing officer. We are filling directors of sales. We are filling the average salary of a job filled on BountyJobs is over $100,000 and we’re filling jobs on BountyJobs that are $250,000, $300,000." Mike Hard.


Michael Hard — Chief Executive Officer
Mike has almost two decades of success in the technology industry. As an executive with Microsoft for 17 years, he developed a passion for building innovative technology platforms, then delivering great sales and service to help customers use those platforms to solve business problems. From 2006 through 2008, Mike was vice president of U.S. sales for MSN and a member of the Executive Board of the Interactive Advertising Bureau. He ran sales and marketing subsidiaries for Microsoft in Asia, Latin America and New York, winning the Microsoft Builders Award for founding the Financial Services Vertical for Microsoft in 1999. He graduated from Yale University in 1984 and received his M.B.A. from Harvard Business School in 1991.

Michael Hard TotalPicture Radio Interview Transcript


Welcome to TotalPicture Radio. We produce broadcast quality interviews that link companies to customers, prospects, employees and passive candidates.

Here’s the headline. Online headhunter marketplace notches three-year revenue growth of 881 percent despite the worst job market in 50 years.

Welcome to an Inside Recruiting Talent Acquisition Channel Podcast on TotalPicture Radio. This is Peter Clayton reporting from New York.

BountyJobs is an online marketplace that connects employers with a national network of seasoned headhunters and is one of only seven HR industry companies to make the Inc. 500 list for 2011 and the only one to focus on improving the way companies find and work more effectively with specialized headhunters. The company’s revenue jumped 881 percent from 2007 to 2010, the three years tracked by the Inc. editorial team.

Joining us today is the CEO of BountyJobs, Michael Hard. I had an opportunity to meet Michael about a little over a year ago. We had a dinner that Susan Burns organized here in New York City and I’ve been trying to get him on the show ever since.

Michael, welcome to TotalPicture Radio.

Michael: Peter, it’s good to see you. Thanks a lot.

Peter: Tell us a little bit about your backstory. Before joining BountyJobs what were you doing?

Michael: Currently I’m CEO at BountyJobs but professionally I spent most of my career with Microsoft so I was at Microsoft as an executive for 17 years. Gosh, what seems like an eternity in this business but mostly my background is selling technology to enterprise customers. I did that all over the world. I’d led Latin America, Southeast Asia. I ran MSN sales in United States for a couple of years but my background is really taking technology and making it happen and primarily Fortune 500 companies.

Peter: What did you find so appealing about BountyJobs?

Michael: That’s probably why they asked me to join. I mean BountyJobs had started before me. It had been founded by two fellows, one of whom was still on our board and then the company decided that they really had a concept that could be very interesting and very effective for Fortune 500 companies and so what I found exciting was the fact that you could take this technology and then you could really fundamentally change how big companies were using technology to apply some discipline to how they use headhunters and there was a lot of room for improvement there and just a whole white space because nobody had ever done it very well in the United States and I saw BountyJobs’s poised to be able to make that happen.

Peter: BountyJobs at the time was looking for a seasoned executive to come in here who had that discipline and that history and experience working with a large Fortune 500 company and other large organizations globally to bring that kind of sensibility into the organization.

Michael: Yeah that’s right because the concept of BountyJobs is very, very simple. I mean it is with the dilithium crystals, if you will, of the starship enterprise of BountyJobs is a marketplace that connects employers with headhunters and both sides of that marketplace find it very intriguing and very powerful. Employers like it because we are the place that they can find specialized headhunters in seconds. Headhunters like it because we are the place where they can find jobs because they have great candidates that just can’t get into the right employers. From the beginning BountyJobs was a great concept. The only issue is that it was taken out from a great concept and then making it something that can be dependable enough, can really save large companies a lot of money, you typically need somebody who’s been in that world and has that experience and that’s what I had at Microsoft.

Peter: Let’s deconstruct this a little bit, Mike, and talk some more about what your pitch is to employers because let’s face it, even since you’ve been with this organization, I mean the whole recruiting paradigm has changed.

Michael: Yes it has and that’s the best way to be able to think about us and if you don’t mind the way I typically start with employers is to tell people what we’re not and then to tell people where we fit in and so if you think about it, when you think about technology and recruiting, there have been a whole host of innovations over the years and all of those innovations have been around how to help companies recruit candidates on their own and there have been some great innovations.

Since the beginning of the internet when somebody first came up with websites, well, then companies used websites to help with their recruiting and then they used job boards to help with their recruiting and then they used LinkedIn and all of them have been great advancements overtime and they’ve helped companies and in house recruiters get very, very good at sourcing and there are a lot of experts out there coaching people on how to become an animal and how does the hunter and how to source candidates on their own and there are a lot of recruiters who do that very, very well.

However, at the same time that they’re doing that they’re all also still turning to headhunters and any good in house recruiter knows that headhunters still need to be a part of your strategy and so they still send jobs to headhunters. Now, when they send jobs to headhunters though, they don’t have a strategy, they don’t know how to track which headhunters are good and which headhunters aren’t. A lot of times they’ll turn to their existing preferred vendor list which has been built up over the years and that preferred vendor list usually if you’re lucky is on a spreadsheet some place in the organization and oftentimes it will have headhunters that are very good but mostly it will have headhunters that came on board because that person was the golfing buddy of a hiring manager back in the day and nobody knows if that person is still around or not and there are variety of other headaches that come from sending jobs to the headhunter channel. It’s basically a black hole so that’s where BountyJobs comes in.

If you are a company and if your regularly send jobs to headhunters and if you want to make it a discipline process where you can track what your spending, if you want to find really good headhunters fast and ultimately if you want to speed the filling of these candidates that you send into headhunters then you turn to BountyJobs and that has been very successful so far for us and we plan for it to even grow more further later on.

Peter: Let’s talk a little bit about the headhunter world out there. There basically two different types of recruiting firms. There are the contingency firms which go out and say alright, give me your job req, if I fill the position you pay me x percentage and then there are the retained executive search firms, the Heidrick & Struggles of the world that go out and say alright, we will do this executive search for you and you will pay us regardless of whether you hire a candidate or not. Can you break that down for us a little bit? Are you working primarily with the contingency recruiters out there? Is that your market?

Michael: We only work with contingent headhunters and the retained headhunters of the world should be very worried about what we’re doing.

Peter: Why is that?

Michael: Because I think that there are a lot of jobs right now that go to retained firms, a lot of the names that you’ve mentioned and they’re a CEO of a Fortune 500 company. You’re not going to recruit that through a contingent headhunter right now but there are a lot of jobs that go to retained firms where the retained firm says listen, in order to be able to have the privilege of working with me you need to give me an exclusive, you’re going to need to pay 33 percent of the fee and I’m going to take a couple of months and then I’m going to bring it to you and they’re sending jobs to those retained firms that they don’t have to anymore.

BountyJobs is filling VP’s of sales. We are filling chief marketing officer. We are filling directors of sales. We are filling the average salary of a job filled on BountyJobs is over $100,000 and we’re filling jobs on BountyJobs that are $250,000, $300,000 and so we are purely working with contingent firms right now but what I’d say is happening is those contingent firms are becoming more and more effective at what they’re doing because of marketplaces like BountyJobs that if I was a retained firm, I’d start to get nervous that contingent is eating away at my marketplace as long as I insist on having exclusive relationships and as long as I insist on my charging fees that I think that the market’s not going to bare.

That’s what we’re doing in the retained space but mostly what BountyJobs is right now we’re entirely contingent. A company will post a job that they’re looking for and they will name the fee that they’re willing to pay. There is no auction system on BountyJobs. You say what job you want, you name the fee and then the contingent headhunters will decide if they’re willing to work on that job for that fee. If they don’t like the fee and if they don’t like that job they’re not going to bid on it but if they do like that job and the fee then they’ll ask to be engaged and because they compete then they are more than likely to fill that job faster than you would normally do. The company only pays if the headhunter fills the job. That’s the definition of pay for performance. That’s the definition of contingent hiring.

Peter: We’ve talked about the advantages of the employers coming into the BountyJobs area. What is the advantage to a boutique contingency headhunter who specializes in engineers who develop C++ programming and that s their specialty and they’ve been doing it for 20 years?

Michael: I love that you put it that way because it’s exactly the kind of people that we have on BountyJobs and that we are constantly looking for to strengthen the marketplace because that specialized headhunter who knows exactly what she wants, she focuses on a very particular industry, she focuses on a very particular candidate, she may even focus on a very particular region. She only does that in the Pacific Northwest. Chances are she’s got a very, very good way to source candidates but that’s only one half of being a good headhunter then you need to source the jobs and usually what will happen with her is she’ll probably have a very strong relationship with a couple of companies that she places the candidates with but she has troubles getting into the door of the other companies that she could place those candidates, other companies that are looking for C++ engineers and she just can’t get in the door because they have this close vendor list.

Now, what headhunters do right now and it’s that kind of situation if you want to get into the door of that firm is you cold call and you cold call again and again and then again and the companies hate cold calls which is to the survey of employers at ERE and they said that the number one thing that they hate about using headhunters is all of the cold calls that they get and you know what the headhunters don’t like cold calling either and so what BountyJobs does is it does away with all of the cold calls. If you’re a headhunter that has that specialty and has those candidates, we get you in the door of the best companies with the best jobs in the United States as long as you’re good and as long as you can present your credentials and your track record in a way so that when the company sees it they’re going to choose you and so the best headhunters on BountyJobs, they will add about 30 to 40 percent to their annual income every year because we are a way for them to augment their business development if that make sense.

Peter: How many headhunters do you have on BountyJobs right now?

Michael: We keep it private and we are very careful about balancing our ecosystem. We’re only in the United States and Canada right now. That may change. Stay tuned. We may go international at some point but within the United States and Canada we have about 10,000 active headhunters in the marketplace. Now, it’s not a homogenous marketplace. Within those 10,000 there will be a certain amount that just specialized on healthcare, there will be a certain amount that just specialized on banking, that specialized on technology, et cetera and even within those industries, in healthcare there can be physician headhunters, there can be nurse headhunters, there can be leadership headhunters, so it’s a variety of things but overall it’s 10,000.

Peter: One of the things I keep hearing out there in the recruiting world is that it is taking a really, really long time today for organizations to pull the trigger and send out that offer letter to the candidate that they’re trying to recruit so what is the average time to fill on BountyJobs? Is it different than what the industry averages which is about six months now for a job that’s well into the six figures?

Michael: Yes. One of the whole reasons that people use BountyJobs is because sometimes they’ll have really hard to fill jobs, it’s been out there for six months, it has been out there for nine months, they really need it and they come to BountyJobs to find the headhunters who make it and fill it faster. It’s hard to say what the average time to fill those on BountyJobs because it really depends on the employer’s process. There are some employers that – we were working with a cruise line a little while ago where they just said our recruiting process is it takes months and months and months because we have to take people through this long thing. Some of the employers just want to turn around in two weeks but the typical experience on BountyJobs is that within three or four days of posting a job, that employer will have a handful of very motivated, very specialized headhunters that really want to work on their job for the fee that they’ve posted. Then within one or two weeks they will have a steady supply of very strong targeted candidates that they’re doing interviews with and then in that situation where the average is it takes six months to fill a job, on BountyJobs the most prevalent fill time is about three months and it varies. I mean we’ve had people that come on board and have said I’m looking for electronic engineers to work on turbine plants in the middle of Kentucky and it takes me nine months to fill these jobs and we fill them in three months but that’s typically what we look for.

Peter: Let’s talk about the fee structure a little bit here. Employer goes in and I’m looking for this candidate, this engineer and I’m willing to pay a fee of X. What is that X and is it related to what the normal agency fee of somewhere between 20 and 30 percent is?

Michael: Yeah that’s good. I’ll answer the question in two ways. The average fee on BountyJobs is about 20 percent and that’s an average and there are some fees that are for director jobs, for very senior physician jobs, for jobs where that headhunter is going to have to put a lot of work in to be able to source that candidate where the typical fee is usually 25 percent and there are jobs where it’s something where I don’t want to hire just one sales physician, I want to hire 12 of these sales physicians so the fee maybe 15 percent. Averages can be misleading but the average fee on BountyJobs is 20 percent and I think that that’s pretty much on par with what’s going on in the rest of the industry, maybe a little bit higher.

But the thing about BountyJobs is BountyJobs makes the marketplace and what I mean by that is the way it works is an employer will when they post a job on our site we have a half a billion dollars of fees that have passed through BountyJobs and so we have a lot of jobs and a lot of data and so when an employer post say I’m looking for a director of sales physicians and I’m wondering what kind of fee is the market rate. BountyJobs is the place that can tell them what the market rate is. You can go up, you can look for other director sales physicians and you can see what other companies are asking for. That’s one way to understand the market. But the way BountyJobs works is you post a fee and if you are looking for a director of sales and you post a fee of 15 percent, no one’s going to want to work on that job. You’re not going to get a lot of really good headhunters that are going to come after you and give you really good candidates and so you’re going to hear crickets and so you very quickly know what the market is then you’re going to up the fee and you’re going to up it to 20 percent and then you’re going to get a lot of really good headhunters so they’re going to want to work on that job and you know what the marketplace is.

BountyJobs, yes, the average fee is 20 percent because we tend to have really good jobs and we tend to have really good headhunters that are standing for what they believe in but we also really make the market and so that’s the way a lot of people use us.

Peter: Let’s talk about that a little bit because you have something out there called the BountyJobs headhunter index and by the way people can go to, they can find this and just put in their name and their email and download this report for free so tell us a little bit about the index and what the purpose of this is.

Michael: The index kind of came about almost as an afterthought for us because primarily what we do is since we have a lot of customers that send all of their contingent search through us and since we have so many jobs that are going out into the marketplace, we gather all of these data and we present it to the employers so most of our Fortune 500 companies use our data to make decisions on measuring the effectiveness of their own headhunting efforts and so they use our data. We have a dashboard that we provide to them for free that gives them an idea of which headhunters are working better than others, which one of your divisions is paying too much in fees, what’s your average time to fill, etcetera and so that’s our bread and butter. That’s the way most people use us and they love us for that.

Then almost as an afterthought we thought, well, in aggregate nobody’s looking at this information and when you have half a billion dollars worth of fees passing through the marketplace we can probably get some insights on this and so every three months we compile all of the data, it’s all across United States and we just report on the trends and the trends are pretty surprising and actually we’re getting ahead of ourselves a little bit because the next index is going to come out in two weeks. It will come out in the middle of October of 2011 and some of the things that we’re finding are that despite the slowdown of the job market and everybody knows that that’s happening, the average fees that headhunters are able to get is going up.

It’s really strange. It’s very counterintuitive but the average fees on BountyJobs are 20 percent and when we’re about to announce that it’s actually going to be above 20 percent, it’s almost going to be about 21percent, taking across the United States with all of these thousands of jobs that are being hired through headhunters, that’s pretty significant and we’re trying to understand why that is the case but I think it’s because I think those people that are good and those headhunters that are working on jobs and then are busy, they’re very busy and they’re able to kind of hold to their guns and demand really good fees and those that aren’t good, I think they got flushed out of the marketplace. I think that there’s a lot less headhunters that are working in the United States right now but that’s what the index is all about and those are some of the insights that we provide and it’s free to employers and headhunters alike.

Peter: Let’s talk a little bit about geographies and industries and types of positions, you’ve been mentioning VP of sales and those types of roles, what type of trends are you seeing out there in the marketplace and what kind of jobs are available out there?

Michael: Well, the types of jobs that we tend to see are the critical jobs. When you think about it it’s logical because…

Peter: Somebody’s paying a fee.

Michael: Somebody’s paying a fee. It’s going to be an important job. So the strength in the marketplace, the marketplace in terms of jobs going to headhunters is still strong all across the board. It’s slowed down a little bit over the last quarter, we’re going to show that in the headhunter index, it is still stronger than it’s ever been and it didn’t go down but it’s kind of plateaued and so that’s going to be an interesting information. Those areas that BountyJobs is particularly strong at are healthcare, banking, engineering, manufacturing, semiconductors, technology, I mean there’s a whole bunch of industries that we just tend to be very strong at and I’d say that the industry, the two places that come to mind where demand is particularly strong are semiconductors. It is incredibly difficult for people to be able to fill jobs. We have about six or seven of the largest semiconductor manufacturers in United States that are using BountyJobs and all of our headhunters on BountyJobs are just burning the midnight oil filling candidates for them. It’s very difficult. The other area is it’s really difficult to find financial consultants and wealth management professionals in the banking sector.

Peter: That’s interesting.

Michael: Yeah, it is interesting. Then the other area is leadership roles in healthcare these days are particularly in demand. Those are just three sectors where we’re seeing a lot of people depending on headhunters. There are headhunters that are able to specialize in that and can supply candidates are doing really well.

Peter: Something else I’ve heard from a lot of recruiters is it’s really hard to get people to move. In other words, as you’ve said, I mean most of the people these headhunters are going after are currently employed. These are not people who are out there looking for jobs and so you’ve got somebody who is currently employed, they may be under water on their mortgage and so are you finding and when you talk to headhunters is this an area of difficulty for them is to get people to move?

Michael: Yeah, it is and I think that’s a symptom of this just strange tale of two cities economy that we have right now where there are certain candidates that are actually doing really well and there are other candidates that aren’t and if you happen to be in an industry where you’ve got the right skills and you’ve got the right seniority and you’re in a hot industry you’re in demand and if you’re not things are a little bit tough and so I am seeing more people insisting on not moving and if they do move and if they’re asking for some really big relocation packages and strangely enough that’s turning out to be a very, very big opportunity for headhunters because…

Peter: Buy my house, right?

Michael: Yeah. Well, yeah. That’s not the one I was thinking of but yeah that would be actually pretty cool. We should have that in there. We were working with a very large manufacturing company right now and what they do is they’ve got an engine division where they literally are building power plants all over the United States and they’re building them in Portland, in Lexington and all over…

Peter: Manufacturing, wow.

Michael: Yes. I know. Who would have thought that we can be doing that again as a country but then what they’re doing is they recruit nationally and so they could find these candidates through their regular headhunters but then you’d have to pay an inordinate amount of money on relo to get this person that they found in San Diego to move to Lexington so what it is it’s an opportunity for those headhunters that specialized in Lexington or specialized in the Midwest or what have you and if those companies can find those headhunters that have a network of local candidates then the companies love them because they don’t have to pay the relo so there’s a new niche that is not new, this niche has been around for awhile, but those headhunters that have the local networks, those are the ones that are really doing well right now because of what you just said.

Peter: You recently landed $5 million in funding from several of your existing investors. Can you tell us about this round and what your plans are for using the capital?

Michael: Sure. It was a big month for because we made, as you said, and we’ve been kind of working in the background, we’ve been working in stealth mode, not a lot of people have heard of us for a very good reason and then suddenly, boom, we made the Inc. 500 list and one of only seven HR companies to do that so suddenly everybody started saying wait a minute, who are these guys and I didn’t even know you could add discipline to headhunting and what’s this all about and then two weeks later we announced that we raised this round of capital. The round of capital is with our existing investors. We’re very, very lucky.

Greylock who is the VC behind LinkedIn and Zipcar and a number of fantastic companies led the round. We’re very lucky to have them and then Accel Partners who everybody knows is behind Facebook and a variety of other companies. Their Accel Partners out of the UK, out of London also participated and took more of the company and then a fantastic company called RPM Ventures which has been with us from the beginning also took the round and the reason that we wanted to be able to get to the money was to expand our efforts now. Obviously, with Accel and their international expertise we’re planning on expanding globally. We’re not ready to announce where we’re going to do that but we probably will at the beginning of the year and then we’re going to invest in our technologies just to make it better for existing customers.

Peter: I think there’s a fantastic opportunity for you to go global , if you will, because so many organizations that have – I mean let’s face it, a lot of Fortune 500 companies have really cut back on their internal recruiting departments, on their HR departments. They don’t have those resources internationally to go out and recruit people that they need and so it seems like there’s a real opportunity for you there.

Michael: I think so too. The typical thing that we see from companies in the United States is – and I’m sorry if I’m repeating myself but – a Fortune 500 company is managing their recruiting budget down to the decimal point in every conceivable area. How effective is my website, which job boards am I optimizing for, how’s my employee referral program, everything is beautifully managed until it comes to when I send a job to search what happens then it’s a black hole. Nobody really knows until they use BountyJobs and so we’re really, really lucky that we’re helping companies bring some sense, some efficiency into that but then of all the multinational companies that we work with in United States and most of our customers are multinational companies, they’re saying you’ve helped me in the United States. The real Wild West is outside of the United States so we got to go there but the way we do it as people can guess is we take these things one step at a time. We don’t tackle something until we’re really ready to do it right and I think at the beginning of 2012 we’ll be really ready to do it right.

Peter: You guys are sort of in a market that you’re not going to find a lot of recruiters. Again, what I’ve heard is it’s a very bifurcated market out there. There’s a lot of entry level jobs and those jobs that have a lot of churn to them retail and those kinds of things that companies will go out and post on job boards and that kind of stuff and then there’s the very high, high end, the CEO jobs, the director level jobs that companies are willing to go out and hire recruiters for but those $100,000, $150,000, $200,000 jobs companies are looking on LinkedIn to fill those things but it seems like you guys have really captured that niche.

Michael: Yes and so I think that what tends to happen is it’s very simple with us. There are a variety of reasons why a company will choose to use headhunters. It could be because you just want to do it for capacity reasons, it could be because you just get desperate and you’re hiring manager says get this thing done right away or it could be a big part of your strategy. It could be that you know that your area of expertise is on wealth management people but when it comes to hiring a payroll specialist you don’t have that skill. For whatever reason you send a lot of jobs out to headhunters and when you do that the hassles of using headhunters are incredible. You have to deal with all of the cold calls. You can’t find the ones that are really good and then really specialized. Once you find them they’re always clamoring for your attention, you have to handle all of the disputes; you have to handle all of the payments. Instead of dealing with all of that, they just use BountyJobs as their channel to send jobs to headhunters and that is our niche and we are enabling them to maintain communication with those headhunters, they have great relationships with those headhunters, they just don’t have all of the headaches and so that tends to be why we’ve been so successful thus far. We just need to keep it going. We need to make sure that we don’t lose sight of what people really like from us and so far so good.

Peter: I’m assuming that your income is derived from taking a percentage of when a job is filled. Is that correct?

Michael: Yes, BountyJobs is free to use and so there are no subscription fees, there’s no cost to enter, there’s no none of that stuff for either the employers or the headhunters. I feel in some sense we sound arrogant when we say this but it’s a private marketplace. You have to be approved before you come in and we need to make sure that if you’re an employer you really are going to communicate with these headhunters because their most precious resource is their time and so we need to approve that you really are going to work with them and on the headhunters we need to make sure that you’re really specialized and you have the candidates but then once you do that the only way we make money is if the headhunter makes the fee, makes the fill and then we take a business development cut. Now, the typical BountyJobs’ cut is 25 percent of the headhunter’s fee. If there is a company that comes to us and they already have a preferred vendor list of people that they really like, usually what they’ll do is they’ll say this preferred vendor list is unmanageable, I want to cut it down, can you guys help me but there are still 15, 20 people that I can’t lose. Well, we’ll take a much lower percentage of the fee for there always companies if they make fills because they have had that existing relationship.

Peter: You’re sort of a canary in the coalmine kind of a company and that you can look out into the rest of this year and next year and look at the kinds of volumes that are coming in and the conversations you’re having with employers. What do you say? Do you think there is going to be somewhat of a recovery? Are there going to be more jobs available next year than there are this year?

Michael: I see two things. One is that, I’ve laughed when I hear this, I look at all of the community forums and I read the blogs and I constantly hear people saying that headhunters are going away because of LinkedIn, because of Twitter, because which I’ve yet to see anybody really do a great job recruiting with Twitter but I’m going to probably generate some angry emails but for all of these technologies people are always predicting the demise of the third party agency. My prediction is no way. The good agencies are here to stay and there are thriving people so just get used to it and they’re going to do really well this year and they’re going to do really well moving forward.

In terms of the job market, those jobs that are their critical hires that we talked about, the directors, the lead ICU nurses, the physicians, the senior Java developers, those people that are the most senior ones, the revenue generating roles, the heads of sales, the directors of sales, the directors of marketing, those are extremely strong through headhunters right now, extremely strong. The number of jobs that have been going to headhunters through there have been very, very healthy. I think that that means that down the line there’s going to be broader hiring to come. I don’t know whether you’re going to see your recovery by the end of 2012, who knows, but I think that the signals are very good.

Peter: Do you see BountyJobs as a disruptor in the recruiting marketplace?

Michael: Yeah I do and again we have a real niche. If you are a candidate and you come to BountyJobs, we can help you. Well, if candidates come to BountyJobs we say we know of a great headhunters who we can send you to and so we are just focused on companies that regularly use headhunters but in that particular niche, there’s been no innovation in that niche on how the two sides work together ever and it’s a huge fragmented market on the headhunter side and you have companies that are just dying to find the right headhunters to supply the candidates wherever they are. I can be that turbine manufacturing company based in New York, I could be hiring in Portland and the person that fills my job could either be in Portland or they could be in Florida. I don’t care. I just want to be able to find them.

BountyJobs is the only way that people can find them, evaluate them based on their track record and then manage them very effectively despite the differences. So I think we’re a disruptor because we are the ones that are taking the hassles out of headhunting and that, hopefully, will transform it and make it better for everybody.

We’ve been speaking with Michael Hard, CEO of BountyJobs. That’s You’ll find this interview in the Inside Recruiting Talent Acquisition Channel of TotalPicture Radio. That’s While there please sign up for our newsletter and remember you can subscribe to our program on iTunes. Just do a keyword search for TotalPicture Radio and join me on Twitter @peterclayton.

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Peter Clayton

About Peter Clayton

Peter Clayton, Producer/Host, is an award-winning producer/director of radio, television, documentary, video, interactive and Web-based media who has created breakthrough media for a wide array of Fortune 100 clients.


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