Recruiter Brandon Stevens noticed something. Everyone was doing the hiring and job application process the same way, even though the basic methods of sending a resume in response to a job description are inefficient. “Closing a position could take months and months,” Stevens says.
“Overwhelming data says that resumes are not enough. Job descriptions are not enough.”
So, “An idea began percolating in my head,” he said in an interview with WRAL TechWire. “I wanted to bring methodology to it. Resumes dominate the industry. But they don’t a tell a candidate or company about how they might fit into a team.” Stevens’ vision was of a game-changing platform with a process to outperform the competition.
He cofounded Raleigh-based Scoutr, where he is now CEO, in 2017 with Guri Burmi, president of the company, to put his concept into action. They self-funded the project for the first year, bootstrapping through development and the beta release. A seed round funded them thereafter and the company is currently raising additional funding.
The company hired industrial psychologist Gabe Pappalardo, PhD, who “has a passion for human design,” to help Scoutr create its product features, algorithm, and interface. He researched hundreds of questions to candidates, what their responses meant and took that data to create a system recruiters can use, Stevens explained.
Translating gut feelings into science
“We wanted to translate our gut feelings about what we knew into science,” Stevens says, “then help us translate that into a product.”
The product uses data to rank and present candidates to managers so they can make faster decisions. Among other things, it looks at a candidates knowledge, abilities, team-culture, work style, and past performance reviews.
One thing they learned, Stevens noted, is that while “The flow of data can be automated, taking the human completely out is a big mistake. Talent doesn’t want to talk to a chatbot.”
The product speeds the recruiting process to close positions in 35-40 days and is intended to increase retention. One reason for high turnover, Stevens believes, is that neither hiring companies nor candidates see each other well during the traditional hiring process. That can lead to catastrophic hires or the job from hell.
A booming hub for talent…
It released its first product, Scoutr 1.0 in February, had its first job placement using the platform in the same month, and attracted its first investor in May. It releases version 2.0 of its product September 1.
One of the advantages of being in a tech hub such as the Triangle is potential partners and clients abound.
Scoutr has worked with K4Connect to refine its process. “They were the very first user of Scoutr,” Stevens says. “We sat in with their team, showed them prototypes and it was an integral part of getting it ready.”
In a country and community that is, as Stevens puts it, “A booming hog for talent,” interest in Scoutr, which puts a great deal more data in the hands of recruiters, is high.
“Scoutr makes it easier to predict performance and longevity,” Stevens says. “We put a lot of time and resources into this to get it right. Now we’re working with small and mid-sized businesses to get some success stories behind us.”