Good help is hard to find. Hungry help is even more difficult to track down.
That’s the case with Benzinga, the online financial news publication. The 5-year-old startup is constantly looking for new people to help it keep up with its growth. That means tracking down a wide variety of professionals, ranging from journalists to software developers. To fill those positions, Benzinga’s leadership looks for people with passion, organization, and a strong work ethic.
“We can’t hire on experience because we have a limited budget,” says Jason Raznick, CEO ofBenzinga. “We’re trying to create something from nothing.”
Finding the right people is one of Benzinga’s biggest challenges, but one it has been successful at overcoming. It has grown its staff to more than 30 employees. That staff has in turn helped create multiple revenue streams for the company, such as its premium subscription service, data analytics, and traditional advertising. Benzinga now commands millions of dollars in annual revenue.
Which necessitates more hires to keep up with the growth. Benzinga has hired seven people over the last year, and is consistently looking for new people. Raznick scours tech meetups and LinkedIn to find candidates.
“I hired a person off Twitter once,” Raznick says.
Benzinga got its start in the Oakland County suburbs, such as Southfield. It announced a move to downtown Detroit late last year in part to help it attract more talent. Raznick has found that young, passionate people are often attracted to working in major city centers so moving next to Campus Martius made sense.
The move to Detroit means that it puts Benzinga next to other new economy startups so recruits feel there are options in case a job with Benzinga doesn’t work out. It also helps attract people who aspire to live in a big city like New York and work in media one day.
“We definitely receive more incoming resumes but we still need to go out there and recruit,” Raznick says. “It’s still a challenge to find hungry people.”
Welcome to the Year of the Gazelle, an exploration of the fastest-growing startups in southeast Michigan by the Startup team and the New Economy Initiative for Southeast Michigan (NEI). Not only will we identify the local gazelle companies that are perfecting innovative new products, creating jobs, and generating lots of revenue, we will give you a full accounting of each one. The stories behind the entrepreneurs that build these businesses. The investors that back them. The resources they leverage. How they have all worked together to build Metro Detroit’s new economy, and how they plan to do it in the future. In return we will only ask you to do one thing: keep up.
This story originally appeared in SE Michigan Startup here.