MILWAUKEE — While websites like Monster.com and CareerBuilder.com as well as industry-specific job sites are a common source of candidates, some food retailers have begun using another Internet resource to fill store director and middle-management positions.
That resource comprises at least two websites that link employers not to job seekers but to recruiting companies — headhunters, in human resources parlance — that provide resumes in response to job openings.
One of those sites, BountyJobs.com, has been used by Roundy's Supermarkets here to hire three store directors over the past few months, said John Quincannon, senior recruiter for Roundy's. Safeway, Pleasanton, Calif., has filled five positions through the service, said Jayme Burke, corporate talent acquisition, in a statement released by BountyJobs.com. Other retail users include BJ's, Target and Starbucks.
Publix Super Markets, Lakeland, Fla., has used a similar site, Talenthire.com, to fill “support positions, not retail jobs,” said Maria Brous, director of media and community relations for Publix. According to Dave Krier, a spokesman for Talenthire.com, Publix has had “a number of successful placements in management, accounting and finance, and IT.”
Roundy's, which operates 153 stores, began using BountyJobs.com last October for store directors and mid-level corporate and field positions. The retailer, formerly a major wholesaler that still supplies a handful of independents, has hired store directors for two Rainbow Foods stores in the Minneapolis area and one for a Pick 'n Save here.
Two of the managers started in December and one will start next week. “So far so good,” said Quincannon about the performance of the new hires.
Roundy's decided to try the site because “we had been struggling to find qualified store directors and field merchandisers,” said Quincannon. He recently posted two additional store director positions as well as openings for a produce category manager and a deli merchandiser on the site.
BountyJobs.com launched in November 2006 while Talenthire.com started in 2004. At both sites, employers post job openings as well as a flat fee — the “bounty” at BountyJobs.com — that they are willing to pay to fill the position.
Recruiters respond by sending the resumes of presumably qualified candidates. Quincannon described BountyJobs as “like the eBay of the recruiting industry.”
Publix's Brous said that Talenthire.com “simplifies the process of dealing with multiple recruiting firms. We appreciate the time savings.”
Recruiting sites can be helpful “when a company needs eight or 10 store managers or five category managers” at the same time, said Jose Tamez, managing partner, Austin-Michael, a Denver-based executive search firm.
Employers can vet the qualifications of responding recruiters before considering their candidates. Some of the responding recruiters “don't know much about the supermarket industry,” Quincannon noted. He has engaged between three and five recruiters for each of the three positions he is currently trying to fill.
Quincannon receives between two and three resumes per week through BountyJobs and rejects 50% to 60% of them.
The hiring process through the site takes from six to eight weeks, he said.
The fee that employers pay for hiring candidates through BountyJobs.com can range between 10% and 50% of starting salary, though most are between 20% and 25%; three-quarters of the fee goes to the recruiter, the rest to the site. Quincannon said Roundy's fees have been between 15% and 20% of salary.
BountyJobs.com offers a refund if a hired candidate does not remain on the job for more than 90 days, said Jeremy Lappin, chief executive officer, BountyJobs.com. About 7% of placements result in refunds, he said.
Quincannon acknowledged that using a job recruiter can be expensive, but he added, “Our emphasis is on the quality of the hire. Regardless of the source, we're looking for the most talented store director.”
Recruiters who specialize in serving the supermarket industry point out the pitfalls of using an Internet recruiting site, even for store and mid-level management positions,
“The art and science of professional recruiting is far more high-touch and less high-tech,” said Tom Smith, president of Retail-iQ, Reston, Va., a division of Preston-Reffett that focuses on mid-level managers. “When you lose the personal touch you risk watering down what you stand for as a business.”
The candidates that his firm represents, Smith added, “are people whom we have generated as a result of years in the supermarket industry and are most often individuals who do not have their information posted on any public websites for small recruiters to grab and forward to potential clients.”