During last year’s pandemic, as companies struggled to reorient themselves, one thing was clear: the move to remote working had arrived sooner than anticipated. This resulted in a significant shift in how businesses would have to hire new employees. And the question was whether, in a crisis, would managers laboriously go through CVs, or would the urgency to hit the ground running lead them to prioritize talents above CVs?
One startup saw an opportunity and chose to take advantage of it.
TestGorilla, a Dutch HR tech firm, devised a method of hiring people based on short, skills-based exams, which had the extra benefit of reducing the unconscious bias caused by snappy CVs, which may allow a very low-skilled person move forward while keeping away smart but less qualified candidates.
The startup claims that its gamble paid off, as they already have over 1,500 corporate clients, including the NHS, Sony, PepsiCo, and Bain & Company, after only 9 months of operation.
TestGorilla already raised $10 million in a Seed funding round, led by SaaS-specialist VC, Notion Capital, Partech, Jeff Weiner´s Next Play Ventures, and Indeed co-founder Paul Forster, Peakon co-founder Phil Chambers, and Justworks co-founder Isaac Oates. The round was fiercely contested, with the round ending in only two weeks after many proposals were received.
TestGorilla is a remote assessment platform founded by Wouter Durville, a serial entrepreneur, and Otto Verhage, a former Bain & Company partner. It examines cognitive ability, soft skills, particular job skills, culture fit, motivation, and language proficiency. It also facilitates the eradication of unconscious biases in the hiring process by replacing CV screening.
Wouter Durville, Co-Founder of TestGorilla, stated, “We’re removing bias because we’re making hiring very data-driven. Instead of just looking at a CV and looking at the big brands mentioned or the picture version of the person or how connected you are to a person, we are saying, hey, use these tests and test for different things that predict job success like cognitive ability or personality to fit with your culture. Then based on all the data you can automatically sort to see all your candidates, from the best to the worst, then make a decision on who you will invite into your recruiting process.”
While Jos White, General Partner at Notion Capital, said “This is a big deal! A super competitive round that almost every VC wanted to get into. They are literally upending the hiring process with a platform that is more democratic, more global and ultimately a much better predictor of job success. Companies are in a major war for talent and yet only armed with a penknife. TestGorilla can open up new talent pools, break down barriers and help candidates and companies find each other. We are leading the round but the angel investors are literally a who’s who of HRtech because they know that this company is the future of hiring and addresses so many of the challenges that companies are facing.”