Incredible But True: How People Get Jobs is Complete Nonsense
"Incredible But True Story: How a Blue Collar Kid From Detroit Discovered How People Get Jobs is Complete Nonsense"
-Recruiters looking at employer websites for jobs
-Job boards containing only a few jobs
-Job seekers spinning their wheels in the wrong places
I'm a former asphalt contractor and then became an attorney by accident—I honestly think the law school I went to made a mistake in admitting me. I grew up in a house that is probably today not valued at more than $100,000. My mother's dream for me was to get a job as a deck hand on one of the freighters that cruise around the Great Lakes in Michigan picking up coal and so forth to power the auto plants.
No one ever had very high expectations for me and I did not either. The story I am about to tell you is the absolute truth, as incredible as it may seem.
I Got Into This Business Because I Quit My Job.
It all started when I quit my job as an attorney in a law firm several years ago. Because I had spent 10+ years working outdoors when I was an asphalt contractor it was hard for me to be cooped up in an office building looking outdoors all day. I went to one of the top 10 law schools in the United States. I have no idea how I pulled that off. I think they must have thought it was a novelty having a blue collar working-type guy in the school.
You cannot keep us working guys cooped up in office buildings, though. We need to be doing stuff outdoors.
When I quit my job a few days before I was scheduled to leave that old law firm, the managing partner of the office I was working in, came into my office. He did one of the strangest things you can imagine but it is something that changed my life and it is going to change yours as well. In fact, I am eternally indebted to him for what he did to this day.
First, he told me that if I was unhappy working at the law firm I should speak with legal recruiters and see if there were other employers I would enjoy working at more.
Second, he told me to not leave the firm yet and spend the next three months speaking with recruiters and going out on interviews. He also told me the law firm would pay me while I looked for a job ... something about it being easier to find a job when you are employed rather than unemployed. I was making a lot of money and decided to take him up on his offer. That silly law firm was paying me around $14,000 a month to type on the computer and talk on the phone at the time. I am not kidding—this is what they pay in some parts for this sort of work.
I knew that I would have to get a lot of blisters and sunburn if I was going to make $14,000 a month working as an asphalt contractor for a month. So I decided to stay caged in that office for awhile.
I took him up on his offer.
A Blue Collar Kid from Detroit Discovers the Job Search World is Complete Nonsense.
Over the course of the next few months I spoke with recruiter after recruiter and realized that each recruiter knew about different jobs than the next one. Moreover, I also realized that all of the jobs in law firms in my city were all on the employer/law firm websites and recruiters were just parroting back the jobs that could be found on these websites.
Let me repeat this:
All of the jobs were on employer websites.
I could not believe that recruiters were making a good living just sending people over to the same jobs that were advertised on employer websites. Here these recruiters were showing up in starched shirts and acting all self important and all they were doing is looking up jobs online and sending me over to the same employers I could find out about on my own.
The problem was that it is a lot of work finding all of these jobs. A ton of work. Now there are hundreds of law firm websites in major cities so finding these jobs was a formidable task; however, at the same time the fact that all the jobs were on these sites was something that really stuck out for me. At the same time I saw recruiters making hundreds of thousands of dollars per year sending people over to these jobs!
I also quickly realized that most of the jobs were not on job boards like Monster, CareerBuilder, HotJobs and so forth but were, instead, on employer websites. In fact, I quickly discovered that virtually every job was on employer websites and not job boards or with recruiters. Probably well over 95% of them!
The reason for this was simple: It does not cost employers a cent to post jobs on their own websites!
It was incredible. All of the jobs that recruiters were telling me about could be easily found on employer websites. None of the recruiters knew about most of the jobs because they did not monitor all of the employer websites.
It was as if every job out there was available to me not through recruiters and not through job boards but just by going to employer websites.
I looked at the system around me and how people were finding jobs and I said to myself "This is complete nonsense and I need to do something about it."
Asphalt Contractor, to Attorney, to Recruiter, to Bank to Search Engine Builder?
What the Fu**? Yes, it is true. This is the course I have followed with my life. I have no idea how any of this happened but I will make a long story short.
I quit practicing law in 2000. By 2005 my company had over 700 employees. Over 300 of these employees were busy manually searching employer sites for jobs just for attorneys. We were using spiders and some other technology but the real problem was classifying all of this information. I was doing this for a company called LawCrossing. LawCrossing is a site that consolidates jobs in the legal profession. This company grew fast ... it has been one of the fastest growing companies on the Inc. 500 at least a few times.
I wanted nothing more than to gather jobs for every profession. Since attorneys comprise about 1% of the population in the United States, I figured that if I was going to gather jobs for every single profession, I would need somewhere in the neighborhood of 20,000 to 25,000 employees. I was very ambitious. I started looking at skyscrapers and so forth where I could house all of these employees.
Then something miraculous happened.
Within a few months a small student loan company I was running burst at the seams and became one of the largest lenders of student loans in the United States. It became an actual lender (like a bank) and grew so fast I could not believe it. Within months I had made not like $1,000,000, not even $5,000,000 but over $10,000,000. It was like winning the lotto or something.
I was not interested in the money for myself, however.
I wanted a search engine to track down all of these jobs.
Within weeks I had hired some of the best programmers in the world. People who had developed search engines for Yahoo! and other sites. It took over a year and millions and millions of dollars but pretty soon we had created an incredible tool to search out employer websites for jobs:
Hound was born.
I paid these guys a lot of money and we had a huge team that developed this and still do. The site works for the glory and advancement of job searchers everywhere.
Stupid Asphalt Contractor Starts Business With No Revenue Model. Call me a blockhead if you want but I started this incredible business with no revenue model.
This is the sort of thing no venture capitalist would ever have invested in because it almost makes no sense. It is insane because:
-You cannot charge employers for posting jobs like other job boards do because the site's purpose is to show every job out there.
So, the revenue model of Hound is subscriptions. Since the site costs money to join about 99% of the world does not understand the value of the site and tells themselves "I would never pay to look for a job."
-You cannot charge recruiters to post jobs or advertise because you are excluding them.
Ok. I am happy about the site, anyway though. People who use it have an incredible experience.
Screw needing a business model!
Screw other job boards!
I just want to put you to work because you getting a job and supporting your family is what really matters.
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