David Oda, LinkedIn’s Large Enterprise Account Director, knows a thing or two about the world’s largest professional network. After nearly 12 years working for LinkedIn, David joined the 10-Minute Talent Show to discuss his experience, working with staffing firms around the world and the job market.
What is your experience with LinkedIn?
LinkedIn is actually my first and only full-time role. I graduated college in the bay area when San Francisco tech was blowing up so I had the opportunity to join LinkedIn at a very early age. When I joined, LinkedIn was in prime startup more: We had less than 1,500 employees, and there were times I was sharing a desk with somebody. But, my experience with LinkedIn has been phenomenal. We now have 21,000 employees, and through LinkedIn, I had the opportunity to live in Australia for seven years. I’ve met amazing people, and LinkedIn has always embraced the way I’ve wanted to pursue my career.
Throughout my 11 ½ years with LinkedIn, I’ve always worked with search and staffing customers of various sizes, disciplines, and regions. When they started out, LinkedIn created a new program with the goal of managing customers and driving talent solutions sales specific to search and staffing customers. So, they felt it would be better for us to have experience on the frontlines. Therefore, I recruited for data scientists at LinkedIn using our tools. It really helped me speak to customers because I had actual experience.
How do you help staffing firms?
We’re fortunate to be a valuable partner for our staffing customers. Oftentimes, your objective or priority is filling roles that make your customers happy, so you need to know what’s going on in the market and meet your customers needs. Our mission at LinkedIn is to connect the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful. We feel that is aligned with the mission of staffing firms as you are also changing lives by helping people find opportunities. So, whether that’s a membership or candidates finding your jobs on our site, we are the bedrock for staffing firms to execute on their main objective: Finding new opportunities for customers and changing people’s lives.
What is it like working with staffing firms in different countries?
There are a lot of similarities and dissimilarities, but doing business varies everywhere, even in the U.S. itself. San Francisco is more value proposition based. If someone is right down the street, we’ll have a phone call instead of meet in person, and this was 8-9 years ago. If we were in New York, what was a 30 minute meeting in San Francisco is now 10 minutes. In Australia, relationships and trust are very important when conducting business. It’s important to establish trust over a coffee or a pint of beer before getting into the details of a partnership.
What advice do you have for those worried about the job market?
There are a lot of unknowns in the job market. We have tons of LinkedIn data showing that there are a lot of jobs, but inflation is creating a lot of uncertainty, and the headlines about companies freezing hiring or laying off people can be nerve wracking. During times like these, there’s a tendency for hiring managers to have tunnel vision and focus on what’s going on in their backyard. I recommend working with a trusted advisor, such as your staffing partners, and see where they’re at in terms of that partnership. Staffing firms understand both sides, hiring and job seeking, so they are great people to talk to. Widening your aperture will help you understand what’s to come and what other companies are doing.
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