5 Reasons Why I love HR Technology v2.0
When I left BountyJobs in October 2014 as a 7-year vet in the recruiting and HCM technology space, I thought I would never be back. I was convinced I had learned everything the industry had to offer. I would grow my career in another industry.
After leaving, I went to tackle a new and exciting opportunity. I had the fortune to work with Jay Walker, the founder of Priceline on an amazing project designed to disrupt the way that companies innovate. Despite a fantastic professional experience, I found myself drawn back to my HCM tech stomping grounds. In September 2015, I joined WayUp, the largest marketplace for college students to find jobs, as their Head of Sales. This year I began another phase of my career, but one thing was clear as I looked for my newest position this year: I had cemented an expertise and passion in the industry that I wouldn’t compromise. So when I had a chance to join HiredScore this May, as the Head of Sales, I didn’t look back:
So, why might you ask to I care so much about the HR Technology industry? Here are the 5 biggest reasons:
- Innovation: There is real metamorphosis happening in the human resources space. The amount of capital at the hands of large market leaders and startup disrupters has exploded over the last couple of years. The increase year over year in HCM technology companies is well documented and rivals many major tech categories. We see new products that don’t just provide functionality, but now offer dynamic user interfaces and experience with rich product features and integrations. Products that integrate and partner successfully in this ecosystem are ruling the day! You need only walk the floors of the HR Tech conference each year to witness the amount of growth and new technology in this category. By the way, it’s worth mentioning that a TON of this innovation is coming from an unexpected location: New York City! The critical mass of hot new HR tech in New York is opening some eyes with companies like Namely, The Muse, Greenhouse, WayUp, Vettery, HiredScore, JustWorks, Andela, Pymetrics, Take the Interview, and many more!
- Respect: At the same time, perhaps in a symbiotic relationship with the growth of the market, there is a real acknowledgment by senior leadership in the importance of Human Capital. CEOs are not just saying people are a priority because it sounds good: they realize the critical importance of acquiring, retaining, and engaging their workforce. For years, I presented solutions that had key value propositions to reduce cost, drive talent, and improve organizational efficiency. The clear value was dismissed because human capital professionals weren’t empowered to make changes. This has changed dramatically. There are plenty of companies that still need to catch up, but the leading indicators are promising.
- The “People” people: I love my customers. There are smart and dynamic leaders in this space that are now being empowered with powerful technology, backed by executive support, and with real budgets to make an impact. I recently attended a senior leadership conference where the Executive Chairman of a private global company called out his CHRO as one of his most valuable executives and business assets. This executive support is ushering in new paradigms and views on human capital. If you haven’t worked in the industry, you will find that it is filled with smart, cross-functional, well-educated individuals who are motivated to make a difference, and might finally have the power and budget to do it.
In my experience, it is also a wonderfully collaborative community with a willingness to share best practices and help people across industries and categories. I’ve also noticed a propensity amongst the category to try “new things”. This open-minded approach is partially due to how quickly the industry has evolved and the cautionary tale of over-reliance any one tool or source. Most companies are willing to take a “demo” and see what news tools are at their disposal to tackle this profound people puzzle.
- Opportunity: This industry is changing quickly. Large players are buying companies to enhance their offerings. New startups are popping up daily with healthy funding. What’s more, with Baby Boomers retiring, the talent gap is looming, and the growth of the millennial generation has companies everywhere trying to redefine themselves. Not to mention, figure millennials out! The holistic view of a company is blurring — from its products to its employees, culture, and its ideals are blurring. The emphasis on employment branding and candidate experience is higher than ever. You need only to walk into a major retailer who takes 1M applications a year and hires 10% of those people to understand the impact of a bad interview experience. The emergence of AI and Machine learning is incredibly intriguing when you think of the vast data sitting in most applicant tracking systems, CRMs, and performance management systems. Unlocking the power of data is the exact challenge I am working on now at HiredScore. The potential impact on companies is so far ranging! The bottom line is that big things are afoot in the human capital space: I want a seat way up in the front row!
- Making a Difference: Seems so cliche, but I can’t deny it. Making an impact can often get lost in many roles and industries, but here the opportunity is alive and well. With the implications of data science and AI on the Human Capital industry, we can vividly see the impact of recruiting, retention, and engagement on organizations. The data is rich and compelling. It reveals the story of how companies suffer when they don’t understand the people impact of an organization. Combine that with the visibility provided by social networks, and we can see the impact and growth of people as they advance their careers. It is rewarding to be at the center of technology that can not only help companies solve key people challenges but also give people the opportunities to grow professionally.
With the coalescence of market timing, executive awareness, dynamic people, disruptive forces, and purpose, I remain compelled to be part of such an amazing industry. Working at companies like BountyJobs, WayUp, and now HiredScore has given me a chance to be part of such a special time. Having now spent nearly 10 years in the industry I can confidently say, if you haven’t considered a career in, investing in, or learning about the HR Technology industry I highly recommend it!