Local tech startup Recruit ‘N’ Refer (RNR) launched their B2B online platform to address common issues in the recruitment industry almost a year ago.
“We weren’t originally planning to launch for another few months,” says Rand Lockwood, RNR founder, “but with unemployment spiking in March and April as companies laid people off across numerous industries, we thought this would be a great way to get people back to work faster.”
Alongside RNR, Lockwood runs his own recruitment agency, Premier Recruitment Services (PRS), and has worked in the industry for over a decade. He developed RNR as a solution to what he sees as flaws in traditional recruitment practice, and ultimately, to streamline the recruitment process through innovative technology.
“Some of the main recruitment problems that I want to fix are reducing the number of unscreened applicants that employers receive and eliminating the need for managing multiple vendor contracts. RNR runs on one standard contract, providing all talented recruiters the opportunity to submit candidates across various roles,” said Lockwood.
“The timing of our launch helped those companies in industries like e-commerce, supply chain, and IT services, where the shift in consumer demand has created new jobs that could be filled by our roster of independent recruiters and recruitment agencies.”
RNR allows independent, agency, and in-house recruiters to apply to work on the platform on a freelance basis, where they can pick and choose which posted jobs they want to submit candidates for. For companies who want to use RNR to post available roles at their organization, the difference between Lockwood’s platform and competitive sites like Indeed or Glassdoor is that the job posts are only viewable and accessible to the vetted, specialized recruiters working under RNR’s contract.
Then, RNR recruiters find candidates for these jobs, pre-screen them, and submit them through the platform once they’re sure that the candidate is both qualified for the role and genuinely interested in it. This process takes the pressure off employers, who often have to vet hundreds of applications, and ensures that the candidates who are submitted through RNR are committed to the position. If the candidate gets the job, the recruiter who submitted the candidate through RNR is paid a placement fee.
Since launching in March 2020, RNR has registered over 300 recruiters and paid out close to $100,000 to recruiters who have placed candidates through the platform. So far, the job posts available on the platform have typically been in the accounting and fintech industries, but Lockwood’s team plans to expand going into their second year.
“Our future goal is to be the most automated, efficient hiring platform on the market,” he elaborates. “We help companies create a winning environment, and the more job posts we bring onto the platform, the more candidates and recruiters we can help over time.”
In addition to their success with helping unemployed professionals get back to work, RNR prides itself in guaranteeing an equal admissions process for recruiters interested in working for them. All qualified professionals are encouraged to sign up, regardless of whether the recruiter comes from an in-house, agency, or independent background. Many RNR recruiters also maintain their regular recruitment jobs as there are no fixed hours required for RNR, and pay is entirely commission-based above market rate.
“We’re building an army of specialized recruiters,” says Lockwood. “By creating a flexible, fair, and competitive landscape, we’re helping the best candidates to get the best jobs and the best companies to get the best people. We’re excited by how much we’ve grown in the last year and can’t wait to see what lies ahead for 2021 and beyond.”