Israeli Recruiting Vendors Surviving in Rough Economy

Two years after I visited with Israel’s recruiting-related and other companies, the country some call America’s 51st state has slowed along with the rest of the world. Says Sandy Erez, of assessment vendor HRVision, “The worldwide recession has not spared the Israeli economy from its devastating effects. Every day, companies are laying off tens and hundreds of people.”

Meanwhile, the three companies I mentioned in greatest detail on that trip — Redmatch, CareerHarmony, and HRVision, are still kicking.

CareerHarmony

When Shanghai’s mayor went off to the pokey for embezzlement, it slowed things down for CareerHarmony, a company we mentioned back in 2006. Government contracts had to be reviewed, but all’s still well with the Shanghai contract for CareerHarmony. The Manpower company is doing about 15,000 assessments a year for would-be Chinese entrepreneurs who want loans or tax breaks from the government.

CareerHarmony has also finished a new product, called a Vocational Profiler, which it hopes to sell to local employment offices and outplacement companies worldwide to help students, people who are thinking of changing careers, and others decide what the best path is for them. The profiler measures cognitive ability (based upon verbal, numerical, and figural abilities); vocational interest (based on preferred activities, hobbies, and fields of interest); and biographical information (education, skills levels, experiences, etc.).

“It’s something I know will take off,” says CEO Stuart Marvin, talking to us from Geneva.

Redmatch

Redmatch has now split into two totally independent companies, one international and one North American, based in Potomac, Maryland and called RealMatch.

RealMatch now has what it claims is the “fastest growing recruitment advertising platform in the United States” for somewhere around 1,000 newspaper sites. It’s also powering Scientific American, Findlaw (where it says 10,000 legal professionals sign up monthly, and which came up first in Google when I searched “legal careers”), and Geek.com, among other sites.

For most sites, RealMatch uses a “pay for performance” model where the employer only pays to see candidates who seem like a match, based on a profile that’s graded, such as “87% match.” CEO Gal Almog says the company has spent a couple of million dollars improving its matching technology.

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“We want to take over the market from Monster and CareerBuilder,” says the ambitious CEO. “Their business model model is obsolete. The current situation makes them very vulnerable. Craigslist doesn’t deliver a lot of value. I don’t believe in a free lunch in any business. A lot of the (posts on free sites) are giving you garbage; we give you exactly what you need.”

HRVision

HRVision closed a deal with Bezeq, the country’s biggest telecom company, and is making inroads in the financial sector.

It also sold to several government agencies (police and immigration) in Mexico, and to AXA, a large UK insurance company. Several banks and call centers in South Africa are now doing pilots with HRVision.

The company is going to release a 3.5 version with several enhancements. HRVision’s Sandy Erez says “the system also allows for a one-time testing of candidates and their subsequent comparison and ranking for suitability to all open jobs in the organization — which means that human capital management can be applied from the moment the recruiting process has begun. Candidates can be tested for their raw capability for higher-level managerial jobs at the initial testing.”

Erez says the slow global economy has worked in its favor. “Companies looking to economize and cut costs are looking into our program.”

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