TalentAuction is a curated marketplace connecting high quality talent with employers in the technology/internet/analytics space. It curates both supply and demand to ensure matchmaking. The product plans to disrupt the premium hiring market, by leveraging the unique advantages of a transparent many-to-many platform.
Key differentiator: Instead of a premium candidate running after companies one by one through inefficient and multiple channels like job-boards, career sites and head-hunters, they create a platform for them to showcase themselves to hundreds of employers (across segments and geographies) at once, and let them make the first move, resulting in better role/compensation for the candidate and that too within a week’s time. For the employers, it’s a platform to source highly curated and active candidates in a short interval of time. They also bring in efficiencies in the process chain be leveraging technology. This TalentAuction model creates an urgency of time, which makes both the stakeholders i.e. the candidate and the employer to act fast, thus impacting the metrics - ‘time to hired’ for the candidate, and ‘time to hire’ for the employer by 5x. Every auction has a weeklong window and the employers have to act in this time window otherwise they lose out on the candidates. This makes them act fast, and rollout interview offers to the candidates that they find interesting. In this process, the candidate ends up getting multiple interview calls in a matter of a week, which typically might take months otherwise. Secondly, the many-to-many nature of the marketplace adds competitive pressure, which gets stakeholders to act fast. So, post auction an employer typically wants to act fast in terms of conducting interviews and rolling out final offer to the desired candidate, in order to not lose out on the candidate to some other employer who also gave out an interview offer to the candidate.
Source of Inspiration: Campus placement is a limited time window many-to-many marketplace, because of which candidate gets to showcase himself to hundreds of employers at once while landing the best job opportunity in the market. This is what led to the birth of TalentAuction, which is basically campus placement but for lateral hires, conducted online, and conducted much more frequently than once a year.
Spotlight Awards to us means a validation of the concept from leaders in the field, which would further help us to scale and drive adoption from other employer segments.
Biggest Challenges & Key Learnings: The two biggest challenges include - fundraising and pivoting (post the failure of our first concept started last year, also in the hiring space). We managed to raise a VC round for TalentAuction within 6 months of inception. The key learning being to focus all efforts on providing value/delight to the customers, and money would follow. Pivoting was a challenge, however what helped us were the deep insights that we had gathered over time by being in close touch with our customers, pertaining to their key problems.
Future of technology in HR: Currently, candidate screening is done manually, by looking at the CVs. Technology will play a major part here; and it will make the screening process more scientific. Currently, it’s a painful process for a high quality candidate to find jobs suited for him.
Message for the HR community: Technology will bring multiple scattered pieces of information together, and enable a much better experience for such a candidate.
TalentAuction is a participant in the Spotlight Awards 2014, which will be held on 22nd August, 2014.