FIRING SQUAD: ZAPinfo's CEO and Innovator Supreme, Doug Berg

August 15, 2018

He's the grandfather of all things SEO + Marketing and platformy... It's Doug Berg people! 

 

Yea, the guy behind Techies.com, Jobs2Web and now a startup called ZAPinfo. Doug is bringing his suave and technical abilities back to the recruiting industry and hoping to disrupt the sourcing scene.

 

What do Chad & Cheese think? Gotta listen to this Talroo exclusive. 

 PODCAST TRANSCRIPTION sponsored by:

Disability Solutions helps employers identify and source candidates with disabilities.

 

Chad:                  Hey Joel.

 

Joel:                     What up?

 

Chad:                  Would you say that companies find it hard to attract the right candidates to apply for their jobs?

 

Joel:                     Well, Jobs2Careers thought so.

 

Chad:                  Jobs2Careers? You mean, Talroo.

 

Joel:                     Talroo?

 

Chad:                  Yeah, Talroo. T-A-L-R-O-O.

 

Joel:                     What is that, like a cross between talent and a kangaroo?

 

Chad:                  No, it's a cross between talent and recruiting. But Talroo was focused on predicting, optimizing, and delivering talent directly to your email or ATS.

 

Joel:                     Okay, so it's totally data-driven talent attraction, which means the Talroo platform enables recruiters to reach the right talent at the right time and at the right price.

 

Chad:                  Okay, so that was weirdly intuitive, but yes. Guess what the best part is?

 

Joel:                     Let me take a shot here. You only pay for the candidates Talroo delivers?

 

Chad:                  Holy shit. Okay, so you've heard this before. If you're out there listening in podcast land and you are attracting the wrong candidates, and we know you are, or you feel like you're in a recruiting hamster wheel and there's just nowhere to go, right? You can go to Talroo.com/attract. Again, that's Talroo.com/attract and learn how Talroo can get you better candidates for less cash.

 

Joel:                     Or just go to ChadCheese.com and click on the Talroo logo. I'm all about the simple.

 

Chad:                  You are a simple man.

 

Chad:                  Yes, me precious, yes me precious candidate, we wants it so sweet precious, yes.

 

Announcer:       Like Shark Tank? Then you'll love Firing Squad. Chad Sowash and Joel Cheesman are here to put the recruiting industry's bravest, ballsiest, and baddest startups through the gauntlet to see if they've got what it takes to make it out alive. Dig a foxhole and duck for cover, kids, the Chad and Cheese Podcast is taking it to a whole other level.

 

Joel:                     Hey, what's up boys and girls? We have a special treat on Firing Squad this month.

 

Chad:                  Oh yeah.

 

Joel:                     Doug Berg, welcome to the show. If I can find the applause button.

 

Chad:                  There you go.

 

Joel:                     Doug, as many industry experts, professionals, long timers know, the guy behind Techies, the guy behind Jobs2Web, is sitting on a pile of money as we speak because he sold those companies. Doug, welcome to the show. We're going to talk about your new company, ZAPinfo today.

 

Doug:                  Love to be here guys. Thanks for having me back. I feel like a throwback to the mid-90s. This is awesome.

 

Chad:                  Yeah, no. Dude, this is totally a high school reunion. You know that right? All three of us half drunk off our ass at the bar.

 

Joel:                     We're all sober, by the way. I'll add that to the show. Chad, you want to read the rules and we'll dive right into it?

 

Chad:                  Yeah. Okay, Doug. You're going to have a two minute pitch for ZAPinfo. At the end of two minutes, you'll hear the bell. Then Joel and I are going to hit you with rapid fire questions. If your answers aren't concise, Joel's going to hit you with crickets, which means you need to tighten your game up [crosstalk 00:03:16]. We're getting bored around here. At the end of Q&A, you're going to get judged, either with big applause, which means you have exceeded expectations.

 

Joel:                     Well on your way.

 

Chad:                  Golf clap, you're on your way but you've got some work to do. Or the firing squad, take your shit and go home because that's not what you want to hear. That's the firing squad. It's time to buckle up and pitch. Joel, start that timer big boy.

 

Joel:                     You ready Doug?

 

Doug:                  I'm ready.

 

Joel:                     Let's do it. You're on.

 

Doug:                  Awesome guys. Well, I'm excited to tell you about ZAPinfo, which is a tool that we've created that is instead of an artificial intelligent tool, we're an information automation tool. Instead of AI, we're IA. The reason we built this thing is because recruiters are bogged down with still too much busy shit every single day. They're burning cycles either posting jobs or trying to grab resumes and contact information. They're using 87 tools to try to get the information they need. They're bundling that crap up, they're sending it in demand. All of these tools are going crazy right now and everyone's got a career site, and an ATS, and a CRM, and a recruitment marketing platform, of which I founded part of the business, but none of these systems really at the end of the day talk to each other.

 

Doug:                  We wanted to build a single tool that would really help bring true productivity to the recruiters, right? They can use ZAPinfo to instantly zap contacts and profile information, put it into any of their applications, basically share that data across all of their applications, and then instantly find the direct contact information. It actually has a huge enrichment capability that instantly finds the LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter identify information. Kind of like what Connectifier used to do, but it's in a very simple and easy to use tool that any recruiter can instantly start using right away.

 

Doug:                  We're being rapidly adopted by hundreds of companies and thousands of recruiters to literally give them hours of their time back every day and to also help track and measure their sourcing cost, because no one seems to know exactly how much productivity your recruiters should generate on a daily basis, or how many hires they're getting out of their expensive sourcing tools. We actually close that loop, as the recruiters using the tool, marry the source data with the spend data, and finally at the end of the day can help companies maximize and measure how they're sourcing teams are operating on any given day.

 

Joel:                     Boom. Now, where can I find out more Doug?

 

Doug:                  The can go to ZAPinfo.io or ZAPinfo.app and be able to ... You may us it for free. They can come down and download the tool and give it a whirl to be able to see if it's going to be something that can work for them and their application.

 

Joel:                     All right. He's all yours, Chad.

 

Chad:                  That's good shit. Who at the end of the day has become your target market? Is it the staff agencies, RPOs, or are you really going straight at TA with this?

 

Doug:                  We're going to anyone that's doing recruiting, mostly going after larger sourcing teams, right? A lot of our earlier customers are big companies like the Best Buys, and United Health Groups, and those folks, but we also work with a lot of these RPO groups like Titus, and Paired Sourcing, and a lot of those guys that are really doing that deep sourcing contract and lead generation and qualification capabilities, where our tool can take literally hours of work and make it just a few clicks. They're really good users, as well as a lot of the big staffing firms and agencies.

 

Chad:                  At this point, I mean, it's like anybody. Anybody who wants to use ZAPinfo, come at us. But from your standpoint, and I know and I understand, if money's coming in, who cares where it's coming from? But from your standpoint, from a marketing standpoint, from an outreach standpoint, from a sales standpoint, who are you targeting as priority?

 

Doug:                  Yeah. I mean, those ... From an inside/out go to market, we are targeting kind of the larger corporate, larger staffing and the RPO groups.

 

Chad:                  Gotcha.

 

Doug:                  The other thing is, we're partnering. We're actually working as a companion application for almost all of the ATS systems, as well as recruitment marketing and CRM applications who may be used to have an application that could do a lot of this stuff, but for whatever reason they haven't been able to continue utilizing those, or they didn't have the facility that we have. In a lot of cases, they're actually bundling us together with their tools because we kind of act like a MuleSoft or Zapier-type of an application, right?

 

Doug:                  We mitigate the need for you to have this six month $100,000 integration between your CRM and ATS, because we literally make it two click easy for people to share the information between those systems. It's an instant on thing. We actually can either work, partner strategic with those firms, or we can just work without them. Because I don't know if you guys remember how hard it was to get the Taleos and the other guys to actually-

 

Chad:                  Oh yeah.

 

Doug:                  Do integrations and stuff.

 

Chad:                  Yep.

 

Doug:                  I just finally got to the point, "I can't believe these systems don't talk to each other." We actually built instead of an API, we built what we called a BPI, which is a browser protocol interface that allows people to instantly and automatically fill in using the, sometimes horrible and crappy interfaces that are on these systems. The ZAPinfo tool can learn it and instantly automate it so in one mouse click you're filling this data point out. Sometimes saving the recruiter 20 to 30 minutes of time, which we've talked to so many talent leaders, you guys, and they literally, their biggest problem is not having users using the systems that they're working with.

 

Doug:                  They're literally back to using spreadsheets, using Google Sheets, sending emails, and doing everything except using the very applications that were supposed to bring productivity. By solving that, we actually can help their investments in these applications become fruitful again because we actually take them from crappy to what we call zappy, where they can-

 

Crowd:                Boo.

 

Chad:                  Oh, that was ... Yeah. Oh, you had me until that one Doug. Oh, you had me until that one. Oh, Jesus.

 

Doug:                  All right, man. I'm a marketing guy.

 

Joel:                     Doug, I want to talk about some news items that came through recently. You are officially now the artist formerly known as WebClipDrop. I don't know if it's something in the water in Minneapolis where Prince is from, but this is something that you guys have done recently. Talk about the name change. Why ZAPinfo? Why the dot io at the end, as opposed to a dot com? You also got a little bit of money to the tune of $1.25 million. Talk about what you guys have done. You're now the CEO. Update us on what's going on.

 

Doug:                  Yep. Every single company I've started, you guys may know this, I've always started with one name and changed it. JobKeys became Techies. HotGigs became Jobs2Web. TrackIt became MyAlerts and we really are doing the same thing here. WebClipDrop, you kind of got to start a business with one name and let it take on its personality and character and let customers tell you what they think the name should be. I'm a big winner ... I love descriptive names of things. Where we started with WebClickDrop thinking, "Hey, this is easy. It's a web clipboard. People can clip things and then drop things," right? That was pretty easy, but man, people would just mutilate the word, you guys. I mean, some of our best customers were calling it WebClickDrop and Click, all kinds of stuff.

 

Doug:                  We needed a faster easier name and one that was a little bit more fun and suited for the bigger story that we were going after. That's really where we landed on ZAPinfo, right? People want speed, they want productivity. They just want to zap things and have them work and we felt like the name really embraced what we're after, which is this ability to, "I want to drop my application in. I want to have it be zapping productivity and results to my teams and to the people." That's really what drove most of the name change. Yes, I came over. I'm effectively here as of August 1st running and building the business full-time. I would love to say this is my last startup, but I said that about the last business.

 

Doug:                  But I'll tell you, it's great to come back to the recruiting and talent and even ... We do a lot with sales and marketing as well, but it's really fun to come back to the talent industry and kind of act like the distribution cap, if you will, because we really get interesting visibility guys on the backend. Just like Uber kind of has what they call their God view. I kind of get something like that, because as we have thousands of users every day zapping talent off the boards, and off of search engines, and off directories, and uploading lists, and all that other stuff, and watching that data kind of flow like the Matrix in and out of all these applications to see where are people getting use, where is information traveling to as it goes through the recruiting process, and understanding and analyzing the intelligence.

 

Doug:                  We've got a big kind of AI tool that's studying all these profiles and looking at the types of talent, the categories, the geographies, the experience levels, where are those things getting sourced from? At some point, it'll be really fun for us to be able to provide that data intelligence back to the talent acquisition communities to help them understand really what does the time to fill look like, and what sources are the best sources for talent, and what types of companies and things are you best going to be focusing after. Beyond just being a fun little application that makes it easy for me to zap a resume in and out, right? Behind that is a tremendous amount of intelligence that we can garner over time as we get to critical mass.

 

Joel:                     The money, who wrote you a check and what are you going to do with it?

 

Doug:                  Yeah. I've been fortunate enough to raise a little over $125 million so far in my businesses, and so I've got some street cred with the venture world and was really fortunate to get a-

 

 

Doug:                  ... Venture World and was really fortunate to get a company called Rally Ventures, which is Minneapolis based, but also San Francisco based, so they're the only firm I believe that has those two connecting points, which is important. But they're very big in the technology space. They were some of the early investors in Jigsaw, and a couple of business models that were really close to what we're doing. Seven Peaks Ventures is out of the Oregon marketplace, and they're also very deep in the technology and data space, and then lastly it's a group called Great North Labs, which is one of these venture firms that's right up here in Minneapolis, just getting started, and we wanted to make sure they were involved to try and give them some love. And of course, myself and a couple that are Angels have funded it to this point and we're also participants in this round as well.

 

Joel:                     And what are you gonna do with the money?

 

Doug:                  Yeah, so the money is really largely helping us scale very quickly. So we picked up Susan Dunham, who was my VP, one of my big sales leaders at Jobs2Web, and was a rock star. She's with me now. She's already leading the group. We've also picked up a sales account manager. Peter's doing more with partners and channels. Lynette Berg, my wife, is actually our Chief Happiness Officer, and her expertise is knowledge bases, and onboarding customers, and supporting web applications. So she's already built out our whole training library and our knowledge base.

 

Chad:                  So you're putting the band back together is what I'm hearing.

 

Doug:                  We got some of the band back together, and of course you know, I've gotten calls from every event manager from HR Tech to Source Cloud to whoever, is all lining up here and we're certainly gonna be participants in a lot of the shows and events. But really, we wanna do a lot of these local events, guys. Not always just the big show stuff, like we're sponsoring the I think it's called the S7 event up in Seattle, right? And those are our people, right? Those really deep, hardcore, Jerry Langhans kinds, Marvin Smiths kinds of people that are using the tool every day, constantly emailing us saying make it do this and that and I think you guys know I'm kind of a relentless innovator I love to hear from customers what feature they want next and put it live within 7 days or less because I think that's what wins at the end of the day, right? Getting in these 2 year product cycles with crap, I mean you gotta almost have an F5 button in your development team. So I'm really fortunate, I've got some of the best developers I've ever worked with behind me on this one.

 

Chad:                  So within the system itself can I go and, talk about the enrichment property, right, so can I go into my Apple contracting system and then look at individuals who are like 6 months maybe even older and can I enrich that data or maybe even new contacts that are pushing to my ATS, can I enrich out of my ATS?

 

Doug:                  Yeah, sometimes the very first place a person sees a person is when they've applied, right? And because application processes can be really shitty, they might've only given you their name, their business card, and their current employers so what you can do is highlight the name of the person, right click on them, and Zap Info will instantly take you to their LinkedIn, their Twitter, their Facebook, their GitHub. Whatever social properties you want and you just hit enrich and it'll literally just go and pull all that information and then you can just literally hit edit on the guy and paste and it'll refill out all of the information. So everything people were doing manually around that right, cause you would just do those things and copy and paste and all that other stuff, that's everything that we've automated with the tool.

 

Chad:                  So can I just set that to do it automatically as I go in so that I don't- because again we're here to- these are still tasks that recruiters have to do before they actually make the call. So can I just set up to do it automatically as soon as I get into a system or maybe somebody applies to my Rex, can I get the system to automatically enrich the contacts as they get into the system so that I don't even have to do that one step?

 

Doug:                  Alright, so you just passed your interview for product manager. You've been peaking at our 2019 whiteboard. So this year we're really working on what I'll call the outside-in method of enriching data, right? So it's a lot of that kind of stuff and we already have built the API frameworks that we're building data bridges that are API friendly to a lot of the bigger platforms, the SATs, the IBMs, all that kind of stuff. And as we do that, right, we are gonna build what I'll call a punch-out or an embedded system so that, maybe if even somebody joins my talent community and all I have is their email address, the Zap Info tool will take that data and fill in all the rest of the information. Almost real time, so those are things that we're gonna be putting into the 2019 roadmap.

 

Chad:                  Doug, we talk a lot about on the legal challenges of scraping LinkedIn, you're probably familiar with the Hiq legal case. Talk about that, Microsoft owns GitHub now as well, so I assume that GitHub will be a little tougher to start- to stop sort of grabbing information. Is that a threat to your business, does it keep you at night? Give us your thoughts.

 

Doug:                  Yeah, so look, the good news is we didn't build a big scraping thing, right, that can help us to harvest all the public profiles and then basically try to get people to come to us and search for data so they don't have to go to LinkedIn, that's not what this is at all. I mean, I think you guys would agree for especially people who have bought LinkedIn recruiter licenses, there's a legitimate business need for that recruiter once they've found somebody and built a relationship and that relationship evolves into the candidate applying or wanting to move forward. You gotta get the data off of the social network and into your internal application. So that's a legitimate business need and, if anything, what we've done is just made that kind of person by person record by record data movement a little bit easier, right.

 

Doug:                  Cause today people are dropping the PDF file and then reparsing it into their application system which is also a violation of the terms of service, or their copying and pasting data field by field into their ATS which takes thirty minutes and it's a total pain in the butt. And at the end of the day, we're closer to the MAC operating or Windows operating system where you're just copying and pasting data over into those applications. I don't think that LinkedIn's gonna sue MAC or Microsoft and say shut down the copy-paste feature because that breaks our terms of service and so at the end of the day, it's really on the users themselves to not violate the terms of service, right? We follow that, we actually have controls in place in the Zap Info System that even if a company said look we don't any of our users to able to even clip a profile, we can prevent that. So we actually, by being in the browser, can help companies to deploy whatever policy they want around when, how people contact folks.

 

Doug:                  Actually some of the biggest problems we're seeing, today, is 8 recruiters from the same company might all recruit the same guy on LinkedIn and it's spamming their users, right. LinkedIn is not doing a lot to help prevent this, where as this Zap Info System will easily be able to do that, right. So they can deploy business rules that says, whether their on the LinkedIn or the same guy is on Monster or the other, you know, somewhere, Facebook, I can literally help the recruiters of a company to say whoa, hold on, maybe 3 of us have already been in touch with this person let's have you not reach out to them so that we can make sure we've got a better candidate experience with the universe, if you will, from the outside in of our company instead of just everyone going crazy and firing stuff up.

 

Chad:                  And you should be able to know that out of the applicant tracking system, right? So you should be able to use a primary signal out of the ATS.

 

Doug:                  Yeah, but you know what that's a- it's a difficult thing because one recruiters aren't checking into the ATS before they go off and start rifling, you know connecting requests out to everybody so you have to be a black box inside of where they're doing their outreach and everyday living, right? So we have to be able to right in their dashboard, if you will, of communication which is the browser. And then secondly, you know, one of the biggest things is, I don't know about you guys, but some companies are spending a lot of money on LinkedIn and other big networks. If I asked them what's your RY or how you measuring the effectiveness, they have no idea. And so, but the beauty is, when people are zapping someone out of LinkedIn recruiter and putting them into their smart recruiters we, just like in the old applicant days remember Chad, we stopped asking applicants where they came from? We're doing the same thing here, we basically hard-tag the source of those candidates into the system and putting attribution around who the recruiter was and what the source was and then marry that data together.

 

Doug:                  At the end of the day, LinkedIn should be super jacked because their companies are gonna get way more hires out of the system, they're gonna get much more credit for it, and therefore be able to drive even more and higher subscription rates in the future.

 

Chad:                  I can actually take a look at all of my recruiters and I can take a look at activity and also productivity because of the attribution of the candidates who are coming through the pipelines and who is actually getting hired into those positions?

 

Doug:                  Exactly. Today, if you do a sourcing report, even in like your greenhouse or your lever, the data fields are typically never filled in. So you get like 1 guy on the report cause a recruiter was feeling generous and put the source code in, whereas all of a sudden after the first 3 days because it's automatically being done as a part of the automation process, the reports come to life. So they're coming to life inside of their core system where we've built these great dashboards that can also marry up the data and help them get visibility to them on our side as well.

 

Chad:                  Doug, there's a ton of competition in this arena, not just with start-ups and players like you, but we look at, you know, Google, Facebook, LinkedIn which we talk about a lot on this show with matching, just post your job and it'll magically go into our database and deliver you candidates that match your requirements on a silver platter. How do you differentiate yourselves in a very competitive market, to cut through the clutter and really get to the customer?

 

Doug:                  You're right. You know, there is eighty little micro-competitors in this space. And at the end of the day, we never want to be an application guys, we always just want to make other applications better so that's what's kind of interesting about being a productivity or companion application, our job is actually to just help these things all work together better. But we've also combined a lot of stuff, right. So I mean a lot of people were using Data Miner and a bunch of these tools to try to capture data and there's a whole bunch of tools that help you to find email addresses and phone numbers, like Ushes and all these other guys and we actually work with a lot of them. So, literally behind the scenes, we will take and use almost every API we can get our hands on; from full contact, to pit bull, to clear bit those are the data engines behind how we're doing the enrichment. But a recruiter that used to have to do those one at a time and then compare the fields and see which one got the email right; that's hours of work. Our thing does it all in one blink of the eye. There's a lot of other folks that will say then take this data and try to integrate it into you Taleo, your ATS or whatever. Again that whole thing is kind of what we've smashed together here and put into a single application.

 

Doug:                  Chad, your point, while we're doing these data transactions and doing source mapping, that's great, but we're also gonna be adding kind of a Fitbit for recruiting kind of a thing. So because we're in the browser, I can, beyond, you know, the hard action of clipping and transferring profile data, I'll be able to actually say hey this recruiter over here, he's the guy that's on LinkedIn, he viewing this many profiles, he's doing this many searches, he's connected with this many people, he's had this many interactions cause all of that data just lives on those networks and none of it actually gets analyzed and looked at for those key performance indicators about what makes a great recruiter or what justifies a LinkedIn recruiter seat or even, as you guys know, you might buy a hundred thousand dollar job board subscription and find out 9 months in no one's even logged into the goddamn thing. So, you know, we want to be the tool that as people are making these investments, we're literally giving you a weekly report as that leader and as individual actors within those systems to say, you know, your company bought you this tool and this access and here's how much you're using it. Here's how much you're using it against other people in the company to try to gamify and actually bring productivity enhancements to those investments that they're making.

 

Chad:                  So how do you cut through the actual clutter and say hey look Zap you need- everybody needs to use Zap and here's why? I understand that you're looking at all these different AI solutions that do waking the dead and enrichment and all this other fun stuff, but this is the 1 reason why we stand above everybody else.

 

Doug:                  Yeah, look I mean, I'm an investor in a lot of the AI businesses, but I think, I think they serve a very different function, right. What they can do to automate the recruiting process is fantastic, right. But at the end of the day, all of that interaction and activity still has to be translated and come into my internal systems and recruiters are

 

Doug:                  ... to be translated and come into my internal systems. And recruiters are still gonna be doing business around information, whether it be profiles and contact information, and setting up interviews, and debriefing interviews, and onboarding people. And all of those data transactions are things that AI and bots are many years away from being able to just automatically do. And if anything, we'll work in conjunction with them. We've actually got some really neat partnering things coming up where ZAPinfo, our IA tool, our information automation tool can actually work with an artificial intelligence tool to really get you close to what might be a full cycle recruiting solution that is something we might mitigate a lot of these platforms to be in real trouble here in about two to four years.

 

Joel:                     Doug, what does sourcing look like in five to seven years?

 

Doug:                  You know, Joel, I think we're finally gonna get back to relationships are gonna count a lot. The whole promise of the social network was that when I link to you and you link to me or if I friend you and you friend me, that there's aa relationship that happens there and I can maintain it, I can update it through my ambient awareness of everything that's happening and manage a bigger group of people without losing connections to them. And I'm astonished, even when we work with some recruiting teams today and we show them how they can use ZAPinfo to not only find, connect, and capture and start stuff, they still want to kind of stay behind this wall. They still don't want to hit the connect button on LinkedIn, they just want to hit the in mail button on LinkedIn, because they don't really want ... They want to get feedback on a transaction or a requisition, but they don't really want to have a relationship with people.

 

Doug:                  And I think that's gotta change. I really think that if you get rid of all the noise of a recruiter and they really can build kind of their own personal community as an extension of the corporate brand and maintain relationships with people as they go through their entire career process, I just think that that's gonna be where we've reached the apex of what's possible in a socially connected world where it's super relevant and super rich, and feedback is real and full, and we get away from this black box nobody ever hears anything to a super white glove kind of a service where recruiters are valued based upon ... Imagine interviewing a recruiter and literally there's, you're bringing literally this portfolio of all these relationships that you have that you could help bring to a company. I think that's gonna be kind of where the big value of who a source and who a recruiter is in the future.

 

Chad:                  That sounds like the end game. I mean, from my side. But when you look at humans, we're lazy, right? So, this makes it easier for them not to be so lazy 'cause they can get that data, but still they have to go through that manual process in some cases. But what you're saying is endgame, that's gonna be something that's plugged into their process. Is that what I'm hearing?

 

Doug:                  I would challenge you to say I've not met many lazy recruiters. I have met a lot of intolerant recruiters. You know what I mean? I think we can confuse laziness with intolerance because we have forced them to work with shitty applications and bad processes, and waiting around and putting limitations on them and all these other things. In a world where everyone's got access to the same people, everyone's got access to everybody, then people that know how to use those platforms and can put rocket boots on and can run faster and do more, and get rid of the friction points, are gonna be the ones that really have a competitive advantage.

 

Doug:                  And that's where I saw, for our ability to run across, if you will. It's kind of like have you ever seen that ... what's that game show where the big balls ... run across all these big balls. Wipe Out, right? That's in essence, it's in essence-

 

Chad:                  I was hoping you were talking about Wipe Out and not some foreign game show that Joel watches.

 

Joel:                     Hey.

 

Doug:                  But I think that the people that can navigate those things and really drive results, people love to get shit done and their frustration level and absolute anger ... anger level, disgust with their application and their stack and the technologies that get thrust on them are everything that we're trying to eliminate as we bring the platform to bear.

 

Joel:                     Doug, Chad asked about one endgame. I'm gonna ask about another. What is the endgame for the company? Are you gonna flip this baby like your other companies? Are you in this thing for the long haul? And after that, breakdown pricing for me.

 

Doug:                  Yeah, look. I mean, we're just getting started here. And we even just got our funding and all of our developers on full time, so I'm always a put your head down and build value in the business and get it to scale, so we've got a good couple of years of just open field running right now. And it's awesome. I'm literally on eight to ten demos a day, and these are big companies. And when we show them, it's always fun as you guys know to show a technology where people didn't know they needed it and in the minute they see it ... Like our demos last 18 minutes. And people hang up the phone and say, "Goddammit, send me a proposal."

 

Doug:                  We've even had one gal, dead silent on the phone after we showed her some of the functionality. I'm like, "Hello, did I lose you?" And she's like, "No, I hate to admit it, I just peed my pants."

Joel:                     What?

 

Doug:                  So, I was just like, "I'll tell our developer. He'll love that." But it's really fun to

bring that kind of very simple technology, it's an instant on thing, instant ROI thing, but we still, like I said, are just getting started, Joel, and for the foreseeable future, we're gonna just keep building this. As you guys know, I got a lot of folks I know in the business. We can help scale it pretty quickly. And yet we do well. Even with pricing, you mentioned, Joel, we're less than a cup of coffee a day. We charge $40 a month for unlimited utilization of the tool at a user level. That's fantastic, right? And we have some companies that literally save 30, $40,000 per user per year in just either productivity or direct contact costs, and then can help them get visibility to stuff they've just never seen before. So, it's a very affordable solution.

 

Doug:                  It may not be that cheap this time next year, but in our first year here, it's a great time to get your company on board and get everybody trained up and utilizing the technology.

Joel:                     Beautiful. That's the bell, Doug, and you know what that means. It's time to face the firing squad, and we're gonna give it to Chad.

 

Chad:                  All right, Doug. I've got to say that I have a soft spot in my heart for Doug Berg, just so everybody knows. I think, dude, the integrations, the BPI piece is legit. Focusing on information automation, the IA piece, because AI really isn't there yet, so being able to create that bridge is a great story, and that is incredibly smart. Focusing on the staffing and RPO side of the house, really focusing your sales efforts there, I can't say that enough, right out of the gate, because they're looking for efficiencies and that's exactly what you can provide. Along with, here's the big thing for them, and you probably already know this. Recruiter attribution, source attribution, and then being able to show them, almost like their own very own god mode within their ecosystem.

 

Chad:                  The only thing that I need to be able to see this thing just explode, and I know that if anybody can do it, you can do it, is the automated enrichment piece. So, at that point, when you guys get there, I need to know that. Right now you guys are getting a huge golf clap, because I think you're definitely on your way. As soon as you hit that automated enrichment piece, it's gonna be like a sky rocket, dude.

 

Doug:                  Couldn't agree more.

 

Joel:                     All right. I'm up. Little story about Doug and his last company, Jobs2Web. Jobs2Web launched shortly after I launched a company called HRSEO, which both sought to capitalize on the SEO trend at the time, and I always felt like I knew SEO better than you guys, Doug, but you guys executed your asses off. You had the contacts, the wherewithal, the money. Execution was key in that business. I don't know the Techies company as well as Jobs2Web, but I really love companies in our space that understand the market, that have contacts existing already, that understand the money game, that you don't want to go raise $50 million tomorrow, that raising $1.25 to get us to our next milestone makes sense.

 

Joel:                     So, for those reasons alone, I'm a big fan of what you're doing. I think that as a business, this is an incredibly competitive space, but I trust that you'll have the team, and the knowledge, and the historical sort of perspective to say, "Here's the pivot that we need to do. Here's the direction we need to go. Here's what we need to build." And for those reasons alone, I'm gonna give you a big applause.

 

Chad:                  Woo-hoo.

 

Joel:                     Now, what do you have to say for yourself?

 

Doug:                  I couldn't be more happy that you guys had me on the show today. I feel like I've avoided the shark bite in my ass, which is always a good thing. But all due credit back to you, Joel. Hearing your early SEO talks and what you were doing there was a huge thing that kept inspiring us to keep going, and what you were doing down the consulting thread we were doing from a platform thread, and I think that's the only difference between kind of what ended up being where we went. Frankly, the Jobs2Web business, while it started with SEO, very quickly pivoted and went into a full platform play to become the first recruitment marketing platform. And look at what's happened.

 

Doug:                  There's all these guys now. Smash Fly and Phenom and Jobe. I just love it. I love watching that continued innovation happen and I think the biggest thing that's interesting from my point of view is you guys remember, industries used to love enterprise software where everything was integrated. We're all sitting and waiting and Oracle bought Taleo and we all thought every ... I think that's the thing I see most on the top level is that a lot of these executive leaders are still waiting for a single platform that's fully integrated.

 

Joel:                     Nope.

 

Doug:                  It's not gonna happen. If anything, there's a proliferation of applications that's happening, and the very smart people are the ones that are gonna learn how to synthesize, not integrate these systems and be able to buy applications that can seamlessly take friction out and add value to each other. And that, to me, I think is where the smarter strategy plays are gonna happen in the future, and we're excited to be a part of it.

 

Chad:                  Yeah. How does it feel to be the grandfather of recruitment marketing platforms?

 

Doug:                  How did I go to being a grandfather, dude? Jesus, man. Founder, innovator. Stay with the baby stuff, none of this grandpa stuff. Grandpa. Godfather.

 

Joel:                     Yeah. Hey, Doug. Tell us again where we can find out more about ZAPinfo.

 

Doug:                  Hey, we'd love to have everybody come and give it a whirl at ZAPinfo.io, which is ... stands for input/output. Come on, Joel. You know this. IO, man.

 

Chad:                  I thought it was Indian Oceans for the country code, right? No?

 

Joel:                     Good lord.

 

Chad:                  We out.

 

Joel:                     We out.

 

Announcer:       This has been the firing squad. Be sure to subscribe to The Chad and Cheese Podcast so you don't miss an episode. And if you're a startup who wants to face the firing squad, contact the boys at ChadCheese.com today. That's www.ChadCheese.com.

 

 

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