Investor Spotlight: NextPath Career Partners

December 18, 2018

NextPath Career Partners is a boutique recruiting firm servicing both local and national clients to hire outstanding people in professional roles including Sales, Recruiting, Marketing, Customer Success, Executive Leadership, and Consulting. Started in 2018, NextPath is a relationship first company that takes the time to truly understand a client’s business, which allows them to achieve outcomes that will make a difference, and ones that may have not materialized using other search methods. NextPath’s goal is not to be the biggest recruitment firm but rather to become a client’s “go to” provider of talent that can transform a business.


Dan Rodriguez, President


Dan Rodriguez has 25+ years of experience as an executive and entrepreneur in the professional staffing industry.

Prior to NextPath, Dan was the Founder and CEO of Veredus Corporation, an Information Technology Staffing and Recruitment Company. After founding Veredus in 2001, the company expanded to 14 geographic markets across the US and grew to over 100M in revenue. In December of 2014, Veredus was acquired by Hays PLC, one of the largest professional staffing firms in the world.


Dan currently serves on the Board of Trustees for the University of Tampa. He previously served on the boards of Metropolitan Ministries, Tampa Museum of Art, St. Leo College, and the Tampa Bay Technology Forum. Dan is a Tampa native, graduate of Robinson High School, and the University of Florida. He resides in Tampa with his wife and three children. Dan is an avid hockey fan and hiker.


Dan, you have more than 25 years of experience in the staffing and recruiting industry, working with companies locally, nationally and internationally. What do you see as strengths of Tampa’s workforce and talent pipeline? What do you see as areas of opportunity? 


I think the workforce here in Tampa is excellent, much better than we get credit for sometimes.  We obviously have some great schools here like USF and the University of Tampa, among others (there are other great schools here and I don’t want to leave anyone out)!  Also, a great population of highly skilled candidates that have relocated here to the area and made Tampa their home. I think one area where we lag is compensation. I can tell you in my last role (CEO at Veredus/Hays) we did business all over the United States and Tampa was considerably below market when compared to other cities. So many times I’d find myself on a plane sitting next to a highly skilled worker flying to some other city to work for a higher wage.  We have sold the sunshine and lower cost of living for a long time – not sure this works as well as it used to.  We need to do everything we can to keep our skilled work force here and attract new skilled workers to the area.


How does NextPath address some of these areas of opportunity?


We contribute by recruiting candidates in some of these high demand areas, and by discussing with our client companies what workers with these skill sets make in other parts of the country. There truly is a war for talent right now and we recommend to every company we work with to constantly and continually evaluate their total value proposition to prospective candidates. This includes not just salaries, but benefits, flexible working arrangements, etc.


What are some trends you’re seeing in the industry – from the employer and the employee side?


It’s definitely a candidate driven market. Most candidates we work with are evaluating opportunities every day. Candidates are in demand and they know this. Companies have probably been a little slow to catch on to this. We encourage companies to have a tight hiring process that moves smoothly, quickly, and without delay. There is a saying in our business – “Time kills all hires.”  And this is truer than ever. If a company moves too slow, they are likely to lose good candidates.


Talent attraction is becoming an increasingly important focus for the EDC. As a new Investor, your team has joined the marketing committee, specifically our talent attraction sub team. What do you hope this team can accomplish?


There are a lot of smart people on that team and I just want to hopefully add some perspective from someone who works in the hiring channel every day. I do think it’s important to engage the corporate and agency recruiting community here in Tampa Bay and find out what the primary reasons are for candidates not taking jobs here. I think we will see some common themes. Once we understand what the issues are, we can come up with recommendations on how to overcome these issues.