New recruiting model: Learn while you don't earn

Tech recruiter PeopleConnect has come up with a business model that it believes will reduce the risks, particularly for start-ups, of hiring talent.

"We find people who are willing to work without a paycheck for the first three months," said Chief Executive Max Shapiro.

The contracts can vary. Employees, for instance, can work for free until a start-up receives a certain amount of funding. However, employees get to keep stock options vested during the period they worked without a regular salary.

The idea is to give employers an opportunity to screen its employees better. It also gives job candidates a way to demonstrate their interest in working for the company. Ideally, a start-up will be able to attract a seasoned management team, always a consideration for venture capitalists without blowing everything in the bank.

"The toughest person to convince sometimes is the spouse," said Shapiro.

Tech Culture
About the author

    Michael Kanellos is editor at large at CNET, where he covers hardware, research and development, start-ups and the tech industry overseas.


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