Helping 1000 employees “misfired” and “massfired” by Flipkart

In an unfortunate turn of events, Flipkart announced last week that it is “firing” 800 to 100 employees.

I wrote a LinkedIn post on this topic and was overwhelmed to see 100+ comments from people who have expressed their shock on the way Flipkart has handled this entire event.

Looking ahead: Connecting Flipkart employees with new employers

Criticization doesn’t help anyone. In the above LinkedIn post, I proposed an initiative to easily connect these employees with future employers. The response was overwhelming – 60+ companies (including Amazon, FabFurnish, HackerEarth, GoJek etc) have so far showed interest in hiring these employees.

Encouraged, we have planned a 3 day online event called “Flipkart Connect” to connect the outgoing employees with new employers. A 100% free event, this will give these employees a chance to connect the right future employers, quickly and privately.

Register for Flipkart Connect

FAQs:

  • Where is this event?

This event is completely online. No need to travel anywhere. Just connect with the right employers discretely.

  • Is there a pricing?

No. This is completely free for both employers and employees.

  • What kind of employers will I find at this event?

All the employers will be verified. We will not give access to third party recruitment agencies.

  • What kind of candidates will I find at this event?

All the candidates currently working/having worked at Flipkart.

The event starts on Tuesday (9th Aug) at 11 am. If you are a Flipkart employee or an employer looking to hire them, please register here.

Let us know if you have any suggestions or comments.

Our hiring hacks

Like many of you, we have spent a fair time in hiring & faced several challenges. So many calls, so many meetings – all have yielded nothing. But recently we were able to hire someone in just 3 days flat, from start to finish. Upon reviewing the process we discovered some hiring hacks that we inadvertently used.

(Thanks Tarun Markose from Teemac for prodding into it and making us answer our own questions!)

  • We had done our homework. We knew exactly what the role was about and what qualities to look for. Not only me or Anubhav or Vinit. All of us had a clear idea of the impact this role will bring about. It’s amazing how fast you can move with your hiring when all your stakeholders have 100% clarity of the role.
  • We had set right expectations: We recently wrote an open letter to all prospective employees and the gamble paid off. Yes, it has turned away 90% of candidates, but has got applications from those who fit our culture better. The blog also sets an expectations of high level of transparency and honesty from both sides. Pretensions are checked in at the door.
  • Brand awareness: This was critical. Over a period of time, we have been able to establish our brand and company values. Bonus points if your potential hires have used your product and have had a positive experience with it.

Energized with this hiring, we took a longer look at our hiring process and laid down these rules:

  • Don’t hire for the status, hire for the trajectory. This means choosing people who are smart, hungry and have a point to prove. Not necessarily from IITs or big brand companies.
  • Don’t hire if your gut says no: Many times we were tempted to hire experienced people who struck the right chords, but were not really aligned with our vision.  We’re glad we didn’t give in to this temptation. Yes, one can always fire them later, but that’s a high risk gambit that we avoid.
  • Don’t over-convince people: By your means, sell them your vision and try to get them excited. But after a point, just stop. If you have to convince them too hard, they are unlikely to stay with you for too long anyway.

So what are your hiring lessons?

Foodpanda lays off 500; hire them or help those affected

This is turning out to be a rough winter for startup employees. Earlier this month, PubMatic laid off 150+ people and today we learned that FoodPanda has laid off close to 500 employees as well. As expected, this has sparked another hot debate on startup bubble, funding mismanagement, startup career risks and so on.

While this discussion is much needed, there is something more important. Close to 500 people from Foodpanda were unexpectedly let go of and now have to look for an alternative job urgently. Having seen such situations closely before, we understand this can be a difficult situation for people financially and emotionally. As we understand there are two challenges these employees face:

  • Discovering just the right companies that want to hire them

Finding all the companies and roles on offer is time consuming and inefficient. For every company you are able to find about, there are 5 that are as promising but are unknown to you.

  • Retaining privacy and avoiding unwanted calls:

You want to maximize your chances, but giving out your personal details to everyone just leads to just spam and fake recruiter calls that waste your time and makes your job search more work than it should be.

Our initiative: Help FoodPanda Employees

To help the affected employees, we at SocialHelpouts have started an initiative that is similar to the one we had started for PubMatic employees.

The idea is simple – connecting the affected employees with as many potential employers as possible. Employees just have to create their short profile while we will reach out to potential employers and showcase the profiles.

If you are an affected FoodPanda employee

You just need to create a short profile on SocialHelpouts.

If you are interested in hiring these FoodPanda employees

You will be able to view all the profiles on SocialHelpouts. There is no cost. Get started here.

Want to help?

Please spread the word. Share this post with your network. Suggestions? Ideas? Please send them to us at hello@socialhelpouts.com.

About us: SocialHelpouts is a LinkedIn like network that matches people with jobs and freelancer opportunities with the help of their network. Everday, users from 300+ tech companies such as Paytm, Time.inc, MakeMyTrip, Inc42, Druva & MindTickle use it hire the right fitting talent.

 

Startup hiring: How is SocialHelpouts different?

Startup hiring is hard. Not because there are not enough hiring solutions but because they deliver more noise than actual results.

For example,  it is not uncommon to get 100+ applications on job posted on say LinkedIn, Naukri or HasJob. But most of these are irrelevant or come from fence-sitters. No wonder that one of the startups hiring on SocialHelpouts reports a ratio of 600 applications to 1 hire!

We have designed SocialHelpouts to make startup hiring easy and efficient. Here’s how:

  • Smart matchmaking

startups hiring made easy with a strong matchmaking

SocialHelpouts heavily uses matchmaking to suggest only the jobs or candidates that fit your needs.  This saves time and increases the quality of interactions that get initiated on the platform.

  • No spam. No frivolous messages.

Thanks to our unique credit system, a user can initiate conversations with only a limited number of people. So,  a candidate can only reply to a handful of jobs and an employer can only contact a limited number of candidates. This cuts down on noise drastically.

  • Referrals from your entire network

startups hiring on SocialHelpouts get referrals from their entire network

SocialHelpouts unifies ALL your existing connections on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. This means a candidate can find mutual friends across different social networks. For a hiring startup, it means not only your current employees but your entire network may introduce an interested candidate to you.

  • Unleash the power of your trusted network

Network recommendations- the key part of startup hiring

SocialHelpouts gives you valuable intel when someone in your network starts looking for new opportunities or recommends a candidate that matches your needs.

But that’s just a start. Startups can also involve their trusted network of friends, colleagues, investors and mentors in hiring.  With SocialHelpouts, these users can easily recommend and refer interesting candidates without doing a lot of hard work. It’s like putting referrals on  autopilot.

Result? We have happy users such as Gaurav Misra from Letsintern.com, who was able to close a critical hiring in just half a day.  Or Abhimanyu Bhosale from LiveHealth who was able to hire 4 key employees in just 2 weeks. Or Gaurav Sava from Adkarlo who closed 2 key positions within 2 weeks of using SocialHelpouts.

Try it yourself and let us know how can be improve: http://socialhelpouts.com

Startup Hiring Hack: Engagement first, hiring later

Let’s admit it – startup hiring is tricky, time consuming and not exactly fun. Many of us find it as a huge distraction from the other “more exciting” activities we do at startups. So we tend to keep delaying hiring until it becomes a crying need. And when that happens, we force ourselves to repeat the age-old hiring drill:

Put together a Job Description > Post on job portals and social media > Shortlist & Interview > (Hopefully) Hire

Sadly, this process doesn’t work well for start-ups

We all know it but often forget – startup hiring is not about getting the most skilled guy for the least cost.

It’s just about finding some smart people who “get” what you’re doing and want to grow along with your startup.

Determining this fit takes time, which is exactly what you don’t have when you’re desperate to hire.

Startup hiring hack: Engagement first, hiring later

At SocialHelpouts, we have had a vantage point of seeing how different startups hire. The ones that have got “hiring” right are the ones who are always eager to meet smart people, without any expectation of hiring them in the short term. They source these people from their network, meetups or platforms such as SocialHelpouts and LinkedIn.

The important point is – they are simply looking to converse, bouncing ideas off them and finding ways in which they can help each other. Hiring is more like a happy coincidence, not the end goal.

As a startup, we have been trying this philosophy at SocialHelpouts and are decently happy with the results. We have not hired anyone with this approach yet, but we have definitely got a growing number of people who give us feedback, test our products, spread word of mouth and will likely be considering us as their preferred workplace in future.

Have you tried this #startuphiringhack? What do you think of it?

Have a #hiring hack of your own? Quickly submit it here – we will convert that to a blog post and credit you for sharing it.

Two weeks after the PubMatic layoffs: here is what we have achieved so far

A bit of context first: Two weeks ago, we heard the unfortunate news that PubMatic was laying off 100+ people. To help the employees affected by this, we started an initiative to connect them with their prospective employers easily on our platform.

Here is a brief checkpoint on what has happened since then.

40 companies have shown interest

We got interest from several big names – such as Symantec, BMC, Crest Software and Sulekha.com along with several fast-growing startups such as Houzify, TravelYaari, Dimentrix Technologies, EverTeam, Boomerang Commerce, Izel Technologies, Qualys , Zentest software and many more.

Many companies reached out from the media and ad-tech space, such as Sokrati, Yukta MediaFork MediaMediastinct , Bonzai Ad and even some based overseas such as Aki Technologies  PulsePoint & JustPemium Ad Exchange. These companies have been asked to check out the profiles on SocialHelpouts.

You can see the entire list here.

47 employees from PubMatic joined us

Word went around and we have about 47 PubMatic employees joining the initiative and creating their short profiles. The profiles are a mixed bag – with around 1/4th technical background and rest from business backgrounds such as operations, account management & digital marketing. Here is the breakdown:

PubMatic Profiles

To see the profiles, login to SocialHelpouts and click this link: http://bit.ly/1J4f7lB

The Results

These companies are checking out the profiles on SocialHelpouts and reaching out to them on via the platform and, in many cases, directly on LinkedIn.  Many companies have also added their jobs to make it easy for people to get in touch with them.

We estimate that about 100+ conversations have been initiated after visiting SocialHelpouts so far. Companies such as Crest have reported having positive interviews already.

The challenge

The challenge has been a little mismatch between the companies & affected employees. While the companies are mostly looking for people in technical roles, 75% of the affected employees are from non-tech roles such as operations, account management & digital marketing.

Next steps and how you can help

We plan to follow up with the existing companies and also plan to reach out to more.

If you know people who got affected in the PubMatic layoff please inform them about checking out SocialHelpouts.

If you know someone who is hiring in operations, account management or digital marketing: please ask them to visit SocialHelpouts and check out all the awesome PubMatic folks that can join their team.

If you have suggestions on how we can improve, do let us know at hello@socialhelpouts.com.

About us: SocialHelpouts is an open network to discover and connect with the right people leveraging your social graph. The platform is absolutely free.