After witnessing unparalleled growth, job portal ReferMe has expanded to the USA and is panning operations in Kenya by June this year. In order to help students from premier business schools of India, the startup, which connects job seekers with employees of companies, has also come up with a special referral plan.
Although employee referrals play a huge part in the process of hiring, most employees do not know the right people to refer. On the other hand, the number of job seekers is growing by the day. Rashmi Nandan, a former MSRIT student, who was then working for HCL Technologies, saw a strong reason to fill this void and pursued this as a startup idea. ReferMe was born.
ReferMe started as a unique job portal which connects job seekers with employees who can provide referrals, thus creating a win-win situation for both job seekers to get an interview call and for existing employees to get the promised referral bonus.
Their business model is simple. An employee can post the openings in his company site and job seekers pay to register on the site. The registration fee depends on the current salary of the job seeker in case they are working. For freshers, it is Rs 350. What is unique about them is the fact that if a job seeker is unable to find any job matching his requirements in three months, the registration fee is refunded, unlike any other job search site in India.
Growth since past year
Since our last coverage of ReferMe, the startup has shown unprecedented growth. Over the past year, they have provided job opportunities to more than 1 lakh job seekers in India. Having expanded to 22 states, they now have two offices, one in Delhi and the other in Bengaluru to handle operations over North and South India respectively.
Starting May 2015, ReferMe is expanding its operations to USA. Registrations for job seekers and referrers across the country are already in progress. Rashmi Nandan says -
We are also in discussion with a Kenya-based company and planning a joint venture for increasing ReferMe global presence and supporting jobs seekers in African diaspora. This venture will commence from June 2015.
ReferMe has also dedicated itself to focus greatly on helping candidates up to two years of work experience from IIMs, XLRI, FMS and other premier business schools of India. When Mohit Sital, the head of services and operation, was asked about the reason behind this special plan, his reply was -
Job satisfaction is a primary concern for candidates from premier B-schools. They often land into corporations failing to meet parameters on job satisfaction, and are bound to quit, sometimes within a few month of joining. Also due to the high salary expectation of these candidates, certain companies are unable to pay out the promised salaries due to business cycles which therefore create dissatisfaction and eventually ouster. We personally have dealt with some of these cases and it emerges as a serious problem with even the best B-schools of the country. We want to provide better opportunity to these students.
ReferMe has a targeted revenue $2 million for financial year 2015-2016. By the start of 2016, they are planning to start operations in UAE from where they plan to connect referral and job opportunities among other nearby Gulf countries. They are also eyeing expansion to Singapore, Canada and the UK in the years to come.