Choosing Greater Phoenix: Wonolo
A conversation with AJ Brustein, Wonolo’s co-founder and chief brand officer
Tell us about your company:
AJ Brustein: Wonolo, which stands for Work Now Locally, is the leading on-demand temporary staffing platform for blue-collar work. We match businesses of all sizes who have temporary or temp-to-hire positions with fully vetted, high-quality local workers that are available within minutes. The concept of work has changed dramatically in recent years, and we’re aiming to provide a platform that meets the needs and demands of modern employers and workers today.
Why did you choose to expand into Greater Phoenix?
Brustein: Greater Phoenix is a market rich with opportunity and we noticed there is a need for workers to support the region’s innovative and fast-growing light manufacturing industry. Companies in this space consider Wonolo a trusted partner for their needs, so we are excited to expand into an area where our services are able to make a huge impact. The Greater Phoenix community needs flexible, scalable talent to continue fostering economic growth, and we’re excited to offer our high quality, frontline workers to companies who need them.
How did your company get started?
Brustein: We first started out in the Coca-Cola Founders program. They provided us with capital and access to their brands, partners, employees and facilities in exchange for helping them solve a problem they were facing. We worked with Coke’s operations team and spotted an opportunity for technology to support the stream of job openings that needed to be filled immediately. If Coke was losing sales and spending money trying to get a Coca-Cola merchandiser into the store, why couldn’t we use technology to place an available, skilled worker in that store to stock the shelves instead?
In late 2014, we exited The Coca-Cola Company and became Wonolo Inc.
How does your company work?
Brustein: We often work with companies in warehouse/fulfillment, merchandising, general labor, administration, delivery and more. Companies can sign up with us, add in descriptions of the jobs they need filled, and set the time parameters and hourly wage. Our platform even makes pay recommendations based on location, type of job and hours based on what we’ve seen fill faster or slower for similar jobs. This way, businesses know how to compete for talent in their area.
Workers, or Wonoloers, download the app on their smartphone, go through our on-boarding system that involves a background check, quiz centered around their understanding and embodiment of our 5Ps (prepared, professional, positive, polite, and punctual). From there, businesses on the platform may ask for additional screenings, like drug tests or skills verification, but plenty of jobs exist on the platform that allow you to work right away.
What makes your product unique?
Brustein: If you sign up for a job and complete it in the same day, you’ll get paid faster than a traditional part-time job. You can onboard, work a gig and then expect your payment to be processed within 24 hours.
For businesses, our approach is streamlined in a way that helps them get the help they need without having to take hours or weeks at a time to screen candidates, conduct individual interviews, and gamble on whether the new hire will be a good fit or not. Our vetting and rating system ensures that you’re getting high-quality workers quickly.
How do you see Wonolo helping local businesses & employees?
Brustein: Not only is Wonolo built to support local businesses as they work to scale and adjust to the ebbs and flows of hiring and staffing, but Wonolo also helps local underemployed workers find flexible work. We’re passionate about solving these two problems and uniting Greater Phoenix as its economy grows.
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