After a great insight into his life as an AGSM alumni at the recent Careers Showcase, we asked Ben Hutt, to tell us his story and talk about his ideas for giving back;

In 2005 I enrolled in a full-time MBA with two goals in mind: make some friends in Sydney (my newly chosen home), and work out what business I would start afterwards.  I definitely met my first objective and made some great friends. As for the second, my pitch for class president was based on the tenet that I'd never have a 'proper job' ever again, and I'd be an entrepreneur through and through. Whilst I helped launch two charities and wrote numerous business plans, my business visa for Australia was rejected and if I wanted to stay I needed a 'proper job'.

From here, I duly went back to my natural problem solving strengths and worked with a small consulting firm in Sydney. 18 months in, I got married and my wife declared she wanted to have a big family so I'd need to stop getting on a plane every week. At the time (2007) in Australia, Macquarie was arguably one of the most successful, entrepreneurial companies to work for. I was lucky to be offered a job in their central consulting team. Unluckily, the GFC erupted almost immediately.  ​

Seizing the opportunity in an outdated industry

As luck would have it, a guy grabbed me one morning at the gym and started talking about a business he'd just founded and invested in. It sounded interesting and after reviewing the business plan I met with the founders. It was a big idea based on two observations. Firstly, Technology was on the cusp of big change - What seems obvious now was a pretty early insight in 2011. Secondly, the global recruitment industry was ripe for disruption.

World's first marketplace for talent

So here we are four years on, our business The Search Party has made it through major challenges to a point where our Marketplace is successful. We empower Employers to quickly and inexpensively hire great candidates, enable Recruitment Agencies to adopt a new revenue stream, growing the market for agency-supported recruitment, and make it easier for candidates to access opportunities with companies all over the world.  We now represent over 15 million candidates from more than 20 countries, and have fabulous teams of people on four continents – including some AGSM graduates!

My thoughts on giving back

With The Search Party growing and when asking myself why AGSM is seeing a difference in its position in Australia, an idea sprung to life. An idea to partner with the Career Development Centre at AGSM;​​​​

  • Step 1: An increase in salary post MBA is an important measured outcome of an MBA cohort. This means that schools doing well (ignoring everything else) do a good job of taking people on low salaries and helping them to get high paying jobs post MBA. The Search Party can help with this, enabling graduate candidates to be represented on the marketplace which in turn, making them available to hire for thousands of employers in The Search Party network.
  • Step 2: Re-engage alumni and strengthen the schools brand. We realised that in partnering with AGSM, there's an opportunity to engage its alumni network, educating them about the opportunity to hire graduates.
  • Step 3: Making a real difference by sponsoring scholarships. We decided to donate any recruitment fees generated through this joint initiative to scholarships focused on global causes AGSM and Search Party are passionate about (Hunger, Global Warming, and Gender Equality). These scholarships benefit students who wouldn't have the financial capacity to study at AGSM otherwise. Over time this will influence the positioning of AGSM, and the virtuous cycle where everyone benefits is complete.

The Search Party business model genuinely offers a proposition that benefits everyone involved. We are simply here to support and empower those who choose to participate - students and alumni, alike.

We are giving AGSM alumni a unique offer to access The Search Party – email AGSM Career Development Centre​ to find out more. ​