More money for casual employment in Europe: Zenjoba marketplace platform that targets students looking for side jobs in industries such as retail, logistics and hospitality and promises to connect them with employers in need of temporary work, has closed a $50 million Series D funding round.
It’s been just under two years since the Berlin-based startup raised a $30 million Series C.
As with many other ‘modern staffing agencies’, Zenjob employs the temps directly – taking care of the associated administrator (such as payment and back-office functions) to further simplify your experience. Another perk it offers temporary workers is the promise that it will pay half their salary within 72 hours of a shift completed – potentially speeding up remittance over a traditional agency.
On the other hand, employers sign a contract with Zenjob and can hire temporary employees as needed, including for short-term and long-term employment.
Zenjob says it works with “some of the biggest” companies in the delivery, retail, logistics, e-commerce, hospitality and service industries — but does not disclose customer names.
He currently says that more than 2,500 companies, in more than 10,000 locations across its two active European markets, are signed up to his platform for on-demand temps – with more than 40,000 workers using the platform every month to book side jobs.
According to the startup founded in 2015, it has matched over 1 million jobs in Germany and the Netherlands to date.
The Series D increase is led by Aragon with participation from all existing Zenjob investors, including Acton Capital, Atlantic Labs, Forestay and Axa Venture Partners.
The new funding is being pegged to expansion into Europe – including the UK market, where it plans to launch this summer – and to product development, including new data-driven automation capabilities that the company says are underway to meet needs. expansion needs. customer base, such as supporting new ‘white collar’ job categories.
“We are launching Zenjob in the UK this year and are continuing our investment in new European markets. We are also increasing our operations in Germany and the Netherlands,” he tells us, adding, “We are increasing our technology team and will invest heavily in scaling and new automation capabilities in our platform.
“Due to high demand, we will expand our offerings in knowledge work and office jobs.”
Zenjob competes with a growing number of tech-focused platforms in matching jobs to temporary positions – including Spain’s Jobandtalent, CornerJob and Luxembourg-based Job Today, to name a few.
Gig platform Uber is also eyeing the space – launching a Work Hub for UK drivers in 2020 as demand has hit during the pandemic lockdowns; and a shift finder app, called Uber Works, in the US in 2019.
In the European Union, incoming regulations aimed at combating bogus self-employment on gig platforms – through a pan-EU legal framework that will set minimum standards for platform workers – could accelerate demand for agency-style temporary employee platforms, channeling demand for labor through personnel intermediaries who employ them directly, thus allowing concert platforms themselves to avoid hiring thousands of couriers and other casual workers.
Discussing the competitive landscape, Zenjob argues that technology will be the biggest differentiator when it comes to the people market, job matching and platforms.
“When you look at the market, we’ve only scratched the surface when it comes to using technology to handle the tasks that make hiring people and job searching tedious and slow,” he suggests. “That’s why we focus a lot on the internal technological development of our platform and on all the necessary processes. We currently have around 75% fully automated processes and our goal is to get north of 95% in the near future.
“Our model works because our technological focus allows us to offer a very fast service with high quality personnel (thanks to the high degree of automation) for the companies we work with. And we can deliver high satisfaction rates and reliable staff, as the other half of our business is solely focused on providing the best experience and benefits for our talents. We pay above-market rates for the jobs we offer and care deeply about the experience and satisfaction of the more than 40,000 people who currently use our app to book jobs around the clock.”
Zenjob also argues that there is still massive growth to be explored – pointing to Germany as an example, where it says over 95% of staff is still mostly offline.
“So we’re competing with large companies that are approaching matching and hiring employees in a very traditional way,” he adds. “Our approach is 100% digital and we are always working to improve the benefits we can offer people who book jobs through us: fast payouts, opportunity to book jobs 24/7.”