Are Cryptocurrencies Really Competitive For eCommerce Use?

For eCommerce retailers that are wondering if cryptocurrencies are the future, this report throws a bit of cold water on that idea. That is not to say that it could happen, but transaction costs will have to be sorted to better compete with credit and debit cards or eWallet payments.

In a press release from GlobalData, the search company dives into the technical side of cryptocurrencies and how transactional costs and scale may be the Achilles heel of cryptocurrencies in everyday eCommerce.

Despite the claims of their proponents, cryptocurrencies fail to meet the basic technical standards necessary for them to function effectively as currencies, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

The Research

The company’s latest report: ‘Cryptocurrencies – Thematic Research’ notes that while blockchain and Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) will play a role in supporting the modernization of many financial systems, the notion that blockchain itself will deliver massive savings is a fantasy.

Gary Barnett, Chief Analyst for Thematic Research at GlobalData, comments: “Many of the most basic claims made by proponents of cryptocurrencies simply are not true. We are told that cryptocurrencies speed transfers up, that they help to eliminate middlemen and that they are free of cost, but none of this is true.

“Cryptocurrency transactions are not free. For example, at its peak, the per transaction cost for bitcoin exceeded $50, which is not exactly a great way to buy $25 worth of groceries. While the cost per transaction hovers around $1 when the bitcoin network is not under load, it will inevitably rise if transaction volumes grow again.

“Furthermore, no cryptocurrency is widely accepted and transacted. The number of retailers and businesses that accept cryptocurrencies as payment for goods and services is vanishingly small, and those that do typically report very low volumes of cryptocurrency transactions by comparison to other means of payment.”

Scaling Questions

Another issue is that cryptocurrencies cannot scale. The Visa payment network is capable of supporting 24,000 transactions per second (tps) at peak rates and regularly averages in the region of 1,500 tps. Bitcoin, meanwhile, struggles to achieve a transaction rate over 10 tps, while bitcoin cash can handle around 60 tps. The only cryptocurrency which comes close to Visa’s average is Ripple, which is capable of 1,500 tps.

GlobalData’s report also points out that claims that the combination of cryptocurrencies and blockchain will lead to financial institutions reducing costs in back-office systems by as much as 80% are absurd.

Barnett adds: “The costs associated with financial systems are as much a result of poor, dated, or simply inefficient processes rather than any underlying problem with the technologies that are used to process transactions.

“The valuations currently applied to cryptocurrencies have no basis in fact; cryptocurrencies represent a classic bubble, in which valuations are purely the result of speculation on the likely behaviour of the market rather than a clear-eyed assessment of underlying value.”

19 recruiting strategies to make hiring your top growth hack

Blast your start up into orbit by building an awesome team with our recruiting strategy tips and advice from hiring experts and seasoned business professionals.

Implementing creative recruiting strategies will help get your jobs seen by candidates who are looking for a new role. It will also make it faster to hire great candidates, more consistently, and with significantly less effort.

19 of the Best Recruiting Strategies:

  • Treat candidates like your best customers.
  • Understand the cost/benefit of every hire.
  • Hire freelancers where appropriate, not just full-timers.
  • Hire candidates for the long term.
  • Strengthen your employer brand with content marketing.
  • Using a coaching culture to attract millennials.
  • Have an office space that attracts millennials.
  • Use data to optimize your hiring time.
  • Have a strategy to attract the best cultural fits.
  • Chase passive candidates.
  • Use niche job boards.
  • Cover pain points in your job posts.
  • Use video in more stages of your hiring process.
  • Implement a mobile friendly application process.
  • Leverage employee referrals.
  • Nurture your talent pool with drip emails.
  • Train your interviewers on the latest interview techniques.
  • Connect with alumni for rehires.
  • Profile your best employees.

19 Recruitment Strategy Mistakes:

We asked recruitment experts “What is the single biggest mistake employers make when recruiting employees?”

  1. Not treating great applicants like great customers.

Treat your recruitment strategy like you do your marketing and sales funnel. If you receive a high-quality lead, would you wait 3 days to call that lead? Then don’t do that to a high-quality candidate. You should move heaven and earth to accommodate that candidate, impress them and treat them to a great hiring experience.

Kate McMillen, Manager of Talent Acquisition & Programs @ Infusionsoft

“Infusionsoft’s strategy for recruiting is similar to its customer strategy. We make our candidate experience similar to our customer experience. Our candidate formula is Engage, Inform, and Transform, much like our customer-formula: Attract, Sell and Wow.”

Recruiting is essential to achieving growth, and one of three things that should be in a CEO job description.

Every new person you add to your team can move it forward dramatically, slow it down, or take it a step back. That’s why companies like Google, Facebook, Uber, and SnapChat offer high option packages, so they can attract the best talent in the world.

They know, as you should, that building the right team is 90% of your job as a founder or CEO.

Once you prioritize recruiting and build your recruitment strategy, you’ll naturally start to create your own employer brand. As this happens, remember that it is as important to bringing on top talent as your consumer-facing brand is to acquiring customers.

  1. Failing to understand the cost/benefit of a new employee before you hire.

Before you hire, you need to know what the potential costs and benefits are. This is considered to be part of best practices for recruiting employees.

When figuring out the potential cost, be thorough and include everything so you have the full picture.

J.T. O’Donnell, CEO of Careerealism

“The biggest mistakes I see start-ups making is hiring people without a clear sense of how their work will justify the cost of hiring them.

If you are hiring based on anticipated growth, you should be able to calculate the ROI on the person you are hiring. If you can’t quantify how this person will definitely increase the earnings so their salary and benefits are covered, then you are just putting yourself in a negative cash flow situation.

Yes, employees need to be trained and require a ramp-up period. But, if within that time you aren’t able to then confirm the ROI is there, you shouldn’t keep them on.

I have personally made this mistake in the past and it reinforced for me how important it is to A) only hire top performers, and B) only hire when you know the ROI is greater than the hiring cost.”

A lot of the experts stress taking your time when you hire, which is hard for start-ups to do – they’re used to moving fast. But as Debra Wheatman points out, we need to take time to be sure the value is there.

Debra Wheatman, President of Careers Done Write

“Oftentimes, start-up environments are running in overdrive and they don’t put enough thought or effort into the type of role they need for the company.

It is easy to just hire a resource. However, the person needs to be able to add value in the organization. Especially when a company is small and growing it is important to bring in resources that can deliver the right value for the company in a timeframe that makes sense.

Hiring takes time.

While it shouldn’t take an inordinate amount of time (like months), it can take weeks. A good job description, interview process, and decision-making should be well planned to avoid making costly mistakes.”

  1. Hiring a full-time employee when you only need a freelancer.

Sometimes maths just isn’t on your side, but you still have a job that needs to be done. That’s a good time to consider hiring freelancers.

In fact, you may want to consider freelancers even if you can afford a regular employee. Many freelancers will jump at the opportunity to join a fast growing start-up in the early days, and you get the chance to see how they work and how well you work together.

Too many #start-ups decide to #hire when their need could be met with a contractor – @dhelbig via @betterteamapp

Diane Helbig, Growth Accelerator & Change Agent

“Lack of clarity. Start-ups need to be sure they have real clarity around exactly what function(s) they need to fill. Then they need to decide if it’s something that requires an employee or an outsourced solution. Too many start-ups decide to hire when their need could be met with a contractor.”

  1. Not hiring employees that thrive at each stage of the company lifecycle.

Start-ups are a special situation when it comes to recruiting.

You’ll need the kind of people that can navigate a fast-changing landscape with little oversight and guidance, and quickly learn new tasks as they become necessary.

That’s why it’s a good idea to look for adaptable people who have previously worked in fast moving environments. Hiring someone who’s been in a corporate environment doing the same task for years and moving them into a 5-person team can be challenging, to say the least.

#Start-ups need to hire people that work well in the environment of an early-stage company, as @katekendall explains.

Not sure if an employee can “hack” the start-up environment? Try freelancing first, as we mentioned earlier, or do what companies like Automattic do – figure it out by having potential employees do real (paid) tasks with the team before making it official.

Kate Kendall, Founder and CEO at @cloudpeeps

“Start-ups can often hire a good person but at the wrong stage of the company’s life. In the early days, you need to optimize for those comfortable with uncertainty, change, less structure and a flat hierarchy. A star hire from a brand-name company might not be turn out as expected. Make sure you also a good mix of tech to non-tech talent.”

When you’re just getting started, you’ll want a team that wears many hats, like a search marketer that can test Facebook and radio campaigns, or an engineer that can double up as your ops manager.

Dean Da Costa, Recruiter at Sourcing Expert has a great bit of advice on getting multi-talented hiring right.

“The single biggest mistake is not building their team correctly. They tend to do 1 of 2 things. Either they think too mono-talented, meaning finding that expert Java guy but that is all they can do.

Or they think too cross-job-talented, meaning they want a Java expert who is also a networking expert, and a Tech writer, those are 3 different jobs and skill sets.

What they should be thinking is cross-talented. Meaning you need a Java developer, get a good java developer that can also develop in other languages as well. Start-ups get caught between the expert developer and the robot who can do many things besides develop when what they want is a “swiss army knife” who can develop cross-platform in many languages.”

As your company grows, you’ll want to start thinking about specialists that know a particular area inside and out.

For example, you may find that Google AdWords is key to your growth strategy, and your budget justifies hiring a full-time PPC manager. Finding a true expert who’s been doing this for years can have an enormous impact on your growth.

As our start-ups continue evolving, Tony Restell reminds us we need employees who can evolve with it.

Tony Restell, Founder of Social Media Agency, Social-Hire

“Firstly, I have seen business owners reluctant to delegate key tasks to staff – and so have constrained the growth of the business by not hiring soon enough. You can’t be driving every project and be responsible for every decision in the business or your start-up will simply lose momentum.

So, hire early.

A second mistake I’ve seen is for owners to get hung up on the exact qualifications and experience that you want your first hires to have. Ask most seasoned business owners about their companies and you will invariably hear that the business changed significantly in its first years.

So, the most important attributes for your first employees are that they are enthusiastic, eager to learn and capable of fulfilling a variety of roles within the company – that way their contribution to the business can evolve as the business itself evolves.”

Evolution, iteration, change… that’s what start-ups are all about, right? Rodolphe Dutel has some additional recruitment ideas for quick wins or hiring for potential as your start-up evolves.

Rodolphe Dutel, Operations at Buffer and Remotive Founder

“Start-ups usually hire someone for their skills (what they can do today) or their potential (what they may be able to do once they ramp up). It’s important to decide ahead of time which of those two routes start-ups want to explore: Understanding how immediate your need is, and whether you have time/resources to mentor someone to grow into a role is key.

A typical example is for sales, you may get a seasoned sales person to build a team around them or hire one/two junior sales people and mentor them.”

  1. Failing to strengthen your employer brand with content marketing.

It’d be nice to have a strong employer brand, right?

A brand that the top talent in your space has heard of, and wants to work for, so that when they learn about a position at your start-up they’re excited about the opportunity, and not wondering who you are.

Business leaders are convinced that branding to attract talent is critical to staying competitive.

But who has the money for an employer branding recruitment strategy?

As it turns out, you do. Because these days you don’t need to run an ad during the Super Bowl to get the word out there. The internet has made publishing inexpensive and doable for any business, and content marketing is a great way to raise awareness about your brand.

One of the key components to content marketing is sharing your knowledge to attract customers.

Each member of your team probably has an area of expertise. Help them find ways of sharing this in a variety of places, whether it’s writing a short article on Medium or your company blog, tweeting titbits of wisdom, or answering questions on Quora.

Your work culture is another great content marketing asset.

Share it with Instagram photos, use Facebook’s live broadcasting feature, and write about how it informs day-to-day decisions at your company.

Give people a chance to learn about your team and an idea of what it’d be like to be part of it, and they may just want to join. That’s how branding attracts talent.

  1. Not embracing a coaching culture to attract millennials.

The future is already here.

If you’re not working to attract millennials to your company, then your recruiting strategy is heading nowhere.

Not sure about that? Consider this.

In just a few short years, millennials will make up nearly half the workforce. By 2030, they’ll be 75 percent of it. Start strategizing now and working on some creative recruiting techniques if you want the best of this generation.

One way to start attracting millennials is to build a coaching culture. Millennials have overwhelmingly shown that they’re interested in opportunity. They don’t want to just settle in for the long haul for the next 20 years; they want to know where they’re going in the next two.

Help them learn and grow, and you’ll attract and keep them.

If you’re not working to attract millennials to your company, then your recruiting strategy is heading nowhere.

  1. Not having an office space millennials want to work in.

The last few decades have seen some big shifts in cultural norms.

The suit and tie, once a symbol of powerful companies and serious jobs, has become a sign of stodginess in many industries.

But there is probably no work convention more hated these days than the cubicle. From Dilbert to Office Space, it has become the symbol for a creativity killing work space.

If you want to attract #millennials to your #start-up, go beyond perks, and give the job meaning.

Want to attract millennials to your start-up? How you design your workspace should be part of your recruiting plan. Open office plans are much more popular among millennials than the rat mazes of yesteryear.

Beyond open spaces, the office is also becoming a destination for millennials – a place where they work, exercise, eat and even sleep. Think about what you can offer employees that will make the office a destination.

John Feldmann, Content Marketing @ Insperity Jobs

“A start-up or small business recruiting strategy should offer the candidate an emotional investment. Since a start-up or small business is focused on its core business, they sometimes overlook the work/life balance and long-term stability aspects. Offering a salary and office perks isn’t enough. Candidates want to know how they will make a difference at work and in the community.”

  1. Not using data to optimize your hiring time.

When we talked to the experts about recruitment strategies, another issue that came up over and over again was timing.

Hire too slow, and you’ll be bringing on employees to help mitigate disasters. Hire too quickly and won’t get the best people.

To help you gauge if you’re getting the timing right, you’ll want to start measuring your time to hire. From deciding you need a new employee to actually bringing them onboard, how long does it take?

Knowing this will help your company determine how much lead time you need for effective recruitment.

The average time to hire in the US is at 27 days (an all-time high) but will vary regionally and by job. Measure your own time to hire so you can get the timing right.

James MacGregor, Co-Founder & CEO @ Biteable

“Hiring too slowly. To date we’ve only hired people when it’s become critical already. One piece of advice I received recently was just assume everything is going to go to plan and hire early for that expansion. Time will tell if that’s good advice, but we’ve changed our mindset and are now hiring for growth rather than hiring to fight fires.”

Of course, you don’t want to rush into hiring either. In the corporate world, the cost of a bad hire can be really high, based on a second-level manager earning $62k per year who has been at a company for 2.5 years.

Most start-ups can’t lose this kind of money, which is one of the reasons why a bad hire could cost you everything.

Resist desperation, stay calm and hire better.

Getting the timing right means giving yourself the time to find a good hire, not just someone to fill an empty seat.

Andrew Warner, founder of #1 start-up podcast Mixergy, talks about how we need to resist desperation and stay calm to get the best hires.

“The biggest hiring mistake that I’ve made repeatedly is being too desperate. Desperation takes on many forms. Sometimes we think that the person in front of us is the greatest person ever. And we don’t establish the right relationship with them from the beginning because we’re just too eager to hire them.

Sometimes desperation makes us hire somebody even though we don’t think they’re the right person, but we feel we HAVE to fill the position right away. Regardless of how it shows up, we can’t let desperation creep into the hiring process.”

While start-ups and smaller businesses tend to be quick and nimble, they may want to think twice before establishing a hiring process that’s as fast as the rest of their business.

Tim Sackett, HR Pro

“One of the biggest mistakes start-ups make in hiring is that they tend to hire too fast! Things move pretty fast in a start-up environment so it’s natural for them to hire fast as well, but this usually is where their problems begin to happen.

It’s so tough to have patience in this type of environment, but it’s critical to the success of what you’re trying to do. In big organizations, you can miss on some hires and no one will really notice. In a start-up environment, if you miss on one hire, it sticks out in a big way!”

OK, so timing is important, but how do you know who the good new hires are? And how do you measure their performance once they’re on board?

Serial entrepreneur Mitchell Harper offers a practical approach to hiring that will help you understand it from the inside out. Literally.

Mitchell Harper, Serial entrepreneur and founder of Start-up Growth Blueprint

“The biggest mistake I see is start-ups not knowing enough about the job they’re hiring for.

When we built BigCommerce, my co-founder and I found there was one truly great way to hire the right person every time. We had to do the job first. One of us would literally do the job for 1-3 months. Then we knew exactly what the metrics and goals for the position would be so that when we hired a specialist, we knew what success looked like, how to measure it, and also how to recognize when things were going off track.”

Does having a co-founder do every job sound like a tall order? Try making a bad hire and fixing the damage caused by it. You may change your mind.

  1. Not having a strategy to attract the best cultural fits.

Great companies are honest about their culture.

Check out Infusionsoft’s careers page. Right near the middle, it says, “A word of warning: Infusionsoft isn’t for everyone.” Or Bonobos’ (super awesome) career page that lets you know, “Working here is very challenging.”

They don’t want everyone to apply for their jobs, and you don’t either. Who wants to pick through a mountain of resumes full of potential new hires that aren’t going to work out?

An employee who doesn’t fit into the company culture could drag down an entire department.

When you’re promoting your employer brand, whether it’s on your career page, social media or at an event, be honest and convey real information about daily life at the company. Most people don’t want to work for companies where they don’t think they’ll fit in.

If you put out accurate information to help people decide if they’re a good fit, you won’t waste time interviewing or hiring the wrong people.

As Eric T. Tung points out, part of hiring the best has to be considering the best cultural fit.

Eric T. Tung, Social Media Trainer, Speaker, Consultant.

“The biggest mistake start-ups make when recruiting is that they often don’t consider the candidate’s cultural fit into the organization. Especially in today’s start-up norm fast-paced hiring, skills seem to be the only measuring stick of an employee, but an employee who doesn’t fit into the company from a culture, ethics, even energy perspective will drag down not only their team but possibly an entire department.

That individual may be the best mobile app developer in the state, but if he can’t take direction, is abusive towards teammates, or is an HR report waiting to happen, it may be advisable to settle for the second-best mobile app developer. In the end, they will contribute to a better, happier workplace. Happy recruiting.”

We heard this more than once – hiring the best doesn’t just mean the person that is most technically proficient. It also means the person who will provide the best fit for your team.

Miles Burke, Entrepreneur, public speaker, business and start-up mentor

“The biggest mistake is hiring purely on technical talent, rather than personality. Personality, especially in a small team, is vitally important to the culture and mood of your start-up – hire a technically brilliant but socially devoid person, and you’ll have trouble keeping a cohesive team, all focussed on the same mission.”

Again and again, cultural fit came up when we talked to entrepreneurs and business leaders. Have a look at what SkyBell founder Andrew Thomas says below.

“Ignoring cultural fit. Achieving a cohesive culture that is built on a clear and shared mission is integral to your success. Evaluate candidates based on their cultural fit as much as their skills and experience.

Each hire should exhibit the company values and congruence with your mission. Hiring someone who does not fit the culture will result in toxicity that holds everyone back.”

  1. Ignoring passive candidates.

Do you know where the biggest untapped source of potential candidates is?

It’s in the 75 percent of people who aren’t even looking for a new job but would consider an offer if it came their way. The “passive candidates.”

What is a passive candidate?

A passive candidate is a potential job applicant who is not actively seeking a new job but is open to changing jobs if an opportunity is presented to them. It is estimated that passive candidates make up about 75 percent of the potential candidate pool.

Passive candidates won’t see the job ad you post to your favourite job board, nor will they visit your company career page.

So how do you reach them?

Try recruiting with social media as one of your sourcing methods in recruitment. The best passive talent may not be checking out job boards, but they probably have accounts on Twitter, Facebook, and other social media. We’ve written up some great social recruiting tips that will help you get a jumpstart.

If you’re just getting started, you may want to try newer social media platforms such as Snapchat and Periscope.

These up-and-coming social networks aren’t as saturated and are especially good for start-ups that want to reach a younger, tech-savvy audience.

  1. Not using niche job boards.

Job posting sites should be part of every recruitment strategy. They help you get the word out to numbers of people probably not possible to reach before the Internet.

Be sure to look for niche job boards, the boards that focus directly on the type of jobs you’re hiring for. Hiring writers? Try JournalismJobs.com. Software developers? Visit GitHub Jobs. Sales? Go to SalesHeads.com.

There’s a niche board for just about every job position you can think of.

Not all job seekers go right to the niche job boards, so you’ll want a presence on the bigger, broader job search sites, such as CareerBuilder, Monster, Simply Hired, Indeed, and Glassdoor.

  1. Not addressing candidate pain points in your job post.

You need to create job posts that get into your candidate’s head and talk about the specific things that make your job better than the one they already have.

Margaret Buj, Interview Coach & Head of Recruitment at Yieldify

“If the candidate has a negative experience of the recruitment process, this is bad for the company’s reputation, especially with reviews on Glassdoor that prospective candidates often read.

It is also important to operate fast – good candidates don’t stay on the market forever and there are no excuses for waiting a month before the first and second interview.”

Social recruiting expert Jim Stroud offers up more useful advice below for taking your job posts from boring to awesome. Pay attention to this one, it’s an easy and inexpensive win in the recruiting world.

Jim Stroud, Social Recruiting and Job search strategy

“I think the single biggest hiring mistake start-ups make when recruiting is not treating their job descriptions like marketing pieces. More often than not, you remove the company name and location and I would wager that the job description the start-up is using is the same as any other company seeking talent with the same job title. As a result, the start-up is not noticed because they look like everyone else.

Rather than doing what everyone else is doing, start-ups should do something different by making their job descriptions remarkable. Instead of text, why not use infographics on your employer website? When posting to job boards, use a short tweet style description of what you want then, link to a video (or audio message) where you can capture the imagination of the job seeker. Moreover, look beyond the same talent pools everyone else does.

For example, Snapchat has 150 million daily active users. Would someone out of those 150 million be a fit for your needs? (Not knowing how to recruit on Snapchat is not an excuse.) Since millennials are the largest generation is the US workforce, why not leverage trends popular with that demographic to get their attention?

The way you present your jobs to the public can also have more than the desired effect. Not only could it help you source the talent you want, but it also promotes your company as innovative and could garner media attention.

Think about it! Free publicity about your company, the attention of hard to find passive talent as well as incoming traffic from active jobseekers; there is a lot riding on your job description.

Don’t mess it up by being bland. Everybody else does that.”

  1. Not using video as a key part of your hiring process.

According to some estimates, video content will make up 80 percent of internet traffic in a few years. Which means video needs to become part of an effective recruitment strategy. You can start by creating a company culture video, accepting video applications, or performing video interviews.

  1. Not having a mobile-friendly candidate process.

We know about the importance of responsive sites and a mobile-friendly experience for customers. And with at least 45 percent of job seekers using mobile devices for their search, we need to have it in mind for recruiting as well. Go through your entire application process, start to finish, on a mobile device. Make note of any parts that were difficult or impossible via mobile.

45 percent of job seekers are applying via mobile. Make sure your mobile application process works!

  1. Not leveraging employee referrals.

Your best source for finding new employees is most often your existing team. If you’ve done your job and hired great people to begin with, then this has a network effect. If your current employees are happy, working on great stuff with a great team and making customers happy, then they’re inclined to refer their friends and colleagues to join them.

David Burkus, Best-selling author, award-winning podcaster, and associate professor of leadership and innovation at ORU.

“The biggest mistake is not involving the team. Your current hires are your best source of information about who is open to joining he company. In addition, whoever you hire, success will be based on team fit. So best to involve the whole team.”

  1. Failing to nurture your talent pool with drip email marketing.

Once you’ve made the decision to hire for a position, put the rest of the promising candidates into a campaign that sends a drip email 2-3 times per year. Keep the emails simple. Remind people who you and your company are, ask them how they’re doing, and make it easy for them to check out your careers page and connect with your company on social media if they want more info.

  1. Using interviewers with poor interview skills.

Just being familiar with common interview questions and the best phone interviewing techniques is not enough to nail your interview process. Consider letting one person own each candidate. They can leverage this relationship at offer the stage and flag issues with hiring managers who are turning off good candidates.

Jordan Burton, Founder of Burton Advisors

“The most painful and counterproductive mistake I see start-ups make in hiring has to be over-selling and failing to interview the candidate thoroughly.

This almost guarantees you end up with a bad team.

The weak candidates pass through too easily, but more importantly, the strong ones walk away–they don’t want to work with a mediocre team, and they are estimating the quality of your team based on how rigorous your process is.”

Part of being able to interview well is being clear on exactly what the position will require and doing your research to make sure you can vet well. As Wendy Maynard told us below, it’s worth the effort to avoid a bad apple hire.

Wendy Maynard, Kinesis Inc. Co-founder, B2B Marketing Strategist.

“Know who you want. Most leaders of start-ups are so busy, they don’t want to take the time to get clarity on the position, with a very clear job description that includes roles and responsibilities.

This should be followed by a methodical interview process that thoroughly vets candidates. Hiring is one of the most important decisions they will make – one that can catapult a start-up forward at great speeds when done right. Or, destroy its progress because they’ve brought on the wrong person.”

  1. Ignoring rehires and alumni.

Keep up with former employees if they performed well and left under positive circumstances. After all, they already know your company culture, and you know them. Turning rehires into a source of employees is easy as well. First of all, make sure that they’re treated with respect when they exit, and that you do a great job with communication as they go.

  1. Not profiling your best employees.

Look at the performance of your best employee to date. What makes that person special? Is it domain expertise? Is it hunger and drive? Is it raw intellectual horsepower? Maybe it’s the will to learn and try new things?

Whatever it is about that person, use it as a gauge to create your core values, and then hire for those values. Imagine a company where your entire team performs at the level of your best employee.

 

AppDynamics founder Jyoti Bansal wastes little time launching a new company

You couldn’t blame AppDynamics co-founder Jyoti Bansal if he took some time off after selling his company to Cisco for a cool $3.7 billion in January. But Bansal is an entrepreneur and he didn’t stop to enjoy the moment. Instead, he did what entrepreneurs do — he looked for a new problem to solve. Yesterday, he announced two new projects.

For starters, Bansal teamed up Rishi Singh, former DevOps platform architect at Apple. Together they are launching a company out of stealth today called Harness, which aims to do no less than automate continuous code deployment. Bansal saw a problem as all good founders do, in this case, a new way of delivering applications.

Unlike the old days where you would create a program, test and deploy it, then work for months or years on the follow-up, today’s programs are being updated regularly, sometimes daily. That creates a whole set of problems for the companies deploying code in this fashion.

Writing scripts for launching the new code has become a cottage industry, Bansal explained and much of this work is in his view could be automated by the correct tool. He says Harness is designed with machine learning underpinnings to automate the code delivery process. It’s  automating the automation scripting process.

“What we are bringing is smart automation. You don’t have to write automation scripts. You specify what you want to achieve [in Harness] and [it’s] smart enough to do it for you. What could take a few months to write in scripts, we can generate in minutes, in the time it takes to model,” Bansal explained.

Harness is designed to allow companies to move fast without breaking things, he said, a challenge that just about every company is facing right now. While tools like Chef and Puppet have been designed to automate these processes, they require many engineering worker hours to create and maintain. Bansal says his company wants to eliminate the script by letting you define the delivery parameters, determining what’s normal behavior and flagging or fixing what’s broken. You can also bring the scripts you’ve created if you wish.

The company also announced $20 million in Series A funding led by Menlo Ventures and BIG Labs.

You may be wondering what BIG Labs is. Bansal didn’t want to stop with solving a single problem, so he’s created his other idea, an incubator called BIG (Bansal Idea Group) Labs, whose purpose is to test out big ideas. It’s a startup testing ground to solve hard technology problems. If they find a solution, they may try to grow it into a new company. If not, they’ll discard the idea and move on. Harness is the first BIG Labs project, but Bansal hopes to launch other companies in the future.

Article courtesy of Techcrunch

How Europe’s changes to copyright law will affect America

Europe is considering changing its copyright law. At first blush, you might think this couldn’t possibly affect the way you debate the news of the day online, upload family videos or run your start-up. But popular proposals at the EU would strike at the heart of the internet’s openness and accessibility as a platform by raising new barriers to interactive online services around the world.

The goal of these copyright changes is to adopt new protections for publishers and artists. But if they are put in place, the burdens they would place on internet platforms would curtail the kind of quick uploading, sharing, commenting and responding that makes the Web so useful. Additionally, we have no reason to believe that these new plans would actually benefit the journalists and artists in whose name the measures are being proposed.

Take one proposal: a fee payable to news publishers when online platforms such as search engines and news aggregators reproduce even short excerpts of news, typically accompanied by a link to the original article (hence the proposal has been called a “link tax”.)

Although the link tax is intended to address a real problem (declining revenues of news publishers has affected their ability to fund quality journalism), similar laws introduced in Germany and Spain further decreased publishers’ revenue by reducing their traffic from links on third-party websites.

A second European proposal would create a new obligation for websites that host content uploaded by users to install automatic filters to scan that content for matches with copyright works, as a basis for new revenue-sharing arrangements that they would be forced to enter into with copyright owners.

Among many problems with this second “upload filtering” proposal, not the least is that it may contravene European law, which explicitly disallows any obligation on internet platforms to conduct general monitoring of what their users do — which this proposal seems to require. There also are insurmountable problems with entrusting algorithms to distinguish infringing uses of copyright materials from legal ones.

The exact language of the two proposals is in flux, because they are each the subject of ongoing compromise negotiations between three institutions of the European Union. Those contentious negotiations were due to wrap up next month, but signs point to a likely extension.

However, should these measures pass, it won’t just be European internet platforms that are affected. Indeed, they are largely aimed at U.S.-based internet companies, which are distrusted and resented in Brussels. (Though it’s worth noting that when the Spanish version of the link tax passed into law, Google responded by shutting down its Google News service in Spain rather than paying the tax.)

Yet a lot more is at stake than the fate of Google or Facebook. Those companies at least can afford the cost of complying with (or avoiding) Europe’s copyright proposals. Smaller businesses can’t. For example, medium-sized internet platforms pay between $10,000 and $25,000 a month in licensing fees for a common tool that conducts a copyright scan of uploaded audio files, an impost that could wipe out a new start-up.

Also, bad European copyright law has often heralded damaging changes to American copyright legislation. It was Europe that in 1993 first extended the term of copyright protection to 70 years from the death of the author, beating America by five years. European countries were also the first signatories to the most important international treaty on copyright, the Berne Convention, which America only adopted a full century later.

The same could be happening again, as Europe considers changing its copyright law to adopt new protections for publishers and new burdens on internet platforms — changes that, if adopted across the Atlantic, could be a prelude to the adoption of similar measures here as well, with harmful consequences.

In its zeal to advance the interests of copyright owners, Europe should be careful that it does not wreak long-term damage to the internet ecosystem by making it harder for start-ups and small enterprises to innovate and succeed on either side of the Atlantic.

Article courtesy of Jeremy Malcom @ TechCrunch

The dream of Polish tech entrepreneurship is almost over

Poland has worked diligently over the past decade to become an entrepreneurial powerhouse. Once home to businesses focused primarily on app design and outsourcing, social, societal, and economic pressures forced the country’s brightest to start building for themselves. And they did.

I’ve covered Polish startups for almost a decade, first on TechCrunch and then on a new blog I helped create, ImpactCEE. It was my mission – as it was Poland’s – to show the world that this central European country was a liberal, open, and capable society able to produce some of the best software in the world. I’ve seen the ecosystem grow from a small, suspicious group of former cubicle warriors into a vibrant and exciting scene with multiple accelerators and funds vying for start-ups. Even the problem of capital seemed to be solved with the creation of a €630 million fund aimed directly at growth and innovation inside the country.

Now that growth is in danger of being destroyed.

I saw the first inklings of a trouble when, at an event dinner in Krakow, a government official stood up and said, in translation, that he invited foreign startup experts to the country but warned, ominously, that he wanted to take their best ideas and innovate past them. This nationalist gumbo, while popular with the country’s ageing post-Communist population, does nothing for the young entrepreneur who has to decide whether to stay in Warsaw, Wroclaw, or Krakow or simply leave to work for a tech giant in a more stable country.

Now the Polish government is working diligently to secure power for the Prawo i Sprawiedliwość party, an increasingly nationalist and religiously-minded political group that appeals to the Poles born during Communism and who remember the “good old days” of food shortages, rationing, and martial law. This party is anathema to the entrepreneurial class. Now the party essentially wants to reform the judicial branch in favour of PiS in order to ensure complete control of the federal government.

“The Polish government has continued to pursue legislation that appears to undermine judicial independence and weaken the rule of law in Poland,” wrote a US State Department representative. “We urge all sides to ensure that any judicial reform does not violate Poland’s constitution or international legal obligations and respects the principles of judicial independence and separation of powers.”

Poland was a beacon that arose from the ashes of World War II and into the chill of the Cold War. It survived pogroms, strikes, third-world status, and, finally, bolted out, panting, into the 21st century. It survived and thrived. All that could change overnight.

If PiS does not stop its efforts to pull Poland backwards it will become a visible example of another failed state torn down by fear, anger, and nationalism.

I reprint below a letter from a number of major figures in the Polish entrepreneurial scene who are, without a doubt, the future of this country. These are her best and brightest and if they see that their homeland is falling backwards they will give up, erasing a decade of amazing growth. There is no hope without forward motion and there is no change without freedom. Without the support of the innovative class, Poland will fall back into ruin and rubble.

Warsaw, July 21st 2017

President of the Republic of Poland

Andrzej Duda

Mr President,

As entrepreneurs, but first and foremost as citizens of the Republic of Poland we are concerned about the changes to the laws on the National Council of Judiciary and the Supreme Court included in the bills on the Amendment of the Law on The National Council of the Judiciary and other bills, the MP draft law on the Supreme Court and the amendments to the law of the system of general courts and some other legal acts.

At the root of Polish innovator community – both start-ups and mature companies – there is conscious engagement in social and civic life. What connects us is the pride in our country, which just like a start-up built a democratic system from scratch and secured the economic freedoms with a system of independent courts.

We participate in the global competition for talent and we want Poland to be the first choice for business people wishing to build innovative companies. The sine qua non-condition for the development of innovative companies and the success of the Strategy for Responsible Development are predictability of the legal system and the guarantee of judicial independence.

Entrepreneurs base their decisions regarding their operation in Poland on the guarantee of stable and consistent rules, also in matters of dispute with the government administration. Global entrepreneurs, including many from Poland, choose only the jurisdictions where the legal system is stable and not subject to dramatic, unexpected changes – especially changes to the political system – protecting the economic freedom and property, including intellectual property.

The separation of powers is fundamental to such a system and maintaining it is for us the guarantee of life in a free and safe country. It is in such a country that we want to realise our dreams of running our own companies, freely competing on the global markets with other democratic countries.

We respect the diversity of political opinion in our society and we stay independent since the innovations we create are meant for the largest possible pool of recipients and transform the economy on an international scale. We suffer acute consequences of the international reception of the way the new laws are being introduced and a potential effect of the implementation of new rules will destroy the trust we have built until now.

We appreciate your involvement in the promotion of innovative economy and we hope you will remain a friend to the young Polish start-up entrepreneur community

We trust that while seeing the necessity to modernise the court system in Poland you will also protect the democratic separation of powers, which makes it possible to create long-term development strategies for our country.

We want to believe that you make good use of your Presidential prerogative to stop the changes destroying the separation of powers in Poland.

On behalf of entrepreneurs and the leaders of Polish start-up community:

1. Arkadiusz Adamek, Chairman, Abyss Glass Group Sp. z o.o. – Participant, Startups in the Palace 2017
2. Przemysław Gałązka, Chairman, Sense Monitoring Sp. z o.o. – Participant, Startups in the Palace 2017
3. Bartek Gola, Investor, SpeedUp Group
4. Artur Granicki, Managing Partner, Trio Legal Partners
5. Magdalena Jagieło, Business Development Director, Startup Poland Foundation
6. Stefan Kamiński, Chairman of the Board, Polish Chamber of Commerce and Electronics and Telecommunications
7. Agata Kowalczyk, Communications Director, Startup Poland Foundation
8. Julia Krysztofiak-Szopa, President, Fundacji Startup Poland
9. Jakub Krzych, Entrepreneur, Chairman, Estimote Sp. z o.o.
10. Przemysław Kuśmierek, Chairman Migam „RKPK” Sp. z o.o. S.K.A, Participant, Startups in the Palace 2016
11. Tomasz Małecki, Chairman, Lublin Science and Technology Park
12. Włodzimierz Marciński, Chairman, Polish Information Processing Society
13. Anna Mazurek, Head of Community, Startup Poland Foundation
14. Dr Jakub Michalski, Chairman, Versabox Sp. z o.o., Participant, Startups in the Palace 2017
15. Łukasz Młodyszewski, Entrepreneur, Chairman, DreamJay Inc.
16. Sebastian Młodziński, Board Member, XTPL S.A., Participant, Startups in the Palace 2017
17. Borys Musielak, Entrepreneur, Co-Founder Reaktor Warsaw, Chairman of the Board, Startup Poland Foundation
18. Szymon Niemczura, Chairman, Kontakt Micro-Location Sp. z.o.o., Participant, Startups in the Palace 2016
19. Barbara Nowakowska, Managing Director, Polish Private Equity and Venture Capital Association
20. Piotr Piasek, Co-Founder, Wolves Summit Conference
21. Jacek Ratajczak, Founder, PLUG Polish Tech Link community
22. Arkadiusz Regiec, Entrepreneur, Chairman, Beesfund S.A.
23. Łukasz Rut, Branch Manager, Lubusz Region Employer Association, Interior Technological Park
24. Maciej Sadowski, President, Startup Hub Poland Foundation
25. Michał Sadowski, Entrepreneur, Chairman, Brand 24 S.A.
26. Włodzimierz Schmidt, President of the Board, Interactive Advertising Bureau, IAB Polska,
27. Borys Stokalski, President, Polish Chamber of Information Technology and Telecommunications PIIT
28. Tomasz Swieboda, Investor, Inovo
29. Marcin Treder, Entrepreneur, CEO, UXPin Sp. z o.o.
30. Piotr Wilam, Investor, Innovation Nest
31. Grzegorz Wójcik, Chairman Autenti Sp. z o.o., Participant, Startups in the Palace 2017
32. Marcin Zarzecki, Chairman, Quotiss Sp. z o.o., Participant, Startups in the Palace 2017
33. Dr Przemysław Żelazowski, Founder and Director, Satagro Sp. z o.o., Participant, Startups in the Palace 2016

Article courtesy of John Biggs via TechCrunch

Recruitment Process Outsourcing Market Revenue, Opportunity, Segment and Key Trends 2017-2025

Previously, recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) was perceived as a way of offloading certain non-core, high-cost and time-consuming tasks of the human resources department. These days however, RPO activities are considered as a necessity for the effective management of efficient human resources more than just an agenda made to bring down cost and time invested in the process of recruitment. The increased realization about the vast benefits of outsourcing recruitment process, including the more refined results owing to vast volumes of data that dedicated RPO providers easily provide and usage of automated tools for effective talent management, is leading to the increased adoption of RPO services.
Global Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) Market: Trends and Opportunities

Over the next few years, thriving industries such as information technology, hospitality, telecommunication, manufacturing, construction, hospitality, pharmaceuticals, and healthcare, especially across developing economies, will be the key driving force of the global RPO market. Companies across these industries will resort to RPO services to focus more on their core competencies to be able to stay ahead of competition. Moreover, the increased adoption of web-based and cloud services and solutions has helped streamline RPO models, which, in turn, has contributed to the overall development of the market over the years.

In an emerging economy such as India, wherein industries such as IT, telecommunication, and BFSI rank among the top across the world, RPO services are beginning to show their presence across these as well as an increasing number of other mammoth sized industries. Recently, leading automaker Tata Motors, financial services company Citigroup, and IT giants such as Honeywell, Mahindra, Wipro, and L&T Technology Services have decided to outsource their talent acquisition processes. In an increasing number of cases, companies in the country are progressively strengthening their focus on the implementation of the model, disbanding internal recruitment teams, and relying on third party recruitment specialists with larger talent acquisition bandwidth.

From a geographical viewpoint, the recruitment process outsourcing market has been examined in the report for North America, Asia Pacific, Europe, and Middle East and Africa. Of these, the North American market is expected to account for a massive share in the market throughout the reports forecast period. The region is home to a large number of key players and has a well-established industrial sector. The market across Europe is primarily driven by the rising demand for RPO activities in countries featuring strong industrial establishments, such as Germany, France, the UK and the Netherlands.

In the next few years, Asia Pacific is expected to emerge as one of the most promising regional markets for RPO activities owing to the rising number of small and medium-sized companies and the increased focus of multinational organizations on expanding their presence in emerging countries such as China and India. Improving economic conditions and a rising pool of graduates and post graduates in the region is also contributing to the overall development of the market.

Companies in the market are increasing their focus on expanding their geographical presence, providing technologically advanced offerings through effective resource management software tools, and adopting cost-competitive and flexible operational models based on cloud computing. The market is intensely competitive and is expected to become further competitive owing to the rise in number of domestic players.

Article courtesy of OpenPR.com

Sell me this pen? Here is how to answer that question.

I personally never thought anyone would actually say, “sell me this pen” in a sales interview. I was wrong. It will happen to you too. And to avoid panic, you should know exactly what to say back.

I am going to give you the right sales framework to respond perfectly every time.

On a quick side note, did you know this sales interview question has been around for millions of years? Its origins date back to the earliest of cavemen. Selling slingshots cave-to-cave. Except back then, they asked, “sell me this bowl of crushed berries.”

Anyhow. The point is, one day it will happen to you and I want you to be prepared.

Because if you start to describe how smooth the pen feels and how shiny the pen looks, just like you saw in the Wolf of Wall Street…

You probably won’t get the job.

Why it matters to sell me this pen?

At first, I didn’t realise why it mattered. It just seemed like a silly question. But, you’ll see.

When you become good at answering this question, you actually become one hell of a salesperson.

And that’s why people still ask it in interviews. It shows your creative approach and how good you are at actually selling product (not just reading your resume).

There are exactly four sales skills the interviewer is looking to see when you answer:

  • how you gather information
  • how you respond to information
  • how you deliver information, and
  • how you ask for something (closing)

Now, since I had a lot of sales interviews lined up at the beginning of last year. I thought, I better practice my response just in case.

The “just wing it” strategy is best for making pancake mix, not for sales interviews.

So, let’s go through exactly what you can say to address each sales skill. Because when you do it right, you will blow their mind!

Here’s exactly what you can say

Just to back up for a second, I had 26 sales interviews in a period of three months. Someone was bound to ask me.

Ok. The Director of Sales stood up and said, “it was great meeting you Ian. Let me go grab the CEO to come in next.” Moments later, the CEO of the 30 person start up walked in the small conference room.

Shortly after initial greetings, the CEO wasted no time to start the interview.

I practiced my answer beforehand. I made sure my answer displayed the four sales skills the CEO needed to hear.

Now you can read it for yourself. And then use it for yourself.

At the bottom, you can see a simple sales framework to memorise that will make this work for you in any situation.

You can memorise the script, but more importantly, memorise the sales framework at the end.

Here you go…

CEO: Do me a favour, sell me this pen. (reaches across to hand me the pen)

Me: (I slowly roll the pen between my index and thumb fingers.) When was the last time you used a pen?

CEO: This morning.

Me: Do you remember what kind of pen that was?

CEO: No.

Me: Do you remember why you were using it to write?

CEO: Yes. Signing a few new customer contracts.

Me: Well I’d say that’s the best use for a pen (we have a subtle laugh).

Wouldn’t you say signing those new customer contracts is an important event for the business?  (nods head) Then shouldn’t it be treated like one. What I mean by that is, here you are signing new customer contracts, an important and memorable event. All while using a very unmemorable pen.

We grew up, our entire lives, using cheap BIC pens because they get the job done for grocery lists and directions. But we never gave it much thought to learn what’s best for more important events.

This is the pen for more important events. This is the tool you use to get deals done. Think of it as a symbol for taking your company to the next level. Because when you begin using the right tool, you are in a more productive state of mind, and you begin to sign more new customer contracts.

Actually. You know what? Just this week I shipped ten new boxes of these pens to Elon Musk’s office.

Unfortunately, this is my last pen today (reach across to hand pen back to CEO). So, I suggest you get this one. Try it out. If you’re not happy with it, I will personally come back next week to pick it up. And it won’t cost you a dime.

What do you say?

CEO: (picks jaw up off the floor) Yes.

See how simple that was. The CEO loved it. Why?

Because all four sales skills were displayed.

Here’s the simple sales framework I used to answer “sell me this pen.” Memorise it for yourself.

  • Find out how they last used a pen (gather info)
  • Emphasise the importance of the activity they last used a pen (respond to info)
  • Sell something bigger than a pen, like a state of mind (deliver info)
  • Ask for the buy (closing)
  • Does that make sense? Yes. OK, good.

Conclusion

Remember, it’s not about actually selling a pen. It’s about showing how well you can sell a product.

Take 15 minutes today to practice the script above. I promise you will benefit.

 

|Article courtesy of SenatorClub.co|

Report: $12BN invested in European startups last year, but fewer $30M+ deals

Investment in European startups held up last year despite fears of a slowdown, with some $12 billion invested during the year, according to an annual report compiled by French investment advisors Clipperton, working with Digimind’s WhoGotFunded database.

The report notes the year as effectively on a par with 2015’s record level of European startup investment.

However, the looming prospect of Brexit is casting a shadow over the region’s future, given the UK’s key role in driving European startup investment — with the report noting 24 per cent growth for UK transactions in the first half of the year.

Brexit — aka the vote by the British public to leave the European Union — occurred in the middle of last year, and the report notes that the second half of the year was “a bit lower” for UK startup investment.

But it’s clearly too soon to know what Brexit’s impact will be, given the UK has yet to start the formal two-year process of leaving the EU (due to be triggered by the government by the end of March). It was only this week that the UK Prime Minister publicly confirmed the country would be leaving the EU’s Single Market as a result of the Brexit vote, for example.

“The dynamics will have to be monitored closely as the real impact of the Brexit is still ahead of us,” the report authors note.

Notable trends also flagged in the report include —

  • an increasing volume of smaller deals (of sub-$30M), helping to offset a decline in larger rounds across the region — so, it looks like investors in Europe are spreading their bets further. “The number of transactions is clearly on the rise (+40% yoy in 2016) suggesting fewer large deals but a handful of start-ups which will seek acceleration rounds in the next 12 to 18 months”
  • growing appetite for tech investment among private equity funds, with the report noting KKR made “landmark minority investments” in OVH (hosting) and Darktrace (cyber); and also that “several big players” launched significant new funds dedicated to technology and growth equity. They also note direct investment by corporates is on the rise

There were 943 deals between $1m and $10m announced in 2016, according to the analysis, an increase of more than 50 per cent vs 2015.

The report also notes the amount invested in the $1M to $10M segment was $3.6BN — the same amount for deals between $10m and $30m (aka acceleration rounds).

These acceleration rounds were also on a positive trend in the second half of the year, up 19 per cent in value vs 2015. So it was only the larger round size declining in Europe last year, which the authors suggest could be good news for a sustainable investment ecosystem in the region.

“Our data highlights a real slow-down in large rounds in 2016 despite the strong activity by large PE and Corporates; potentially a healthy pause in the European ‘unicorns’ phenomenon,” they write.

While the UK continues to dominate the European startup investment ecosystem, with $4.1BN invested into its startups last year, the report flags strong momentum in France — which saw a 22 per cent increase in investment value vs 2015, according to their data.

The report also notes that three deals in the top five for the European region went into French startups (web hosting company OVH; IoT connectivity platform Sigfox; and audio kit maker Devialet), with the other two going to UK startups (on-demand food delivery platform Deliveroo; and DNA sequencing firm Oxford Nanopore). Some $2.7BN went into French startups in 2016.

France also looks likely to be one of the European countries that will gain from Brexit in the coming years at the UK’s expense, via an influx of jobs created by banks headquartered in London moving roles to Paris as they seek to retain access to the EU’s financial services passporting mechanism.

Elsewhere in Europe the Nordics saw a decline in the value of investment vs 2015, with a 24 per cent drop — and just $1.1BN invested into startups there.

While investment in startups in Germany, Austria and Switzerland is described as “solid”, with deals for the year there valued at $2.6BN.

The report also goes on to highlight positive growth signs for the southern European countries of Spain and Portugal too, suggesting the former is showing signs of “real uptake” — with the volume of startup investment transactions up 150 per cent in H2 2016 vs H2 2015. Although challenges remain, with the report noting Spain still lacks a “favorable” regulatory framework for startups.

*NB: The report includes Russian startups but excludes investments in Israel

Article courtesy of Techcrunch.com

Revionics appoint Bob Godfrey as SVP VP EMEA

Jurupa have successfully completed the hiring of Bob Godfrey as SVP EMEA on behalf of Revionics Inc. Godfrey, formerly VP EMEA with iTradeNetwork Inc joins Revionics on Dec

Godfrey, formerly VP EMEA with iTradeNetwork Inc joins Revionics on Dec 12th 2016, will be based from their EMEA HQ in London and reports directly into Marc Hafner, Chairman & CEO.

Founding Director of Jurupa, Aaron Davies commented “against a backdrop of some extremely strong competition, Bob proved beyond doubt through a series of demanding interviews with the senior management team that he was the outstanding candidate for the job. We look forward to working closely with Bob in 2017 as he seeks to further drive growth in the region by leveraging his considerable experience and know-how in the retail industry.”

4 Essential Questions to ask at the end of a job interview

“I am always surprised how some interviewees tend to trail off towards the end of an interview instead of finishing strong and leaving a lasting impression,” says Zachary Rose, CEO and founder of Green Education Services, a green jobs training firm based in New York City.

Whether you’re a senior preparing for campus recruiting or a recent graduate still hunting for a job, here are the top questions experts recommend asking at the end of a job interview to leave a great final impression on hiring managers and establish yourself as a top candidate.

“Is there any reason why you wouldn’t hire me?” Kelsey Meyer, senior vice president of Digital Talent Agents in Columbia, USA says, “A recent candidate asked, ‘If you were to not offer the job to me, what would be the reason?’ This was extremely straightforward and a little blunt, but it allowed me to communicate any hesitations I had about the candidate before he left the interview, and he could address them right there.”

“This one question is something I would suggest every single candidate ask,” adds Meyer. It lets you know where you stand and if you need to clarify anything for the interviewer. “If you have the guts to ask it, I don’t think you’ll regret it,” she says.

Rachel Dotson, content manager for ZipRecruiter.com, says, “All too often you hear about candidates leaving an interview and thinking they aced it, only to get a swift rejection email soon after. Take the time while you’re face-to-face to ask about and dispel any doubts that the hiring manager has.” Make sure a key asset of yours hasn’t been overlooked.

“As an employee, how could I exceed your expectations?” Michael B. Junge, a staffing and recruiting industry leader with Irvine Technology Corp in Santa Ana, California and author of “Purple Squirrel: Stand Out, Land Interviews, and Master the Modern Job Market,” says that one of his favourite interview questions is when a candidate takes the lead and asks, “If I were offered this position and joined your company, how would you measure my success and what could I do to exceed your expectations?”

“The question shows confidence without being overly brash, while also demonstrating that you have an interest in delivering positive results,” Junge adds. What’s more, the answer you receive can reveal what the interviewer hopes to accomplish by making a new hire, and this information can help you determine whether to accept the position if you get an offer.

“How could I help your company meet its’ goals?” Dotson also suggests job candidates ask the interviewer, “How does this position fit in with the short- and long-term goals of the company?” The response to the short-term side of the question gives you further insight into your potential role and helps you tailor the remainder of the discussion and your interview follow-up, she says. “Second, by bringing up long-term goals, you are telling the hiring manager that you’re there for the long-run, not just another new grad that is going to follow suit with her peers and job-hop every six months,” Dotson says.

Junge also recommends that interviewees ask, “What challenges have other new hires faced when starting in similar roles, and what could I do to put myself in a better position to succeed?” He says few students or new grads will ask this question because most haven’t witnessed failure. To a hiring manager, this question demonstrates maturity and awareness, and if you’re hired, the answers can help you avoid the pitfalls of being new.

“What excites you about coming into work?” Murshed Chowdhury, CEO of Infusive Solutions, a specialised staffing firm in New York City, suggests that candidates ask the interviewer, “What excites you about coming into work every day?”

“This is a role reversal question that we often suggest candidates ask,” he says. People love the opportunity to talk about themselves, so this question provides an excellent chance to learn about the hiring manager and find ways to establish common ground. “This is also a great opportunity for the candidate to determine whether he/she is excited by the same things that excite the hiring manager to see if the culture is a good fit,” Chowdhury adds.

The Bottom Line Although it is important to provide a great first impression to a potential employer, as well as acing the basics of a job interview, closing the interview strong is just as important.

“Prove to your interviewer that you want this position and you are in this for the right reasons, not simply to fill your day with something to do,” Rose says. Ask these questions before you leave, and leave your potential new employer with a great impression.

Article courtesy of Forbes.com