St. Pete Startup Hires 150 After Partnering with IBM, T-Mobile

March 19, 2020

by: Lauren Coffey

Entrepreneur Chad Nuss wants to help those who are facing uncertainty with their careers during the coronavirus pandemic while also building his company, InsideOut.

The St. Petersburg-based marketing startup, that was featured on AOL co-founder Steve Case’s Rise of the Rest tour, is hiring 150 local employees in the next six months.

“A lot are struggling with no restaurants, no bars (open),” Nuss, InsideOut co-founder and chief revenue officer, said. “Because St. Pete brought an InsideOut tech company to the city, it’s creating a bit more resilience to things like this, like a recession.”

He has a particular focus on those in the retail and restaurant industries, which are shuttering or at the very least on pause as officials continue to push social distancing.

“We’re wanting to target people in the service industry who have no jobs; they’re perfect for us, because they have all the same characteristics we need,” Nuss said. “Customer centric, they know how to talk to people, they’re outgoing. 75 percent of people who work for InsideOut did not come from the sales industry.”

“IF THERE’S FIVE TO 10 PEOPLE PER RESTAURANT, THINK ABOUT THE PEOPLE WHO WON’T HAVE A JOB IN THE NEXT THREE WEEKS OR HAVE TO MAKE A CHOICE OF, ‘WILL I STAY IN THIS INDUSTRY?’”

The 150 employees will join InsideOut’s current 200 local employees, which are all working remotely during the pandemic.

“If there’s five to 10 people per restaurant, think about the people who won’t have a job in the next three weeks or have to make a choice of, ‘Will I stay in this industry?’” Nuss said. “We’re doing virtual interviews, virtual open houses, work from home. So, we’re fully virtual.”

The hiring, while fortuitously coinciding with coronavirus, has been in Nuss’ plan since he snagged deals with some of the biggest industry leaders in the world: IBM, Google and T-Mobile.

The deals, which he snagged in January, February and this March, will need an amped up workforce for Nuss.

He will be providing his innovative sales and marketing technique to Google, which covers North America clients and IBM, which covers their worldwide clientele of 40,000 customers.

“We work with Google to extract the knowledge from its sales people, how they currently sell to their customers,” Nuss said. “Then, we measure it all in our experiment lab, see what is the best practice, then releasing it (to the clients) so they’re using the highest productive sales play.”

With the T-Mobile partnership, InsideOut will be building out the national sales center for T-Mobile’s business-to-business center in St. Petersburg.

It’s a shift that’s happening more recently in St. Petersburg, which has begun to dip its toe further in the technology sector.

“It’s great timing and I think the city has done a great job in trying to recession-proof the city,” Nuss said. “Here is a great example of a massive problem that we don’t know how to solve and here’s a tech company hiring 150 people.”

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