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Ups, downs, and funding: news of the job board industry

In pandemic times, four weeks feels like four months – at least that’s how long it feels to me regarding the last time I wrote about the news of our industry! Yet despite the virus (or because of?), I continue to see activity in our space – and it’s not all unemployment. So let’s take a look:

  • 104 Corp. is growingTaiwanese job site operator 104 Corp. saw operating income in the first quarter of 2020 grow by 15% year-on-year to NT$72 million ($2.4 million U.S.). The company attributed the increase to continuous growth of its job bank and executive search business. Operating revenue in Q1 amounted to NT$397 million, up 5.2% year-on-year. Pre-tax income increased 19.3% to NT$77 million compared to NT$64.4 million in 2019. Wonder what Q2 will look like?
  • Jobberman launches assessment Nigeria-based recruitment site Jobberman.com, has launched Skills Assessments, an online test product to help recruiters determine core competency levels of job seekers.  The company says the tests were designed by experts and tailored to assess skills needed for specific job functions and experience levels. The Jobberman Skills Assessment tool costs ₦54,000 ($138 U.S.) per testing round. Good move.
  • Randstad revenue downRandstad reported revenue fell 7% year over year on an organic basis in its first quarter ended March 31. US revenue fell 3% organically year over year in the first quarter; the decline was 4% in Randstad’s US “staffing/inhouse services” segment and 2% in its “US professionals” segment. Randstad Sourceright revenue, which includes MSP and RPO services, was down by 5% organically year over year in the first quarter, while Monster revenue fell 20%. Ouch.
  • StartUp Jobs is acquiredRecruitment software company Alvius has acquired the UK Startup Jobs platform. Founded in 2011, UK Startup Jobs is an established job board with a community of 10,000 job seekers. The deal represents marks Alvius’ first acquisition and will enable it to strengthen its position in the SME recruitment space, as well as secure access to a greater pool of relevant clients and candidates. Interesting.
  • Seek sets big goals Despite weathering what it described as “volatile” macroeconomic conditions in almost all of its key markets, Seek, the Australia- based recruitment giant, continues to push ahead with a long- term growth plan that co-founder and CEO Andrew Bassat believes will result in $5 billion AUD ($3.2 billion U.S.) in revenue by 2025. The employment website said it was “impossible” to forecast the impact of coronavirus on full-year earnings as net profit in the first half of 2019-20 fell by 24 per cent to $75.6 million. Interesting.
  • Recruit delays financials Recruit Holdings has delayed announcing its financial results. Historically, Recruit Holdings announces its financial results within 45 days of the end of each quarter. But, the Covid-19 crisis has put plans to release its full-year financials on hold. Its HR matching businesses were negatively affected. The businesses cover Indeed and Glassdoor. Hmm. And speaking of Glassdoor….
  • Glassdoor lays off employees Glassdoor has laid off 300 employees – about 30% of its entire staff. In a memo to the entire Glassdoor staff, CEO Christian Sutherland-Wong said the layoffs were a cost-cutting measure taken to offset a decline in revenue caused by the coronavirus crisis. In March, Glassdoor saw negative double-digit percentage impacts to traffic, direct sales and self-service, according to the memo. April saw no improvement, mainly because employers, who pay Glassdoor to help recruit employees, have slowed hiring considerably. Sigh.
  • Upwork is upFirst-quarter revenue rose 21.5% at Upwork. Gross margin improved, although net loss increased. Upwork withdrew full-year guidance but reported that for the second quarter it is forecasting revenue of between $79 million and $81 million, a year-over-year increase of between approximately 6.4% and 9.1%. Not all job boards are down.
  • CareerArc launches video assessment: CareerArc has integrated an AI and video tool into its placement platform to help candidates evaluate their soft skills and character traits through brief, self-guided interviews. Candidates can use the insights generated through the video assessment to refine the presentation of their personal brand during interviews, on their resumes and while networking. The company said the “AI-powered psychometric technology” was built with language processing, machine learning and assessment science. Interesting – and of course, ‘AI’!
  • The Supreme Court and scrapingThe Supreme Court has asked HR tech company HiQ Labs to respond to LinkedIn‘s appeal of a lower court’s ruling regarding the scraping of member data. The request is a sign that at least one justice thinks LinkedIn’s appeal could merit a hearing by the top court in the U.S. HiQ Labs scrapes LinkedIn member updates and analyzes the data to predict when workers are likely to quit their jobs. It then sells its data to employers. In May 2017, LinkedIn revoked HiQ’s access to the site, then sued the company. Let’s see where this goes.
  • Goldenline sees dropIn Poland, Agora-owned recruitment site GoldenLine.pl saw a revenue drop by 64% in FY2019. As a result, the company has reduced the number of its employees by 80% in recent weeks. GoldenLine’s revenue amounted to PLN 6.9 million ($1.6 million U.S.) last year, down by 64% from PLN 14.2 million in FY2018. The company also significantly increased its net loss to PLN 5.8 million ($1.4 million U.S.) last year from PLN 700,000 ($167,518 U.S.) a year earlier. Wow.
  • Appcast launches Xcelerate  Appcast announced the launch of Xcelerate – the next generation of its programmatic job ad exchange, Appcast Exchange. Xcelerate automatically learns where hireable candidates for each employer live, work and hang out online. It also offers A/B testing tools to allow recruitment marketers the ability to trial new job titles at scale to improve the ad budget ROI. Sounds cool.
  • DHI revenue downDHI Group’s revenue fell 2.9% in the first quarter to $22.5 million. Revenue rose 19.3% in its ClearanceJobs business but fell in the New York-based company’s other online jobs website businesses: eFinancialCareers and Dice. President and CEO Art Zeile noted that 90% of DHI’s revenue comes from annual subscription-based contracts and two-thirds of the company’s revenue this year had already been booked by March 31. The power of subs.
  • Workstream picks up fundingWorkstream, a hiring platform and mobile app that streamlines the sourcing and onboarding of hourly workers, announced the closing of a $10M Series A funding round. The round was led by Keith Rabois of Founders Fund, who will be joining Workstream’s Board of Directors. Workstream is used by almost 5,000 hiring managers in the U.S. and helps hire front-line workers: caregivers, nurses, delivery drivers, take-out restaurant staff, gas station attendants, etc.

Wow! A lot happens in four weeks, it appears. Some good, some not so good. But as you can tell, acquisitions, growth, and funding continue in certain areas. I hope your business is stable at a minimum – and perhaps even growing.

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