We are thrilled to publicly announce SignalFire’s talent platform!

Teach to fish. Provide the bait. Spear the occasional tuna and chart paths to new, unchartered waters.

We’ve built one of the most comprehensive approaches to Talent that the Venture Capital community has ever seen, and for those that have been privy to what’s going on underneath the hood, the proof is in the pudding — and we’re just getting started :)

“We’ve done multiple rounds with SignalFire. They have been beyond phenomenal for us, have driven not only strategy and fundraising to the next level, their direct support with CTO, Data Science, Exec search, research, and fundraising support has been off the chart. Frankly we are less than a year and half since commercial launch and we are likely a full year ahead of schedule in every metric from our partnership with them.” -portfolio CEO

Talent is one of the most important areas that a VC can add value to a portfolio company. Our goal at SignalFire is to offer the most comprehensive Talent offering in the entire industry, encompassing every key tenet to building and scaling a company on the People side. We refer to this as our Talent Platform, a 360-degree solution for strategic and tactical value-add to every company in our portfolio, at scale. This solution is comprised of:

  • Recruitment process optimization
  • Leadership development & mentorship
  • Executive recruiting
  • Technical recruiting
  • Talent research
  • Advisor network
  • Communities
  • Beacon Talent sourcing tool

Recruitment Process Optimization

One of the most important components to building a business is recruiting and managing a superior team. For first-time founders, we start by offering a program led by Crystal Guererro who partners with founding teams to help them establish a world-class recruitment processes. We refer to this as a “recruiting engine” — systems implementation, brand building, role definition, recruitment process, sourcing, interview training, and compensation benchmarking to enable teams to identify, attract, engage, close and onboard top talent quickly and effectively. In these insanely competitive talent markets, this program helps our companies demonstrate that they know what they’re doing, and are able to move quickly. Crystal has been partnering with founders to build programs like this for nearly a decade — an invaluable resource to help set companies up for success in attracting and retaining top talent.

Leadership Development & Mentorship

Once you’ve got the basics down, a critical component to growing the company is the enablement and training of Leaders. For experienced founders and those that are beginning to scale beyond seed, we’ve built up a program led by Tawni Cranz, Chief People Officer at Waymo and former Chief Talent Officer at Netflix. She supports our founders as they experience varied scaling roadblocks — unlocking their full potential as leaders and helping them to think through what makes them, them, and how to translate that into the ethos of an organization’s culture, espoused by everyone in the company and championed by the company’s leaders. This program also helps founders think through proven methods for training from within and providing the leaders on one’s team the resources to learn and grow with the company — turbocharging scale.

Recruiting

On the direct recruitment side, we partner with portfolio companies to fill key gaps on their teams. We do this through two dedicated programs:

Executive recruiting & strategic engagements (leadership, board members, advisors, research)

Technical recruiting — hard to fill engineering and product assignments with a focus on AI

In these programs, we help our portfolio by sourcing candidates directly and playing a highly active role in bringing them through to close. Dave Carpe and I partner with founders to conduct deep market research to help better increase the odds of our founders landing the right candidates at the right time. Dave previously led talent research for the office of the CTO at Microsoft and has been an executive recruiter for over 15 years.

Advisor Network

On the Advisory side, Yujin Chung spearheads our Network, connecting the portfolio to the right expert guidance when they need it. Think of this as surgery. If you’re having your brain operated on, you don’t want a general practitioner or a knee surgeon operating on your brain; and when doing so, you want the best of the best. We’ve amassed a team of Advisors who are current, best-in-class operators in a wide variety of vertical fields (Growth, Sales, Finance, Infra, M&A, etc.) to provide 1:1 guided sessions to help the portfolio tackle immediate and long-term strategic business challenges. Yujin previously built a similar capability at Andreessen Horowitz and is one of the most connected people in Silicon Valley.

Communities

We complement all of these programs with a Communities effort run by Michael Martin, whose goal is to connect the brightest minds in the tech sector with the information they want, the guidance they need, and the introductions to anyone they’re qualified to meet — in or out of our portfolio. Michael joined us from XPRIZE where he led the development of their global AI Community. Given the expertise at our firm, we place a particular emphasis on building a leading community among the field of Artificial Intelligence, and we’re partnering with the industry’s top thought leaders to create an offering that’s truly unique and valuable to all members. Think of this as a talent agency — our Communities program is a place to connect, debate, inform, discover and guide.

Beacon Talent

Lastly, we think of Talent as a system, a product, and scaling requires software. In the spirit of building a product alongside the founders we partner so closely with, we bring you a killer application called Beacon Talent. Beacon Talent is an AI-based system for identifying and sourcing top talent, providing deep intelligence on prospects automatically and in your native workflow. In this effort, we boil the ocean of publicly available data and distill this down to simplified insights, which can be connected seamlessly to in-house applicant tracking systems. This product directly addresses one of the biggest friction points in recruiting — research, which typically consumes HALF of the time it takes to conduct a search. Our goal is to reduce this time-intense effort dramatically while expanding the scope, quality and diversity of candidates. A massive advantage for our portfolio. The program has already helped us place dozens of people in the portfolio thus far in 2018! Our goal is to grow Beacon Talent to become one of the most impactful tools in the entire venture capital talent ecosystem.

“The SignalFire team have been the most instrumental partner in our whole network. True on day one (literally) and true today….The firm will break down concrete walls for you. We have a large number of institutional relationships with top tier VCs across the valley and they hold first place.” — portfolio CEO

To learn more, please sign up to join our Community, or ping me directly — we’d love to hear from you!!

-Mike