In 2010 I decided to leave the life of an entrepreneur and rejoin the workforce. What I discovered was that the world of job-hunting had been turned upsidedown and backward. Up until then, I had a successful career and had built up a pretty impressive resume. But very quickly I learned that the traditional view of a qualified candidate had changed. The resume I was taught to use and was successful with in the past, was now actually hurting my chances of landing an interview.
The content of my resume mattered less than the format. And what’s worse, no one seemed to know what format or language style was most appropriate for any given opportunity. That first job hunt of mine took nine months. Sadly, my next two job searches took longer and longer. Sadder still, I discovered I was part of an ever-increasing group of workers called “discouraged workers” all with almost identical stories to mine.
Being a marketer by trade I put my research hat on to see if I could discover what was going on. How could it be possible that a successful professional, with a rich background, find it so difficult to find work – any work? And what are those who can find work doing that those of us so-called “discouraged workers” are not?
The answer is both surprisingly simple and terrifying. It’s simple in that it’s relatively easy to fix. It’s terrifying because the longer we go without fixing it, we risk crippling our workforce and prompting another economic crisis.
The one thing most successful job seekers have in common is a referral. I wanted to build a solution that shifted incentives away from job boards that solicit hundreds of strangers. I wanted to shift those incentives to employees who made referrals. I wanted to create a tool that made it easy for employees to spot great candidates in their networks. And I wanted to get people back to work fast.
That’s why I created hirebarry.com.