This is the 1st part of our series on the HR Tech World Startup Competition powered by Cornerstone. Faye Holland, our MC for the startup expo, writes about the 5 finalists (and 10 runners-up) who will compete for a sponsorship package during HR Tech World Amsterdam. Purchase your tickets to the show here.
One of the finalists in the HR Tech World Startup Competition, VERCIDA addresses fundamental diversity flaws in the hiring process. The team’s inspiration was seeing jobseekers ‘hide their diversity’, with examples including changing the name on their CV to something more ‘western’, not disclosing age or hidden disabilities and avoiding talking about sexual orientation or wanting to have children. Candidates worry these factors will make other candidates appear stronger to recruiters.
On the other side employers say they want more diversity but don’t get those individuals applying, yet Morgan, CEO of VERCIDA, and his team found the in-house efforts on D&I (Diversity & Inclusion) were staggering. So VERCIDA takes everything employers do with D&I and blends it with job adverts. The idea is that when jobseekers look at the job adverts, and see what the employer is doing on LGBT or gender etc, it breaks any negative unconscious bias the jobseeker has about that employer.
But if it wasn’t for the power of social media VERCIDA might not have applied for the competition at all. Morgan told me it was when he saw a respected HR Tech figure share the competition on social media that he saw it and realised it would be the ideal place to put VERCIDA on the map. They’re looking to push the message of inclusion and diversity, knowing there will be people seeking an answer to their issues with attracting diversity, and they’re offering one.
Its early stages were as Diversity.Jobs which may ring a bell as you read this, but VERCIDA has come on leaps and bounds since then. DiversityJobs.co.uk was an off-the-shelf product, a white label job board that Morgan and his team worked with to prove a concept – that D&I could be leveraged for the attraction of talent. But from their feedback they knew it needed to communicate more. VERCIDA went that extra step by blending the resourcing strategy and in-house diversity efforts.
Think of VERCIDA as a career site rather than a job board, says Morgan. They want jobseekers to really see and feel company culture on their website, not just have people apply for jobs they have the skills for. Employers seem to be on board as they want to be seen as an employer of choice by the widest possible spectrum of talent, regardless of social standing, so Morgan tells me.
When it comes to the market VERCIDA is looking for collaboration, not competition. They’re due to release a product called Our VERCIDA, which job boards can plug in, meaning that employers can leverage their information on VERCIDA for use on other platforms too.
Company size: N/A
Based: London, UK
Key customers: 120
Target industries: All
What function within HR is your product designed for: Resourcing and diversity managers
Morgan Lobb, CEO of Vercida.com, is a respected figure in the field of equality and inclusion. His work is at the forefront of “new diversity” which is helping employment and government agencies. Morgan has acted as a ministerial steering advisor and has received numerous awards and accolades for his work.
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