Bruce Putman

Taking your business to the next level

Dear Just Ask Judy:

“I have been in business for a while now, but I need some ideas on how to take my business to the next level. How do I go about it?” … Inquiring in Indiana


Dear Inquiring in Indiana:

Your concern about taking your business to the next level is a common theme for recruiters. Running a business can be challenging, and it's understandable to feel frustrated when trying to expand your business by a significant margin. To identify strategies you can use, I contacted Bruce Putman, a search and staffing industry consultant, who can give us insight into how to take your business to the next step. Bruce served in leadership roles in both NAPS (National Association of Personnel Services) and MKSSA (Missouri Kansas Search and Staffing Association). He has successfully opened multiple locations and worked in different verticals such as healthcare, LI, and professional/clerical.


Bruce commented that expanding vertical markets for growth is a key strategy in the staffing industry. Taking the opportunity to diversify and expand in this manner can enable you to broaden your business's scope and capture new opportunities. To do this a rational analysis of market trends is crucial to identify the right vertical markets for expansion. Information on demographics, hiring trends, and current industry events is necessary to build a picture of potential opportunities in a specific vertical or location. It is important to look for cross-selling opportunities where you can utilize your existing database and expertise to move into a new vertical. While rational analysis is important, he also emphasizes the importance of gut feeling and knowing which markets have growth potential. You can develop this gut feeling by talking and listening to your peers, applicants, and clients. This combination of intuition and rational analysis can guide business owners in making strategic decisions about expanding into new markets.


Putman highlights the value of relationships and learning from others in the industry and recommends joining search and staffing associations. These associations can provide opportunities for networking, training, and mentorship, allowing staffing firm owners to connect with peers and learn from each other's experiences. These network connections can help you identify a market niche which needs to be better served, leading to growth opportunities for your firm. Bruce also acknowledges the challenges that small business owners face in the staffing industry and cites the importance of having trusted peers with whom you can share experiences and ideas.


We appreciate Bruce’s willingness to share his insights and experiences in expanding vertical markets for growth. His expertise provides valuable guidance for business owners like yourself looking to take their business to the next level. He encourages owners to contact him with any questions or concerns, offering his contact information and willingness to mentor and help in any way he can. Bruce can be reached at or at 816-392-2730.


I hope I have answered your concern!

NAPS Harold B. Nelson Lifetime Achievement Award Winner