This one's a real rush of blood to the head!
Recruitics and Phenom are continuing the acquisition boom in our industry
LinkedIn is looking to take on Fiverr and Upwork.
And that's just the Chad & Cheese appetizer, as the boys then dig into billion dollar companies that poo-poo HR departments, professors who do hardcore drugs to achieve work-life balance and even a good ol' fashioned dust-up with industry vet Bill Boorman.
Hide your kids! Lock the doors! You're listening to HR’s most dangerous podcast. Chad Sowash and Joel Cheeseman 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.
Aw. Yeah. Dancing on the line of cancellation since 2017, welcome to the Chad and Cheese podcast, everybody. I'm your cohost Joel "cheese is good for you" Cheeseman.
And I'm Chad, "the stranger" Sowash.
And on this week show the shopping spree continues in TA tech, LinkedIn wants a piece of the gig economy pie and heroin supports a sound work-life balance. Who knew?
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Joel (1m 48s):
The sun is shining in the Midwest.
Chad (1m 50s):
Feels good. This is, this is going to be our feel-good episode. Okay, the last ones we were cranky. We were all pissed off, but I am determined to make this "a feel good episode", that being said.
Joel (2m 4s):
Chad (2m 4s):
Sometimes I would say, throughout the day, I just have happy songs pop into my head. Does that ever happen to you?
Joel (2m 11s):
That sounds a little psychotic, but yeah, sometimes songs pop into my head. When there's room for the voices, stop talking to me. Yeah. The music
Chad (2m 20s):
One popped into my head today. It's Stevie Wonder's, Sir. Duke. That is one that pops into my head frequently. And I think it's because it was played on the radio so much when we were little kids, it was probably drowned into my head, but I just love that song. What song? Just kind of like, it's a happy song that kind of like pops into your head out of nowhere.
Joel (2m 44s):
So as both of us are young children of the seventies, I have a, you know, a favor for the seventies disco. So for me, it's a little Sister Sledge, Good Times. The actual show Good Times was great. There's also Wang Chung Tonight. I guess if you're rolling into the eighties. Yeah. You know, Everybody Wang Chung for a good time, but yeah. Songs are great. And the older you get, the more, the bigger the library gets and it's all good.
Chad (3m 19s):
And dude, Spotify is my, my best friend right now, podcasts, music. I mean, I spend probably half an hour on Spotify looking through like albums and shit liking things and just that whole signal liquidity that Spotify has on me.
Joel (3m 37s):
So you are, you're a subscriber then to Spotify. Okay. Are you a Joe Rogan listener? Occasionally?
Chad (3m 43s):
I can't. I can't listen to Joe Rogan. They're like three hour podcasts. Number one. I would have to split it up. Number two. He's just a Fucking whack job.
Joel (3m 55s):
He's a different cat for sure. He's a rich different cat.
Chad (3m 59s):
He is, good for him.
Joel (4m 1s):
Yeah. Well we got to have some feel good shout outs, I guess, to start the show.
Chad (4m 5s):
Yeah. So I want to start out with the feel good of, I just saw this morning and did a little research of over a hundred migrant children are being united with their families, and this is only the first month of Biden being in office. I think people across the globe, let alone us here in America, watching that happen in our country that made me feel good this morning.
Joel (4m 34s):
Definitely feel good. So we've talked a lot about corporations and vaccine and should they require it? What should they do? So, so Publix, your new favorite grocery store since Kroger rubbed you the wrong way, let's put it that way. They're offering a $125 gift card to employees that get the vaccine and gift card sounds a little cheesy, but hell they're probably spend the money at Publix anyway, with their employee discount. So public's way to go, man, incentivize that vaccine because we all need the shot.
Chad (5m 6s):
Yes. Incentive is smart. People living on incentives, essential worker wages, need food, go figure and pub Publix probably doesn't want their employees spending just some old gift card at Piggly Wiggly. So, you know.
Joel (5m 24s):
Does Piggly Wiggly still exist?
Chad (5m 27s):
I have no fucking clue. One of my favorite brands.
Joel (5m 31s):
It's actually a really interesting short sell story, from like the thirties or forties. So in lieu of the GameStop drama that we just lived through, if you want a historical perspective on short selling a Google Piggly wiggly, short sell, and you'll get a good story.
Chad (5m 48s):
Well, and this answers your question, which was will employers pay employees to get vaccinated? Target is providing hours of pay and free ride share rides for workers to get vaccinated. Grocery store chains. LIDL? Lidl? I guess, I don't know. Fuckin' never heard of it. And Aldi are also giving them employees paid time off to get the coronavirus vaccine. Instacart's gonna give their quote unquote staff, $25 stipend. So it is happening and this is a great way to just get these people to get the goddamn shot, because we all need it.
Chad (6m 30s):
And, and I'll take it if you wont.
Joel (6m 32s):
Yeah. And the time off is a big one, because they're going to be in line for three, four hours to get this fucking thing in some places, by the way, census Bureau survey that just came out almost one quarter of Americans said they don't plan to get vaccinated. What the fuck, America?
Chad (6m 48s):
After that $125 Piggly Wiggly card, I bet they do.
Joel (6m 56s):
Oh, what else? In shout outs, who else besides Kroger rubbed you the wrong way,
Chad (7m 2s):
Thrown under the bus, which was really interesting.
Joel (7m 5s):
The double-decker bus specifically, and
Chad (7m 8s):
We're actually called out on Facebook, Bill Borman.
Joel (7m 10s):
There's a new podcast, right? Yeah. They promoted it with basically a Mount Rushmore old Willie Nelson album cover design with, let's be honest four middle-aged white dudes as sort of the future set in some, I think it was a Maren Hogan and some other women called them out like, Oh, you know, more white dudes on a podcast. Fantastic. And they projected, or they deflected that on us.
Chad (7m 34s):
Do you and I, Joel, we talk about this in getting interviews. We talk about who we should schedule, why we should schedule who we think are fun topics, that kind of thing. And I've talked, I've talked to Matt Older about this, who was also one of the individuals who was run over by the Borman bus. So we are, we are constantly looking at trying to find individuals, especially females, because females, they don't come to us. I have, we have probably hundreds of males who come to us on, you know, month after month after month, trying to pitch why they should be on the podcast, whether it's their brand, their product, whatever it might be.
Chad (8m 16s):
Female on the other hand, they don't, they, they generally not coming to us. So I guess they're, they're looking for us to find them, whether it's on a list or something like that. So, you know, message to all you females out there. We'd love to be able to have you pitch us on why you want to be on the show. And if you don't want to be on the show, that's cool too. That means you don't have to pitch us. But overall, if you want to get your voice amplified, your brand amplified, all these things, it's really easy to get a guy on because they're all over the fucking place selling themselves. And I'm not saying that you have to be crazy about selling yourself, but at least have some type of pitch and push it out to podcasts.
Chad (8m 60s):
And we're not saying that we're just automatically going to have you on because you're a female. It has to be good content. I'd love to be able to talk to you because I'm spending time, hours a week, looking for individuals to make our podcast more equitable. And this year, so far, we have nine interviews, five of which are female. So, you know, we're trying to, we're trying to keep that balance and trying to be smart about it.
Joel (9m 26s):
Yeah. So three things on this one is it's, it's much like my teen years, women ignore me. So I'm sort of used to it. Secondly, although the professional quality of this podcast is above, you know, you know, the average podcast, we have no production team. We have no staff. It's just us. And we have other things going on. Like we don't have a team getting guests for the show. And then lastly, it would be much different if a female came at us about female representation, the fact that it's the white British dude doesn't really keep me up at night. So that's three things and Bill love him to death, super charitable guy. We just, we thought we'd have some fun with his calling us out on this, on this issue, because I think we're pretty proud actually, of the representation that we give to a broad spectrum of folks across the board, on our show.
Joel (10m 16s):
Chad (10m 16s):
Yeah. And can we do better? Always? There's no question.
Joel (10m 19s):
Help us help you.
Chad (10m 20s):
Yeah. Help us help you. But overall, one of the things that we did create was a channel called Fem Amp to be able to highlight and amplify all of the females who have participated in interviews on Chad and Cheese. But again, if you want on the show, that's awesome. Let us know, and then pitch us on what you'd like to talk about, but we'd love it.
Joel (10m 41s):
And then get ready for fun on the Chad and Cheese podcast.
Chad (10m 44s):
Or a no, because it might suck, because if it sucks, you just say, I'm sorry.
Joel (10m 51s):
Trust me. I usually don't want to be on this show, so I forgive you if you don't want to be on this show either. You know what I'm saying?
Chad (10m 57s):
Joel (10m 58s):
Chad (10m 59s):
Okay. Oh, a good segue. We're going into a TNG and ADA digital's Unbiased Day on March 18th. Yeah. So you can go to TNG.se, just scroll down to the painted lady, register. It's free. Some of your favorite people are going to be there from TNG and ADA Digital. I might be talking a little bit about robots, but for the most part, I'm going to be talking about bias and technology, here in the United States. And I think that's pretty much going to translate abroad as well, but Julie is going to be speaking. And so is Bas, not even going to try your last name, buddy, cause you always say, I say it wrong, but so many great speakers, Asa, Sarah, Elan, and a whole host of crew, go to TNG.se and registered today.
Joel (11m 53s):
That was a great segue. And you didn't even plan on that. I don't think we didn't. We didn't talk about it. If only we had a better segue into the first news story.
Chad (12m 0s):
Joel (12m 1s):
Which, we don't, but let's get into some acquisition news. Our buddies at RecruitEx acquired Reverse Delta.
Chad (12m 10s):
Joel (12m 10s):
I didn't know who Reversed Delta was. They're London-based company that specializes in integrated recruitment websites, think jobs to web, I guess, and digital marketing and is best known for its award-winning career site platform, FX Recruiter. It's so famous that we've never heard of it. Anyway, there they tout themselves as a "high performance mobile first empowered recruitment website, producer built for exact fit with your business." This one's a little confusing to us. What are your thoughts?
Chad (12m 42s):
So I love the name right out of the gate, Reverse Delta because in business many, use the word Delta as a meaning for gap, whether it's a gap in sales, a gap in production, whatever, thus making Reverse Delta a closed gap, get it, get it anyway? So yeah, I, dude, this is interesting from a recruiting standpoint, I believe that in the candidate experience, many hiring companies have failed to provide a truly responsive and great experience, but I don't totally understand where this fits into RecruitEx bag of tricks. Are they harkening to an SEO for jobs or jobs to web? Are our systems not yet evolved enough to already provide this type of functionality.
Chad (13m 29s):
But then again, I remembered Mona and Ryan and the whole creative KRT crew is over there. They're alive and well and kicking. So I'm wondering if they're not trying to go down the road of a Radancy and see like Talent Brew or a Symphony, like SmashFly X? They've got the programmatic piece, right? Sodas, Radancy? Soda's Symphony? Now they're, backloading it with possibly the website piece, our CRMs next? I mean that, that's the question. Are they really trying to compete in that segment?
Joel (14m 5s):
Yeah. So I've been reading press releases for a long time. Now I've written my own set of them as well. And there, there are sort of three telltale signs of a press release that should tell you how important the news is to the companies that are putting out the release. Number one is the length of the release. The longer the release, the more important whoever is doing the acquisition thinks of the acquisition, right?
Chad (14m 28s):
It's like a Twitter feed.
Joel (14m 29s):
Yeah. Okay. This is like a three paragraph. Okay. We bought this company, here's a quote from recruiting CEO and we're done. Okay. So the length is important if they don't disclose the terms, it wasn't enough money to talk about it. So that's usually a little bit of a telltale sign. And then lastly, the transition information and what's happening to the people that are being acquired. We had a good laugh about job.com's, recent acquisition, and that the quote of the co-founders didn't even have their name. It just said the co-founders said this release doesn't even have a quote from the CEO of the acquired company. There's nothing about anyone joining the board. There's nothing about, they'll be our new product, our new product chief or anything like that.
Joel (15m 13s):
So I don't know how important or big a deal this thing is. Reverse Delta was started in 2002, according to the website. That's a long time to be in business, It may just be a situation of we're just tired. Competing is hard. This thing is getting to be a bitch. Like let's find someone to put us out of our misery and just buy our clients and then put them on your platform. So I don't, I that's kinda my take on this. There, there was no big splash on this news. It probably doesn't mean a whole hell of a lot, other than Reverse Delta's clients will now be giving money to RecruitEx instead of Reverse Delta.
Chad (15m 53s):
Do we know another brand in our space that holds their cards as close to the vest as RecruitEx does?
Joel (16m 2s):
Chad (16m 3s):
Yeah. Good point. Good point. Yeah. Good point. Yeah. So, but most don't, I mean, that's the thing is that I think RecruitEx and their team, just from a culture standpoint, they reserve the right to tell you anything. And they generally don't tell you a goddamn thing. So the press release. Yes, it was very Twitter. Like it was a tweet and there wasn't much there. And that to me felt on purpose.
Joel (16m 28s):
So if I had done my homework better, and again, we have other things going on other than the show, but I would probably go back and look at other press releases that RecruitEx has dropped. The KRT one comes to mind.
Chad (16m 41s):
That's a different level, different level.
Joel (16m 44s):
So there would be some trend of importance equals exactly . But anyway, I think it's much ado about nothing keeping with our London theme and prove me wrong. RecruitEx tell us what's going on.
Chad (16m 56s):
Like to hear it. Oh, I love the Intel.
Joel (16m 59s):
Another Acquisition, good God, the money is flowing.
Chad (17m 3s):
Phenom is spending cash.
Joel (17m 5s):
Phenom, Philly based Phenom. We love the Philly-based companies, acquires Talent Cube a little bit on that Talent Cube, which I haven't heard of before, I don't know if you have either, is an "experienced, driven video technology company" based in Germany, Munich. I've never been to Munich. Have you?
Chad (17m 23s):
Oh yeah. Were you stationed there? I was not. I actually went there with the family a couple of years ago.
Joel (17m 29s):
Okay. This is Phenom's, third acquisition in five months. So they're a bit on a bit of a tear. The addition of Talent Cube's technology advances Phenoms ability to provide seamless video functionality. Where we heard that before at every stage of the talent journey. The Phenom CEO Mahe Bayireddi said, quote, "Talent Cubes, video platform, inspires mutual trust throughout the talent life cycle. Organizations can convey their mission through their employees own voices, while job seekers can narrate their journey in a context that relates to recruiters and hiring managers. Stories resonate more deeply when we tell them face to face, in real time or through automated video prompts. Our acquisition of Talent Cube will cultivate a stronger understanding between company and candidate."
Joel (18m 13s):
Again, stop me if you've heard this one before.
Chad (18m 15s):
Phenom is on a tear. They've bought My Ally in Q3 of last year, EnDouble in Q4 of last year. Now Talent Cube. This acquisition is easy to understand, nlike the RecruitEx acquisition.
Joel (18m 30s):
Chad (18m 30s):
Market validation. iCIMS planted their video flag in the ground with two separate acquisitions of Easy Recru and Altru. Yup. Video is a part of the future of experience and engagement. No doubt. So this to me is a great acquisition from a capabilities and global standpoint. Obviously this is their second global acquisition. So the big question for me is when will Phenom raise again. And if they don't raise, who's targeting Phenom for acquisition.
Joel (19m 5s):
Ooh, I don't see them going public?
Chad (19m 8s):
Joel (19m 8s):
So they got to sell to somebody. Hmm.
Chad (19m 11s):
And have about $57 million in funding thus far. So I could see them raising, although I think right now with these, these acquisitions, they would be ripe for acquisition themselves because they haven't taken that much money.
Joel (19m 27s):
Yeah. It's gotta be a decent fish though. Yeah. Mm Hmm. That'll be interesting. Yeah. I'd say get more money and buy some more companies like people are on clearance right now.
Chad (19m 37s):
Applicant tracking Systems all over the world need to be looking at companies like Phenom.
Joel (19m 42s):
What's your own ATM go by Lever. I hear they're hurting. They need a buyer from what I understand. Call Lever for certain. Yeah. They replaced their CEO a few months ago. That that was very quiet. No, no press releases are usually more revealing than press releases. This makes total sense to me. Video's hot, work from home is hot. We talked about Paradox recently, putting video into their chat bot or conversational AI. We talked about HireVue buying, you know AllyO so this is clearly a trend and Phenom pimps themselves as the CRX, right? So it's all about the user experience and video is obviously a component of that. The work from home, remote recruiting trend is not going to go away.
Joel (20m 26s):
So this makes perfect sense to me and Talent Cube has kind of a funny, quirky culture on their website and under the, About Us under their Values, one of them is make your mama proud, which I thought that was kind of funny. Make your mama proud. That's one of their values, one of their core values. So yeah, this makes total sense to me.
Chad (20m 45s):
Sounds like a German core value that can expand throughout the universe, to be quite Frank.
Joel (20m 53s):
And always a chance to bring up Snatch and Zeee Germans and his quote is always fun.
Chad (20m 58s):
Is it a Tommy.
Joel (20m 59s):
Yeah. Tommy? What's this, you got to be some protection? Protection from who? is the Germans. Anyway, it's kind of a British show. It's a feel-good British show today. Let's get away from that and go to Canada and get a quick word from JobAdX. And we'll talk about LinkedIn.
JOBADX (21m 14s):
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Joel (21m 59s):
I just realized this is an Indeed-free show. You're welcome. You're welcome listeners. If you're sick of Indeed.
Chad (22m 19s):
Being said, shout out to the stranger,
Joel (22m 23s):
A great album about from the seventies, Billy Joel, by the way.
Chad (22m 27s):
An Austin family took in Chelsea Timmins, a delivery driver whose car nearly crashed into their home during a delivery run due to the weather, the family welcomed her to stay in, it ended up being five days. Timmins who lives three hours away in Houston, said she makes weekly trips to Austin because the delivery market in there pays more. Chelsea picked up one last delivery on Sunday as the snow picked up thinking she would have time to make it home. She didn't. And she found herself with a nice Austin family who took her in, for five whole days.
Joel (23m 10s):
Nice. Speaking of strangers. Oh, Matt Charney, buddy of the show.
Chad (23m 15s):
He knows The Stranger.
Joel (23m 17s):
He's familiar. He joined Smart Recruiters. One of our faves as the Director of Industry and Product Marketing, Matt, congratulations buddy.
6 (23m 29s):
Who, who came up with that title? Jesus that's right.
Joel (23m 31s):
Probably memorable. Probably Matt. I'm only coming on. If I'm the director of, I want to be the SVP of industry and no, you can be a director. Fine. And, and also speaking of lack of blood flow, LinkedIn went down this week on Tuesday. I don't know. I don't know what recruiters were doing for that few hours that LinkedIn was down. But I think, I think recruiting still happened even with LinkedIn not working, but they're back, they're back up. The blood is flowing now.
Chad (24m 2s):
On the heels of Fiverr acquiring, Working, Not Working, from last week's show a somewhat bigger deal as is happening at LinkedIn.
Joel (24m 11s):
Mr. Segue, you are, good God. So LinkedIn is eyeing the gig economy and who wouldn't. This is the biggest news since LinkedIn launched an ATS. Haha. The information, I'll let that sink in for a second. All right. This was news out of the information. They said, quote, "LinkedIn is developing a new service called marketplaces." Stop me if you've heard that one before "to let it 740 million users find and book freelancers pitting it against publicly traded firms, such as Upwork and Fiverr." According to two people with direct knowledge of the matter, marketplaces is slated to launch.
Joel (24m 52s):
As soon as this September Upwork and Fiverr last year together generated about $550 million in revenue. So it's no shock that LinkedIn would eye this market Facebook, as we also know, cause we've talked about on the show is looking at this, but more of a fix your plumbing perspective, then go find a designer for your website. What do we think about LinkedIn getting into the gig economy?
Chad (25m 21s):
Interesting. LinkedIn generating 8.8 billion in revenues in 2020 from subscriptions and selling jobs, freelancers? They want freelancers to spend more time on LinkedIn and trying to think this through. Yeah. LinkedIn would broaden their user base. It's current, somewhat developed tech to gobble up that $550 million and drive more. But I don't know from, from my standpoint, why wouldn't they just acquire some one?
Joel (25m 53s):
That's interesting. The valuation of those two companies has gone through the roof. I mean this, so the marketplace will sort of replace what they have now. It's called ProFinder. So ProFinder has been around for a long time. It lets users post proposals, proposals for jobs and then people can hire freelancers. ProFinder also lets people contact freelancers directly, blah blah, blah. But there's no sort of fiverr-ish experience. There's no, stars, reviews.
Chad (26m 24s):
I don't like it.
Joel (26m 25s):
Yeah. So to me it makes sense,what I think the hidden. Okay. So there are a few things here. I think that are, that are cards on cards in LinkedIn's deck that can make it really formidable to Upwork and Fiverr. Number one is their acquisition of GitHub. If they can figure out a way to blend marketplaces with the GitHub community, then you've got a pool of like technical people that is probably unmatched by Fiverr or Upwork. The other thing that would be interesting is if they went into, you know, Microsoft's treasure trove and either gave more money or more of a percentage, or took less of a percentage for buyers, could they roll in, you know, benefits to some degree, maybe even health care on some level, depending on the country.
Joel (27m 17s):
I mean, I think that with Microsoft's, you know, bag of money, there's some interesting things they could do to draw people away from Upwork and Fiverr. And I think that GitHub universe, community is really sort of an untapped monster in terms of something like a gig economy, marketplace.
Chad (27m 35s):
Yeah. If you're Microsoft and you have that kind of money, go find doesn't have to be, it doesn't have to be Upwork, doesn't have to be Fiverr, there are up and coming gig platforms that are out there that are gaining traction. Like our buddies, you know, at Camino, obviously we just saw Working, Not Working was acquired by Fiverr they're out there. So go find something and buy it. They've been at this since October of 2019. I know that doesn't seem long, but overall, this is not your expertise. Right? I do know that they bought some attorney, platform that was a gig platform years ago.
Chad (28m 16s):
And they have that CEO driving this train. I think that's the wrong thing to do. You buy that shit when you're Microsoft?
Joel (28m 25s):
Yeah. Or you're so damn big you think we can just do it ourselves, sorta like, you know, Facebook and their marketplace. Anyway, the next story really interesting, we enjoy this one. We don't need no stinkin' HR out of, out of London. Again, more England, actually, this is Manchester. I wonder if they know our buddies at Caroo, they probably did.
Chad (28m 47s):
Joel (28m 47s):
Caroo, the BBC reports, Greg Jackson is the founder and CEO of Octopus Energy, some of you in the UK might be using the Octopus to power your house. No one in Texas, no one in Texas is you can start at more than $2 billion selling green energy. Despite now having more than 1200 employees, Greg says he has no interest in traditional things like human resources or information technology departments. He says there is a tendency for large companies to infantilize their employees and drown, creative people in process and bureaucracy. They want to stay away from that.
Joel (29m 28s):
No HR, I, I like the sound of that. Your thoughts?
Chad (29m 32s):
This CEO, he has actually run very small companies before, right? So that's, he's used to, that's what he's comfortable with, right? So what he's doing is he's taking what he's comfortable with and trying to apply it to something much larger and overall, it won't work. It won't. I mean, when you're talking about a company that he says, Hey, look, we don't need HR to fix, you know, these squabbles and things. That's what the managers are for. Right? Well, for the most part, the managers are part of the fucking squabbles, right?