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Tuesday, October 15, 2013

The 100 Most Influential People in the Staffing Industry

Just one year ago I couldn't imagine where I would be today. I am humbled and honored that I have been been selected as one of Staffing Industry's top 100 influential people for 2013.

My background is in IT and the corporate world. I spent several years helping companies streamline their processes and become more efficient through the use of innovative technologies. That kind of service has always been a driving force behind my career.

The last decade alone has seen many changes in the way we conduct our daily business. Everything from shopping, to travel, to how we watch television has been enhanced by technological advances. However, the staffing industry model of hiring and placing contingent workers on assignment remained unchanged.
I saw the increase in online applications for freelance workers such as oDesk and eLance. While these are great ways to connect independent contractors to potential customers they are limited to that professional sphere. What if similar methods could be used to improve the quality of work for organizations that handle contingent staffing like temporary employment agencies, event staffing, security companies, and healthcare staff providers?

I had an idea to make this happen but like many entrepreneurs I had moments of doubt. What if I left my corporate job and failed? I realized that I couldn't wait for the opportunity to arise, I needed to take it. Three simple rules helped me get started.

 I took a chance and launched NextCrew. Little did I know at the time what was in store. 

NextCrew, an innovative technology supplier that provides a cloud-based software platform which allows brick-and-mortar staffing firms to introduce and grow “next-gen” online staffing processes and revenue streams. NextCrew integrates with existing ATSs, websites, etc. and enables efficient, fast online staffing processes many clients are now demanding. Nice thing about platform is that, it easily integrates with existing system such as ATS and Payroll systems. This allows, organizations can start maximizing their revenue without making drastic changes to their existing workflow.

NextCrew is not backed by venture capital or angel investors. Getting our concept on the market has not been easy. I have been extremely proud of our accomplishments and I would like to take some time to thank those who helped make it happen.

We are a true LinkedIn success story. When I started I didn't have a single contact in the staffing industry. I didn't have a marketing budget and I wasn't sure how to get the word out to my target industries. However, as part of my professional life I was already connected to the largest online network: LinkedIn.

The light bulb went off and I realized that I already had the right tools at my fingertips. LinkedIn has been a great asset to me and NextCrew. I was able to market the concept, publish blog posts, join groups, and get connected. Shortly after beginning my LinkedIn campaign we were contacted by two staffing services interested in learning more about NextCrew. LinkedIn gave me the confidence to continue marketing my idea and allowed me to grow the business to where it is today. There have been a lot of great individuals who have helped me with their advice and their connections. Never underestimate the need for mentors no matter where you are in your career.

I was also able to put together a great team to bring NextCrew to life. Without my technology team or my marketing team I would have never been able to make this happen.

Currently we have clients in the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada. They span several industries but have two things in common; they all employ contingent staff and they were looking for a more efficient way to manage their processes. The sky is the limit moving forward and I am excited for each and every step along the way.

Getting listed as a top 100 most influential company means a lot to me personally and to the success of NextCrew. It is a great mental boost. I know that my efforts are appreciated and that my product can help hundreds if not thousands of companies do the very best work possible.

If you have ever thought about stepping out on your own and pursuing an idea as an entrepreneur I am here to tell you it is not only possible but it may be vital. If you feel restless in a corporate environment it is most likely because you are meant to do something more. It is critical to the business community because we need more great ideas to continue innovation. My advice to you is:

1        Don't be afraid to refocus. Your original idea might not be perfect but with some creative thinking you can take it to the next level.
     Failure is not an option. That is not to say you won't experience failure along the way, but don't look at it as the end of the journey. Learn from your mistakes and keep going.
3       You can't do it alone. Connect with great people. These individuals, organizations, and companies will become your first cheerleaders, your first customers, and your best asset.

Thank you for supporting NextCrew. I look forward to the future of our company. 

"Success is a Journey not a Destination"
- Heraclitus

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