Building the Future of Work, from Fiverr to Wade & Wendy.
Sep 14, 2019
Meet Whit Walker, Head of Product.
At Wade & Wendy, we have a killer team. The only way we can build such an ambitious and innovative product is by tapping the expertise of a dedicated and talented group of people. One of those people is our brilliant Head of Product, Whit Walker.
Whit joined W&W in October of 2018. He possesses unique insight into the future of work and the gig economy thanks to his prior position at Fiverr, where he was a Category Manager. Whit worked closely with the company’s executives to set the growth strategy, while simultaneously coordinating with engineering teams to develop the features that enabled that strategy.
At Fiverr, one of the key initiatives Whit pushed forward was improving the quality of sellers on the platform. To this end, Whit built a recruiting engine that helped bring “Fiverr PROs” onboard the platform. This enabled the company to go upmarket in the services offered and ultimately lift the marketplace overall. This experience (along with launching a category focused on chatbot services) gave him serious insight into what it takes to scale a recruiting technology using conversational AI.
“Working at Fiverr was the perfect lead-in for Wade & Wendy. Running a line of business forced me to understand all of the dynamics involved with running a large, two-sided marketplace. Setting a product roadmap gave me great insight into how to align business objectives to empirical data and customer insights. And building a chatbot development marketplace, while recruiting professionals at scale, almost seems too closely aligned to be coincidental!”
Whit’s success at Fiverr was built on a wealth of former experience. In 2010, he earned his M.B.A. from the prestigious Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia. He spent a summer at CNN Digital’s Strategy & Partnerships group, and then found his way to South Korea, working for Samsung in an internal consulting position. During his time in Seoul, Whit spearheaded the creation of tailor-made Samsung innovations focused on specific industry sectors. “One really cool thing we built,” he recalls, “was a digital tablet specially designed for use in hazardous areas. This introduced tech into areas that were previously deemed unsafe for such a product, and allowed us to establish a foothold in the Oil & Gas and Petrochemicals industries.”
After South Korea, Whit moved to Singapore, where he co-founded an analytics and data marketplace company, Quadrant. Here, he gained first-hand knowledge of what it takes to build a business from scratch. He also gained experience growing both sides of a two-sided marketplace, servicing both data producers and data buyers. “This was a really valuable experience for me as I learned just how much is involved in building a business, and how to prioritize product functions that address real market needs.”
These experiences, combined with his more recent time at Fiverr, have set Whit up perfectly for a position at W&W. Since coming onboard last October, Whit has hustled hard to bring our product to the cutting edge of recruitment automation. He is excited to help transform the world of work for the better: “Everyone understands that recruiting and hiring are a very frustrating processes for all involved. I think it’s exciting to build a product that’s tackling these big, exciting issues.”
And over the next six to twelve months, Whit has been focused on removing as much friction from the recruiter’s day to day process as possible.
“Our vision for the world of recruiting is one that is less built on searching (for a job, or for a candidate) and much more about matching talent. By using a data-driven approach and an engaging interface, recruiters will be able to focus more time on the human aspects of their jobs, and candidates will be able to approach their career journey in a positive, personalized, and engaging way.”
He is hoping for big things at W&W: “What we’re building is going to help streamline the hiring process. We’re at the early stages of building something that’s going to have a lasting, positive impact on a lot of people. I’m really proud to be a part of that.”
Over the coming months, we’ll be putting the spotlight on more members of our brilliant team. Stay tuned!