Shiftgig Opens New York Office to Provide an On-Demand Service to New York Businesses

New Mobile App Enables Workers to Easily Find Extra Work at Events 

Chicago, IL – December 9, 2014Shiftgig, the premier online community for the service industry that enables bartenders, servers and other industry shift workers to connect, find jobs and be entertained, announced today it has opened a new office location in New York to provide New York businesses with an on-demand flexible workforce powered by Shiftgig’s network of service industry members and mobile technology platform.

Shiftgig, which launched its on-demand service in Chicago in mid-2013, selected New York as its next location due to the city’s vibrant restaurant scene and the thousands of businesses who already use Shiftgig to post jobs. Early New York clients have included Javits Center, Bank of America, Sullivan & Cromwell, Biz Bash Events, Sonnier & Castle Catering and Colgate Palmolive.

Early response has been extremely positive. Sara Gonzalez, general manager of corporate dining and conferences services at Bank of America, said: “I recently transitioned two accounts to Shiftgig and what a difference it has made!  Shiftgig made it a point to understand the needs of my business in order to send the most suitable staff that not only performed expected tasks but added value to the operation.  I’m very pleased I made the switch!”

Shiftgig’s on-demand platform provides a win-win for both businesses and workers. Businesses get quick access to vetted, tech-savvy workers for events and seasonal spikes in activity.  Workers can pick from a variety of paying gigs and manage their own schedules.

“There are hundreds of thousands of people in New York who would like to supplement their income with additional shifts,” said Eddie Lou, co-founder and CEO at Shiftgig. “As the largest service industry community in the United States, we saw a great opportunity to help the many local hospitality, food service, and event businesses easily find and hire great staff.”

Workers who successfully enroll into Shiftgig’s on-demand service can access shifts on their mobile devices, where they will find many opportunities to make more money with the flexibility to choose when and where they work.

“Candidates love that they have the ability to pick and choose assignments through our mobile app that work best for their schedules,” said Michael Goldberg, Shiftgig NYC City Manager. “As a result, it has given us the ability to methodically tailor each team of workers to meet the demands of our clients and let them know with real transparency exactly who is confirmed for their assignments.”

“With better data, an enormous worker pool and superior mobile technology, Shiftgig has many advantages over traditional staffing agencies,” said Christian Rudder, a Shiftgig investor and president and co-founder of OKCupid. “Enabling businesses to staff more efficiently ultimately helps New Yorkers get more work opportunities and find greater independence.

For more information on Shiftgig, visit www.shiftgig.com.

About Shiftgig

Shiftgig is an online marketplace that connects workers with jobs.  Shiftgig collects client requirements, worker skills, and real-time shift data to provide smarter and timely matches.  With over 1,050,000 registered members and 25,000 businesses, Shiftgig has built the largest online community where members connect with business to access jobs and content in the restaurant, nightlife, hotel, and retail verticals.

Shiftgig Increases Its Momentum with $10M in Institutional Financing and Expansion of Leadership Team

Chicago, IL – November 14, 2014 – Shiftgig, the premier online community for the service industry that enables bartenders, servers and other industry shift workers to connect, find jobs and be entertained, announced today it has secured $10 million in its first institutional financing.  The round was led by The Garland Funds with participation from KGC Capital, Chicago Ventures, DRW Ventures, Firestarter Fund, and Corazon Capital.  The latest financing will be used to execute on an accelerated growth strategy that includes the expansion of the company’s technology, product and team.

“We are committed to our mission of connecting millions of workers to millions of jobs,” said Eddie Lou, co-founder and CEO at Shiftgig. “Shiftgig’s mobile platform makes it easy for employers to find, assess and hire full-time, part-time and temporary staff.”

“Shiftgig has proven that the right platform can enable businesses to hire more intelligently and more efficiently,” said Gary Holdren, Managing Partner of The Garland Funds. “Recognizing this massive market opportunity, we are excited to help Shiftgig expand and believe in the team’s ability to execute.”

“Mobile penetration, social hiring, and local services are three trends that are coming together to change the way people find jobs,” said Sam Yagan, CEO of The Match Group. “Shiftgig is a disruptive business solution that enables businesses and workers to connect in real-time.”

Shiftgig has also announced the expansion of its leadership team to support its rapid growth. Jill Erickson joined as Chief Revenue Officer; Travis Haight, as VP of Service Delivery; Dan Miller, as VP of Talent; and Michael Yoch, as VP of Product. They join CEO Eddie Lou, President Jeff Pieta and CTO Sean Casey, who together co-founded the company in 2011.

As Chief Revenue Officer, Erickson is charged with driving 100% client satisfaction for Shiftgig. She oversees sales, marketing, and account management. Previously, Erickson has held senior executive positions at TMP Worldwide, Monster Worldwide (IPO) and Gild and is an industry expert in the digital marketing and talent acquisition space.

As VP of Service Delivery, Haight supports client success by managing Shiftgig’s community operations and recruitment teams. He has over 17 years of experience recruiting and building successful teams, most recently with MarketSource, a sales and marketing staffing firm.

Miller comes to Shiftgig with 20 years of training and human resources experience. As VP of Talent, he is responsible for acquiring and retaining top talent and ensuring Shiftgig continues to be a great place to work. Prior to Shiftgig, Miller was with Echo Global Logistics (IPO), where he scaled the technology company from 20 employees to over 1,500 in five years.

Joining the team as VP of Product, Yoch plans and manages the product roadmap for Shiftgig’s client and worker facing technology. He comes to Shiftgig with over 14 years of experience creating award-winning technology products in media, publishing, and personal finance, most recently with HelloWallet and NPR.

“With Shiftgig’s rapid growth this year, we have taken the opportunity to strengthen our senior management team by adding four exceptionally talented individuals,” said Lou. ”Each of them has significant business and technology experience and we look forward to their contributions.”

For more information on Shiftgig and its leadership team, visit www.shiftgig.com.

About Shiftgig

Shiftgig is an online marketplace that connects workers with jobs.  Shiftgig collects client requirements, worker skills, and real-time shift data to provide smarter and timely matches.  With over 1,050,000 registered members and 25,000 businesses, Shiftgig has built the largest online community where members connect with business to access jobs and content in the restaurant, nightlife, hotel, and retail verticals.

Shiftgig is Named Up-and-Comer Winner of 13th Annual Chicago Innovation Awards

Chicago, IL – October 31, 2014 –  Shiftgig, the premier online community for the service industry that enables people to connect with jobs, announced today it has been named one of the Up-and-Comer winners of the 13th annual Chicago Innovation Awards.

The winners were announced at an event held at Chicago’s Harris Theater on Thursday, October 30, with nearly 1500 business and civic leaders attending.  The Chicago Innovation Awards, celebrating its 13th year, is the Chicago region’s foremost recognition of the most innovative new products or services brought to market or to public service each year.

Shiftgig’s chief innovation is its digital marketplace that intelligently connects service industry workers with jobs by collecting and analyzing client requirements, worker skills, and real-time shift data to provide smarter matches.  The platform will help millions of workers get millions of shift jobs and improve their likelihood of successful employment.

“Chicago is an innovation hub with talented business leaders who have the vision to see things differently and set themselves apart from the competition,” said Tom Kuczmarski, co-founder with Chicago journalist Dan Miller of the awards. “Every winner of the Chicago Innovation Awards embodies this mindset, and each one has found a unique way to solve a previously unmet need in the market.”

“We are very excited to be recognized as an up-and-comer in Chicago,” said Eddie Lou, co-founder and CEO of Shiftgig. ”It validates our team’s efforts and inspires us to make 2015 an even bigger year as we continue to grow the nation’s largest service industry community and provide a superior employment solution to our clients.”

The winning organizations receive a variety of honors including the opportunity to ring the NASDAQ Bell in New York City, a profile in Crain’s Chicago Business, and meetings with the Mayor, Governor and Cook County President.

“With more than 550 nominees received this year, it is clear that Chicago continues to rise as a global center of innovation.  This region has become a magnet for attracting the capital and talent needed to fuel even more innovation activity and economic growth,” said Luke Tanen, Executive Director of the Chicago Innovation Awards.

The complete list of this year’s Chicago Innovation Award winners can be found at www.chicagoinnovationawards.com.

About Shiftgig

Shiftgig is the service industry network, the premier online community where members connect with each other and businesses to access informative and funny content, jobs, and industry deals.  With over 1 million registered members and 21,000 businesses, Shiftgig has become the largest online destination for people in the restaurant, nightlife, hotel and retail industries.  For more information about Shiftgig, visit www.shiftgig.com.

Restaurants See Continued Job Growth but Have Trouble with Turnover

The summer months have brought both successes and troubles for the restaurant industry.

After a rough winter, sales have begun to bounce back, rising 0.3 percent during the second quarter of 2014. Although this is an improvement on the first quarter, there is still some concern that there are still not enough guests coming in.

Despite this worry, jobs continue to grow steadily in the restaurant industry. Growth was at 3.5 percent in May, marking the seventh consecutive month of over 3 percent job growth for restaurants.

Unfortunately, turnover continues to be a significant problem in the case of both hourly workers and managers. Rising vacancies in the third quarter or 2013 has led to some employment pressure this summer.

Employers looking for reliable staff can turn to Shiftgig, where they can look through hundreds of thousands of candidates to find exactly who they need for their restaurant. Posting a job is free, and it is easy to search through profiles of qualified candidates.

Join Shiftgig today to avoid hiring problems.

Source: nrn.com

Shiftgig Grows as Part of a New Economic Ecosystem

It’s traditional logic to say that businesses will sprout up in places where large companies have taken root. It’s been a common pattern in a growing economy as small businesses arise to support the larger one. However, a new trend is coming forth: small businesses are building their own economic ecosystems. Creating communities that form a network of resources, startups are blossoming in unexpected places.

Chicago has been one of the breeding grounds for this new style of business community. Shiftgig itself has been a prime example of this model. Not only did Shiftgig grow among other small tech startups, but as a job network and community for the service industry, it also supports small businesses in the restaurant, retail, and hospitality sectors. Shiftgig is leading the way as a leader in this new kind of network.

You can read more about small business clusters at Forbes.

Shifting into the Bullpen: How Eddie Lou and Jeff Pieta’s Shiftgig is helping to grow their Bullpen

By Thomas Miller

Eddie Lou and Jeff Pieta had already started Shiftgig, a successful networking company for the restaurant and hospitality industry, when the idea for Bullpen was born.

Shiftgig is a networking site that connects job hunters in the restaurant and hospitality industries with opportunities.(A la linkedin.) In its two year life span it signed up 750,000 works and 17,500 bars, restaurants and other service industry business. Their free to use model, however, still left a need for revenue generation. They were working on solving this problem when one of their clients asked them a question that helped to birth Bulllpen.

Blue Plate Catering, which was already using Shiftgig to recruit full time workers, wanted to know if there was ever going to be an option to use Shiftgig to find temporary workers for events. A light bulb went on and fireworks exploded. Traditional staffing companies hire full time workers to staff their events, and most companies are limited by their social circles. Using Shiftgig, Pieta and Lou realized they could leverage their labor pool far more effectively than companies relying only on people they knew.

“We can assemble workers who are supplementing their employment but who are not interested in working for traditional temp agencies,” Mr. Pieta says. “A big problem in events is finding enough people when you need them.”

Using Shiftgig, they were able to find the people. Bullpen has signed up over 1,000 people in Chicago, and is currently launching an office in New York. The model works because it allows workers  to pick up shifts on their own schedules, when they need cash or have some free time.

Shiftgig is able to make money by charging the same as other staffing companies, but cutting its overhead using technology. “You’d be surprised how much of the staffing industry is still done manually, scheduling by phone, filling out forms, then having someone re-enter that information into a computer,” he said. “We hired someone from a traditional staffing agency who said it takes them four to six hours to process an employee. We think we can get that down to about half an hour.”

By improving the technology across the board, Bullpen, and in turn Shiftgig, believe that they can change the face of staffing.

Shiftgig Community Survey Shows Bar and Nightlife Industry Workers Seek Deeper Engagement with Beer and Spirits Brands

Chicago, IL – January 8, 2013 Shiftgig, the premier online community for the service industry, announced today the results from its nationwide member survey, which indicated that a strong majority of bartenders, servers and bar managers are not only influenced by beer and spirits brand marketing, but also welcome it.

The survey, which was distributed to Shiftgig’s community of service industry professionals, showed that 94% of bartenders, servers and bar managers are more likely to personally use and recommend to their business customers those beer and spirits brands that actively engage with them. Moreover 82% responded that they wanted engaging, entertaining and educational content from beer and spirits brands.

“Beer and spirit brand engagement with the service industry is proving not only effective but desired,” said Eddie Lou, CEO of Shiftgig. “Due to the influential nature of industry professionals, building brand awareness on a popular platform like Shiftgig gives marketers an opportunity to reach an exponentially greater audience.”

With over 650,000 user profiles and more than 15,000 businesses posting job listings, Shiftgig provides the largest platform in the United States for enabling engagement between beer and spirits brands and the service industry. For information on how your brand can engage with the influential bar and nightlife industry on Shiftgig.com, contact Matt Richards at mrichards@shiftgig.com.

Additional survey findings included the industry’s preferred themes for content delivery, which were ranked in the following order: 1) information about new brand product launches, 2) educational opportunities about beer and spirits brands, 3) monthly online contests, 4) video that brings a brand to life and 5) promotion of brand-sponsored local events.

About Shiftgig

Shiftgig is the service industry network, the premier online community where members connect with each other and businesses to access informative and funny content, jobs, and industry deals.  With over 650,000 registered members and 15,000 businesses, Shiftgig has become the largest online destination for the restaurant, nightlife, hotel and retail verticals. For more information about Shiftgig, visit www.shiftgig.com.

Get paid to surf the social web and find awesome content – Shiftgig’s Content Curator program

You may have noticed that Shiftgig has been getting much more involved in our community of service industry people through our Facebook and community pages (www.shiftgig.com/articles). The key has been high quality content generated by our awesome partners in the social sphere like Ask the Bartender and The Bitchy Waiter.

Well, it’s your lucky day because we are taking it up a notch by implementing our Shiftgig Curator program. As a Shiftgig curator, you would be paid per piece to help us find funny/interesting/informative content that would be relevant to our audience from across the social web.

That’s right: you would get paid to surf on social media! Even better, you will have the ability to link your social accounts to your own channel on Shiftgig and increase your personal following as a result.

What does it take to become a Shiftgig Curator? We are looking for awesome, tech savvy people with excellent writing skills and the ability to spot highly shareable content. We will provide training and materials to help you along the way, but you should have some way of demonstrating that you understand social media and principles of engaging content creation.

If you are interested in applying to become a curator, please send us an application with the following in PDF form to thegoods@shiftgig.com:

  • Links to your social accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Google+, etc). The bigger following you have, the better!
  • A couple paragraphs explaining why you would be an awesome content curator for Shiftgig. Ideally you have worked in the service industry before and really understand our audience.
  • 2 examples of curated content that you would submit to Shiftgig. In these examples, include a catchy headline and short blurb about what that content is
    • We strongly prefer images, charts, infographics, and videos over text-heavy content

Shiftgig Adds Emerson Spartz to Advisory Dream Team and Launches Social News and Entertainment Platform for the Service Industry

Chicago, IL – December 12, 2013 Shiftgig, the professional networking and employment community for the service industry, announced today that Emerson Spartz has joined the company as an advisor. Spartz, the CEO and founder of Spartz Inc., is best known for founding MuggleNet at the age of 12, a Harry Potter fan site that attracted 50 million monthly page views soon after it launched. In related news, Shiftgig has redesigned its site and hired a team of hilarious, insightful writers to provide social news and entertainment specifically devoted to the service industry to complement its job searching platform.

“Emerson has a track record of generating viral growth in communities, and we’re thrilled to bring him on to the Shiftgig team,” said Eddie Lou, CEO of Shiftgig. “Shiftgig has quadrupled in size since this time last year, and we expect this growth to continue. Ultimately, we want our audience to find industry information and fun content as well as job opportunities.”

Spartz, who famously dropped out of middle school prior to creating MuggleNet, also founded sites such as OMG Facts, Unfriendable and smartphOWNED. Today he publishes 18 unique websites and apps that attract over 160 million page views each month.

“I really like the Shiftgig marketplace and how it is helping people find jobs.  There is a lot of opportunity to provide other value-added features to this audience,” said Spartz.

Spartz joins a Shiftgig advisory team that includes Ken Pelletier, former CTO of Groupon; Brian Spaly, founder and CEO of Trunk Club; and Sam Yagan, founder of OKCupid.

In addition to providing a platform for networking and finding jobs, Shiftgig’s new community pages, The Goods, will offer articles that are fun, informative and inspirational. Already the largest service industry community, over 600,000 people have created profiles on Shiftgig to connect with each other, find better employment and be entertained.

About Shiftgig

Shiftgig is the professional networking and employment community for the hospitality industry, facilitating connections between employers and candidates. It simplifies the hiring process by matching meaningful candidate profiles with job openings so both sides get better results quickly. Shiftgig also provides the latest information on industry news, events and deals. The company currently operates in Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis, New York, Philadelphia and Washington D.C. For more information about Shiftgig, visit www.shiftgig.com.

Reinvent Your Employee Scheduling from When I Work

6 day course on how to “Reinvent Your Employee Scheduling” from our partner, When I Work

We are slaves to our schedules. At home it can be juggling appointments, soccer games, family dinners, and maybe a few hours to sleep. At work, your schedule can be even more overwhelming—and just like at home, you probably aren’t only worrying about yourself.

All of us have our own lives, our own drama, and our own worlds to worry about in addition to work—and often, schedules falls by the wayside. Managers, in particular, face this challenge when it comes to finding employees who can cover missed shifts, illnesses or other personal crises that arise.

As a result, your schedule is never really solidified until the shift starts. Things come up, life gets in the way, and changes get made. If you don’t have a solid scheduling system in place, you and your employees will find yourselves in over your heads.

You’ll Never Not Need a Schedule

If you’re employing human beings, you’re always going to be dealing with the challenges of ever-changing schedules—it’s just part of running a business. What you can control is the power that you give your schedule. You have the ability to take control of outdated systems, poor communication, and the anxiety that comes along with maintaining full shifts.

I’d like to invite you to a free 6 day course on “How to Reinvent Your Employee Scheduling”. Over the six days, we walk through how real businesses deal with the common, everyday scheduling problems all managers face. This crash course will give you strategies needed to help you take control of your schedule and make it work for your company.

To get started, register here to see how a small coffee shop in St. Paul, MN shaved hours off their weekly scheduling time, gave employees 24/7 access to their schedules, and increased overall productivity.

-Chad Halvorson

CEO When I Work