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The Latest from the Talent Tech Industry

June 14-20, 2021: U.S. employers report that the hiring outlook for the next 3 months will be the strongest in 21 years; The LinkedIn and hiQ battle over scraping personal data rages on after a Supreme Court decision sending the initial ruling against LinkedIn back to the appeals court; Beamery raises $138M to accelerate its growth as a “talent operating system;” TikTok makes a move at Vidcon to establish its position in the market for online video creators; Gloat raises $75M to reinvent the internal job board and expand into the market for contractors; A TopResume survey finds that 69% of women have no intention of returning to the workplace; eqtble raises $2.7M for its HR analytics app that is designed to promote better inclusion; and servant leadership, first conceived in the 1970s, is now being reinterpreted for Millennials and GenZs.

U.S. Employers Report Strongest Hiring Outlook in 21 Years

Employers in 32 percent of U.S. businesses surveyed expect an increase in payrolls during the next three months, while three percent expect to trim payrolls and 63 percent anticipate no change, according to the latest “Employment Outlook Survey,” released by ManpowerGroup. “Employers are ready to bring their workers back as restrictions lift and America gets ready to work,” said Becky Frankiewicz ManpowerGroup president, North America. “Yet childcare challenges, health concerns and competition mean demand still outstrips supply which is dampening the ‘big return’ of the American workforce. According to the study, payroll gains were expected in all 12 U.S. industry sectors during the third quarter of 2021: leisure and hospitality (+41 percent), wholesale and retail trade (+29 percent), education and health services (+27 percent), transportation & utilities (+26 percent), durable goods manufacturing (+25 percent), nondurable goods manufacturing (+25 percent), professional and business services (+21 percent), construction (+19 percent), information (+18 percent), other services (+16 percent), financial activities (+15 percent) and government (+15 percent).

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Supreme Court gives LinkedIn another chance to block data scraping

A couple of years ago, LinkedIn was told by a US federal judge that it can’t block rivals like hiQ Labs from scraping personal data from public profiles. But on Monday, the US Supreme Court threw out that ruling, sending it back to the 9th Circuit of Appeals. This is due to a recent June 4th decision that restricted the scope of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, a federal anti-hacking law that blocks access to a computer without authorization. In that particular ruling, the Supreme Court had made the decision that a person can’t be guilty of misusing information if they had permission to use the computer in question. This all started in 2017 when LinkedIn accused hiQ of scraping LinkedIn’s public profiles. hiQ would then use the data to create algorithms that could predict when employees might leave their jobs. LinkedIn said that hiQ was in violation of the anti-hacking law above, while hiQ accused LinkedIn for being anti-competitive. hiQ sued LinkedIn, stating that public data must remain public.

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Beamery raises US$138m as battle for talent intensifies

Beamery, the leading talent operating system that helps companies attract, engage and retain top talent, has announced US$138m in Series C funding led by the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan Board, through its Teachers' Innovation Platform (TIP). TIP focuses on late-stage venture and growth equity investments in companies that use technology to disrupt incumbents and create new sectors. Accenture Ventures also participated alongside existing investors EQT Ventures, Index Ventures, M12 and Workday Ventures. The round follows a record year for the company, which finished with 337% annual revenue growth in Q4, and surpassed one million roles filled on its platform during 2020. Organisations around the world are now hiring at pace in an increasingly competitive talent market. In Q1, Beamery saw a 462% increase in jobs posted across its customer base, compared with the same period in 2020, while the number of candidates pipelined only rose by 46%, indicating that demand is already significantly outstripping supply.

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TikTok replaces YouTube as top sponsor at VidCon, heating up bidding war for creators

With the title sponsorship for VidCon US 2021, TikTok will be the most prominent platform brand at a key venue for connecting online video creators and tech with consumers. The confab drew 75,000 attendees in 2019 and has historically been most closely associated with YouTube. The switch-up in title sponsors could read as a changing of the guard, strengthening TikTok's position as a formidable competitor to social video giants that have long wielded control of the category and its advertising dollars. TikTok will deploy a team of top creators and executives at the convention to promote its offerings and attract more talent into the app's fold. As digital video becomes a more important channel in advertising and entertainment, a bidding war for creators has emerged between the leading short-form video companies. Last month, YouTube launched a $100 million fund to attract creators to its TikTok-like video product, Shorts. The investment mirrored aspects of a Snap campaign last year, in which the platform distributed $1 million a day through the end of 2020 to creators who posted videos to Spotlight, the company's own short-form video offering.

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Gloat raises $57M to reinvent the internal job board

Gloat, which has built an AI-based platform that it sells to organizations to power their internal job boards, has picked up $57 million in funding, money that it will be using both to continue both for business development, but also to continue adding more features to its own platform, for example to expand deeper into openings for contractors and to open up more opportunities for secondments at other businesses, and to extend into front-line positions alongside the knowledge worker roles for which the AI is currently optimized -- in short, to improve career agility for people embedded at, and valued by, an organization, who may want to explore opportunities there instead of, or even alongside, looking elsewhere. Accel is leading this Series C round, with previous backers Eight Roads (a part of Fidelity), Intel Capital, Magma Venture Partners, and PICO Partners also participating.

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TopResume Survey Reveals: 69% of Working Mothers Have No Intention of Returning to the Workplace

TopResume, the world's largest resume-writing service, announced its latest survey results, revealing that the careers of working mothers continue to suffer, even more than a year after the pandemic's start. Between March 8 and April 20, 2021, TopResume asked 1,508 women in the U.S. who identified as primary caregivers to children under the age of 18, “Are you planning to return to the workforce?” In summary, 69% of working women said they planned to remain at home as a full-time caregiver for the time-being. Only 31% said they planned to return within the next 12 months. In addition, 55% of those still working said they would voluntarily leave their jobs, if given the option.

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eqtble Raises $2.7M for HR Analytics App with The Promise of Better Inclusion

eqtble announced a $2.7 million seed round of venture capital for its HR analytics platform. Perhaps the most interesting thing about this funding is that two of the three founders led people analytics in shops like WeWork and Snap. TechCrunch reports that the app can “deliver insights and visualizations about four main areas: talent recruitment, workforce, engagement (including attrition, or when workers quit), and compensation.” People analytics is a category that has never seen the growth expected for it. Challenges with integration, competition with platform providers, and a lack of client resources needed to develop complex views that require data from across the enterprise and from systems not only in the HR tech stack have been blockers. However, we are moving into a new wave of work technology where some of these issues may be addressed by new tech. With more open integrations/APIs, a rapidly maturing people analytics discipline, and analytics tools that require more of a business analyst and less of a data scientist to use, we expect to see more growth in the people analytics category.

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Servant Leadership for a New Generation

Sometimes looking towards the future begins with a glimpse of the past. In 1970, Robert Greenleaf wrote the famous essay, The Servant Leader, in which he famously stated: "The servant-leader is servant first. The difference manifests itself in the care taken by the servant-first to make sure that other people's highest priority needs are being served. The best test, and difficult to administer, is: Do those served grow as persons? Do they, while being served, become healthier, wiser, freer, more autonomous, more likely themselves to become servants?" Now, a half century later, much of Greenleaf's wisdom is set to find a new home and interpretation in today's contemporary world. In light of the exponential growth of remote technology, Millennials and Gen-Z may change the world of work more than any generation since the industrial revolution. Understanding how to lead these new generations isn't as difficult as you might think but requires a renewed mindset open to a brand of selfless leadership that will—to DEI's main premise—attract, include, expand, welcome, develop, encourage and grow talent.

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