Morgan Hunter History: 1990 – Present

As the 1980’s came to a close, Morgan Hunter was continuing to grow and keep pace with an evolving job market. Recognizing a gap in the temporary staffing market, Morgan Hunter President Jerry Hellebusch created Signature Staffing in 1990. Established as a separate company, Signature Staffing focused exclusively on temporary placements.

“At the time, most firms in the temporary staffing business had always been match-and-send resume shufflers,” Hellebusch said. “Their idea of recruiting was to run an ad and screen resumes that responded. We’ve always tried to proactively recruit candidates, to work referrals and develop client relationships. I knew this formula would be successful in the temporary staffing industry, so we created Signature Staffing.”

With the establishment of Signature Staffing, Morgan Hunter was solidifying itself as the premier recruiting firm in the Kansas City area. What had started with just four employees recruiting accounting and finance professionals had grown to include the administrative, information technology, human resources, sales, marketing and advertising industries.

Despite a recession in the early 1990’s, the decade proved to be a successful one for Morgan Hunter. In 1996, the company celebrated its 10 year anniversary. Then in 1997, a need for contract IT professionals emerged in the employment market. In response, Morgan Hunter created MH Consulting Services to focus strictly on contract IT placements. Once again, Morgan Hunter was on the forefront of an emerging market.

Entering a new century

In response to the unprecedented success and growth of Morgan Hunter, Hellebusch sought to expand the Morgan Hunter team. In 1999, Hellebusch hired JD Huxman as CFO of Morgan Hunter.

“I had gotten to know Jerry in the late ‘80s and we had kept in touch throughout the years,” Huxman said. “When I was offered the CFO position at Morgan Hunter, I knew it would be a great fit. Jerry’s vision was to offer more personalized service — something I thought the staffing industry was missing at the time — and it was a vision I was excited to be a part of.”

Not only did the new century bring new employees, it also brought a new way to recruit top talent. While other recruiting firms saw the internet, social networks like LinkedIn, and online job boards like CareerBuilder as a threat to the staffing industry, Morgan Hunter saw opportunity.

“A lot of people thought the internet would do away with recruiting,” Carol Schmidt, a recruiter with Morgan Hunter since 1996, said. “What it did was separate us from others in the industry. While the ‘resume clearinghouses’ in the industry struggled to compete with sites like CareerBuilder and Monster, we didn’t because we continued what we had always done: conduct in-person interviews with every qualified candidate in order to fully assess their skills and guarantee we are only providing the best talent possible.”

While the internet enhanced the abilities of Morgan Hunter recruiters, other technological advances brought new business opportunities.

In the early 2000’s, a push toward digitizing the country’s medical records emerged. Electronic Medical Record (EMR) projects are time consuming and require significant temporary staff augmentation to complete. So in 2002, Morgan Hunter created another company called Morgan Hunter Healthcare to focus on providing contract Healthcare IT professionals to organizations looking to implement and optimize their EMR system. Morgan Hunter Healthcare (MHHC) has continued to expand its reach, and today provides Healthcare IT solutions to clients nationwide.

A few years after the inception of MHHC, Morgan Hunter created MHED to provide substitute teacher staffing solutions for school districts in Kansas and Missouri. What started with a partnership between MHED and a single school district has grown to include five districts, one preparatory academy and hundreds of substitute teachers.

Morgan Hunter Today

As Morgan Hunter enters its thirtieth year in business, the company continues to thrive.

“Every day, we get to help people find a job. It’s extremely rewarding to experience a candidate’s excitement when they finally land the job they’ve been looking for,” Schmidt said.

Over the years, a lot of competitors have come and gone, and Huxman contributes Morgan Hunter’s staying power to strong client and candidate relationships.

“In the end it’s the relationship and the trust that you build, either with your candidates or clients, that dictates whether or not they are going to do business with you,” Huxman said. “I believe very strongly that without the personal relationship and trust, we wouldn’t be able to continue for another 30 years.”

And Hellebusch doesn’t see things slowing down anytime soon.

“Good people are getting harder and harder to find,” Hellebusch said. “While good talent is hard to find, our business will continue to thrive.”