How is AB5 (the Gig job crusher) affecting TA Tech vendors

Gig Economy

A recent article from the San Francisco Chronicle highlighted how Gig economy companies are dealing with the new California independent contractor law, AB5, that went into effect on 1/1/2020.

While a lot of the attention has been on companies like Uber and Lyft, there are other Gig Work platforms that are also being affected, like Wonolo, a California based gig worker platform.

Wonolo’s workforce is similar to many other platforms, like dog walking, freelance writing, and other platforms that offer independent contractors flexible work hours, but don’t provide benefits. This flexible, no benefits model just got harder to maintain in California, however.

Because Wonolo workers don’t meet the stated exemptions in AB5, the company has chosen to shut down gig operations in California. This is going to be an interesting ride, because California is one of Wonolo’s primary markets. Wonolo, and other applications might be able to continue to scale outside of California, or they’ll face changing to an employee model, similar to typical staffing firms.

What is AB5, and who does it affect?

California AB5 clarifies and creates exemptions to the California Supreme Court 2018 ruling, name Dynamex, making it harder for California companies to classify workers as independent contractors.

In short, AB5 creates a 3 step litmus test. Workers are considered employees, if:
* They perform tasks under a company’s control,
* The work is integral to the company’s business,
* The worker does not have independent enterprises in that trade.

This is going to be interesting to watch, because Uber, Lyft and other large gig platform companies are not laying down on this new classification. They’re fighting the law in court, while also proposing a new law to be listed in upcoming public elections.

There’s no doubt that flexibility of work options is a primary driver of the gig economy. It’s also one of the newest and biggest competitors to the traditional warehouse, hospitality, quick serve restaurant, and other part-time employers.

JobsInLogistics acquires Net-temps – Great combo!

JobsInLogistics-NetTempsJobsInLogistics, one of the strongest brands in the transportation niche recruiting niche, announced the acquisition of, one of the pioneers of Internet Recruiting, and one of the strongest brands in the Temp-to-Perm and part-time recruiting and staffing niche.

As a long time Internet recruiting veteran and Internet job board pioneer, I’m always interested, and more often, then not, amazed at many of the mergers and acquisitions within the HR technology and Internet Recruiting market.

Many of the Venture Capital funded companies never get off the ground, because they never had a business plan or technology that had much hope of really working (think BranchOut, Jobster, or any and all “automated psychological profile job matching algorithm companies”).

Recently, Glassdoor raised an additional $50 Million, bringing their total investment to over $90 Million. I don’t know the recent valuation for Glassdoor, but if the investors wanted a 10X return, Glassdoor would have to sell for well over $900 Million (a little under the current public valuation of and, combined).

So, seeing two of the best brands merge, who can provide synergies to each other in a real-profitable way, is always exciting.

Congratulations to Don Firth, of, and Sue and Gregg Booth of Net-temps!

What are your thoughts about the acquisition? acquires onTargetJobs – $50 Million cash

Dice Holdings, the parent company of,, Slashdot, and other properties, today announced the purchase of onTargetJobs, the parent company of, HealtheCareers, and Biospace.

The purchase was for $50 million in cash, based on trailing 12 months revenues of approximately $38 million.

The acquisition seems to go along with Dice CEO, Mike Durney’s, vertical roll-up strategy within niche job boards.

The question will remain, can DICE extend the brands and increase revenue across the brands, like they have done with Rigzone, or are they going to leave the brands in autonomy, like the recent acquisition of ITJobBoard in Europe.

DICE has a lot on it’s plate right now. Integrating Open Web, it’s social sourcing tool, it purchase 12 months ago, into the search engine, and extending that beyond to other brands.

The Hcareers acquisition will put Dice into the hospitality segment, where it has never competed previously. The HealthECareers seems to be redundant based on their acquisition of AllHealthCareJobs a couple of years back.

The End of the Yahoo! 4 Hour Work Week!

In a recent announcement, Yahoo CEO, Marrissa Mayer, decided that it’s time to end “The Yahoo 4 hour Work Week!”.

From my personal experience, Yahoo has been living the “4 hour work week” with a culture of non-accountability.
Several years ago, I was working on a job advertising partnership with Yahoo.
No one on the Yahoo team would make a decision.
No one was ever “available” to make a decision.
Then, someone would come back to the table and say, OK, we have approval.
We would draft the documents and send them to their legal team.

The document was only 5 pages, mostly boilerplate stuff, but it would take several more weeks. I later learned that the “legal department” was actually outsourced to a big firm, and since their was no accountability on the part of the entire Yahoo team, the legal team just kept billing, billing, and billing.

Of course, the document that we sent to get reviewed was returned with notes saying that Yahoo could not agree to those terms, and so we would do it again.

After three attempts at working through this complete incompetence, I finally got the Yahoo “authority” on the phone, and told them to find someone else’s time to waste. (The actual text was more like “go blank yourselves and get a real job”.)

So, after hearing the news that Marrissa was going to put an end to the “4 Hour Work Week” culture at Yahoo, I knew exactly what she going after… the lack of accountability.

Good for Marrissa! Good for Yahoo!

Flexible time for employees is a great benefit. Many responsible employees can, and do work better remotely. However, Yahoo is in a position where they need all-hands-on-deck. They need a culture change.

The employees who are committed to turning Yahoo around will stay and weather the culture change that has to happen. The rest… well they’ll be posting their resume on Monster. (Does Monster even exist anymore? Oh.. that’s another story.)

IRONMAN: They really don’t know

A couple of days ago, after severely injuring my low back while training for Ironman Canada (coming up in 3 weeks), I was referred to Chiro-Medical, a top notch Athletes Chiropractor and Medical office in San Francisco. (which I highly recommend… my Chiropractor was Daniel Lord, D.C).

With my head in my hands, dealing with the lower back pain, I slowly looked up an saw the following painting and quote on the wall.

Here’s the text from the quote.
Real inspiration. Especially as the date of my first Ironman triathlon looms closer.

They don’t really know!

Everyone seems to know that an IRONMAN is a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bike ride and then a 26.2 mile run. 140.6 miles completed in 17 hours or less. But do they really know? It rolls off of their tongue as easily as discussing the local 5K that they ran or a hard, hot, and challenging ¬? marathon that they survived last summer. But do they really know?

It used to bother you when they said, “IRONMAN, oh yea, that’s really cool. My friend does those all the time. She does like 8 or 10 of them a year, but mostly just local ones though!”

That’s when you realize that They Don’t Know and it’s not important that they do know. It’s only important that you know. IRONMAN is personal, very personal. IRONMAN is everything for that day. There is nothing more important than crossing that line; and you will cross the line, no matter what. Quitting is not an option. IRONMAN defines you and in many cases it redefines you.

IRONMAN is your commitment, dedication, preparation, determination and perseverance to train for an event that in the beginning seems impossible to finish.

IRONMAN is pain, agony and the almost reckless passion of pushing yourself beyond the limits of what you are capable of.

IRONMAN shows you that boundaries are made to be broken. All of this to compete against your own best effort for that day.

At the end of that day, everyone at the finish line knows, and you know that for this day‚Ķ and forever‚Ķ YOU ARE AN IRONMAN!”

– Cole Braun, Founder, RACC, and 8 time Ironman Finisher.

The poster and quote above are for sale, with proceeds benefiting Racers Against Childhood Cancers. To purchase a print, or support RACC, click here