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The cavnessHR Podcast can be found at the following places or you can just type in cavnessHR on the respective app.
Google Play: https://cavnesshr.co/057e8
Pocket Casts: https://cavnesshr.co/thecabaa36
Social Media links for Ninh Below!!
Hiretual Tel: +1 415-758-3330
Address: Mountain View, CA 94303, USA
Ninh’s Book Recommendation!!!
“Full Stack Recruiter: The Modern Recruiter’s Guide”
Resources from Ninh!!!
If you go to Hiretual.com. You can get our chrome extension that's completely free. It's going to be free forever. What it can give you is it will help you write boolean searches complex boolean searches on 40 different platforms with ease. Works right in your browser. It also helps you discover 10 people's personal contact information per week. Most HR folks right or if you're a job seeker, a job hunter and looking for jobs want to connect with the hire manager directly. That's a great way to do it.
Jason: Hello and welcome to the cavnessHR podcast.
Ninh: Hello, this in Ninh Tran
Jason: Today's podcast is brought to you by Audible. Get a free audiobook download and 30 day free trial at www.audibletrial.com/cavnessHR. Our guest today in Ninh Tran. Ninh, are you ready to be great today?
Ninh: Yeah. Really ready. It's gonna be a great day.
Jason: Ninh Tran is a Chief Relations Officer and co-founder of Hiretual and is also a SourceconERE Media recruiter and author and has spoken on various subjects such as AI and the future of recruiting. Today's sourcing technology and skills recruiting, workflow automation hacking, Authentic Leadership for Growth and selling is selling. At both Stanford University and in the global talent acquisition conference. As a Cal alumni, Ninh found how to help emerging local food economies thrive by creating dozens of jobs for the unemployed right here in the United States. Hiretual is recruiters best friend. Hiretual is an AI recruiting platform of choice built by recruiters for recruiters. That continually proves to make the Internet recruiting friendly and your life easier. Part of the vision is to make the Internet recruiter-friendly. Ninh, thank you very much for being here. That's a great undertaking you take on it right there right there.
Ninh: Jason thank you for having me.
Jason: So how does Hiretual work. What's the process?
Ninh: So at Hiretual, we tried to make the Internet sourcing. So searching for candidates across the web easier we use a lot of machine learning and AI learning models to make technology and automation smarter.
Ninh: What you can do is if you are a recruiter or a sourcer. Are you just looking for people say you're hiring for python developer or sales. Or anything under the sun as long as there's a title you can type that into our system and if you're familiar with boolean strings. Hiretual will actually help you write a complex Boolean search for you. Most people that really understand boolean that they oftentimes take months or years to master it. We just make it super easy. It's good to understand the nuances. But it's essentially the main point of our free version is that it's going to save you time.
Jason: What would you tell people who tell you. You know what. I'm sure your system is fine and all. But I trust my gut. I use my gut to hire. I don't want to use your system. How do you convince them to come to 2018.
Ninh: I would say you know using systems. Any system right. Just like using a car. You're still going to rely on your gut to hire. We will help you definitely find the right people with the right skill set. But it is going to be your decision, your hiring managers decision to hire. We don't do the interviewing or anything past screening is something that we don't do. We'll get you the names of the right people. They are going to have the skill sets that you're looking for anything under the sun really. Then it's up to you to interview to see if their a culture fit. If they are high performers. If they match and going to work well with your team. So you know again there's no artificial intelligence or technology that can replace that right. Ultimately people hire the people they like. So if you see a candidate that's going to really impress you then go ahead. My only hope is that you are able to leverage us to get to those candidates faster.
Jason: How specific does Hiretual get with skills. Like how much of a deep dive can you do?
Ninh: Yeah. So we recruit the whole recruiting process. There's a lot of stages. Actually one of them, the very first one is sourcing. So searching for candidates getting the recruiting leads. There's two ways of sourcing. There is passive sourcing and there's active source. Passive sourcing is essentially post a job and you pray. A lot of people do that. It works really well for a lot of blue collar folks. But you know when you think about the environment that we're in today right. There's like three point nine percent.
Ninh: So even posting jobs and praying becomes less and less effective these day. Where you know you can get thousands of operations right. The other portion of sourcing is active sourcing. Let's say your hitting LinkedIn or Facebook or Twitter or Angellist or Meetup or Github. Finding people that might not be actively looking for a job because they most likely have a job. But those might be the guys that are really high quality candidates that have all those skills that you want. A lot of times the way you would find them is using like a skill set Boolean search. That's kind of the old way to do it. But with artificial intelligence and machine learning. What we have done at Hiretual is build out a Knowledge Graph. So the system and the technology already understands kind of how skills companies and job titles relate to each other. Whenever you type in Java developer cloud experience in Azure or AWS. Then it will understand kind of the profile person that matches that and comes back with the first five examples for you to pick from. So you're actually training the technology.
Jason: How did the idea for Hiretual to come about.
Jason: It's a real long story. But we've been around for about three years more than three years actually. Believe it or not at the beginning we just tried so many different things. We tried to build our employer for a platform we tried to build like an application tracking system. We tried to build a candidate relationship management system and even like a job board. But we failed at all of them. So what happens is we tried different things. Then we really thought that we understood recruiting and sourcing. Because you know the founding team has helped scale. One of the engineering teams and Samsung research and development went from 20 to 130 engineers under one year. So quite an accomplishment there. But you know going outside and kind of trying to figure things out. We just failed miserably. So people either didn't want to use our product or don't have to pay for it. We didn't have users or didn't have a business model. When I came on I solved the user problem. We have a ton of traction. But still the product was good But we didn't have any business. Nobody wanted to pay for it. so we said what the heck you know.
Ninh: We'll do recruiting ourselves to really learn what it's about. So we became a company like a lot of the AI companies out there. They claim it's all automation and it's smart and everything. That's kind of what we were in front of AI for recruiting and in the back it was me and my colleague Jason doing all of the other recruiting work. So essentially we did executive search for IT folks here in the Bay Area. Poaching people from Facebook, Google and Twitter to join small unknown startups. That's kind of where I learned to be a recruiter, full stack recruiter, full cycle. My engineers they were still building the AI platform in the background right. They were building internal tools and we had pretty good traction. We've made hires. We had pretty good clients. I hired an intern for the summer and he never had any recruiting experience or he didn't come from a technical background either. He was like a sophomore in school studying business. I trained him to recruit. But I also gave him the tool. The grandfather of what Hiretual is today right and he made a hirer after one month. A junior software developer.
Ninh: So he paid for himself a couple times over. That kind of how the idea came about. We just needed some internal tools to speed up our own recruiting. Because you know a lot of the sourcing is just resumes and you just sift through it. Because people put so many keywords and buzzwords in them. They just load it in there's so many people who are kind of pretending to be software engineers. But they're not really. So it's kind of hard to cut through the noise. So that's kind of what Hiretual was at the beginning. Then we added the templates of Boolean searches like 2 to 300 booleans that you would search for if you a Python, Java, or web developer front end, full stack back end. Whatever it was and then as the technology matures. It just went from just a couple of hundreds to anything you type. Somebody asked me can you search for corn breeders. I was like do you mean farmer. It's not a farmer. It's like corn molecular genetics researcher.
Jason: You're in the Silicon Valley area right now. Correct.
Ninh: We're in Mountain View. I'm working from home you can see my beautiful library back there. Because I'm getting ready to fly out tonight actually to Seattle. There's a conference called Talent42. It will be my first time there and I am really excited to go.
Jason: How long will you be in Seattle.
Ninh: So I'll be in Seattle for two days. Well three days if you count today. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday. Then on Wednesday night I'm flying out to Palm Springs. It's going to be California staffing professional conference where I'm speaking on the future is now. How AI machine learning is going to impact and disrupt. What kind of value it can bring to staffing industry. Then I also have my own section where I'll be speaking on sourcing and passive candidate engagement technologies.
Jason: I'm actually in the Seattle area. We need to try to link up while you're here.
Ninh: Oh, you are nice. Maybe I'll see you tomorrow. Are you going to Talent42 Jason?
Jason: I was not planning on it. But we need a up for coffee or something.
Ninh: Yes. It is at the Bell Harbor conference center.
Jason: When a potential client comes to you and they say you have a very good system. But there are lots of good systems. Because as you know this space is crowded. And they say, what can you tell me to convince me to use your system.
So with Hiretual right we're known for having a lot of data. A ton of very accurate data. Whenever you're looking at a system like in any advanced technology that has to deal with artificial intelligence or machine learning or any sourcing technology. It's really all about how much data you have and how much time you have. So for the learning models to mature. So again we're very known for having people's personal contact information between a personal cellphone or personal e-mail. That's kind of the lifeblood of recruiting. If you find the right person the next step is to get their contact information and reach out. Now with reaching out most people what they do is take on LinkedIn and email the person. Once they find they're a good fit. You are the perfect fit for this role. Please apply here. Good candidates get that 20 times a day. My wife gets e-mails like 30 times. So what we actually recommend is you spend a little bit more time personalizing the first e-mail. To make it, Hi Jason. I love your beard. We should connect or is your name Wi-Fi. We should connect or something fun. You don't spill all your beans. So we tried to do that because we also help you follow up with people. Create a follow up and engagement sequences. So that you know that the first message whether they open it don't open it.
Ninh: You can be more confident that the effort you put in is not going to waste. Most people I met in on LinkedIn. Most people use LinkedIn for recruiting. It's a great platform. But you can only inmail. You never follow up and if you do that already sets you apart from the rest of the crowd. What we do is we can help you create follow up templates. Let's say the candidate opens the e-mail. Then you can follow up with this message. I have seen people generate a list of leads for recruiting from us that matched their personal preference as well as the skill set. Create the engagement, personalize it and then create follow ups in a way that they would use it. For example in conjunction with calendly, one of those of scheduling tools. Cheap like 10 bucks a month or free. They say phone screen. So in 24 hours they were able to fill their whole days with phone screens. Now with that kind of efficiency instead of spending days and hours on reading resumes and reading people's profiles. You just gotta make sure that this person that you're reaching out to you has the right profile fit. Because they will get back to you and they will talk to you and you can fill your days and weeks with phone screens and ultimately get to the higher.
Ninh: With a lot of power times a lot of responsibility. So make sure it's right. That's kind of a second part of my answer. Why would someone want to work with us is that we actually spend time and we really care about your success when you use Hiretual. Because we spend time one on one to train you on how to use it. Explain every single button and every single feature. Because you know in my space, adoption is the name of the game. AI and machine learning it's new technology. Korn Ferry did a survey. There's 85 percent of people that are really excited to adopt new technology that makes their life easier. Then 15 percent of people are kind of adopting the doom and gloom that AI is going to take their job and whatnot. You and I hear their fear right. I hear them and I would say you don't be afraid of technology. Be aware of what other people can do with that technology. Partner with someone who can who can be there and truly partner with you and show you how it works for you. Walk you from a to z so that your successful. Data works fast and we care. So I guess that would be my answer.
Jason: Talk about a time you were successful. What you learned from that success and what we can learn from that success.
Ninh: I have had my share of successes. I've had even more share of failures. I think you can't succeed without failing and I fail every single day at something. I am particularly fond of one particular story. When we did the recruiting. So me and Jason did the IT executive search. While my engineers were building the AI architecture platform in the back. I taught him how to recruit. I taught him to search the boolean, how to write the message, instead of just writing CAD templates how to engage. We started doing like shipping time essentially from US to China. We had a CTO hire on 50 percent commission 55 zero commission on his total benefits. He found the first person that he reached out to got hired by the company. It took six months to close to try and convince the candidate to sell his house, sell his car sell, all of his staff and go back to go to China essentially. But he pulled it off and that check fed us for quite some time before we hit hiretual.
Ninh: So that's kind of my success story. Well my team's success story. My team success is my success. I'm a very blessed guy because you know like Steve Jobs says, "most people don't ask for help." I think that's because most people they think that asking for help comes with some strings attached. And it might be, but you know again you miss all the shots you don't take. I'm glad that I was able to impart something to Jason. Today, He's training other recruiters to be recruiting on Hiretual. But he is telling me sometimes, hey Ninh, I kind of miss recruiting. So we must have done something right. That's kind of the story I say when people ask me share with me a time when when you consider yourself a success.
Jason: Now of course the follow up question. Talk about a time you failed. What you learned from this failure and what we can learn from this failure.
Ninh: So I actually have an engineering background. I was very fortunate at work at the best company in the world. One of the best companies in the world. But when I started recruiting. I really took the engineering approach to finding and reaching out to candidates. So I essentially wrote scripts to reach out to engage candidates. To engage thousands of candidates at the same time. So essentially, spamming people all the time and you know one thing you learn in recruiting. I wrote the thing that people write, "hey I love your profile or I love your skills or I saw your profile it's a great fit for this role. Here's the link to apply." Well I probably had somewhere from 5 to 10 percent response rate and most of them said no. I was surprised that people even responded to that message. I sent e-mails. The first amateur mistakes. You know how you write templates and say hi first name and some quotation or some brackets. I didn't test it so I sent e-mails to hundreds of people said hi. First name.. So of course people would know that this is a template. Good times. Talk about even before that right. We had built the job board. We build the ATS and CRM and we spent a ton of money on that. Nothing really panned out right. We have the technology still today and we kind of use some of it. But most of it is not very useful to be frank.
Ninh: But it really helped us to actually finding something useful that people want and helps make their professional life easier. By the way, when we did release the grandfather of Hiretual right to beta. I was copying recruiters and asking them, so what do you think of Hiretual. They said well it's cool but not very useful. So I'm very fortunate that we were able to fail forward. I get to talk to people and ask them, if it's not very useful, what would make it useful. They were like well, you don't have contact information. That would help me find these guys. They look great, but what's next. It's nice you guys can find me people on LinkedIn. I can search on LinkedIn too. Can you help me find people outside of LinkedIn. There's always more challenges. But we made it. I'm very fortunate to be back. Ask me how are you guys better than this other company. Right now I say you know I don't know. But ultimately it's the people behind the product that make the difference. So they don't have my co-founders. They don't have my team that I have and they don't work as hard. I don't know. They don't fail as hard.
Jason: Can you tell us about someone who has helped you in the past and how they helped you?
Ninh: I can think of so many people that have helped me in the past. I think the person I'm most thankful for is my family and my wife. We got married shortly before I joined the company in my first two years. I was working 16, 17, 18 hour days six seven days a week and I barely saw her on work days. So you know and she supported me through all of this while getting her own computer science degree. So we weren't living like kings. We were actually extremely humble beginnings. We lived in a like a shady, well I liked that place. But we lived in East Oakland right at the time. We grew closer together. I definitely married up and another person in my family would be my mom. She's the one that was a role model work, ethics and rising up to challenge and working through hard times. There's a whole story behind that. It might be a little bit too personal so I'm happy to connect with anyone wants to know that story one on one.
Ninh: But let's just say that my mom had to overcome so many things. As a single mom. To get me where I am very fortunate. I'm also very thankful for that. So many many people I can't count them. I can tell. David Niklaus from the industry even. You know Michael Doran. Many I'm a very very blessed guy. Hiretual has been around for about a year and a half. Since October 2016 now and we have over twelve hundred paying companies today. It's mostly because people share and recommend us. In recruiting if something works people share. If something doesn't work it kind of fizzes out. Because recruiting it's not rocket science. But it's busywork. You're always busy. You work 24 hours. There's more work still. So they do that people really appreciate it.
Jason: Nihn, I understand you have a book to recommend to our listeners.
Ninh: I totally would recommend “Full Stack Recruiter” by Jan Tegze. So this book will tell you everything about recruiting that you may or may not know. I highly recommend Jan Tegzeis one of the sourcing gurus. He's a recruiting manager. He's getting promoted from to left and right. He's one of the guys that you know like everyone anyone can come to you and say hey I'm a sourcing guru right. Then claim that I'm so good at something. But he's the guy that actually put a benchmark together. Called sourcing.games. That's how the Web site is like sourcing.com and sourcing.games.
Jason: I understand you have a gift for our listeners.
Ninh: I do have a gift for listeners. I've always had a gift for listeners. So if you go to Hiretual.com. You can get our chrome extension that's completely free. It's going to be free forever. What it can give you is it will help you write boolean searches complex boolean searches on 40 different platforms with ease.
Ninh: Works right in your browser. It also helps you discover 10 people's personal contact information per week. Most HR folks right or if you're a job seeker, a job hunter and looking for jobs want to connect with the hire manager directly. That's a great way to do it.
Jason: Ninh, Can you provide your social media links for yourself and your company so people can reach out to you.
Ninh: So I am I'm almost everywhere in social media you know. I'm on Facebook just search Ninh Tran at Hiretual. Then on Twitter and Instagram and almost everywhere else. I have my user id will be NinhTran09. On LinkedIn, I am https://www.linkedin.com/in/ninhtran08/ But anywhere if you just type in Hiretual and you ask for me I'm pretty available. I love to chat with people and kind of just listen to what their challenges are and if there's something that we can do over here at Hiretual or just build relationships. The way we do business is just by making friends and asking for help. Love to connect. If you want to connect with me. My e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org
Jason: For our listeners, the links to the book recommendations and his social media links will be on our show notes. You can find the show notes at www.cavnessHRblog.com. Ninh, we are coming to the end of our talk. Can you provide any last minute advice to our listeners on any subject you want to cover?
Ninh: One advice that I've gotten for example from from one of my mentors. One advise for a life that he gave me was listen and be humble before God. That has really helped me go a long way and I hold onto those words straight away.
Jason: Ninh, thank you for your time today. I know as a startup founder your time is very valuable. So thank you.