HRExaminer Radio

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HRExaminer Radio

Guest: Jeff Mills, Chief Revenue and Operations Officer, 1-Page
Episode: 133
Air Date: December 2, 2015


Jeff Mills, Chief Revenue and Operations Officer at 1-Page, is a veteran business wrangler who brings a wealth of experience in sales and marketing for interactive media, retail, travel and technologies.

Before 1-Page, Mills served as Chief Revenue Officer at Gengo, the leading technology platform in the multilingual content and communication domain. Mills served as a Vice President at Criteo where he built a world-class team and executed the go-to-market strategy that put them on the map in the United States.

Mills also held leadership positions during an eight-year tenure at Yahoo!, starting in 1998; at SideStep, acquired by Kayak in late 2008; and at Sojern, the leading travel media company.

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Audio MP3




Begin transcript

John Sumser:                        Good morning and welcome to HRExaminer Radio. I’m your host John Sumser and we’re coming to you live today from beautiful downtown Occidental, California. The place where engineering got it’s real start in California. Today we’re going to be talking with Jeff Mills, who’s the Chief Revenue and Operations Officer at a really interesting new startup called 1-Page. How are you Jeff?

Jeff Mills:                                 I’m doing great John, thanks for having me.

John Sumser:                        You’re welcome, nice to have you here. Would you take a moment and introduce yourself to the audience?

Jeff Mills:                                 Yes, my name’s Jeff Mills. I’m the Chief Revenue and Operations Officer here at 1-Page. We’re based in downtown San Francisco here at Union Square. Been with the company for a couple years and we’re doing some exciting things in the space.

John Sumser:                        How did you end up coming to 1-Page? You’ve got a pretty colorful history. Tell a little bit about your trajectory as you moved to 1-Page.

Jeff Mills:                                 Yes, I’ve been scaling companies for about 15 years. A fun fact about me is I started my career back at Yahoo in 1998, when at Yahoo back then and I was literally 20 years old. People used to give me a hard time and ask to see my work permit and ID me and all kinds of stuff back then. After scaling several different businesses at Yahoo, I moved over to Sidestep and Kayak, which is the largest travel search company, scaled those. Criteo, which is a very large personalized retargeting company, also publicly traded company now. I was their first VP in the US and after these successes I ended up starting my own LLC where I would literally go and advise companies on their revenue growth strategies, building teams, capital funding, things like that. During that time I became an advisor, a mentor for both 500 startups here in the city as well as Orange Telecom, which is an accelerator, they have is called Orange Fab that’s based here in San Francisco.

Believe it or not Joanna Weidenmiller, the CEO of 1-Page actually walked in to Orange Telecom and pitched for an investment and I sat on that investment committee. I instantly fell in love with the business and her infectious nature and passion for it and ultimately she made me a believer and I helped them get that investment and then about a week later she convinced me to join their advisory board. Couple months after that I was spending three to four days a week in their office and slowly over time got sucked in and really excitedly I did. Shortly after I came on full-time we went public on the ASX, which you know we’re the first publicly traded company that listed on the ASX out of the Silicon Valley and things have scaled tremendously well for us.

John Sumser:                        That’s tremendous, so we should come back and talk about going public on the ASX. Let me ask you what do you do? You gave some advice, you wandered over there and started spending your day there. I imagine you weren’t just drinking coffee.

Jeff Mills:                                 No, I spent a lot of time … If we go with the beautiful vision. I spent a lot of time on client strategy. I spent a lot of time ultimately identifying the issues that our clients are facing. The reason I’ve been successful in my career is that I don’t really do sales, I do solving. I’m always trying to figure out what’s the solution that’s going to solve big issues. When I come in and started advising for 1-Page in the beginning it was really trying to determine those big issues. 1-Page started really as an assessment company, which we still have a great assessment product. Ultimately in the battlefields of hiring right now there’s a lot of nice to haves and the analogy I use is it’s going to HR and talking about building a beautiful hospital but they’re in the Civil War and it’s triage in the middle of the battlefield and they need things that can help them today, right now. That’s when we started building out our sourcing product and I’m a big part of uncovering and finding those solutions.

As you know, John, I probably spend most of my day just moving my emails from the right side to the left side of my inbox because I get about 150 a day and most of those are figuring out how I can help our clients solve major sourcing issues within their company.

John Sumser:                        Tell me exactly what is 1-Page, what does it do?

Jeff Mills:                                 In it’s simplest form what I like to say is that everyone’s trying to hire a star, a Lebron James if you will, the MVP for different roles. It doesn’t really matter if it’s a low-end role or a high-end role, the people who are best at doing those roles are doing them today. The best hamburger flippers what do they do all day?

John Sumser:                        They flip hamburgers.

Jeff Mills:                                 They flip hamburgers, exactly. If we want to be able to bring in the best we have to go after the passive candidate market. There’s a couple ways companies can go after them today but a big piece that the companies are using is they’re doing the old post and pray method and just hoping these people are going just walk in. The reality is and it doesn’t matter what level of an employee, the people who are best at doing it are currently doing it. The reality is that over 80% of people who are gainfully employed today would be willing to leave their current job for a better opportunity. What 1-Page does is instead of giving you this whole world and ecosystem to go through and research, we’ll dial down and hand you the 25, 50, 100 passive candidates that match the exact persona you’re looking for. On the Lebron James analogy I hand you the Cleveland Cavaliers, I give you the 20 people that match the persona you’re looking for. I give you the direct contact information, their email, their phone number and when relevant the most connected person within your company to that passive candidate.

John Sumser:                        1-Page gives me a list of people with contact information. Do you help with the what do I do next? It’s my sense that a lot of people who are in recruiting fall short when they’ve got the right contact information but they’re reaching out to somebody who hasn’t expressed any kind of an interest in the job. Do you help there?

Jeff Mills:                                 Yes, definitely but I do have maybe a fundamental belief that the best recruiters and the best hiring managers are great at identifying who will be good for a role and closing them. The best recruiters out there are phenomenal sales people who are able to position their company. I was at the CHRO Exchange pretty recently and MasterCard was on stage there convincing everyone that MasterCard is this really sexy place to work. I raised my hand said I don’t believe you, MasterCard can’t be that sexy and they go through and actually broke out how many millennials they now having working for the company, all the different things they have going on. There’s no advertising in the world that would have gotten that point across, it’s the passion that that person has on how they can explain that business to someone that’s going to bring them in.

I give them the conduit to be able to reach that talent and be able to have that conversation with them. That’s the conversation that gets these things going. The other piece is that I ultimately can see, especially for large organizations, who within the company has the most personal connection to these passive candidates. Instead of the recruiter reaching out, I can literally have the employee reach out. Employee referral programs are very complicated today. We ask employees to do way too much. We tell them what engineers do you know, write them on a list. Instead we help them understand who in the company knows that passive candidate the best and they simply can reach out to their internal employee and have them be the conduit that makes the introduction. We’re increasing conversion rates by well over 500% once that internal employee is the one who does the reach out. That’s just a fact.

John Sumser:                        That’s interesting, so in the bundle of information about a particular contact is an assessment of who in the company would be the most likely person to recruit them well. Is that what you’re saying?

Jeff Mills:                                 Yes that’s right, so not only are we providing all of the relevant and current information on job history, education, on skill sets. Not only are we giving you their email, phone numbers, specifically their mobile number. On top of that we’re able to identify by overlaying all of this data, history. I can see that Jeff Mills knows John Sumser. Not only have they talked on a conference call once, they also worked together back at X and went to school together at Y and grew up in the same home town. We can look at different types of social connectivity as we overlay this data and start to really understand who knows somebody the best. The reality is if we just met once at a conference and became a connection on some site it doesn’t mean much, but if I actually have a real history with you and I reach out to you you’re going to respond to my email because you’re my friend.

This is incorporating all of that data, all of that information to make it a real seamless opportunity. The reality is that employees want their companies to be successful, they want their friends to be successful. If you make it easy for them, if you do the work by identifying who you want and ask them to make the introduction that’s a real easy ask and that’s something that scales within organizations.

John Sumser:                        That’s interesting, so what makes 1-Page different from it’s competitors? There’s a lot of people out there hopping a lot of data, making a lot of promises. What crisply defines you from the rest?

Jeff Mills:                                 I would say one is just plain size, we’re bigger and better. We have over one billion profiles in our platform. If we stop this conference call right now and counted to a billion it would take us 35 years, that’s how large we are. We have the depth and breadth that others don’t have. The other thing is we’re actually doing the sourcing for you. We’re putting together the 25, 50, 100 prospects that fit the criteria that match the persona of the open role that you’re looking for. So much time is being sucked into the research. Everybody can add more data somewhere and say I gave you more areas and more libraries to go search through. The reality is you don’t have time for that, so I hand you the wrapped up, here are the 25 people that match the exact criteria that you’re looking for, here’s their direct contact information, go out and close them, bring them in. They’re exactly what you’re looking for. If you have a great opportunity for them they’re going to be interested.

John Sumser:                        A billion profiles, a billion profiles, that’s mind boggling. How does that distribute around the world? That would be more than America right?

Jeff Mills:                                 Oh no, we are massively a global company so this is not just a US company. It’s one of the reasons we went public on the ASX to start with is that we are a global company. I have requests for bankers in South Africa to baristas in Chicago. Ultimately because we have so many, we really have data that nobody else has. Not only do I have and as you talked about competitors, yes we have engineers, yes we have sales people, yes we have those types of roles but we also have nurses. I don’t know if you know this but nurses is the number one posted job in the country right now. There’s over I think it’s 500,000 nurse posting or something like that right now.

John Sumser:                        That shortage is acute.

Jeff Mills:                                 Yes and I have those people, I have millions of nurses on my platform, several million. I’m not just taking information from one source, I’m taking it from over 75 different sources that open up into even more sources beyond that. We don’t just have one region, one type of role. We actually cover the gamut and they can get into truck drivers, nurses and insurance sales people and ultimately baristas. Then we go all the way back into HR directors and sales people and engineers and finance. It definitely gives us that breadth, again not just a US company but very global.

John Sumser:                        I’m going to ask you a harder question. The idea that you have a great big pile of data is it’s like a lot of advantage in technical business, it’s an advantage in time. There are an enormous number of people who are racing behind you to catch up there. How do you keep providing value above and beyond what you’re providing as the company goes forward?

Jeff Mills:                                 The problem with data and I’ve worked in big data for a long time. Yahoo is frankly a big data company, Criteo that I worked at is a big data company. The problem with data is … John have you had your coffee yet this morning?

John Sumser:                        I have.

Jeff Mills:                                 Your DNA changed the second you sip that coffee, right?

John Sumser:                        Right.

Jeff Mills:                                 The reality is since we’ve been on this call people have been born, people have passed away, people have gotten hired, people have changed jobs since we’ve started this phone conversation. Data is always changing and so you have to be able to keep up with the data. Most data companies and this is one of our big advantages, at best the contact information is going to be 30% accurate. The actual titles and names and current employers and whatnot are going to be maybe 60, 70% if they’re really good. The only way you can get to the high 90s, 98 percentiles that we’re getting to is by having the best data aggregation layers possible starting with that, but then ultimately putting in a manual touch on top of that. One of the reasons we moved to curated pools and I’m sending you these 50 people, the Cleveland Cavaliers if you will, is because I’m manually double checking all of that information that’s in there to make sure it’s accurate.

If you just go in to a really big database and start doing searches, your searching is only as good as the database is at that moment. What we’re doing is we’re enriching it, we’re getting it as far as you possibly can, then we’re building these curated talent pools and then manually double checking the information to make sure that it’s accurate. We’re actually giving you information that’s 98, 99% accurate verses other companies that are going to be fairly inaccurate. That’s a big feature for us as well as the present.

John Sumser:                        It’s the first time I’ve heard the term curated talent pool. Why don’t you just flush that out a little bit. You’ve talked around it, but what is a curated talent pool?

Jeff Mills:                                 Ultimately somebody wants … Let’s use nurses, somebody wants to hire nurses in San Francisco, California. If they went on to some tool they would type in registered nurse, San Francisco and then they would find thousands of nurses that are in San Francisco. That’s not what you need. What you need is labor and delivery nurses in San Francisco. Actually you needed people who’ve worked on the floor at a hospital, you need somebody who’s obviously a registered nurse, has a degree, has X amount of experience. I’m going through and pulling together the very specific information that you have and building a pool of talent that matches it. You’re going to click a link, open it up and see the 25 labor and delivery nurses in San Francisco that work at the competing hospitals that you want to pull from. Instead of you have to go in and do a bunch of searches and research and all this, your recruiter is running. They’re opening this up and they have their playbook in front of them, they know what they’re doing right now. That’s a curator pool.

John Sumser:                        Do you imagine that the list that you push forward will get smaller over time as your ability to understand who works and who doesn’t work improves?

Jeff Mills:                                 All talent, what’s interesting is if you break it down it’s always skill sets. Nobody just hires a nurse, they hire a labor and delivery nurse. No one hires a sales person, they hire a staff sales person. What I tell people is the purpler your squirrel is, I’m sure you know the purple squirrel reference, the smaller your pool gets. If you’re asking for some position that you want to fill in a very small remote town and you want them to have this very specific experience obviously there’s less people in the world that will fit that. If there’s only three people in the world that fit the very specific thing you’re looking for then there’s only three people in the world, so that’s as big as it is.

As far as our billion people and what we’re doing there, it’s the skill sets that these people have. I have tons of these … I mean talent is everywhere, so it’s accessing that. If you’re looking for nurses, if you’re looking for sales people, if you’re looking for engineers, I have a very large database to be able to continue to keep those pools up to date. Most of our clients do not set up a pool and terminate it the next month. They keep them open because they’re always hiring software engineers, they’re always hiring registered nurses, they’re always hiring bankers and we’re continuously being able to just show them the next 50 that fit the criteria they’re looking for or 25 or whatever the number is depending on the type of role.

John Sumser:                        You’re doing pretty well in growing. Who are some of your customers?

Jeff Mills:                                 Yes, we just recently announced Starbucks. Starbucks is just launched with us in multiple cities. They have some big initiatives around bringing baristas in from different economies and whatnot so that’s been an interesting release for us. We probably work with a couple dozen Fortune 1000 companies, probably a dozen Fortune 500s now. Work with one of the largest banks in the world, one of the largest telco providers in the world, one of the largest insurance agencies in the world, one of the largest hospitals in the world. Basically over this last year one of my jobs is to go through and to find a category leader within each one of these verticals to make sure that what we’re providing is right for that vertical. I can tell you that we haven’t hit a vertical yet that we haven’t been able to scale quickly. We are going through procurement with the largest companies in the world. My average employee rate per company today is over 33,000 employees and in scaling. In the beginning we only worked with very large organizations because of the affinity or the connection strength to their employees as being one of our differentiators.

We really focused on extremely large companies because obviously they have more connections then a smaller company. Now with our curated pool and direct contact information though I can work with startup in San Francisco that needs to hire software engineers. I can work with any size company with the approach that we have today.

John Sumser:                        What’s in the roadmap, where are you headed?

Jeff Mills:                                 For us, again the data is going to continue to change all the time. We publicly announced that we’re closing on an acquisition right now, we’re bringing in and adding to our bench strength and most of that’s around data and engineering and data scientists. Ultimately we already have a phenomenal team of data scientists, but we are adding to that in a way that will extremely impress the world that we’re talking about. Extremely talented, very well published data scientists that want to move into our company, who could work anywhere they want to work in the world but they want to work with us because of the need there is, the opportunity there is to solve such a huge problem. Everybody works on something, everybody has a skill on something and this is a very interesting space to bring in the best and brightest because of the thumbprint that you can put on solving a real issue globally.

John Sumser:                        That’s interesting, so what should I have asked you? What didn’t I get to?

Jeff Mills:                                 Honestly you asked me the thing that most people don’t ask and I’ll reiterate on that which is the data quality itself. Most people get excited there’s a billion people and want to go reach them and they want … but that’s enough. It’s the more acute person who understands that there’s a difference between old data and real data, there’s a difference between skill sets, there’s a difference to all of these things and that’s the question that I have to remind people to ask me most often. The other thing is working with these big companies how are you able to get, to work with them so quickly and part of that is it goes back to us being a publicly traded company. We get through procurement with these very large organizations much easier than most companies because we are publicly traded. On top of that we are InfoSec compliant, we’re a real tech company out of San Francisco, California. We’re able to get through the hoops that a traditional startup wouldn’t be able to do.

John Sumser:                        That’s actually pretty smart. It was, in my mind, it was a risky idea to list on the Australian Stock Exchange and it looks like it’s becoming the move that defines the company. With that publicly held accountability you’re able to stand some tests that small startups can’t.

Jeff Mills:                                 It’s a fact. When you’re working with large organizations they want to see that you’re publicly traded, they want to see that you’re not going to go away tomorrow. We recently raised another $50 million in the Australian Stock Exchange, we have a very large bank account, we are listed, we’re regulated, we’re compliant, we’re all these things. When it comes to getting through procurements like this large companies are not nervous about working with a tech company and viewing it as an early stage company. Definitely gives us that and then frankly we have got great technology. We pass these robust InfoSec compliance tests and all these different things that they want to run. I work with one of the largest banks in the world, I’ve been through the most difficult procurement in history and lived to talk about it.

John Sumser:                        Maybe in our next conversation I get that you probably have really strong security and in my simple view of things privacy is how you describe the strategy of handling data and security is the tactics of handling data. It would be interesting because you’ve got such a large pool of data and such interesting customers to talk about what privacy means when you have a billion records of people.

Jeff Mills:                                 They have you tie in to their active directories and things like that. Believe me, security is the forefront of what we do and is a big reason why we’re so successful.

John Sumser:                        That would be an interesting next conversation. If you were to pick a couple things that you want the listeners to take away from this conversation what would they be?

Jeff Mills:                                 Good question, I would say stop the post and pray and think that your Lebron James is going to randomly apply, he’s not. Let the recruiters and hiring managers do what they do best, identify and close that talent. I can have them reaching out to them today, so stop spending so much time on research and spinning cycles and let a real professional tech company provide you the information you need to move 10 times faster.

John Sumser:                        Jeff please take a minute to reintroduce yourself and tell people how to get ahold of you if they’d like to.

Jeff Mills:                                 Yes, again I’m Jeff Mills, I’m the Chief Revenue and Operations Officer here at 1-Page, based here in San Francisco, California. My email is, that’s

John Sumser:                        Well thanks Jeff. We’ve been talking with Jeff Mills, who’s the Chief Revenue and Operations Officer at 1-Page and as you probably picked up in the conversation they’re publicly traded on the Australian Stock Market which has allowed them an enormous amount of liquidity with which to tackle the market. They are making noise in a way that we haven’t seen in this industry before. It’s been great talking with you Jeff, thanks for spending the time with me this morning.

Jeff Mills:                                 Mr. Sumser thank you, be good.

John Sumser:                        Yes, thanks for checking in. I hope you have a great rest of your day. You’ve been listening to HRExaminer Radio, have a good morning.


End transcript

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