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Part 2: Jason Leonard: From Corporate Staffing Mgt To TalentMaze

Posted on October 9, 2008
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By Dave Mendoza, Partner, Partner JobMachine Inc. Profile
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Q& A with Jason Leonard – Managing Director, Talent Maze

Six Degrees: Tell us about Your Company

Jason: Talent Maze revolutionizes the Employer and Recruiter business model by creating a marketplace where Employers are able to locate and engage top, proven Recruiters to find the perfect candidate for their jobs. In turn, Recruiters are effortlessly able to find open job requisitions for their active candidates. Think the Ebay or Auto Trader business model, but specific to the recruiting industry. We are a free service for both Employers and Recruiters.

Six Degrees: How was Your Company Founded?

Jason: The founders worked on both the external agency side and the internal corporate side of recruiting and realized there were different pain points for both populations. The legacy contingency search model fundamentally has not changed in decades. It is inefficient, laborious, not cost effective and doesn’t take advantage of all of the technological advances of the Internet revolution. Realizing where there was a need there was an opportunity, Talent Maze was born. The founder’s goal is to improve the decades old recruiting process so Employers can find better talent faster and for less money and Recruiters can find and outlet for their perishable candidate inventory and make more money. Talent Maze solves for both sets of problems.

Six Degrees: Where did you go and find investors?

Jason: Originally the company was funded by the founders. Once the technical product was developed, debugged and put into production Angel investor contributed capital. Most of the Angels were found via the founders extended networks and by leveraging resources like AngelSoft and Active Capital. Talent Maze is considering increased rounds of funding in order to significantly bolster sales and marketing and technology. Our two main competitors have recently both received large infusions from Venture Capital firms.

Six Degrees: Your Company’s Value Proposition

Jason: The traditional recruiting business model is similar to a maze filled with time and resource draining traps. For Employers there are many frustrations in the process as it exists today. There is the challenge of engaging enough reliable external agencies to dedicate quality time to filling their job requisitions, coupled with the challenge of managing the ever changing Recruiter landscape. Both challenges prohibit internal Recruiters from doing what they do best – interviewing, evaluating, negotiating with and hiring candidates.

For external Recruiters, it is equally frustrating to find outstanding candidates for whom they do not have current opportunities with great companies. To solve this problem external Recruiters are forced to spend their time marketing to Employers instead of doing what they do best – identifying and strategizing with top notch candidates about what careers are right for them.
Talent Maze solves for both sets of problems via an Internet based marketplace connecting hiring companies with the tens of thousands of external search firms, independent Recruiters and headhunters. The result is hiring companies fill jobs faster, for less money and Recruiters make more placements with less time spent on marketing. Both sides benefit from reduced administrative burden and do so for no additional cost. Talent Maze is a free service to both Employers and Recruiters
Six Degrees: What is the pricing structure for your services/products?

Jason: Talent Maze is free to both Employers and Recruiters. Employers dictate on a requisition by requisition basis how much they are willing to pay (either a percentage of base salary or fixed rate) in the event they hire a candidate submitted to them through Talent Maze. Once a hire occurs, the Employer sends the fee to Talent Maze to be held in escrow until the guarantee period is met. Once the guarantee is met Talent Maze sends a check for 80% of the placement fee to the Recruiter who supplied the candidate.
Six Degrees: What is the future for Your Company?

Jason: Since we just finished private beta this past Spring and officially launched to the public July 1, 2008 we are in full growth mode. Our sales and marketing team are actively branding and socializing the Talent Maze model to both Employer and Recruiter customers. We have found the adoption rate to be high on both sides and look forward to a rapid growth path. The underlying business model is truly game changing and benefits all parties involved. We are literally only limited by how much time we have to engage new Employers and Recruiters to share the power of the marketplace with them. The future is looking very bright for Talent Maze.

Six Degrees: Do you blog?

Jason: I actually just started. I always wanted to blog at Citigroup, but the company did not allow it. Now that I am at Talent Maze I think it’s time to share my thoughts and perspectives with the recruiting community. Visit for more.


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