You can keep your problems

You see, I have enough of my own. Problems can be time-consuming, stressful and challenging. Now I don’t resent my own problems as an absence would suggest there is either nothing much happening in my life or I have no control over it. But just because I recognise the value of taking responsibility for my own life does not mean I welcome other people parking their issues at my doorstep.

And this brings me to one of the aspects of the welfare to work sector that I find most puzzling. People who abrogate responsibility and just expect someone else to find a solution to their difficulties are simply ticking time bombs on the cusp of their next misfortune. Until a person takes personal responsibility s/he just blows in the wind and cannot be relied upon. So why do so many advisors pick up the baton and step in to find a job for a person? They are simply reinforcing the message that the individual is useless and needs everything done for him/her. It won’t be long before something happens and once again the person is unemployed, passively waiting to be assisted again.

This does not mean that jobseekers should be just left to it, somehow knowing what to do and how to do it. But there should be a crystal clear message that the advisor is not taking on the customer’s problems but is simply providing help so the person can find workable solutions. When selling MyWorkSearch I often focus on how technology saves costs and is convenient to access whenever and wherever required. However if I had to pick one attribute that is transformative, it is retaining responsibility with the jobseeker. Because once people cease being dependent they start coping and from this comes confidence and confident people are far more likely to have fulfilled and successful lives.

So I am happy to help people; indeed I delight in it. But don’t ever ask me to own your problems. They are your’s to solve.

Sour grapes and transparency

Many psychological studies have emphasised the importance of fairness. We can all put up with considerable hardship however what makes it feel far worse is when our situation has arisen as a consequence of unfairness. In business all too often we are unaware of why a decision has not gone our way and therefore do not know whether it was our fault through not being as good as necessary or someone else who simply did a better job. We very rarely have insight into a patently unfair process.

One of the positive things happening with government procurement is the greater transparency into the decision making process. Far more data is published and therefore one has a better, albeit not perfect, insight.

Two things have happened this week that I have found very frustrating and I cannot get away from the feeling that I am suffering from a severe case of sour grapes! That having been stated, what has happened is still wrong and is very disappointing.

The Cabinet Office are sponsoring what is a great initiative. In an effort to benefit from the innovation that tends to come from smaller enterprises and to encourage government to do business with this type of company they have created the Innovation Launch Pad.  Here companies can submit ideas and the best ones get a higher profile and access to help in advancing their proposition to government. MyWorkSearch submitted two ideas (idea 1 and idea 2) and in the first, expert review stage, they both were scored 5 out of a maximum of 5, something achieved by only a handful of submissions. Whilst I am clearly biased, given these scores I think it reasonable to claim some merits for both proposals. The current stage of the competition is for those with civil servant email addresses to register and rate each idea, clicking on a thumbs-up for those they like and a thumbs-down for those they don’t. Our second idea has the distinction of – by some margin – receiving the most negative ratings of all the several hundred submitted proposals! Given that the idea clearly is not daft my only explanation for this level of antipathy is that civil servants are associating our idea with public sector redundancies and that a vote against us is a vote against redundancies. Absurd and unfair though this is, there is nothing I can do about it and it is therefore highly unlikely that what on the face of it is a good idea, will have a chance to progress to the next round.

The second occurrence this week was the announcement that The London Boroughs Recruitment Partnership, a consortium of twenty-five boroughs and three associated bodies, have appointed a firm as their sole supplier of recruitment advertising and strategic HR services.  The announcement includes the fact that the contract has been expanded to include additional services such as outplacement to help LBRP members during the current period of change. MyWorkSearch looked at bidding for this major contract however the published requirement was that whoever bid for outplacement also had to offer recruitment advertising. The two services have nothing in common and I can see no logic in requiring both from the same company, especially as there is only one large provider in the UK that within its range of business lines has both services. We knew we could not win and therefore decided not to bid. Several months later it is this one organisation that has both offerings that has secured the contract. They are are a reputable and professional company and will in all likelihood do a good job for their client. However they won a major piece of public sector work in what was superficially an open but in reality a shoddy process. This is not fair to the companies that would have liked to secure the work and it is not fair to the tax-payers and employees of the twenty eight organisations that procure through The London Boroughs Recruitment Partnership.

And this brings me full circle. Two instances of poor practice that have negatively impacted upon my company, an enterprise I care very much about. Ironically the transparency of the process has made the unfairness that much more obvious. But what to do? I could obsess over it and have it churn away. I could try and fight the process and bring about change. I think instead I’ll just write this cathartic blog and then move on! Sometimes life isn’t fair and in business this rough goes with the smooth.

Yes – this does matter!

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I am the CEO of a company and I am also a salesperson, responsible for ensuring we win as much business as possible.  So I do appreciate both sides of the coin: receiving numerous approaches from enthusiastic vendors, all keen for my time and budget and meanwhile being that self-same person trying to get a prospective customer to focus on our offering.  I am quite certain that in my haste I have rejected offers that it would have made more sense to accept.  But this is just one of those things in a busy business life.

I was pondering this as I discussed some of the challenges our business development team face.  We are convinced that:

  • MyWorkSearch through taking an innovative approach solves a fundamental problem that affects the entire outplacement industry.  The level of assistance that can be provided by a conventional outplacement provider is directly related to the budget, as the main cost is a consultant’s time.  The lower the budget the more the service is rationed and at some point the offer becomes of very limited value.  Delivering through technology breaks this link as we do not have a delivery cost.  Our service is 24/7 ‘all you can eat’ with the user taking as much assistance as s/he wants.  On the basis that we have got our solution right – and the evidence suggests we have – we have created something truly special that transforms what is possible in our sector.
  • Whilst every employer I have met has stated that they would like to provide career transition help to former staff, many have said that they simply don’t have the money to do this.  MyWorkSearch, using technology, has dramatically reduced the cost of outplacement assistance and I quite simply do not believe that any solvent employer can now use lack of funds as a reason to refuse provision.

Executives who do not spend their employers’ money wisely are doing a disservice to the organisations that pay their wages.  But unless the sums are very large the consequences are normally trivial.  However those responsible for outplacement decisions fall into a different category.  Not to put too fine a point on it, their employer is firing people who will need to secure new employment in what is clearly a tough jobs environment.  Since very few people are sufficiently wealthy to be able to fund their lifestyle for long without a salary the consequences of redundancy can be severe indeed.  I therefore find it very hard to accept the cavalier attitude to outplacement that my colleagues and I observe all too frequently.

I don’t believe that HR executives who fail to put time and effort into their choice are callous.  Nor do they fall into the category of the careless pathologist whose inattention results in a cancer being missed or the inefficient MOD administrator whose error results in a soldier being without essential equipment.  However their casual approach to this responsibility has consequences far further reaching than I believe they realise.

I remember seeing a cartoon of a man with a machine-gun standing outside a tent next to a medieval army whilst inside the king points out to his servant that he has a battle to fight and no time to see some salesman.  So how should we handle the employer who refuses to look at what we offer, citing either an existing supplier relationship or lack of time or the inability to countenance outplacement due to absence of budget?  If anyone who reads this has some ideas please do get in touch.  And I promise to make time to listen!

Several buses – all at once!

I was going to start my blog with some comment about how one waits for ages and then several buses come at once.  However I then noticed that it has been a month since my last post so it is me that has been slow to write rather than the pace of news that has been fast! But nevertheless a lot has happened.

In September I wrote about MyWorkSearch being shortlisted in the 2010 e-learning awards.  For a new company to make such a prestigious list is hugely rewarding.  A few weeks ago a colleague and I went to the black tie awards dinner, more to network and learn than in the expectation of success.   We vaguely plotted our route to the stage as they prepared to announce the winners in the ‘most innovative’ category however we were not too disappointed or surprised as the bronze and silver winners were revealed and our name was not called out.  I think I was having a “never mind, perhaps next year” conversation as gold was announced.

It took the person next to me to point out that my colleague and I really should head to the front to collect the top award!  So MyWorkSearch built upon the successes of winning the LinkedIn European Business Award and the Microsoft Bizspark contest to now also receive the accolade of Gold Winner in the most prestigious UK e-learning awards.  As if this wasn’t enough, in the past month we were a finalist in the National Online Recruitment Awards and have been shortlisted in the Learning Technology Solution of the Year category for the 2011 IT Training Awards.  I guess I had better take my black tie to the dry cleaners!

All of this external recognition is extremely satisfying.  We work very hard to do a good job and it is great when others acknowledge this.  However the best bit of good news came last week when we completed the analysis of our user research study.  We wanted to find out how successful MyWorkSearch is in getting people back into work.  Well the answer is:

  • 61% of MyWorkSearch users had within 3 months found a new job.
  • The average time to find a job was 62 days.
  • 92% of successful jobseekers stated that MyWorkSearch contributed to this outcome.
  • Jobseekers who accessed the advice and eLearning on MyWorkSearch are 50% more successful at finding a new job than those who do not.

Now this is a superb Christmas present. As I sign off on what will be my last post for 2010, I wish everyone all the very best for the holiday season.

You can lead a horse to water but can you make it drink?

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Mixing metaphors, the elephant in the corner of outplacement is the extent to which job seekers accept and act on the guidance they are offered.  A good many do.  They take advantage of the knowledge and experience offered them and benefit accordingly.  But a meaningful proportion does not.  For reasons such as cynicism, depression, pessimism, disillusionment and lack of confidence they simply don’t engage with the process.  A negative spiral kicks in and the consequences can be long-term unemployment.

This is very frustrating for all concerned.  The people who work at my company, MyWorkSearch, and our competitors get up in the morning with the intention of helping job seekers.  We passionately care about the results we achieve and are saddened by those who don’t take the useful guidance that is made available to them.

This is the leading the horse to water bit.  But what about the drinking?

Last year, in October, I wrote about how we had identified this as an area we wanted to research (https://blog.alberg.co.uk/2009/10/23/the-job-search-conundrum/) and stated that I would return to this as a topic.  Since then we have made considerable progress.  Our research has helped us discover the areas to focus on and our design and development teams have made great strides in implementing improvements.  For example:

Usability is an area we have to work really hard on as if it is difficult or not obvious what to do next a proportion of people will give up.  We have transformed MyWorkSearch with a comprehensive redesign. We have looked at ‘user journeys’ and tried to eliminate the areas where a person can get confused and cease activities.

Allowing flexibility whilst providing the option of a guided route.  Some people want the freedom to self-serve our advice, content and tools.  Others want to be guided through a stepped process.  One size does not fit all and providing this choice removes usage barriers.

Sometimes there is provision for a person to assist individuals as they progress on their path to re-employment.  Knowing who is succeeding and who needs help is key to providing targeted assistance that makes the most of this expensive resource.  We therefore developed a reporting engine that allows a person to see who amongst a group is effectively using MyWorkSearch and the job seekers that would benefit from personal assistance.

The above are all hygiene areas.  They are the basics of a sensibly designed system.  Although they may not be easy to get right we know that they are essential for an effective online re-employment solution.  The area that has most long-term potential and goes above these quality foundations is our Nudge Engine.

Our Nudge Engine is designed to understand each job seeker as an individual and provide personalised guidance and prompts that nudge the person towards the best outcome possible.  Through understanding human psychology and statistics we can populate our Nudge Engine with rules that help each person get the most from MyWorkSearch.

We started work on the Nudge Engine a few months ago and it is about to go live.  We see these personalised small steps as the key to helping individuals succeed.  I will let you know how we progress.

My iPhone and what it has taught me about business

Many, many years ago, my first ‘mobile’ phone was built into my car.  My next one was a small briefcase that I hauled around if I needed to make calls.  Over the years phones got smaller but essentially they did the same thing: they allowed incoming and outgoing calls.  Then ‘smartphones’ emerged.  As well as making calls one could have a diary or run an application.  Whilst ownership of this type of phone provided some sort of geek bragging rights, the reality was that they did not work particularly well and were impractical to integrate with other computers and servers and thus were often more hassle than value.  The Blackberry was the first device to really make email easy and it integrated superbly well with Microsoft Exchange, meaning that my diary, calendar and email were always up to date on both my computer and my phone.   However, certainly in the early days, the Blackberry was a one-trick pony.  Other than the email suite, the device did not offer much more.  I played around with a number of Windows Mobile and Symbian phones but, despite being comfortable with technology, I always found them hard to use well.

Then I got an iPhone and I was blown over.  Every element of the user interface worked well.  It was thought through, logical and had great design.  It was a joy to use.  What was truly impressive was how Apple had created an environment whereby other developers could create applications to work on the iPhone that were doing vastly different things but despite this still functioned in a similar fashion and were intuitive to use.  No other device on the market managed to combine this flexibility with ease of use.  Rival capable devices were typically hard to use and each application had its own learning curve.  How was it that all those rival companies that had big R&D budgets, numerous talented engineers and the same customer research data had either failed to recognise the requirement or failed to deliver it?  What had no doubt been regarded as impossible had been achieved by Apple.

For a decade I have been running businesses that have invested heavily in creating software delivered business solutions.  I have observed that it is relatively easy to get developers who can write code that is reliable and indeed can engineer complex algorithms.  What is really difficult is creating a user interface that is a joy to use.  The wider the range of functionality the harder this is.  The more need there is to add an extra menu option or button or to create inconsistent operating rules that simply confuse users.  If a person’s hobby or career require mastery of complex software there is a chance that the individual will invest the required time to learn how to properly use it.  However most people are not this committed and they simply give up and either stop using the product or stick to a fraction of its real capabilities.

In February 2009 my company started building an online solution for outplacement.  MyWorkSearch was designed to provide the information a job seeker requires to manage their job search and the tools to assist the person in achieving this.  We spent over six months creating it and it incorporates considerable expertise and tremendous functionality.  Those who spent time using MyWorkSearch were extremely complimentary, however many also said that it was daunting.  Too many options, menus and features.  Unless one spent time getting to know the product one could find it overwhelming.  Over the next several months we made numerous improvements and this certainly helped matters, however it was clear we had no iPhone.  Our competition did not either, however this was not the point.  My colleagues and I felt that just because most people accepted that big software applications had to be complex, we should not.

So in December 2009 we started work on version 2 of MyWorkSearch.  We met with designers, usability experts and e-learning professionals.  We put together a team and have spent over six months intensively re-thinking MyWorkSearch and then implementing these new ideas.

On Sunday 11th July we will be upgrading to this new version.  I am so very, very pleased with what our team have produced.  We have been uncompromising in our efforts to push beyond functionality and achieve usability.  Whenever we have been stuck the iPhone has been a clear signal that the intractable does have solutions.  In a previous post I wrote about our observation that some users did not take full advantage of the resources we were making available and appeared to be giving up.  I hope that improving usability will make a difference to this.  We will be monitoring the outcomes and this is a topic I will be returning to.  Meanwhile I want to thank Steve Jobs and his team at Apple.  Sometimes it takes someone else to show that the bar was set too low.  As well as making a great phone Apple have also contributed to what is fast becoming the most powerful and effective tool available to those in career transition.

MP-45

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Every day at MyWorkSearch we help thousands of people with their career choices.  Whilst this is a serious business that fundamentally affects people’s lives there are occasions when we look at the light-hearted side of our profession.  So on a quiet Friday afternoon and with the media dominated by the election, the MyWorkSearch team started thinking about what careers politicians could try should they not be an MP on May 7th.

The Prime Minister would be a perfect Community Diversity Officer, having successfully placated Gillian Duffy, the pensioner he branded a ‘bigot’ earlier in the week, whilst David Cameron, with his liking for (public sector) cuts and love of the outdoors would make an ideal butcher. Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg, who likes putting a spanner in the works, is recommended to try his hand at plumbing should things not work out for him next Thursday. We also felt that the original ‘Blair Babe’, Jacqui Smith, would make an ideal Ann Summer’s party organiser, George Osborne an estate agent and Vince Cable, used to playing second fiddle, would be an ideal second-hand car salesman. Perhaps unsurprisingly, BNP leader Nick Griffin, who is used to being abused in public, would make a perfect traffic warden should he not be elected to parliament.

Having searched though 12 politicians’ profiles, our full list of recommendations is as follows:

POLITICIAN & CONSTITUENCY SKILLS,EXPERIENCE, PERSONALITY IDEAL JOB

Gordon Brown, Kirkcaldy & Cowdenbeath

Likes meeting members of the public, not afraid to express his views,  champion of minorities (especially Eastern Europeans) Community Diversity Officer

David Cameron, Witney

Member of the ‘Bullingdon’ club, likes making cuts, enjoys running outdoors, wants to ‘beef up’ national security Organic butcher
Nick Clegg, Sheffield Hallam ‘Man of the people’, likes putting a spanner in the works Plumber
Jacqui Smith, Redditch Original ‘Blair Babe’, knowledge of education, detention and sex laws, husband enjoys adult films Anne Summers Party Organiser
Vince Cable, Twickenham Experienced orator, good with numbers, used to playing second fiddle Second-hand car salesman
George Osborne, Tatton Used to making predictions on the economy, intricate knowledge of mortgages having been investigated over his repayments by the PSC Estate Agent
John Prescott, Hull East (Standing down in 2010) Likes fast cars, knowledge of self-defence, experience of being a deputy Police Chief
David Miliband, South Shields Expert in foreign etiquette, known for charm, used to waiting (in line to become next Labour leader) Concierge

William Hague, Richmond (Yorks)

Known for comic wit during PMQs, experience of TV presenting, preceded David Cameron, boasts 14 pint minimum

Warm-up comedian
Ed Balls, Morley and Outwood Reputed for being aggressive & ambitious with a treasury background. Once called the ‘most powerful unelected person in Britain’ as a civil servant Bailiff

Lembit Opik, Montgomeryshire

Rated most liberal MP in parliament, known for liking twosomes

Erotic fiction writer

Nick Griffin, Barking Cambridge graduate with good writing skills, likes uniforms, used to daily abuse from the public Traffic Warden

Just because you’re out of a job doesn’t mean you don’t have skills that can be employed usefully elsewhere. Our list of alternative jobs for MP’s demonstrates this and we hope that come May 7th, if any of these MP’s do need further career advice then MyWorkSearch can help them in this search.

Have a great bank holiday and normal serious service resumes on Tuesday!

Richard

Transition

I should be depressed; however I am not.  In addition to it looking like I will lose my bet, my company is soon likely to have to contend with a more challenging environment.  All the indicators are that the economy has turned and we are now on the road to recovery.  We may not be on the motorway, indeed it feels more like a windy country lane, however the economy is gradually becoming more benign with fewer bad news stories and reasonably frequent positive ones.

This makes it harder for MyWorkSearch which has clearly benefited from high levels of unemployment; with recovery there will inevitably be fewer potential users of our service.  However the reason for my optimism is that I am quite certain that even in a more buoyant environment there will still be employment change.  Some organisations will prosper and recruit, others will do less well and shrink.  Companies will merge and operations will move.  All of this will mean a reasonable level of ongoing demand for outplacement and career transition assistance.

The reason for my optimism is I am convinced that our hypothesis just over a year ago, that online outplacement would be useful, has proven correct.  As overall demand for outplacement shrinks the requirements that remain will gravitate to MyWorkSearch‘s online model.  So many thousands of people have now experienced the benefit of 24/7 unlimited assistance that it is hard to see many preferring the alternative of a handful of consultant delivered hours that the same budget offers.  As with so many other sectors, technology is changing the way this one operates.  Whilst my colleagues and I may need to work harder to secure new business, at least we will be doing so in the satisfaction that our country is suffering less hardship and meanwhile our business model is aligned to what the customer wants.

Over the next few weeks we will be upping our game in order to ensure we remain at the forefront of our sector.  We will be launching our new website and embarking on a major marketing campaign.  Hours of additional e-learning content will be added to MyWorkSearch and we will be rolling out a new design combined with usability improvements.  The benefits of feedback from thousands of users combined with six figure investment will see us capitalise upon our existing lead and ensure we are the obvious choice for outplacement purchasers.

None of this helps with my bet.  But if there is one gamble I have to lose, I guess that this is the one it should be!

The New World of Outplacement

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I wrote an article for HR Zone on how I see outplacement changing and why we created MyNewJob.me.  As one needs to register to read HR Zone articles I reproduce it below.  I hope you find it of interest.  I am convinced that this is the way the market is going.

Outplacement is changing. What was once predominantly a service designed for a relatively small number of senior executives is now a mass market offering. The problem is that although the name has remained the same the available budget has considerably changed. No longer are several thousand pounds per person available. It is now, at best, several hundred pounds and as budget is trimmed, so too is the service provided.

What used to be fairly comprehensive job search support and guidance has been replaced by a brief one-to-one, attendance at several lectures, a few handouts and a pat on the back. A couple of years ago this would have been disappointing but not a major issue as job opportunities abounded. Now the world has changed. Each job seeker is competing with 50 to 150 others per role and with these odds, the enthusiastic but unprepared candidate is in for a rude shock. Numerous unacknowledged applications later, despondency sets in and it does not take that many months before a previously gainfully employed person becomes a member of the long term unemployed.

I don’t think it is realistic to call for larger outplacement budgets. A few years ago job losses were often the consequence of M&A activity and the overlaps created by a merger. Cash was abundant and outplacement was just one of the many deal costs that were accepted as one-off exceptional items. Now employers are shedding staff to cope with threatening financial pressures and the need to slash costs includes the overall severance budget.

Some years ago I was involved in the transition of recruitment from a largely paper based process to an automated and online one. It was fascinating to see an established methodology overturned by a set of technologies that transformed the speed, quality, consistency, efficiency and costs of a process. I believe that outplacement is now undergoing the same change and soon the process will be very different from what we have been used to.

The advice and guidance that has typically been provided by an outplacement consultant can now be received through on-demand e-learning. Many of the laborious tasks that a job-seeker has to undertake can now be automated.  Examples include searching for and aggregation of vacancies, or identification of relevant employment sources.  Wizards with attractive templates make CV creation considerably easier than used to be the case. Process automation means that job search activities can be tracked, reminders provided and reports generated. Triggers can monitor activity and provide encouragement and advice based on what a person has done, or indeed not done.

Effective outplacement can now be provided through technology. Clearly there are huge cost advantages. Also, unlike traditional outplacement online programmes can be swiftly scaled and there are no logistical challenges in commencing the service. There are also no practical limits on resource provision. With traditional outplacement service availability is rationed according to the budget, however a technology solution can be accessed 24/7 and provision is not constrained.

We have also uncovered some unexpected benefits. Most job seekers want to immediately ‘get stuck in’ and energetically commence their job search. An on-demand online process lends itself to this as individuals can use the service for as many hours as they want and do not need to wait for the next scheduled workshop. We are seeing considerable usage in the evenings as people at home do their research and create job applications.

Another characteristic that we had not predicted is control. Being made redundant can be a major emotional blow.  In addition to the worry about the future, someone else has decided that your job is coming to an end and you have to leave the organisation. This is a major loss of control. Traditional consultant delivered outplacement can reinforce this as the job seeker is once again thrown into a process and told what to do and when to do it. Having the assistance on demand as a web delivered service returns control to the job seeker. The individual can choose what to do, when to do it and how much to do. This is very important to a significant proportion of online outplacement users.

Of course it is not all plain sailing with online delivery. People made redundant typically want some human contact. This will often be a cathartic discussion of their plight rather than a practical job search process discussion. Another area is that a proportion of people are far less active in their job search than common sense and market knowledge suggest they should be. I am not sure that this is unique to an online solution. It may just be that with a technology platform there is the data on individual activity that does not exist with a conventional process.

I believe that the next couple of years will be very interesting for the sector. A slowly recovering economy will result in relatively high unemployment, job market volatility and competition for jobs. Large numbers of people will require assistance with their job search and technology will be the only way of cost-effectively meeting this demand. New and improved services will emerge and we will see innovation in a market that for many years has changed little.

Inevitable, but when?

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I am currently on holiday and this is one of the few occasions each year when I get extended, uninterrupted time to read and think.  One of the books I brought with me is Behind the Cloud, by Marc Benioff.  Marc is the founder and CEO of Salesforce.com.  My company uses their product and I recently met Marc after their London conference.

Salesforce.com has developed into an exceptionally successful and very large company.  My business is at the other end of the spectrum.  However what we have in common is that both of us have founded enterprises at the forefront of a market about to change.  Marc’s book explains what led him to form his company and in describing how he overcame obstacles and went from startup to market leader provides a wealth of useful guidance for others in a similar position.  It is both helpful and inspirational.

The relevance to my company is with our MyNewJob.me offering. We operate in a sector where fundamental change is inevitable.  The current ‘business model’ is broken.  Outplacement provision is dominated by a handful of organisations and whilst they do their best, they rarely provide a good service to their customers.  Their challenge is that they employ consultants to help people through their job search process and with budgets now typically in the low hundreds of pounds per person they plain cannot afford to offer a decent service.  The employer that is paying the bill feels less guilty about making redundancies however both the service provider and the job-seeker know that the offering is of limited value.

The only viable model is self-service using online technology.  All the help that the job-seeker requires can be provided online (from job search training to activity management to task automation to reporting, etc.) and since technology is cheap the customer can consume as much as s/he wants whenever s/he wants.  It is totally logical.  The only challenge is that many of the employers who purchase this type of service don’t yet know about MyNewJob.me or recognise the deficiencies of what they currently purchase for their staff and why change is both necessary and inevitable.

Just as Salesforce.com built what they knew the market would need and helped educate others to recognise why their model was superior so must we do the same.  Fortunately our business is now profitable which means we don’t have the pressures of a cash-burning startup, however the role of a pioneering evangelist is a challenging one.  It is great to read about others who have successfully made this journey.