Employee referrals have become quite common and are by far the most preferred mode of hiring in any organisation worldwide. Definitely, the medium has its own advantages – both to the company and to the referrer. But have this ever crossed your mind that you can actually make money by just referring your friends for a job?
No..! But now you can think about this.
A startup called SpringRole aims to open this system to the public, where anyone can refer their friends/ colleagues for any job-whether or not they are a part of the company. With a motto of “Hire faster, Hire Cheaper”. The portal allows anyone who has a social presence online an opportunity to refer or to get referred for a job with SpringRole; and at the same time, to earn an average of $100 per introduction.
The web portal was launched as a hiring marketplace 3 months back in the US and now it has spread its wings in India. Led by Benoit Vatere and Kartik Mandaville, the startup was incubated by California based Science Inc. and is currently headquartered at Bangalore.
How does it work?
Individual users can activate their profile on the portal for free via their Linkedin accounts. The ‘Refer Now’ tab redirects the user to the job listings page, wherein for each job referral a fixed amount ranging between $5 to $20 is mentioned. In order to avoid spam, at a time one user can refer only 6 people for a job.
For instance, a user A saw a job for an Android Developer marked with $10. From his Linkedin connections, he referred Mr. B for this job. Once the referred person accepts the job opportunity, his profile is pre-screened using an algorithm to check whether it matches the company requirements. Now, as soon as Mr. B’s profile is sent to the employer, user A will get USD 10 in his account which he can redeem via cheque, Paypal or Bitcoin.
In order to post jobs, the companies need to opt from the available packages. For example, they have an entry level monthly package of INR 6,000 for companies where they can post as many jobs as they want but there will only be one active job.
Opportunities and Roadblocks
As per Karthik, from the users perspective, India is a very interesting market, as monetary factor plays a great role in driving people to refer. Also, employers here, still trust the traditional recruitment websites like Naukri, etc more and are still reluctant to put their credit/debit card details online. But this is not the case in the US. “Its similar to the fact that in India we do not pay for downloading a song, but in US we do,” he added.
If talked about facts, then the online recruitment space globally has been forecasted to grow with a CAGR of 14.52%, by TechNavio’s analysts. Also, according to a survey, with increasing mobile and social media recruiting, the Indian job market is improving with an increase of 19% since the beginning of this year, with 59% of companies hiring at the moment.
The initial challenge was to find how to best reach to companies that are hiring. There are so many channels and ways to do it, that it has been difficult to figure out which one is the most efficient and scalable.
Commenting on managing the marketing strategies in both the countries, Benoit Vatere said,“ It is definitely very challenging to tackle two markets at the same time as they are completely different ones which requires complete different strategies when it comes down to customer acquisition. While we are leveraging paid media in the US, we are more focused on direct sales in India.”
The challenges ahead are going to be the retention of new customers. Like any business, success comes from repeat customers which is why we are very focused on our user experience.
At present, SpringRole has around 50 paid clients in India and it aims at getting around 100 clients every week on board. Currently its services are also available on iOS platform, going forward, the founders are planning to launch the Android version too.
Further, the team is also working to include Facebook and Twitter profiles of the user to for referring their friends, apart from the existing LinkedIn profiles.