Can you explain to us what a Market Network is?
When we talk about Market Networks, there are two key concepts to understand- the open network, and then the market network, which is essentially a coming together of open networks and marketplaces, as we know them today.
Let's start with an open network. An Open Network is an ecosystem which empowers different individual systems to have interconnectivity. Today, we use many systems in our work and interactions, but unfortunately, most of these systems work in silos, either having very limited or no interoperability with other systems. For example, if two people want to have a video call with each other, both of them need to be on the same application- be it Zoom or Meet or Teams. It is not possible for someone using Teams to have a video call with someone using Meet. Such platforms, therefore, become Closed Systems.
Now consider how you send and receive emails. One can be a user of any email application/service provider- say Outlook, and can still send an email to a person using any other email application/service provider- say Gmail, Yahoo etc. UPI is another example. I can send money from my ICICI account using the PhonePe app to a shopkeeper’s HDFC account by scanning his BharatPe QR code. These are both open networks. They facilitate interoperability amongst one another and bring us closer together.
Market Networks go one level deeper, by bringing together two transacting parties, just like in a marketplace, but via an open network, and establishing the reputation of these transacting parties for greater trust in the system. In an open network, members of the network do not have any credible information about the other members. For example, any seller can request a payment from a buyer via UPI, but the buyer will not know whether the seller he is paying to, say for an online purchase, is trustworthy or not. In the case of a marketplace, the trust is somewhat established by the owner of the marketplace- much like an Amazon or a Zomato operates, but the data is centralised, often leading to monopolistic business practices.
The Market Network addresses both these problems by building a verified reputation for every transacting member. This builds an inherent trust in the market network, meaning that two parties do not need to establish trust in each other to exchange data or transact. That trust is assumed, based on the verified reputation of both parties on the network. This leads to more seamless collaboration. Also, there is no central ownership of data in a market network. Data autonomy is maintained.
How do you see Market Networks revolutionising the Talent landscape?
A market network can unleash innovations across four different dimensions in the talent landscape:
- Best-in-class interoperable applications: As technology and innovations in the HR domain evolved, the initial focus was on driving automation in talent management. With time various applications to automate HR processes matured, but they created a tradeoff. Either we could have interoperable applications- all built by the same provider, or we could use best-in-class applications built by different providers, but compromise on interoperability. Different applications built by different providers didn’t talk to each other. In a market network, this goes away. Innovators do not have to worry about building all the modules themselves, but can focus on creating super-specialised applications for the ecosystem instead. This facilitates the development of interconnected systems with superior work processes and enhanced productivity.
- Ecosystem level collaboration: If you look at the banking ecosystem, banks compete with each other for savings accounts but collaborate with each other for transactions. Banks compete with each other for lending but collaborate to ascertain creditworthiness through credit bureaus. Now coming to the HR domain, companies are competing for talent but there is actually a huge opportunity for collaboration. Collaboration can reduce redundant administrative work like each company doing background verification of a candidate from scratch. They can create ecosystem-level knowledge with initiatives such as sharing compensation information without PII- this can help to create industry-wide salary benchmarking. They can even take initiatives to stop candidate ghosting at an ecosystem level. Talent market networks facilitate industry-level collaboration and bring about unparalleled efficiencies. As most of the systems are currently isolated and closed, system-based information is getting restricted within the system itself. Talent Market Networks hold the potential to release this trapped information by creating interoperability among systems. An ecosystem level of knowledge can be created and the entire industry will get benefitted
- Cross-ecosystem collaboration: Now, this goes a step deeper. If the talent systems are interoperable, that also opens up opportunities for integration with many other sectors. For any insurer or lender or bank, for example, it would be tedious and time-consuming to integrate with hundreds of different HRMS/Payroll providers, but if the entire ecosystem can be connected by a single integration on a talent market network, it is easy for them to provide their services to all the companies and employees in their respective portals /systems with complete data security. Things will become more plug-and-play. A Talent Market Network, therefore, is addressing both the concerns of intra-operability and interoperability between systems inside and outside organisations. With this enhanced connectivity, an organisation is free to choose any service provider without compromising on the intra- operability, along with gaining critical connectivity across the network.
- Empowerment of Professionals: Talent Market Networks speak to many professionals’ concerns directly. First of all, professionals can directly connect amongst themselves and with any organisations in the network. Second, it gives them better access to the job market. Right from finding out the right fitment for a job, to salary benchmarking, self-verification resulting in faster onboarding, and access to referral programs etc, the talent market network offers many possibilities. Thirdly, collaboration with other professionals who have been verified with a reputation rating, to become a part of collaborative projects, becomes possible -empowering the gig economy. Fourth, it empowers professionals to get placed higher in the power equation with service providers (and become liberated customers). They can demand personalised services on the basis of their credentials on the network. The service providers could include- renting and lending services, insurance, banking, travel & hospitality, learning and development, etc. - driving the Intention Economy from the Attention Economy. But most importantly, the talent market network gives professionals greater control over their own data- they can log in with their Repute Identity to interact with other systems, and retain complete control over their personally identifiable information (PII). They choose what they want to share, and with whom.
The Talent Market Network is poised to reshape the talent landscape by making significant strides in all of these four dimensions.
How do you see the advent of blockchain-based talent market networks like Repute being an asset to HR professionals, enabling their companies to be better at managing their talent?
The ecosystem created by Repute's talent market network connects & creates direct interoperability between various stakeholders in the talent ecosystem, like HRMS players, organisations, professionals & several service providers. Currently, Repute's talent market network is helping HR professionals to address critical challenges around talent management. For example, it equips them to improve their offer acceptance to joining ratio, gives them access to market salary trends that allow them to offer the right salary to the right candidate, and helps them conduct instant, accurate, and automated background verification. They can also instantly create employee profiles in their respective systems, thus creating a seamless employee onboarding experience. In addition, it strengthens employee experience by empowering employees to get quick access to various services like - Renting, lending, insurance, banking etc.
There are various applications available in the Repute Talent Market Network which are of great help to the HR fraternity, for example, Repute Insights leverages the voluntary knowledge within the network to provide companies insights into different aspects of the talent landscape. This includes salary benchmarking information based on various parameters like industry, location, skill sets etc. Instead of relying on third-party reports, companies have access to real-time verified information on salary trends within Repute's talent market network. This helps HR professionals make better, timely decisions and extend competent offers.
The talent market network also makes referrals smooth and effective. Today referrals are one the most reliable ways to hire. Repute enables employees to refer candidates to different companies easily. With clear and transparent information on all parties, the network allows companies to choose referrals that match their requirements. The network also creates ownership of referrals, ensuring those who make suitable recommendations are recognised. Good referrals enhance an individual’s reputation, while bad ones lead to a negative impact on their reputation. This helps make referral mechanisms more robust & transparent, and assists companies in finding the right people.
How is Repute's Talent Market Network advantageous to Professionals who are connected to the network?
Repute's talent market network reimagines how professionals interact with organisations and empowers them to be in control of their information. With control over their data, professionals can share their verified information with organisations as per their requirements. Organisations can instantly verify a candidate's credentials, identity, and overall reputation, furthering their trust in the prospective employee. This quick and secure sharing of verified information enhances the trust in their credentials and makes the selection process & joining a new company a smooth journey.
Our talent market network also provides employees with a clear understanding of the company, their offerings, and past performance. Individuals who are part of the talent market network have access to critical market insights like salary benchmarking, market trends on skills demand etc., all based on verified information. As a result, individuals can better comprehend the changes in the talent landscape.
The network's ability to democratise information across the ecosystem means candidates can better choose their next job and craft a career path that aligns with their aspirations. In addition, the network helps employees create a picture of their entire work life, ensuring candidates do not begin from scratch when they join a new place.
Additionally, the network allows employees to connect with service providers like financial institutions, rentals, insurance service providers etc., to seek customised solutions and products. Individual professionals can share their verified credentials instantly with the service providers they want and get personalised offers, furthering a seamless experience.
How does Repute's talent market network ensure that data shared across its networks remain secure for employers and employees?
It is important to remember that sharing data across the network does not mean there is a public access folder for this information. Unlike modern-day Marketplaces that are acting as 'trust brokers' like an Ola or an Uber and become the central authority that owns all the data, the talent market network is decentralised and relies on different parties to willingly share information across one or more participants. The way the talent market network operates is more akin to the banking ecosystem, where banks connect and work through the UPI or Visa networks without compromising the integrity of their customer's data.
We couldn't create networks like this earlier because we didn't have the right tech. Fortunately, with Web 3.0, we can create open ecosystems that allow for data integrity and security. Web 3.0 is a network protocol that will enable businesses to collaborate while still preserving the confidentiality and integrity of data. Data isn't stored on the network and is only shared when consented.
What is the future of the larger talent management landscape that you envision talent market networks like Repute creating?
The trust-free collaboration among companies, employees, third-party service providers and HRMS companies, brought about by the talent market network, is revolutionising talent management. HR managers are assured of agility and accuracy in talent hiring and management. At the same time, employees are also empowered to be in control of information. Not just that, the talent market network uses blockchain technology and principles of Web 3.0 to enable intra-system connectivity in organisations to avoid siloed work. Various applications solving different business problems can talk to each other via the network. It also provides the infrastructure to access a whole gamut of services from the talent ecosystem, such as full-time talent, freelancers, recruiters, interviewers, BGV agencies, etc. based on the reputation they have built in the network. The possibilities in a talent market network are endless and many more new use cases are getting added regularly.
An ever-growing number of players, i.e., employers, employees, and third-party service providers, connecting with the network will drive the movement from systems to an ecosystem & all the stakeholders will benefit accordingly. Acquiring the right talent will become much easier for companies. They will also be more agile in responding to changing talent needs, and their ability to hire the right person quickly also rises.
The talent market network will help to address more new use cases by adding more applications & onboarding different participants for newer segments. As the network grows, Insights will get refined further & the connectivity strength will be higher allowing for better & faster decision-making. We are also onboarding more service providers onto the network to help organisations and employees gain meaningful access to the services they require. For example, we are already enabling employees to apply for a wide range of financial solutions. Moving ahead, a much broader range of workplace solutions will be available for both organisations and working professionals.
In addition to reviewing certificates and degrees, the network will enable candidates to highlight other strengths that might not appear on a traditional resume.
As the talent market network grows, we hope to see the entire talent acquisition and management (TAM) landscape benefit. Everyone from employers and recruiters to full-time candidates and gig workers, to HRMS platforms, BGV providers, Earned Wage Access Providers, Insurance Companies, etc. will be in a position of power with access to verified, real-time data and the ability to collaborate in a trust-free environment. This will lead to the development of better products and services, faster and more accurate delivery of individual and organisational goals, and the growth of the talent industry as a whole.