2014 in RearView

By Michael Overell - Jan. 6, 2015
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Where did the year go!? The last few months of 2014 feel like a blur of footy finals, Thanksgiving, and bad facial hair. And companies hiring. Always hiring.

2014 was a massive year for RecruitLoop, in our journey to transform recruiting and make hiring easy. I want to say a heartfelt thanks to everyone who played a part in it: our Clients, Community, investors, advocates. And especially to our team (and their families), who worked tirelessly throughout the year to make it all possible.

Before we launch into the new year, a quick pause to reflect and celebrate 2014, in the rearview.

The year in numbers

Cause sometimes that’s all you need…

  • $6,500,000+ saved for our clients, compared to traditional recruitment agencies (assuming a conservative 15% fee)
  • $1,000,000+ in payments to our top 25 recruiters
  • 335,858 visitors to our website and blog
  • 4,506 downloads of one of our free resources
  • 210 recruiters in 11 countries
  • 152 new blog articles and essays published
  • Hundreds of happy clients
  • $1,290 raised for men’s health thanks to unsightly facial hair
  • Team of 10 people across 4 countries, with 20,039 messages posted to our internal chat rooms (most of them automated!).
  • 2 new offices, and 4 new office pets.

New Features

We’re on a mission to bring transparency and fairness to the process (and industry) of recruiting – for everyone involved. We expanded our platform in 2014, and launched some exciting new features to do exactly that.

Project feedback and ratings.

In the outside world, finding and identifying the best recruiter for a specific role is an almost impossible task. We’re solving that problem with detailed feedback and ratings. Now, every recruiter is rated on several criteria after every project: professionalism, responsiveness, efficiency, expertise and value. Clients can also offer public (and private) comments for review.

As consumers, we’re starting to expect this type of transparency in almost every other profession. But it’s unheard of for recruiters. You’ll be seeing these ratings on new and improved Recruiter Profiles in early 2015.

Project Feedback

Project Feedback

Verified references.

We carefully vet the experience of every verified recruiter in our Community. A big part of this is references from a recruiter’s previous clients and candidates. Now, when we ask a recruiter for a reference, that referee must verify their comments using their LinkedIn credentials. This ensures the references you see on a recruiter’s profile are from real people, who stand behind them.

Verified Reference

Verified References

Campaign pages.

A big problem many jobseekers have when dealing with recruiters is transparency about the actual role and company being represented. We’ve solved that problem with Campaign pages, which allow recruiters to transparently publish and share branded application pages for any of their client projects. Recruiters publish the page. Candidates apply. Here’s one of our favourite examples:

Campaign Pages

Campaign Pages

Simple proposal viewer.

Our clients demand transparency about potential Recruiters the might work with. One way we delivered that in 2014 was with a simple, cleaner view of Proposals. Now, clients can view any recruiters’ proposal with a single click, from any device (no login required!). They can ask a question, accept or decline each proposal in a matter of seconds.

Recruiter Proposals

Recruiter Proposals

Matching algorithm.

A big internal development in 2014 focused on our marketplace management platform. This allows (amongst many things) much faster, more targeted matching between clients and recruiters. Now, when a clients posts a role, they receive only 2-3 proposals from recruiters with specific, relevant experience – often within minutes. There’s no fancy screenshots of this one. The only way to try it is to post a role.


We published a lot of content! Here’s some of the most popular:

In the outside world: on sites like Inc., OnStartups, Entrpreneur.com.

On the RecruitLoop Blog:

Infographics: The True Cost of Hiring.


Our Community is the lifeblood of RecruitLoop. It grew and thrived in 2014 – sometimes of our own making, but increasingly (and excitingly) with a life of its own.

The Loop.

We launched our community platform called ‘The Loop’, where recruiters can complete challenges, win and compete for points, and redeem them for real-world rewards. Special shout outs go to:

  • Tamara Blythman – who won a trip from Sydney to San Francisco!
  • Kim Acworth – who redeemed her points for sponsorship of her rally car.
  • Christie Heiner – who redeemed her points for one year of LinkedIn Recruiter membership.
Kim Acworth

Kim Acworth – A RecruitLoop ‘Legend’ in her rally car


Meetups & Webinars.

We hosted Community over a dozen meetups (physical and virtual) throughout 2014. Some were purely social, but brought people together. Our professional development series also had great feedback, with topics like How to be a Legendary Looper; and Maximize your Consultant Mojo.

Biggest lessons

It wasn’t all a year of smiles and roses. It was difficult in many ways. Like any (every?) startup, we’ve made mistakes and learnt something new every day. As we grow – and grow up – as a company, I hope we’re constantly improving, based on those sometimes painful lessons.

Doing too many ‘things that don’t scale’.

We followed the famous advice. We tried to address broken processes with human input. We carefully curated every element of our marketplace to provide a phenomenal service to everyone involved. But we reached a point late in the year where this accumulation of small decisions – despite the best of intentions – was actually making it harder for us scale. This was a difficult realization; and we’re now in the process of streamlining and automating many parts of the business, to ensure we have a truly scalable model.

Some people don’t like change.

Actually, tons of people don’t like change. This is an obvious statement, and something every new innovation needs to overcome. But it’s a sentiment we felt in a few different ways this year: in a strategic partnership that flopped soon after takeoff; in another that got close, but fell just before the finish line; in some poorly disguised hacks and critiques from disgruntled traditionalists.

Some of these lessons hurt in the moment, but have made us stronger on reflection. We’re unmoved in our resolve to change the status quo; and now in a better position to do it with another year of experience behind us.

What’s coming next…

If 2014 was massive, 2015 will be massiver. Or more massive. Actually – more massiver. A small hint of things to come:

  • An Expanded Community.  We’re making some major changes to our platform and guidelines, to expand the reach and scope of our Community. Expect to see different categories of recruiters and Talent Professionals, based on their level of skills, experience, and verification.
  • New and Improved Profiles.  We’ll be rolling out new designs for Community Profiles, to capture the depth of specialization and experience, and display detailed performance metrics and ratings.
  • New / improved UI.  In general, we’ll be progressively deploying a dramatically improved, mobile-responsive user-experience for both sides of our marketplace over the coming months.
  • …Along with a few more I can’t share just now.

It was a fantastic year. Thank you to everyone who played a role. We’re looking forward to serving you with even bigger and better changes throughout the year ahead.



Michael Overell

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