UNLEASH Panel | Advice to HR Tech startups

"“More human side value first, success second. Give away good content. Have  a sense of community - Give, not get!"


One of the great panels on UNLEASH Start up stage was “Flashlight on Founders: The impact of startups on the future of HR” . The panel was moderated by Dave Hazlehurst and the speakers were:  Adam Gordon (Candidate ID), Sharon Argov (Hibob), Rebeca Carr (SmartRecruiters) and Chris Collins (RoboReruiter), Winner of the startup competition.

These were the highlights of the panel:

Q:  What’s your advantage over the mogul out there (SAP, Oracle, etc)

  1. Expertise – They are busy with too many things, bigger “fish to fry”.
  2. Customers – Able to get them more involved with your system, feedback etc.
  3. Speed  – Quicker, make mistakes, fix on the fly.
  4. Open and agile – The more open you will be, the quicker the integration and adaptability, the quicker you evolve.
  5. Relationships – Closer HR and Customer Success relationships.

Dave Hazlehurst’s Tips

“Focus on what you can do Best”

“Learn to say NO”

Q:  What are your pain points?

  1.   Finding brilliant talent.
  2.   What not to do – Need to focus.
  3.   Balance work/life.
  4.   Cash in the door.

Q:  What are the differences between startups and HR startups

  1. More experienced entrepreneurs (Looking at the average age in the Israeli scene, Adam is right!)
  2.  A need for knowledges of rules and regulations.
  3.  HRs and HR founders learning and  evolving together, ”mutually dependent”.
  4.  Not easy to sell to HR people.

Dave Hazlehurst’s Tip

“More human side value first, success second.
Give away good content
Have  sense of community – Give, not get!”


Q: In HR you sell to the HR Manager, recruiters deal with it – Is it a limitation / problem?

  1. Not a problem if you are able to put yourself in the shoes of the end user.
  2. Bring in end users as the evaluation. Without adoption it will not succeed. Not to mention candidates.
  3. Depending on region. In the USA, sales directly to recruiters or the person looking to hire, they have more power to make decisions.
  4. Different values for decision makers than to recruiters, which is why when onboarding the software, they sell the VALUE of using the product to the end users.

Q:  What advice would you give HR founders?

  1.   Start younger!
  2.   Do your best!
  3.   Don’t take yourself too seriously, have fun!
  4.   Focus early, do something really well and build from that.
  5.   Don’t go into a business with no market. Start where there is demand.
The Israeli HR Tech Founders Meetup

My point of view and to summarize – I believe  HR Tech founders should meet regularly and discuss challenges, form relationships,etc. The HR Tech arena in  Israel (where I am from) is a very vibrant one. The one I am closely involved in, includes a dedicated whatsapp group, where everyone is very supportive of each other. We also started a monthly meetup to discuss more topics in depth and help the relationships form. I believe those who will prosper are those that will also share their experience, support and be supported, as Dave Hazlehurst, in his infinite wisdom, stated (yes, I am (one) of his groupies 😉


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