Receive daily articles & headlines each day in your inbox with your free ERE Daily Subscription.

Not logged in. [log in or register]

Finder’s Fee for This Job: $100,000

by Aug 7, 2014, 3:37 pm ET

NRGThe crowdsourcing referral bonus for helping find a president of a solar-power developer has been set at $100,000.

Yes, NRG is saying that if you provide a U.S. candidate for a new part of the company called NRG Home, you’ll get $100,000. If you end up referring yourself, you give the money to charity.

Jennifer Wallace, the senior vice president for human resources at NRG, told me by email that the company “wanted the referral fee to generate excitement and drive people to action. The position we are searching for is a unique one, so our crowdsourcing campaign had to be innovative as well.”

People can only refer one person, and it has to be done by August 22. They’ll use this form to do the referring. The job description is here. The fine print is here.

This article is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to offer specific legal advice. You should consult your legal counsel regarding any threatened or pending litigation.

  • http://www.EngineeringReferral.com Douglas Friedman

    Because of what my company does, this story really caught my attention. My first thought was “that’s crazy.” 100k is certainly much, much higher than the fees we offer our network members when they refer engineers and IT folks. But then I thought about it for a couple minutes and looked at it from the standpoint of what slowly seems to be becoming accepted market expectations in talent acquisition crowdsourcing. Most TA crowdsourcing platforms try to save their clients a minimum of 80% of what they would have paid hiring through a recruiting agency (setting crowdsourced referral fees at about 1/5th of the low end of a recruiting agency’s fee is a good rule of thumb for very hard to fill jobs requiring unusual skill sets). And most platforms also try to significantly improve time-to-fill metrics by quickly qualifying a candidate slate. Okay. So, NRG Energy is a Fortune 500 company that earned about $700 million last quarter and is projecting about $3 billion for the year. Their CEO, David Crane, made about $9 million last year with about $1.2 million of that being cash (according to Forbes). Now, a president of a business division will generally earn significantly less than a CEO. But NRG does pay very well across the board (for technical talent at least) and this is an important job for them. Would they end up paying half a million to a retained search firm if they went that route to fill this job? Almost certainly not. The fee would be much less than that, particularly if they have an established relationship and have negotiated a preferred fee structure for themselves. So it’s not a “typical” 80% savings. But would they pay more than 100k. I think probably. Twice as much? Maybe. Now the time-to-fill metric is a question mark at this point. And, to be honest, because our crowdsourcing work is so engineering and IT focused, I have no particular insight on that. But, they are getting a lot of publicity because of this and I’m guessing a whole lot of referrals. And that publicity only looks to increase between now and 8-22. So, I think that 100k is a crazy number when compared to most crowdsourcing fees which tend to be small fractions of that amount. But, for this particular job at this particular company, not “crazy” at all. Expensive if you use the 80% savings rule. But, then again, how many crowdsourcing bounties generate this kind of interest? So is it money well spent? I don’t know how to judge that, but NRG can certainly afford it and it is a “the times they are a changing” kind of idea. I say bravo NRG.

    Doug Friedman
    EngineeringReferral.com
    My LinkedIn Profile