Workforces are becoming more flexible and fluid than ever—and companies are facing increasing challenges managing contingent labor pools and navigating the new gig economy.
In this episode of UpTech Report, I interview Glenn Laumeister, the CEO of AllWork, a company building the technology to solve these complicated 21st century workforce management issues.
Glenn discusses the depth of AllWork’s end-to-end platform, the technologies they use to help companies manage a complex, dynamic workforce, and his previous experience as the founder and CEO of CoachMarket.
The future of the gig economy
As the number of flexible or freelancer gig economy workers is going up dramatically. People are also changing and so, the way we work. And companies need to adapt to their new future employees to create a more flexible staffing environment.
So how can AI can help in the future of the gig economy? “New generations want to basically get their jobs on an app. They want to get matched to a job and today’s technology does not allow for that.”, says Glenn.
Glenn is a serial entrepreneur and technology CEO who has launched and scaled numerous technology businesses including the freelancer marketplaces CoachMarket, for executive coaching and corporate training consultants, and Thuzio, a freelancer “digital talent agent” for professional athletes.show more
Prior experience included launching and growing Partsearch/PartStore.com, an e-commerce and enterprise software business for consumer electronics, computer, and appliance replacement parts.
He co-founded PartStore and grew it from an idea to over $75 million in revenue. The Company’s awards included the INC 500 list, Deloitte’s top 500 growth businesses nationally, and he was selected as an Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year finalist.show less
DISCLAIMER: Below is an AI generated transcript. There could be a few typos but it should be at least 90% accurate. Watch video or listen to the podcast for the full experience!
Alexander Ferguson 0:00
Workforces are becoming more flexible and fluid than ever. And companies are facing increasing challenges managing contingent labor pools, and navigating the new gig economy. In this episode of UpTech Report, I interview Glenn Laumeister, the CEO of Allwork, a company building the technology to solve these complicated 21st century workforce management issues. Glenn discusses the depth of all works end to end platform, the technologies they use to help companies manage a complex, dynamic workforce, and his previous experience as the founder and CEO of coach market.
Thank you so much, Glenn, for joining me, I’m excited to learn more about all work, how we got started the market fit that you’re you’re feeling a need for fitting a need for and then also the future? How are you innovating? And where are you heading in the growth trajectory? To start us off? What year did all work start? When? When did you join them?
Glenn Laumeister 0:54
So I joined about three years ago. And there’s two founders who had built the business before that for a couple of years and bootstrapped it. And so they actually, you know, built the business sort of for themselves, and then spun it off into a separate company, your previous
Alexander Ferguson 1:11
you were founded a company in your CEO that led into this, tell me about that.
Glenn Laumeister 1:17
Yeah, so I founded a company called coach market, which was a marketplace for executive coaching and corporate training consultants. And what I was very interested in was this whole idea of online labor marketplaces, helping people and companies connect, to find each other and work together kind of as part of that early thinking around the gig economy. So, you know, in certain verticals, there’s lots of people who are already working as consultants, or in some way, a flexible on demand worker, but they have a really hard time finding those gigs. And so, you know, scraping a gig worker if you have enough gigs, but if you don’t, it’s not so great. And we surveyed a lot of people from Coach market in that executive coaching area. And we found that they spend 50% of their time on business development. And that’s not really what they want to do, right? They want to be coaching and working and helping people develop helping companies develop. So that was a problem we’re solving there. And that was a true marketplace, that led me to the opportunity at all work, which is a little bit different, because we’re more of an internal marketplace. So we a company comes to us, they have their people, they already have their team. And we help them manage that team at scale. So it’s really more workforce management, and then payroll services, because they what they want from us is not so much the sourcing of the talent, right? They have the talent, what they want is a better way to manage them more efficiently, and also to some degree to figure out how to attract more talent. So one of the biggest problems we’re solving for our clients with all work is that they have a hard time attracting gig workers. Right. So they’re typically employing like full time people. And they have kind of a very rigid, you know, staffing model, which is the way it’s always been, and now they have, they’re having a hard time finding people because it’s record low unemployment.
Alexander Ferguson 3:13
So it’s a challenge even to get employees or gig economy because the growth of the gig economy right now you’re having to attract, let’s say, people, they could they could jump on a gig here. So your platform helps the old platform helps in that endeavor.
Glenn Laumeister 3:25
That’s right. So we’re really connecting these gig economy workers with their employers at scale. And what we found is that just as you said, you know, the number of flexible Freelancer gig economy works is going up dramatically. And the companies are saying, Hey, I can’t find enough people to have to schedule eight weeks in advance 40 hours a week, because I don’t want to work that way. So what do I do? And what they have to do is adapt to this new gig economy and create a more flexible staffing environment.
Alexander Ferguson 3:55
Now, you guys, where are you headquartered from?
Glenn Laumeister 3:58
We’re in New York City.
Alexander Ferguson 4:00
And now just be think, five years and how big is the team?
Glenn Laumeister 4:03
So we’re about 2025 people. Fantastic. We also leverage a lot of consultants as well. We practice what we preach.
Alexander Ferguson 4:11
And then then the growth here of the end, clients that you are serving, what do they look like that the the type of the style and you have a certain base that you’re serving right now? Yeah, so
Glenn Laumeister 4:23
our target is a consumer brand. And that brand wants to employ a flexible workforce to help them better engage their end customers at retail. So whether it’s selling merchandising, marketing events, you know, a big trend right now is that the brands are putting more and more people into stores. So most people don’t realize that if you walk into a Bloomingdale’s or a Macy’s, half the people you’ll see there in the store actually work for the brands not for Macy’s directly. interest right now, think about it as a brand. Those people are working all over the country in 1000 different stores. How do you find them? track them, maintain a relationship with them, schedule them pay them properly. So it’s all about that kind of activity and then engagement. And that’s what our software helps them do. When you talk to the workers. They say, here’s what I’m looking for. And more and more, it’s about flexibility. So there’s lots of studies out there, and particularly with the younger people, millennials, and Gen Z, and they said, You know, I really want to work in a more flexible way than maybe my parents did. And so, you know, one, one really amazing statistic is that in five years, 75% of our workforce will be millennials are younger. So these are digitally native people, they want to basically get their jobs on app, you know, they want to get like automatically matched to a job. And so they want to be able to work that way. And really, today’s technology does not allow for that.
Alexander Ferguson 5:52
How many clients and then also the end employees? Are you actually managing on your platform?
Glenn Laumeister 5:58
So we have about 50 Different brands that we work with today. And we’re probably have between three and 5000 town, anyone time working all over the country? You know, in basically two to 3000 different locations all across all 50. States and Canada.
Alexander Ferguson 6:15
Awesome. Let’s dig into the technology, the platform itself a bit more than the technology itself. Tell me? How is it different than other solutions out there? And how is it also maybe the same that we can understand and create analogy to?
Glenn Laumeister 6:30
Yeah, sure. So we our concept is one end to end platform that helps our customers manage everything from the time they have the people to the time that people get paid. So if you think about that process, where are they doing, they’re budgeting those people, they’re scheduling them. They’re approving timesheets, and these are hourly employees we’re talking about, they’re proving the timesheets, they’re training them, they’re reporting on all of their activities, they’re figuring out, you know, sort of from a performance basis, who are the best people and running analytics on that. And then they’re also in need of payroll, right. So our platform actually pays them as well. And so this is an important part of the gig economy that Lego don’t realize is that you can have workers that don’t, you don’t have to commit like 40 hours a week to them, as long as they in the onboarding process, or total, this is a flexible assignment. So what we really specialize in is our customers want to use someone who’d say, five to 30 hours a week, all year long. So because of the nature of what they’re doing, it’s not really project work. It’s more like, hey, I need you to be at Bloomingdale’s every Thursday, Friday and Saturday for the next, you know, eight weeks, right. So there is consistency for the game workers. So they’re able to plan ahead in terms of having relationships. And but what’s really important here is that what our customers don’t get today is they don’t get software built for how they work. So they might get like a scheduling program. It’s kind of generic a budgeting program, they use Excel. So most of our clients are using Excel or Google Docs, or they try to find something to make it work. What we’ve done is taken our vertical, which is now let’s call it consumer products, sales and marketing. And we built specific technology just for that vertical. And so a lot of what we do is a similar function you might have in some of them software programs. But typically those are single points solutions, like just scheduling, or they’re generic, and they don’t really adapt that well to specific verticals.
Alexander Ferguson 8:31
So it’s a great use case of taking a vertical and then putting lots of different solutions into one makes this vertical very happy, because then they don’t have to worry about having these. Now, another piece of technology, I believe you mentioned in a previous conversation we had was even tracking then these workers by IP, geolocation, so making sure that they’re there. Right, right. But that technology.
Glenn Laumeister 8:59
Yeah, so one of the things that we found is really a problem is just this connectivity to the talent. So imagine you’re brand new based in New York, you’ve got people in California, and Seattle, and Texas, and you don’t really know where they are all the time are they where they’re supposed to be. And so we have an app that talent uses, and they check in to each shift in the checkout of each shift. And we actually verify their GPS look using GPS technology, their location. So we have the address of the store, let’s say it’s a store in our system. And so if they’re not in the right location, we tell them, hey, you’re not in the right location. And we also tell their manager, and so what we’re doing is we’re really helping both sides. Be aware of what’s happening in your business.
Alexander Ferguson 9:42
Is that automatic communication, or is that manual or automatic? So if they show up in the wrong place, they’re gonna get a little thing for the phone, say, Oh, you’re in the wrong place,
Glenn Laumeister 9:51
you’re in the wrong place. And by the way, when your manager knows that you’re in the wrong place, either talk to your manager. So you guys work Get out, you know kind of thing. So we don’t get involved in like that performance management, our clients use our data and our technology so they can do it better themselves. But it’s a huge, huge advantage. Because, you know, let’s say the person was supposed to be there from 10 to five, they show up at 1030, they’re probably billing you for 10 o’clock, right? Because there’s no manager present. And that’s not good for either side, right. So we create really a standardized way of doing it. So both sides know that, hey, I’m there, I’m supposed to be I’m getting paid the right time, the right hours. So that’s one example. The other example is that, because we’re using the mobile app, the town is able to send information from each shift to their manager and to the company. So in the past, they fill out like timesheet, two weeks later, they put like sales information and other things, and it was kind of too late by them to do anything about it. Now, the manager will get a shift report that has photos, it has notes from the ships, it has sales data, anything else that they want to capture, that information gets collected, immediately sent to the manager and then sent up to the corporate like head of sales, let’s say so they get in real time sales information, which we’re finding that some of our clients are getting sales information, 60 days later, right? So now they have actionable data. So a big thing underlying our system is creating actionable data that they can easily get their hands on
Alexander Ferguson 11:20
anything you can share that another CEO could learn from of hurdles you were able to overcome, whether it’s product market fit, or just even the platform itself with the technology, any anything you can share.
Glenn Laumeister 11:33
Yeah, sure. So I think one of our big learnings was that the enterprise buyers, were really not ready for this five years ago, we had some good customers, the customers that we had loved us. But when you go and talk to him about it, you know, Uber wasn’t really in the mainstream then. So they didn’t really understand what an app could do what you know, GPS was like the enterprise buyer really need a lot of education. And the biggest change I’ve seen from that point to three years ago to now is that now when we walk in, a lot of our customers are saying to us, I am looking for technology to help grow my business better. Even three years ago, they were saying, Tell me what you do again, and you know, like, Oh, I get it like it was like more of a process. But now they’re seeing other things out there. And they’re saying, why don’t I have something like Uber to manage my view? Right. So that’s really helped us in terms of the sales cycle, less education, more about like, we can move from education right into ROI.
Alexander Ferguson 12:35
Do you feel that you’ve crossed the chasm now of now getting the early majority? Are you still in the kind of the early adopter phase? What would you say? Yeah, so
Glenn Laumeister 12:46
we I think we went from that you got to really focus on early adopters to more of a mainstream now. And so you know, we’re talking to client potential customers that a year ago, two years ago said, I, you know, we don’t really know why we need it, you know, like, Okay, you see, nice to see, you know, like, this is good, but like, we don’t really know why we need it, then they call us up and be like, now we know why we need it. Because we planted something in their brains that came back to them, right? And said, okay, yeah, this is pretty dumb, that we’re doing buddies on spreadsheets, there should be a better way.
Alexander Ferguson 13:17
So that’s a helpful data point for other SaaS companies out there that are developing new technology that you might have to place a data point and wait a year or two for it to grow.
Glenn Laumeister 13:24
Well, that’s right. You got to be patient, you got to patients. So five years
Alexander Ferguson 13:28
from now, where do you see the company?
Glenn Laumeister 13:32
Yeah, what we’re really trying to do is to kind of democratize this whole way that you work with your employees. And so in the old days, you know, you’d buy some huge system from like Workday, or Kronos or something. And it was a huge investment, and you had to integrate everything. And it was kind of like the software, things were made to do huge, huge implementations, but really hard to integrate, and hard to get started with. So our vision is to make really our platform very accessible to people. So you think about it in five years, someone should really come to our platform, sign themselves up, get started without really having to spend a lot of time working with us with no implementation, and make it really easy in terms of the training of their employees and their teams. So the idea is that I could I could decide one day, hey, I’m, you know, I’m spending $2 million a year on this talent. I don’t have a way to measure my results. I go on there, I start everything up, you know, we do like one phone call or something with them, and then away they go. Right. There shouldn’t be like three months of pain getting started to look at what we’re focused on is, well, I think we’ll stay with hourly workers because it’s a huge opportunity there. But you look at sort of those immediate skill levels, so sort of 18 to $40 an hour. There’s a lot of other jobs in there that require a certain amount of scale that lend themselves to a flexible workforce. And you have workers who will stay in that vertical forever. They take traveling nurses, for example, in health Care, those people tend to stay in those jobs for 10 or 20 years, because they have a certain skill, but they have really no tools to help them manage that that workforce. And so we’d like those kind of verticals. So we’re definitely going to expand horizontally, I think, for us is really understanding, you know, like, 80% of our platform is the same. There’s 20%, that will change the user experience the reporting kind of what data they capture industry specific. Yeah, so that will be customized, but the rest will all be the same. So that’s how we’re looking at it. Like we wouldn’t go into something where we had customized 80% of it, we want to customize that 20%
Alexander Ferguson 15:39
What hurdles, do you imagine you’re going to have to face difficulties in order to overcome and realize this vision?
Glenn Laumeister 15:47
I think it’s like the the behavior of a lot of enterprises when they think about their different types of workers, right? And what you what you see a lot happening now is if you go to these conferences, for instance, and you’re talking like the head of HR, or even the CEOs, they’re looking at their workforces differently, like, okay, you know, what, I’m not going to have just all full time workers. And I’m not going to have just employees, I have all these different consultants, freelancers, you know, whatever you call them that are important to my business long term. And so how do I how do I work with both of those groups? Right. So what I see is, it’s hard to predict how fast that will go mainstream. I think it’s already there for a lot of companies. But it’s like, is that a year three, five years down the road? It’s hard to say?
Alexander Ferguson 16:37
Would you say that, that Uber has changed the workforce? Or companies like Uber?
Glenn Laumeister 16:44
Yeah, I think it has changed a lot, actually, more than people realize, because a lot of people, they especially younger, people look at that and say, Wow, Uber has given me a new way to make money with no commitment. Isn’t that amazing? They literally from the worker perspective, I can work one day, a week, two days a week, or I can quit and I don’t really quit, I just don’t turn on the app. Like, it’s amazing. Like, you don’t actually quit, you just don’t turn on the app. So I think that’s really having a profound shift in how the younger people look at work, especially, you know, in their 20s and 30s, especially if they’re hourly, right.
Alexander Ferguson 17:24
And now, it’s requiring the other organizations out there other companies to have to shift the way they interact with this, right?
Glenn Laumeister 17:31
That’s right. Because someone may, you know, you may interview someone and they say, you know, I don’t want to, I don’t want to have a job, I want to work for you for as long as it works for me. And so the balance of power has really shifted, right, also record low unemployment now, and that’s going to continue, I believe. So I think all of a sudden, now the workers are saying, well, that’s what you want, but I want something different. And fundamentally, that’s kind of what we’re trying to do is get in the middle of that and help both sides, you know, reach a common ground, right? Because there is a, there’s a misconception that the gig economy means you know, I work for days here and never work for that company. Again, that does happen. But that’s really the minority, the majority of it is, employers want some kind of workforce they can count on. And most, most workers want some kind of employer relationship or relationships that they can rely on for income. So you know, neither side is just towing doing like, you know, shot in the dark kind of thing doesn’t really work. So that’s what I think is interesting is to see how this new generation comes up and says, you know, maybe I’ll work for two or three people like Uber or Lyft, via whatever, but I’ll probably find one or two that I that I clicked with, and it works for me. And I’ll do that for five years. But I’ll do it flexibly, like if I don’t want to work on Saturday, I just don’t try my app. Like that’s true on demand. Like that’s crazy. Like, think about the old days, like no, if you don’t show up for work getting fired? Like that’s kind of going away. Wow. Yeah.
Alexander Ferguson 19:04
Of all the upcoming technologies that are that are coming down that you see what are you personally most excited about? coming into fruition?
Glenn Laumeister 19:13
Yeah, I think you know, it’s sort of a in the place of like AI and machine learning and thinking about how you can eliminate kind of repetitive tasks, redundant tasks, things that humans don’t need to be doing, right? Like, because people are we are very worried about AI replacing jobs, but we see it a little differently. We see it as if I’m a manager, and I’m scheduling 100 people, can I use AI so that doesn’t take me 20 hours a week, but takes me two hours a week. And I’m going to be a much happier person because I can spend my time on value added things not just scheduling. So we’re starting to use those technologies and we really are focused on making people’s lives easier, their jobs more efficient, you know, really eliminating stuff that hate to do Right. And then you think about it from the talent side. If I have a very, very well developed profile, I can get job requests sent to me that I actually want.
Alexander Ferguson 20:11
How are you personally? innovating? Where do you look for for the latest to stay current?
Glenn Laumeister 20:17
I was and we talk to our customers a lot about what they’re looking for. But to a certain degree, they’re not technology people. So they’re not going to say, I wish you could use AI to do this. Because that’s not their background, right. And so I really focus on the ideas of other industries and where they’re innovating. So let’s take AI machine learning, like, where’s that working today? So when I’m reading, you know, CrunchBase, or whatever I’m reading, and I say, Okay, wow, this seems to be really working here. Can we apply it over here? Because, you know, what I would say is workforce management, staffing technology, in general is behind other areas in technology, innovation, that’s why it’s an opportunity for us. So I really try to learn from other areas, other verticals, other applications and say, Oh, the problem they’re solving is also one that we need to solve
Alexander Ferguson 21:09
as a as a leader and a CEO. Are there any podcasts or books or audio books that you’re reading or listening to right now?
Glenn Laumeister 21:17
Yeah, I think there’s one book that I read recently, that was really interesting, and it’s a little bit out there, but I’m a big fan of classic rock. And if you look at now all these guys like the fleet by Mick Fleetwood, from Fleetwood Mac, Eric Clapton, Keith Richards, they’ve all written their autobiographies because we’re getting older, right? And if you look at a rock band, it’s actually quite similar to startup. So if you read these books, he started having these weird flashbacks to like, oh, yeah, that’s happened to me when I started this company. And so I’ll give you an example like Fleetwood Mac, right? Mick Fleetwood, who is the leader, his book was very insightful. And so sometimes these rock bands are sort of like Uber, right? They take off like crazy, and they have all this demand and making all this money. And then a lot of times they collapse. Because the demand just goes away, or they didn’t manage themselves well, and they have all these personal issues and drug issues, and whatever the drug thing is probably a little bit more prevalent, and rock and roll then in startups, but then some bands reinvent themselves, right? Like Fleetwood Mac, they came back three or four times some setbacks. He’d say, oh, you know, we made this album, and it was terrible. And no one bought it, we’re really depressed. And then we came back, we did another one. And it was a gold record platinum record. And so when you’re reading, you’re like, wow, they have to really be smart, and have their finger on the pulse of their of their fans of the market. And they’ll say, oh, you know, like, this kind of music now is no longer in fashion. So we had to start adding synthesizers, or whatever it was. And you’re like, Wow, this is like so is the idea. The CEO has to be thinking like now but also three to five years ahead.
Alexander Ferguson 22:53
where can folks go to learn more will be a good first step for some of the tech.
Glenn Laumeister 22:57
Yeah, go to all work now calm. So that’s our URL work now calm, or they can also connect with me on LinkedIn as well. They want to get more information. But our website tells a pretty good story. And certainly, on LinkedIn, I’m happy to connect to talk to anyone else.
Alexander Ferguson 23:16
That concludes the audio version of this episode. To see the original and more visit our UpTech Report YouTube channel. If you know a tech company, we should interview you can nominate them at UpTech report.com. Or if you just prefer to listen, make sure you subscribe to this series on Apple podcasts, Spotify or your favorite podcasting app.