RecTech Bad Ass - Adam Godson

When you want to talk recruitment tech you need to call upon one of the very few BAD ASS RPO tech overloads around the globe. So that's exactly what Chad & Cheese did...

Adam Godson is High Commander of Tech Solutions at Cielo - that's what I call him - where they have 150,000 hires per year in 27 applicant tracking systems and that doesn't even touch the cool ass tech outside of the ATS.

Don't miss the insights and tomfoolery... Sponsored by - when you or your clients need ONLY QUALIFIED CANDIDATES call the crew at Uncommon.


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Chad: Dude, I just got off the phone with Teg.

Joel: Teg, Teg ... Oh, yeah, over at Uncommon.

Chad: Dude, do you know another Teg? Anyway, Uncommon just opened up their resume database of 100 million candidates to recruiters for free.

Joel: Whoa. Wait, what?

Chad: Yeah, Uncommon's releasing their new database-matching tech in beta before the end of the year, and they want to show it off to recruiters for free.

Joel: All right, let me get this straight. Recruiters can sign up for Uncommon's beta, post their jobs into the system, the system then matches only qualified candidates from Uncommon's database of 100 million candidates, and this is all for free?

Chad: I know, dude!

Joel: Dude, Uncommon has some of the best matching tech in the industry. That'll be like cheating for recruiters.

Chad: I know. Uncommon uses the qualifications in the job description to automatically source, screen, and deliver candidates that meet all requirements. It's pretty freaking dope.

Joel: Did you just say "dope"?

Chad: Here's how you register: go to, click on the "Join Beta" button, and for all you Chad & Cheese listeners, if you use the promo code ChadCheese, you will get extended by a full week.

Joel: I'm sorry, did you really say "dope"?

Chad: Dude, shut up. Tell your recruiter buddies, join beta,

ChadCheese. It's dope.

Announcer: Hide your kids, lock the doors. You're listening to HR's most dangerous podcast. Chad Sowash and Joel Cheesman are here to punch the recruiting industry right where it hurts, complete with breaking news, brash opinion, and loads of snark. Buckle up, boys and girls. It's time for the Chad & Cheese Podcast.

Joel: Boom.

Chad: Welcome to the Chad & Cheese Podcast. This is Chad Sowash.

Joel: The way-too-early edition.

Chad: Yeah. And that's Joel Cheesman, by the way. Just so that you know, today, once again, Chad & Cheese are committed to bringing you the most high-quality guests on our show. Well, maybe not today.

Joel: Ouch.

Chad: So today we have Adam Godson, who is the high commander of recruitment technology at Cielo. Did I get that title right, Adam? High commander?

Adam: High commander, I'll take it. I'll take it. Why not?

Joel: The most biblical name on the show, to date.

Chad: Adam Godson, yeah.

Adam: Very much so.

Joel: Eve Godson is on next week.

Adam: Yeah, she was unavailable today.

Joel: That's right.

Chad: It's kind of like Odinson. Is that what you're thinking? A little Marvel action? Everybody out there, and just for Joel as well, Adam already speaks fast as it is, okay? He's a quick talker. And then he speaks faster when he gets excited. So when he talks about recruitment technology, he speaks very fast, so I suggest that everybody listening to this podcast listen at half speed so that you can understand.

Adam: That's right, back it off. Back it off just a little bit.

Joel: And if you're in a pot-legal state, go ahead and smoke up while you do that.

Chad: Which Wisconsin is not, and that's where Adam's at.

Adam: That's true.

Chad: So Adam, give us a little bit of background about you, Cielo, what the hell is a Cielo. Give us a little bit.

Adam: Yeah, so I lead technology globally at Cielo. Cielo does recruitment process outsourcing, so we hire some or all of a company's hires, always under their brand. We have a "we become you" promise, so people apply to one of our partner companies, they think they're talking to a recruiter that works for them, they're actually talking to a recruiter that works for us. So we drive process and outcomes through outsourced hiring.

Adam: My role is the best role in the company, and I work on technology systems. We've got a few technology systems that we bring to help recruitment. We typically work with our clients' ATS systems, so think of that what you will, but we oftentimes inherit those. We use 27 different applicant tracking systems in our client ecosystem, some of them better than others.

Joel: So like 1% of them.

Adam: Right, exactly. That actually is fairly close. And then we try to wrap the data all together in analytics platforms to make good stories of what's actually happening for talent acquisition and what those outcomes are. But the cool part is we get to try lots of stuff. We know a lot of the recruiting technology in the market, and we're always experiencing, trying, seeing what works, seeing what doesn't work in being able to stay ahead of the game. So that's, I think, where we add some value.

Chad: So TA ... oh, talent acquisition always likes to bitch about their applicant tracking system. So at this point, what I'm hearing is, "Shut the fuck up. We have too many."

Joel: Yeah.

Chad: All these applicant tracking systems. But seriously, how many clients does Cielo have? You guys are global, so how many clients do you deal with? And I mean, these are applicant tracking systems that are not just US-based, right?

Adam: Yeah, of course. We've got over 160 clients around the world. We make over 150,000 hires a year. We've got 10 offices around the world in every region of the world. Yeah, over the years, it's gotten much more complex. I've been here for seven years. We were a 200-person, little RPO when I started, focused only in North America. We've been able to grow to over 200,000 employees around the globe and take on really one of the only handful of players in the RPO space that could really handle global complex deals. And that's what makes it a ton of fun, man. It really is, just being able to solve really meaty complex problems you've really got to wrap your head around and think about and do it with tech.

Joel: So talk about the global, I guess, variety that you see, what trends are you seeing, globally, for those of us in America that don't necessarily see the world on a regular basis?

Adam: I was in Argentina a couple of weeks ago, for example. The economy's really rough in Argentina right now, so I think it's, you know, good times and big parties in North America and in a lot of Europe, but there are certain parts of the world that it's not right now. So I think understanding not only the economic situation of those countries but also their maturity when it comes to talent acquisition. The story we hear over and over and over again in Latin America and Asia Pacific is, "There's a global ATS implemented for our company, but nobody really uses it. And there are processes that corporate follows, but here it's different in our region. Nobody uses those systems." And some of that is the systems' fault where they're not really set up to handle those environments well.

Adam: But a lot of it also is just business process maturity. In many ways, those regions are the Wild West, and it's the global companies that are coming first to introduce more process and introduce more systems to do that. So that's much of what we do in our programs, is get more global consistency. Because companies want to globalize, they want to be able to see where their talent is around the world. I mean, mobility of talent is incredible today, but it doesn't work if we're not all working in some of the same systems and have the right business process.

Chad: And you can't find them here, right? So if you can't find them here in the US, and there are individuals that are obviously abroad, and you can work virtually, then yeah, there's an opportunity to do something like that. Now, you talk about process, and when we talk about technology, I don't believe that we talk about process enough, but I would believe ... and tell me if I'm wrong ... that process has a lot to do with the technologies that you and Cielo actually pick to integrate into your clients' systems or their "stack."

Adam: Yeah, absolutely, absolutely. It's a ton about process. I actually think that process is where ... I mean, the process is the name of RPO, right? Process outsourcing ... is a big reason why we're able to be somewhat successful in making technology work for clients, because we always have ... our vantage point is always the end outcome in mind. Like, we don't get paid for making people feel good, we don't get paid for getting 30% more clicks. We get paid for hires and outcomes, right? And that always has to be our focus, so we can't use technology that is super cool and we like the salesperson, but does it work? That's not our game. Everything has to work, and we have to be able to get outcomes from it.