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Talkin' Talent Pipelines with Candidate.ID's Adam Gordon

While in Lisbon at TAtech this month, the boys sat down with Firing Squad alum Adam Gordon of Candidate.ID to chat candidate funnels and Eurotrash.

Enjoy this Nexxt Exclusive.


Chad: We ran into kilt wearing, friend of the show, Adam Gordon from Candidate.ID at TAtech Europe in Portugal. Take a listen, after a quick word from our sponsor.

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Announcer: Hide your kids, look the doors. You're listening to HRs 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 and Cheese Podcast.

Adam: From 18-21, my daily rate was 10 grand.

Joel: And we won't ask what services came with that 10 grand.

Chad: Yeah, I don't think it's appropriate to.

Joel: And when have we ever been appropriate on this show?

Chad: They're never listed...

Joel: People don't tune into us for the appropriateness of our commentary.

Adam: I reserve the right to be forgotten.

Chad: So you know how we started the show yesterday? Or I should say, Joel started the show yesterday, came on to the stage and said, "Hey, what's up Euro trash?" That's how it started.

Adam: Euro trash...

Joel: You weren't there were you?

Adam: No.

Joel: Yeah.

Adam: Euro trash...

Chad: Yes, yeah. That's how we started.

Joel: And I have the air horn too, which was fun.

Chad: We all know who bad cop was starting that one out.

Adam: That's hilarious.

Chad: I didn't even get a chance.

Joel: It was the last one of the day, everyone was looking pretty sleepy, so you know. Yeah.

Adam: Half the people here are American.

Chad: That's a very good point, wait are you...

Chad: Oh my god.

Joel: Euro trash.

Chad: Yeah. So give us an intro...

Joel: But someone came up after and said, "Man you stole my thunder."

Joel: You made 'em immune to cussing. I was gonna shock 'em into listening to me, but you ruined it for me.

Chad: Not gonna happen.

Chad: So today we are with Adam...

Joel: "Firing squad" alum.

Chad: Alum.

Joel: ...and survivor Adam Gordon.

Chad: That's right.

Joel: Just another of the many success stories of those startups brave enough to face the firing squad.

Joel: Adam how are you?

Adam: Yeah fine, I'm still slightly bitter about the golf clap you gave me though Joel.

Joel: What was Chad's?

Adam: He gave me a big round of applause.

Joel: It's amazing how well the participants remember what we say and how we rate them at the end.

Chad: Because it all counts.

Joel: And many of them carry grudges and scars and bitterness unfortunately. The funny thing, I have no idea what I remember, I don't remember what I, but you clearly will take it to your grave and curse my name as you're lowered into the earth. But look at you now?

Chad: He's a good looking man in a kilt!

Joel: You're getting money from either Russians or Germans, we can't quite...

Chad: Joel can't pin that down.

Joel: The paper trail is a little bit fuzzy.

Chad: We've heard Germans, zie Germans.

Joel: So clear it up for us right now, who gave you money, how much was it, for what percentage, like what are the deets on this?

Chad: What are you gonna do? Yeah.

Adam: We received some investment from recruitment technology, a small recruitment technology fund driven by a guy called Andy Burika, in Germany. He has investments in 19 recruitment tech businesses, we're the only ones that don't speak German.

Joel: Zer gut.

Adam: As I understand. He gave us a high six figure investment and acquired 10% of our business.

Chad: High six figure.

Adam: Yeah.

Joel: A semi-exact answer.

Chad: Yeah.

Joel: At least the percentage was good. We don't usually get percentages of the business. Were you wearing a kilt during the negotiations?

Adam: Uh, no...

Joel: Did you open the kimono so-to-speak?

Adam: In fact, yes is the answer. So when I first met him at UNLEASH in Amsterdam I was in my kilt.

Joel: Uh-huh.

Adam: It was the day that, I'd just come off stage after winning the Recruitment Tech Startup stream at UNLEASH...

Chad: Uh-huh.

Adam: At the competition. And subsequently we were in Berlin, talking the secret HR society's gathering one evening.

Chad: Wait can you talk about that? The actual secret HR society?

Adam: Well the secret...

Joel: The first rule is don't talk about the secret.

Adam: About the secret? Yeah. Scott and I were in our kilts, we saw him, we saw him that day, we weren't in our kilts when we were in his office, but we were in our kilts again by the time we saw him later in the day at the event.

Chad: Yeah.

Adam: The kilt works. Outside of...

Chad: The kilt does work.

Adam: Outside of the UK the kilt attracts people.

Joel: Good tip, good tip. But I'm assuming you have to actually be Scottish to pull it off.

Adam: Absolutely not.

Joel: No?

Adam: No, of course not.

Chad: What are you talking about, we're gonna be in kilts later today?

Joel: Yeah but we won't be able to pull it off. And we definitely won't be

able to raise money.

Chad: I'm pulling that bitch off, yes.

Adam: I suspect you'll find...

Joel: Well raise some money while you're at it.

Chad: I do!

Adam: I suspect you'll find the amount of people coming over to talk to you is going to increase in your kilts.

Chad: Oh yeah?

Joel: And I'm assuming the number one question is...?

Adam: What material is the kilt made of?

Joel: Would not have been my guess for first question or most asked question.

Adam: So the answer is yes I am afraid I always wear pants under my kilt.

Joel: Oh okay. Pants or an underwear thing? Like it'd be...

Adam: Oh yeah, I mean it's not a jock strap.

Joel: You're not wearing pants with the kilt right now...

Chad: It's not a jock strap...

Adam: No, they're kinda like, they're kinda like tight boxers.

Joel: No G-string?

Chad: Oh okay.

Joel: So the boxer brief...

Adam: Yep.

Joel: That's what we're rocking.

Adam: Yep.

Joel: I can get behind that.

Chad: I'm going with leopard skins.

Joel: Boxer briefs or bikinis?

Adam: Most people don't though.

Chad: Oh bikinis.

Joel: Bikinis.

Chad: Yeah yeah.

Adam: Most Scots don't though.

Chad: Yeah!

Adam: Yeah I mean like most of my friends don't. You go away and watch a football match or a rugby match or something...

Chad: Yeah.

Adam: In a different country and...

Joel: And they're going commando.

Adam: Yeah they all are, yeah.

Chad: So back to the topic at hand, what are you gonna do with this money? You've got this amount of money, what are you gonna do...?

Joel: Aside from sponsoring the show, what will you be doing with...?

Adam: We've hired our first sales team, so we're taking that seriously now. We've got some processes in place and we've got some real rigor around how we're going to market. That's the first thing. Second thing is we have accelerated product development so we're creating a recruitment CRM which will be free to anybody that wants to use it as of July.

Adam: That's basically, just, putting our money where our mouth is and showing how much we value recruitment CRM. Zero pounds and zero dollars.

Chad: So the CRM sucks, along with the ATS, is that what you're saying? Is that what we're hearing?

Adam: No I'm not saying anything about ATS...

Chad: Oh okay.

Adam: I'm just saying that recruitment CRM is a category of software that's

been created to solve a problem that it does not solve.

Chad: Uh huh. What is that problem? What's the category problem?

Adam: Being able to keep in contact really effectively with all of your


Chad: Okay.

Adam: Being able to nurture them and being able to tell recruiters which candidates they should pick up the phone to when the job gets signed off. CRM doesn't do any of those. Most people think that they need it, and that's fine, that's why we built it and we'll give it away for free, if people really want it. That's fine. And it will be a decent CRM, it will be a decent recruitment CRM, by the way it will be.

Adam: But what they really need is the talent pipeline software, the talent pipeline automation and that's the bit that we charge for.

Chad: I remember when Avature first came out, years ago right, and everybody was, the problem was engagement and the problem was also that candidates were not finishing the application process and in the ATS there really wasn't much you could do with that info at least, that data at least. So they wanted this other layer which actually Jobs to Web got into as well, before they were sold to Success Factors and it was all about business card information. That was all in a separate system from your ATS so that there wasn't any quote-on-quote 'compliance' around it and it was in an advertising system not your system of record.

Chad: So it never really evolved past that, is what I'm hearing from you.

Adam: Well I mean that's the truth, there's so many different sources of candidate information today...

Chad: Uh huh.

Adam: That you don't need to store in a CRM and you still got it in just as fast time...

Chad: Uh huh.

Adam: All these sourcing tools can tell you somebody's email address, and tell you their phone number, so to be honest you're more compliant if you just leave it on the web and just access it straight from the web. But if people want it, then fine, that's great we'll give it to them. We get it all the time, we get people saying to us, "Your product looks amazing, but really we need a CRM first."

Adam: So that's why we've created it because we'll just go, "Fine, have this one for free."

Joel: So you talked about adding new features and hiring talent to do that, so what, what are some of the features of things we'll be talking about a year now that you guys have created?

Adam: We'll be a long way down the road with a machine learning program which is all about self-building campaigns. Organizations today have to put the content into Candidate.ID to make it work and they have to connect the content to each other, you know one bit to another bit, and they need to add a points algorithm to the beginning, a scoring model. Candidate.ID in years’ time is going to be able to self-build campaigns. For example, the recruiter will get an email to say, "Next week's campaign to nurture yourself for engineers is live, or is ready to go live, they'll just click...

Adam: No they'll click on a link...

Chad: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Adam: They'll get to see what the email copy looks like, text message copy, social media posts...

Chad: QA/QC

Adam: Everything and then, yeah, absolutely. And then all they'll have to do is press distribute and it'll go. Today they might spend 2 hours creating a really good

campaign, in a year's time they'll be able to do one in 15 minutes.

Joel: And for the recruiters out there who don't want to become marketers, this is great news for them.

Adam: To be honest it means that Candidate.ID is actually accessible to recruiters 'cause today the only people really running it are sourcing teams and recruitment marketing teams. So recruiters can use it to access information about candidates, but you would never have somebody that's filling jobs creating campaigns. In a year's time they'll be able to, it'll be really easy.

Chad: But recruiters aren't even going into their applicant tracking system looking for data, they feel like they always have to go out to job boards, or LinkedIn, or some shit like that, right? So what makes you think that they're gonna use this, I mean because they're in a routine, right? "Well we're paying for this, we gotta go out and use it", event though the data's probably already in one of their systems as it is. How are you gonna get them to stop the stupid shit and start using data that they've already paid for?

Adam: So that's, that...

Joel: I think that's your next catch phrase, by the way, stop doing stupid

shit, (Candidate ID)

Adam: We'll think...

Joel: Or ID.

Adam: We'll think about it yeah.

Adam: That's the precise reason we created Candidate.ID because Pfizer told me that 70% of the people they were hiring from LinkedIn had already been on Taleo at the point that they reengaged with them.

Chad: They bought ‘em already right?

Joel: Yeah.

Adam: Yep exactly.

Chad: How many times, and you would know this better than we would, how many times have they bought those candidates over and over and over, before they actually go back into their ATS and use them if they are at all.

Adam: Well it's a really good question actually, I don't know how many times they have, but it's at least two for 70% of them...

Chad: Oh yeah.

Adam: So it could well be three, four, five times...

Chad: Yeah!

Adam: So here's the big thing they need to do, they need to keep in contact with people throughout the, from the start of their career right to the end of their career, they need to nurture those people, long term relationships, giving them useful, relevant content...

Chad: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Adam: And having an ongoing relationship. And not an ephemeral relationship, which is, we might talk to them once every three years or something like that. How we're gonna get recruiters using their own database within Candidate.ID, where they don't do it from Taleo or Workday or anything else...

Chad: Uh huh.

Adam: Is because they can easily see who's hot today. So you surf them with hot leads so that they can eliminate cold contact, and they can therefore spend more time filing jobs and less time reaching out to people who never respond. That's a massive, massive saving. And in fact today we can show that Specsavers, which is Europe's biggest optometry retailer...

Chad: Uh huh.

Adam: The recruiters in that business are filling 50% more jobs per person, because they practically eliminated cold contact with candidates.

Chad: Which means you need less recruiters.

Adam: Well, either you need less recruiters, or you are providing, maybe more superior candidate experience, a higher touchpoint, more internal business partnering, and doing more qualitative things. Of course if cost's your issue, than yes, less recruiters.

Joel: You are one of the contestants on today's death match. You're going up against a robot, a chat bot...

Chad: And a sourcing algorithm.

Joel: Algorithm. What's your strategy to win today's contest?

Adam: I'm gonna put the human back into recruitment.

Chad: Cause you'll be the only human.

Joel: I'm bringing the human back to human resources.

Chad: Now wait a minute, wait a minute, wait a minute, you're just talking about an automated process that will build marketing campaigns, and you'll be able to cut the recruiters in half...[crosstalk 00:14:25]

Joel: Exactly. So if you just push a button and it does everything.

Adam: Yeah, but I'm gonna, yeah. But the ultimate to campaign build isn't ready yet, so that's in a year's time.

Chad: Okay.

Adam: So today...

Chad: Today...

Adam: I'm gonna be representing the human face of recruitment.

Chad: The human race. The human face.

Joel: So the kilt's on, are we gonna get a Mel Gibson-esque Braveheart rally cry for human beings?

Adam: I'm definitely gonna be spontaneous with that, I've been thinking about what I might do.

Chad: Uh huh.

Adam: I think maybe...

Joel: I'm thinking some blue face paint might be...

Adam: Maybe but I like, do you guys know Naseem Hamed? Prince Naseem

Hamed? The boxer?

Chad: No.

Joel: No.

Adam: He used to come into the ring on a flying carpet.

Chad: Ahh.

Adam: Thinking about trying to do that.

Chad: Yeah. I wanna see you pull that off, I really do.

Joel: That's gonna be some brownie points.

Chad: You know what, some of the investment that he just received from Russia...

Joel: He can probably produce a flying carpet before the event.

Adam: Here in Lisbon we're also not that far from Morocco and I'm pretty sure that's where they make the flying carpets.

Chad: Yeah I think that is. Yeah, I think that's the only place, they're trademarked or something.

Joel: Adam thanks for joining us man, good luck today, in today's death match. And as always stay in touch with what's going on at Candidate.ID.

Chad: There it is, keep those legs sassy.

Adam: Thanks for talking to me!

Chad: Later!

Joel: We out.

Tristen: Hi, I'm Tristen. Thanks for listening to my stepdad, The Chad, and his goofy friend Cheese. You've been listening to The Chad and Cheese Podcast. Make sure you subscribe on iTunes, Google Play, or wherever you get your podcasts so you don't miss out on all the knowledge-droppin' that's happenin' up in here.

Tristen: They made me say that.

Tristen: The most important part is to check out our sponsors, because I need new track spikes. You know, the expensive shiny gold pair that are extra because, well, I'm extra.

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