Gig Tank startup plays matchmaker for talent and jobs
What if finding a job was as easy as finding a date online? You enter your criteria, let the algorithm do the heavy lifting, then check out potential suitors. The cute companies get your application, and the others never know you stuck your tongue out at them. No fuss, no muss, and employment nirvana soon follows.
That’s the idea of Fetch, a Birmingham-based startup participating in Gig Tank this summer.
“The pendulum has swung and talent is getting fed up with LinkedIn, Career Builder, Monster,” according to Fetch co-founder Jason Hutson. “Because when they put their resume out there, it’s either a black hole and they never hear from somebody when they apply for a job, or they get bombarded every day from recruiters saying they have the perfect job for them when they really don’t know who they are.”
Hutson describes the company as a talent-driven hiring platform, “basically eHarmony meets Match.com for employers and talent.”
“Our platform takes out the need for third-party recruiters by sending the matches only to the talent,” says Hutson. “Then they get to read all about the company, all about the job, see who the hiring manager is. They’ve already been matched to the job which means their culture fits, their salary range fits, their location, their skill sets.”
Job seekers can say they’re not interested in the job, and the employer will never know they were looking.
“One of our taglines,” says Hutson, “is ‘You’re nobody until you choose to be somebody.’”
If the job seeker likes the job, a click sends a profile to the hiring manager.
“The hiring manager gets to see all about that talent, and they already know at that point that the talent is interested in the job and the company,” says Hutson. “They’re not clicking through a bunch of resumes where the skills match, but they don’t even know if that person is interested in the job or not.”
The platform opens up a chat between the talent and the company for direct communication or scheduling interviews. After the hiring manager or HR manager reviews the profiles of people who have been vetted by the platform and have said they are interested, interviews can be scheduled and an offer can be made through the platform.
Fetch’s fee structure is also a departure from traditional ways, in which a company would typically pay 20-30 percent of the hire’s annual salary to the recruiter upon hiring, with a 90-day replacement guarantee if the person leaves or is fired. Fetch charges a 17 percent fee paid monthly over a 24-month period. If the person leaves, the company simply stops paying the fee.
“So really our process is completely disruptive,” says Hutson. “Along with the process being different and protecting the talent, we’re offering a payment method that makes it affordable for companies who couldn’t afford recruiting in the first place, so now they can compete for that talent. Even startups can afford recruiting at these rates.”
Hutson and co-founder Shayne Morrow—who has started and sold two staffing companies—started Fetch in February with a soft launch focused on IT and creative professions in Birmingham. The company is already making revenue and has established a presence in several other Alabama cities.
Through Gig Tank, they hope to refine the platform and continue expanding in Chattanooga and other second-tier markets, such as Huntsville, Nashville, Austin and Mobile through brand ambassadors in each city. Then comes adding more vertical markets and expanding nationally.
“When we really narrow down that strategy, I think we’ll be able to pick it up and put it down in cities where we have no connection whatsoever,” says Hutson.
Rich Bailey is a professional writer, editor and (sometimes) PR consultant. He led a project to create Chattanooga’s first civic website in 1995 before even owning a modem. Now he covers Chattanooga technology for The Pulse and blogs about it at CircleChattanooga.com