Tuttle held senior-level positions at at several large corporations before entering a partnership in 1989 to create Staffing Solutions Enterprises, a work force recruitment firm in Greater Cleveland. In 1996, he launched Staffsol.com, an Internet support site enabling candidates to respond online to job postings. The site had an immediate positive impact on Staffing Solutions and paved the way for CareerBoard.com, which hit cyberspace in 1997.
CareerBoard.com was the first Internet portal linking employers to job applicants 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and it was an instant success. While being first sometimes means a quick rise, followed by a steady decline as competitors emerge, Tuttle's business model protected him.
"We went after local markets, while they (competitors) pursued national brands," says Tuttle.
CareerBoard.com offered the same services as the competitors that followed, but at significantly lower costs by outsourcing design and using smaller, locally based solutions providers. And it excluded employment companies, so corporate recruiters weren't competing with agencies for qualified candidates.
"Many of our competitors thought we were crazy to launch the CareerBoard business, as it took business away from our traditional staffing company," says Tuttle.
But the move strengthened Staffing Solutions and attracted so much business within the first year that it required an upgrade. By 1999, a new, more robust version was accompanied by expansion into the Cincinnati, Columbus and Toledo markets. Today, the site averages 400,000 visitors a month.
This year, the assets of CareerBoard.com were sold to HRSmart, a global technology company headquartered in Dallas. The new CareerBoard LLC and its president, Tuttle, are headed for national expansion. How to reach: CareerBoard LLC, (216) 595-2225 or www.careerboard.com