4 Questions 4: Mengühan Ünver (StartupCVs)

This time in 4Q4, Mengühan Ünver, one of the founders of StartupCVs. 

1. You have some recent experience in startups in your team, but also some corporate or consulting experience. What can you bring from these other experiences outside of startups into your current work?

The differences between working in a corporate environment and working in a startup are immense. In a corporate environment, you take a much more reactive role where problems are externally generated and need to be solved by you. In a startup on the other hand, you actively have to generate problems and initiate things, otherwise you and your employees simply have nothing to do. Adjusting yourself to this type of working is quite difficult for new startup founders/employees coming from the corporate world. Nevertheless, the most important experiences I could take from corporate were:

  • Knowing organizational processes and structures: learning from a highly developed organization makes it far easier to create your own structures and processes
  • My skills in sales and (online) marketing: my technical knowledge was very handy many times, I was not required to hire someone until the later stages of our company
  • The fact that I know I do not want to work in corporate​ as an employee in the near future​ – this one is the most important. Quite many professionals do not know which type of environment suits them best. This is something that you have to experience yourself.

15052015 4Q4 Mengühan

That’s what StartupCVs is about – in case you do not want to click to go over there.

2. StartupCVs is in HR, just like Shah Recruiting (a recruiting agency), one of your previous projects. Is there something that makes HR a particularily interesting market for you to start a company in? Or is this rather a coincidence?

Well, I always thought that we would do something in adtech or e-commerce like many other startups in Berlin but after all these years, we simply realized that we are quite strong in HR and ​Recruiting. Combined, we interviewed several thousand candidates and hired several hundred over the past three years. We are now transferring this experience into our products.
At StartupCVs, for instance, we do the pre-screening of candidates and match them with suiting startups. ​Startups save a lot of time and money sourcing/finding candidates.​ Moreover, recruiting is IMHO one of the most exciting areas to work for. ​By making the right or wrong hiring decisions, you can impact the entire future of a company. With our companies, we are becoming a major part of​ ​this impact.

3. What made Berlin the right city to start StartupCVs from? How much does location still matter to you in 2015?

Location matters. It matters with respect to the people you can hire, you meet and it also matter​s​ with respect to the financials. Starting a company in Berlin is quite inexpensive in comparison to the Valley or London. The cost of living is low which makes it easy to bootstrap a startup. Also, it is not difficult to get highly qualified personnel with an international background​. What makes it a little more difficult to other location is the access to financing as well as the bureaucracy that you have to face when you legally found a German company. Especially foreigners hesitate to start a business in Germany ​due to the bureaucracy caused by the necessity of the “German” language most of the time.

4. How do you expect StartupCVs to develop in the next couple of months?

We have seen great traction so far, both on candidates as well as startups side. We ​already meet people (coincidentally) who have found their jobs on our platform (on events etc.).​ This makes us very proud. Nevertheless, our goal is to further increase our reach in the European markets and become the number one platform for connecting individuals with startups.  In the next couple of months, we want to focus more on further increasing the user experience for both sides as well as on onboarding more and more startups so that we can generate​ many more success stories​.​

Thanks to Mengühan for answering these questions!

Who should I have a 4Q4 with next? Let me know on Twitter.