Hot Headhunting: AI-Driven Recruiting Firm Sees Uptick In Sales/Marketing Hiring

AI is applied to every other human activity. Why not to recruiting? That’s the premise behind TopFunnel, a recruiting automation platform that links high-level knowledge workers with organizations.  

The Bay Area company is seeing a resurgence in hiring, especially for corporate engineering and sales and marketing positions.  Email is among the typical skill sets needed in the latter, says Jessica Schertz, chief of staff at TopFunnel.

Sales and marketing jobs fell after numerous layoffs in March. But they are rebounding, and are hot right now, both in B2B and B2C. 

This includes people specializing in paid social and customer acquisition.

The company is now processing about five hires a day, mostly at growth-stage tech companies and public firms, up about a third from last year, says Justin Palmer, the co-founder and CEO of TopFunnel. 

A year ago at this rime, most of candidate sourcing was in the Bay Area Since then, there has been an almost complete turnaround. Companies are looking for remote employees outside the Bay Area, perhaps in less expensive locales. 



The technology is based on “less headhunting, more on filtering,” Palmer says. It tends to focus on passive candidates, while helping clients access a "pipeline" of possible hires, Palmer adds. 

Recruiters and hiring managers can source candidates with their morning coffee, the firm proclaims. 

What is the firm seeing? “It’s harder to recruit out of the big companies,” Palmer says. “People who are at Google are staying put.”

In June, the company saw a huge spike in sourcing African-American employees as firms sought to create more diverse teams in the wake of George Floyd’s murder. However, that has declined in recent months. 

The company, 3.5 years old, is VC-backed and has hundreds of clients and 40 employees. Last year, it acquired Clara Labs, a robotic scheduling product that moves into email threads and looks at a person’s schedule. 

It is so effective that people mistake Clara for a live assistant, Schertz laughs. 



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