Minnow ApplyDirect is out to radically disrupt the recruitment industry’s online model, writes tech expert Tim Knapton of TechVoyage.

There’s no doubt that one of the biggest local tech success stories to date has been Seek.

The online recruiting platform has captured a dominant share of the online jobs market and now commands an equity capitalisation of almost $6 billion.

But one ASX micro-cap is aiming to radically disrupt that model — by allowing employers to avoid paying intermediaries like online jobs boards and recruitment agencies.

ApplyDirect’s (ASX:AD1) digital technology suite enables large private and public sector employers to take control of their recruitment processes by making their careers pages more discoverable by job seekers.

In the process, it ensures the candidate experience, and hence their engagement, is optimised and the employer’s value proposition is properly positioned with jobseekers.

The technology suite is designed to make a candidate’s search and application experience as easy as possible — convertsing traffic into quality applications.

The key software modules include recruitment reporting, job checks, job alerts, applicant management and integration with HR Information Systems.

The company’s technology also embraces digital marketing, which augments the organic candidate traffic driven directly to the employer’s application process.

The offering also features a job cataloguing system, integrated with extensive digital and social marketing capability.

The core value proposition is that bringing candidates directly to employer career pages and application processes allows employers to better utilise their significant investment in HR systems and people.

Australian employers spend about $12 billion a year on recruitment intermediaries and so that value proposition is compelling.

ApplyDirect’s roll out strategy prioritises sectors with large employee numbers, high turnover and high vacancy rates such as government, health, retail and professional services.

Subscriptions are the biggest contributor to revenue, based on the average number of monthly vacancies times a notional price per vacancy.

Revenues are also generated from digital marketing campaigns and innovation development, particularly in the government sector.

The NSW Government, the country’s biggest employer, is ApplyDirect’s biggest customer.

Under a three-year deal, ApplyDirect hosts and maintains the iworkfornsw solution, while also providing digital marketing services that ensure ongoing discoverability.

More recently it embarked on a six-month digital media campaign targeting the healthcare sector for First State Super.

One of the key changes for the industry is the increasing importance of Google, where about 75 per cent of all jobseekers start their search.

This ratio is likely to increase even further with the launch of Google for Jobs in Australia, which will rank employer jobs (as original content) ahead of that duplicated by intermediaries.

Importantly, ApplyDirect’s solutions are uniquely positioned to enable employers to navigate this opportunity.

Last year, the company’s revenues were only a little over $1 million but today’s digital world is driving fundamental changes to the way in which employers and candidates engage, with the latter usurping more control over the process.

This will make ApplyDirect increasingly relevant and the likelihood is it will enjoy very significant growth rates over the next few years across each of its core customer segments.

Tim Knapton is the founder and CEO of online tech research and finance marketplace TechVoyage.   Its video/financial database and digital broadcast platform provide a more efficient way for investors to appraise listed and unlisted tech companies and for entrepreneurs to finance, acquire and exit them.   

Previously Tim was Head of Corporate Broking at Deutsche Australia and before that ran a research department for a leading broking house.  Tim has also been a freelance tech/finance journalist for more than 20 years and a columnist with The Australian Financial Review, The Bulletin, BRW, Shares and Australian Business.


This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.