S4 E27 RecruitersRecruitingRecruiters Have You Met… Jack Coapman?

Chris Hoyt 0:28
Gerry Crispin, good afternoon.

Gerry Crispin 0:30
Well, well, Chris, how are you?

Chris Hoyt 0:34
It’s always so formal when we connect online.

Gerry Crispin 0:41
Absolutely. Life is good.

Chris Hoyt 0:43
Yeah, and I think we’ve got a guest on today. Jerry, do you want to introduce Jack?

Gerry Crispin 0:49
Do I want to introduce jack? I want jack to introduce Jack. Hey Jack. You here. I don’t know where we get Jack to be introducing.

Chris Hoyt 1:04
Well, we do we do have him on the line. He might be here. Yeah, maybe he stepped away for just a second. I could see him on the line.

Gerry Crispin 1:12
You can.

Chris Hoyt 1:14

Gerry Crispin 1:15
Can you see me on the line?

Chris Hoyt 1:17
I can see you on the line to I’m omnipotent today.

Gerry Crispin 1:20
Oh, I got it. Okay.

Chris Hoyt 1:24
vocabulary word of the day that but

Gerry Crispin 1:27
i think that’s wonderful.

Chris Hoyt 1:28
Why? Well, it’s easier to say than recruiters recruiting recruiters.

Gerry Crispin 1:33
It is easier to say than recruiters recruiting recruiters.

Chris Hoyt 1:37
Although I think we are getting pretty good of it.

Gerry Crispin 1:43
I’m going to I’m going to learn how to do this blog talk radio before long for sure.

Chris Hoyt 1:47
We’ll get the hang of it if we decide not to leave.

Gerry Crispin 1:51
Yeah, yeah. Absolutely.

Chris Hoyt 1:54
Jack, can just chime in. We’ll just make we’ll make up a scenario for Jack

Gerry Crispin 1:59
okay. That’s good. He’s been around long time behind the scenes for like, at least 15 years I think

Chris Hoyt 2:12
so Wow, I didn’t know that.

Gerry Crispin 2:14
Oh yeah, he was working with Virtual Edge right after it started I believe as I recall, and and then obviously after virtualized was sold to ADP and Diane and the folks went on a little bit of a hiatus I think and when they came back they came back with him too. So it’s kind of cool he was with Virtual Edge the longer after it was sold to ADP

Chris Hoyt 2:48
Yeah, yeah. Cuz I knew, I guess have to do have him. I suppose at ADP, but I didn’t ever really talk to him obviously, until, you know, he was over at great people. Which is where he is now as the chief strategy officer.

Gerry Crispin 3:03
Absolutely. And

Chris Hoyt 3:07
you know it occurs to me Jerry that we miss a wonderful opportunity here to to make up fantastical stories about jack.

Gerry Crispin 3:14
We could Yeah, what comes to mind is jack in the beanstalk but I don’t think we can go there. That’s Well,

Chris Hoyt 3:24
you do know that jack has a history he used to be a dog musher.

Gerry Crispin 3:29
That would be very cool. Yeah. And Alaska.

Chris Hoyt 3:32
When when mining for carrots on the Alaskan frontier

Gerry Crispin 3:39
and of course, they grow very large there as to these days as the case may be.

Chris Hoyt 3:48
Okay, so jokes aside, Jack may be having some technical difficulties getting in and I’m sure we’re killing him if he can hear us but what why don’t we take a minute because nobody’s nobody on our end, at least directly to our listeners has talk to you about the project that launched this week recruiters recruiting recruiters.com.

Gerry Crispin 4:06
Yeah, sure.

Chris Hoyt 4:07
Yeah, I know you did a you’ve done a couple of quick calls and a few interviews. But why don’t you Why don’t you give us sort of your pc or your escalator pitch on, on your view of sort of what we’ve managed to do in this partnership and standing this up?

Gerry Crispin 4:21
I think we’re, we’re turning a couple things a little bit upside down just to see what’s going to happen about that on it. And I think it comes from really the employees because it’s not coming from me. It’s not coming from you. It’s not coming from any of the other consultants, vendors, etc. out there. It was the employers who basically raised the issue that this whole new issue that, you know, challenge that we’re under, is forcing us to let people Go that we don’t want to let go. As opposed to, we’re going to be in a recession for the next couple of years, we’re going to lay people off. And hopefully someday you might come back. But you know, goodbye, have a good time. We don’t know there’s so much uncertainty. And there’s a hope that we’ll be able to bring them back in a few weeks, a few months, etc. And so I think the shift the pivot for many HR and ga leaders has been, I want to, I want to maintain a relationship with these folks, when they leave, I want to make sure that they’re treated properly, I want to make sure that we stay in communication and keep them apprised of what’s happening back home. And in the hopes that we can get through this and come back whole. We want to we want almost all of them to want to convert and come back as opposed to say, Man, you let me go, I’m going I’m gone kind of thing. And so That was the incentive when we talked about creating a platform that might be helpful. They said, I want to make sure that people are treated properly, whether they get the job or don’t. And that changed everything for us in terms of how we put stuff together over the last 44 weeks, to make sure that we could ensure that people that employers who are going to potentially touch a candidate who is also a recruiter would do it according to at least a minimum standard in which there would be no blackhole. There’d be establishing expectations and delivering against them. And and obviously, we had to solve for the problem of okay, how do we know that that’s happened, which means we got to be able to also ask the recruiter who got in touch with you or who did you get in touch with and did they meet those or that standard and then there has to be a consequence. You know, if you’re not, if you’re not rising to the occasion, then you shouldn’t be using the platform. And in summary, what we did and now it’s a matter of whether or not we can whether it, whether or not it resonates and whether it serves as a place that recruiters would like to go to, to engage one another, to find the jobs that we can offer and, and potentially talk to each other about what else they can be doing that would be helpful for them in terms of gaining employment or finding recruiters.

Chris Hoyt 7:45
Well, I think what’s really interesting and worth calling out is that you know, we did this in partnership with an awful lot of big brains and dairy and dairy. I think I’ve got an update. Are you ready?

Gerry Crispin 7:55
Yeah. an update

Chris Hoyt 8:04
Jack, are you on the line?

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 8:06
I’m here. I don’t know if I’ve ever been welcomed with a drum roll before.

Chris Hoyt 8:13
I gotta tell you, I’ve probably abused that drum roll sound effect for the last five podcasts.

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 8:17
okay to say you’re having fun with those, huh?

Chris Hoyt 8:20
Yeah, for sure. I only have three. I’ve got I’ve got that one. And then this one. And the other one. I’m just gonna leave as a mystery.

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 8:31
I think it works.

Gerry Crispin 8:33
Jack, we’ve already been talking about you. We had you as a musher of dogs in Alaska, and a carrot farmer as well.

Chris Hoyt 8:44
Also in Alaska.

Gerry Crispin 8:46
Also, in Alaska

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 8:46
Well I’ll have to update I’ll have to update my resume, I guess.

Gerry Crispin 8:49
But it did fill a few minutes and then we explain recruiters recruiting recruiters which I’m just getting so much better at saying And now you’re here. So that’s great. Yeah. Well, thank you for having me. Well, we would like you to correct the misperceptions that might have occurred on the part of many, many people about who jack copeman really is. So can you give us a quick elevator? Talk about, you know where you’ve been? Because I know you’ve been around here for a long time.

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 9:27
I have I have. So I have been in the in the, you know, recruitment technology space for gosh, probably right about 20 years now. And that was really my first entry into the world of HR technology back in 2001. When I joined the organization by the name of Virtual Edge at that point in time and, you know, that was back in the day when applicant tracking system was really an applicant tracking job posting was really the two primary technologies in recruiting. And gosh, you look at it today, and it’s So much different in the such. So we had a great run with Virtual Edge. We were acquired in 2006 by ADP. And you know, as you as you might expect, some of us stuck around, I kept making it interesting for people like myself, but management temp temp management team at that point time kind of broke apart. But we found an opportunity to get back together with an organization by the new gr8 People that started in 2010. And there was a lot of building and work that was going on working with some strategic partners for a couple years. And I joined the organization in 2014. And what’s great is it’s the same management team. So at this point, we’re kind of finishing each other sentences, which is, which is a good thing. So it’s been, it’s been great prior to that I had you know many more years in retail technology and such but working in HR is is a lot better than working with a leader of IT in a supermarket chain that is not really happy all the time, but So it’s been a welcome change

Gerry Crispin 11:01
Well, that’s great and and not had to travel too much from the point of view of moving I mean, you you’ve lived pretty much in Pennsylvania, New Jersey area, right?

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 11:14
I have we’ve been down here for about 25, 26, 27 years somewhere in that ballpark. So came down with a with a job change once again when I was back in the in the retail technology world and, you know, was fortunate enough to be introduced to Diane Smith and Jane Kettles back in 2000-2001, and really loved the mission that they were setting forth for themselves in the Virtual Edge organization. And we’ve been fortunate that we’ve had a great supply of talent you know, through the Bucks County area in the Greater Philadelphia area that’s been able to kind of feel the success of both Virtual Edge and now gr8 People.

Gerry Crispin 11:50
You know, I’m I’m a great fan of Diane Jane, I think they represent a very strong set of values that I really appreciate. A little bit about gr8 People. What? What is where is it now in relation? Because I know you’ve been around for now for several years, you got a lot of a number of stablished clients. And I mean, I remember when we we first saw it coming out. So where do you see it? Where do you see it today? And where do you see it going over the next year or so?

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 12:25
Yeah, great question. So, you know, when we started the business, you know, the the objective or the thing that we saw happening and given our experience of Virtual Edge, we had a chance to talk with a lot of people that we had an opportunity to serve over the years and and you know, as you guys know, right in the retail technology world, it’s all about solving problems and increasing capacity and improving your brand and everything in his organization sought to do this. The made the right decision along a long timeline and they kept adding different types of solutions. And pretty soon they had to look in the rearview mirror and realize that they had you know, a dozen plus this different types of technologies that were supporting the branding of the organization, the engagement of job seekers, the ultimate hire, and onboarding of talent into the organization. But they were always challenged with really three primary things. One, one was kind of an inconsistent user experience across the board. Second was the challenge of monitoring all those integrations. And the third was at the end of the day, if you want to press the magic button, and say, so what was my source of higher across the continuum and how many people converted from marketing activities to application activities to being hired? It was it was almost impossible to do. So we went forward with the mission of veal to kind of pull together everything from talent discovery in talent or candidate engagement and ultimate entire and put that all into a common platform. So that for those organizations that were really looking for an end to end system and not have to worry about those inconsistent user experiences or those integrations could really look to great people as the platform To really introduce people into the organization, engage with them through the process and ultimately hire them. So we started, you know, what’s interesting, we worked with a couple different types of customers, as you guys know, right? We started working in the RPO space. And you know, that’s a, that’s a gorilla of its own. When you think about the hundreds of companies that those organizations support the the millions of candidates, the thousands, if not millions of jobs that they’re responsible for. So we really tested the strength and enterprise class of our platform against that model, and have had some great success in that. But today, we are, you know, most of the growth within gr8 People has been with corporate staffing teams that are looking for a robust enterprise class platform that are looking for end to end connectivity of all the different services and processes that they have. And then there’s also those organizations that say, Well, I already have an applicant tracking system. I really can’t change that. What can we do? In terms of supporting those things that I need to do now from a marketing of the organization, candidate relationship management, So in those cases, we kind of put our applicant tracking system on beside Gerry. And we kind of say, hey, let’s let’s be thoughtful about what the solution would be for you. And in that case, we kind of turn on things like candidate relationship management, you know, campus and event manage employee referral, and all those different types of utilities that complement the applicant tracking system, but really help an organization connect their brand with talent out there

Gerry Crispin 15:30
Okay so you have been pretty agile them in terms of being able to integrate with other things?

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 15:35
Yeah, so, you know, I think what’s great is, you know, today, you know, with the, with the growth of API engines, and, and, you know, and those utilities, you know, we’re able to integrate with different applicant tracking systems, different video interviewing tools, assessment providers, you know, different utilities, like single sign on electronic signature, you know, pretty easily so you know, when How to be in a nimble and agile. That’s for sure.

Gerry Crispin 16:04
Yeah, that’s cool. So, so you were certainly among the the folks that we called when we said, you know, our members are looking for, you know, something that might work during the furlough. And you were, you were you’ve been in those discussions throughout what, what kind of inspired you to participate in this thing? Because not everybody did

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 16:27
Yeah, I mean, you know, just the mission behind the scenes, right, that just came out, you know, clearly on every conversation is that, you know, we are all, we all have a tremendous amount of respect for the work that talent acquisition professionals do and unfortunately, in challenging times, you know, they’re usually one of the first ones depending upon the industry and the business climate that that is, is hurt is hurt in a way that that is tough to kind of come back from. So the opportunity to kind of connect those organizations that that has the hiring needs any organization and those people that are responsible for helping with that hiring me know that the talent acquisition professional, you know, having an opportunity to do whatever you can, you know, when there’s been a lot of people on these calls, whether they be people providing technology or saying how it can work or, you know, testing DCP infrastructure and the such, and just the mission of being able to kind of do whatever you can, because you’ve always got to be in a position to pay it forward. And, and I think we owe it to, you know, the talent acquisition professionals to do whatever we can to help them because when, when things you know, when we come to, will be when we turn the corner on this, right, they are going to be front and center and they’re going to have another set of unique challenges on them to make sure that they’re staffing the organization in the right way.

Gerry Crispin 17:48
Well, it’s true. I mean, it certainly is going to be always a continuing set of issues and this may not be the only black swan event. That we see over the next few years so. So it does, it does. It does pay to kind of embrace the possibility of how we can collaborate, especially when we can see that many of the employers themselves are collaborating in ways that are that are helpful to each other. And some, you know, some of them your clients, some of them are not your clients, you know, but they want to have that kind of direct capabilities, if you will, and that obviously saves a great deal of time, energy and effort. You also I know, you, you stood up for your clients and then offered beyond that additional support in the way of some of the campus. I think it was initially designed as campus but it’s more like a career fair kind of tools. Is that correct?

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 18:55
It is it is so you know, we’ve, for a long time had a complaint Within our one experience platform that helped organizations, you know, manage both campus and or their own proprietary kind of career events, right. So it was all about leveraging different parts of the platform to brand the event, you know, the Find the event brand new event promoted an advertisement, engagement, engage with job seekers at the event. So we actually developed a tablet based app to kind of support that, and then all the follow up that happens after that. And as we know, in the blink of an eye, we went from supporting that physical event to needing to figure out how to continue to promote the brand, and everything it gets out these things virtually. So, you know, as as another means of us kind of paying it forward was, well, you know, you know, we have this utility, let’s, let’s put it forward to those companies, I can be a valuable asset to So, you know, we’ve been really we’ve been really fortunate to be in a place as an organization as we’ve been growing to be able to do that and pay it forward. So I think we got got close to a dozen, if not more companies that are standing up their own recruiting events and are looking to leverage the great people platform to kind of promote that into such. So it’s been great to, it’s been great to be able to kind of support that for the organizations and, you know, we’re going to continue to look at different ways, you know, as this as this new, this new world order continues to define itself of different things that we can do to kind of support them through the platform.

Gerry Crispin 20:27
It’s great point, you know, we, we, we wanted to make sure that we wrote up and and put into kind of a resource directory, all of the different kinds of things that companies were doing. Some are very similar to recruiting, recruiters, recruiting recruiters, and some are a little bit different, like, like your camp campus or events, tools, and so on, on the website on recruiters recruiting recruiters there is a resource directory that is connected down at the bottom. And they can find great people’s description of that tool as well as links to get back to you guys if they want it. So that’s kind of cool. Any thoughts about, about recruiters recruiting recruiters that now that it’s launched, and obviously, we’re still looking for a number of things that we want to tighten up and a couple community ideas that we want to kind of develop, but any other Final Thoughts relative to that?

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 21:37
No, I didn’t, you know, I, you know, I congratulate, I congratulate, you know, the whole, you know, CareerXroads team and all the different contributors and, and, you know, when you’ve got calls together with, you know, people like Roy and Maren and Brad and yourselves and as such, there’s nothing but good that can come out of that. So you know, that that opportunity to bring together people and shed any, you know, you know, any competitive differences that you may have had with with technology providers as you’re competing with business in, you just kind of shed those things and kind of say, Hey, we need that we need to do whatever we can to support the people that we work with day in and day out. So, you know, I applaud you for those efforts and look forward to being part of you know, that continuing mission.

Gerry Crispin 22:22
Yeah, we appreciate you being one of the founding members of this this group, for sure. And we’d like to see a lot more and join our consortium and, and support this approach.

Chris Hoyt 22:33
Now, Jack, we’re not going to let you off too easily because as we discover on yesterday’s interview, Ralph robot who you know, from Consider, turns out he is a master chef. Uh huh. Yeah. And we’re Gerry. I’m trying to get him to teach one of our virtual cooking classes, and he’s picking some French cuisine. That’s apparently his specialty. So the question now Jack is what is it about you that We don’t know that sort of, you know, outside outside we love to ask this of our members but what is it outside of work that you like to do? That might surprise people? Why dragon boat racer?

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 23:13
What’s that?

Chris Hoyt 23:14
Are you a dragon boat racer?

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 23:16
No, no, nothing that exciting. You know, I, I would not consider myself a chef, but I do I do. I consider myself more of a of a line collector. Right? So it’s, you know, I love times when I’ve got my family, you know, my, my wife is is getting acclimated to this virtual world and is a fourth grade teacher. So my kids are have a lot of teaching there. And there’s nothing better for me than to sit down after cooking a meal, putting it in the middle of the table and then sitting back and watching everybody enjoy themselves. So, you know, I’m blessed to be able to have a strong family here with kids and grandkids. So I don’t think there’s any secret super powers that I’ve got, you know, just enjoy every day.

Gerry Crispin 24:05
How cool are you? How old is your grant? You have one grandkid at this point

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 24:09
No, I have three now. rate. Oh yeah, I have three. I know it’s it’s crazy. Absolutely fight me though.

Gerry Crispin 24:17

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 24:18
what’s that?

Gerry Crispin 24:19
You tie me?

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 24:21
Yeah, yes. So I have a grandson, Liam, granddaughter Ellie and those are both with my, my daughter and her husband. And then I have a grandson Jack the fourth, which is with my son in his life. So looking forward to the time that we can have all those people around the table again.

Chris Hoyt 24:42
I we’re all looking forward to that. Yep.

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 24:46
I’m just gonna keep, when they decide to be able to do that. If they if they say that, you know, you can’t have gatherings over 10 I think if I if I count, right, I’m thinking I’m good under you know that the group would be under 10 So that would be a good thing.

Chris Hoyt 25:01
Talking about the bubble, the reinstitution of what is it familial bubbles or familial cells?

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 25:08
That’s right. That’s right.

Chris Hoyt 25:11
All right, Jack, we’re really glad you dialed in. man, we really appreciate all the help on the project, the brain power and you and your entire team leaning in and helping with the logo work and just how the platform and stuff should be structured. That expertise as well as all that heart that went into it, man, we love you.

Jack Coapman, gr8 People 25:25
Whatever, you’re need.

Gerry Crispin 25:27
Thank you, Jack.