Resumes that are inaccurate costs employers more than half a trillion dollars per year. Incorrect, embellished or false information on a resume is known as “resume fraud” and occurs in over 60% of all resumes and is the root problem to all hiring inefficiencies. The sizable Total Addressable Market (TAM) in the employment market is ripe for disruption because many of the solutions being used today to authenticate candidate profiles date back several decades. Even newer Artificial Intelligence (AI) uses candidate self-proclaimed resume data and the result is in improper candidate filtration and eventual mis-hires because the data used by the AI is poor quality. To solve the problem, the data must first be validated, then AI can be used to automate much of the manual work that recruiters are required to perform when sourcing top candidates. Until now, there never has been an authentication technology that can thoroughly validate employment-centric credentials in real-time and this is where Workwolf is helping to automate recruitment and improve the quality of employer to applicant matching!
Established in 2017, Toronto-based start-up Workwolf Inc., is led by CEO Erik Simins. He is one of the three Co-founders and guided by their motto to “Unleash The Power Of Truth”. The company has emerged as the pioneer software company for resume authentication and candidate background verification using a combination of blockchain, AI, Machine Learning and Facial Recognition with the technology ecosystem. This new-age platform provides up-to-date information about candidate credentials to recruiters and employers, all in real-time, enabling both the candidate and the employer to be the ideal fit for one another.
The rise of the Digital Work PassportTM
Social and professional networking platforms over the last decade have created digital identities that are competing at unreal expectations. This has made candidate identification more challenging for recruiters as candidates are literally forced to embellish their digital personas. To address this and to solve his customers’ talent identification challenges, Erik and his team began to develop prototypes that would make verified candidate data more accessible through decentralization of the records held within credential issuing institutions.
To speed data access for recruiters and employers, Erik’s team developed the first commercial application of Blockchain Technology for Human Resources. The platform democratizes the once silod data, pulling the credentials directly from source, then changes the control of data distribution from a third-party to the data owner, or the candidates themselves. The blockchain secures the data records with proprietary technology that renders it tamper-proof, so that once the data is pulled, it is guaranteed authentic. Armed with this modern, disruptive and innovative solution “Workwolf’s mission is to change the gold standard of what is acceptable as a resume by creating one that is verifiable in real-time,” explains Erik.
“Workwolf technology uses a network of APIs and certified background checkers to pull authenticated data records directly from over 100,000+ credential issuers.”
Research has shown that almost all businesses face systemic hiring problems. These could be due to many confounding variables such as hiring biases, or multiple actors in the decision-making process. No matter the industry or seniority level of the hire, Erik saw how organization leaders were making hiring decisions based on the self-proclaimed information on a resume, backed by spurious data.
“This meant that our clients, who are some of the most successful companies in the world were making critical business decisions with data that was accurate less than half the time. Imagine how much their business will improve when Workwolf increases the candidates data accuracy by 50%. It will literally transform the employment market process for hiring,” perceived Erik.
Unleashing the power of truth - Packfinder
With the coupling of Blockchain and effective artificial intelligence in HR, Workwolf has empowered all participants of the hiring process, providing detailed insight to employers and a common ground for all job seekers. Every user on the Workwolf platform goes through a profile evaluation through its CareerFit Assessment called Packfinder. The assessment which takes candidates approximately 15 minutes to complete is free of charge of recruitment agencies and employers and accurately predicts job performance using Workwolf’s proven benchmarks or unique benchmarks creates by Workwolf customers based on their top performing employees. The technology scores and filters job applicants and almost entirely automates the applicant filtration process by illuminating human character traits, innate biases and behavioral patterns that all predict performance outcome once in the job.
The technology also addresses the problem of equitable distribution of job opportunities and classifies the applicants based on their individual specific strengths without ever seeing or meeting the applicant. Packfinder accurately analyses self-management capability, motivation, conflict resolution, people-orientation, and other traits while scoring job-fit on a scale from 1-5 in over 500 different jobs! Beneficial for both the applicant and employer, both get a copy of the results.
“This innovation has been accomplished and recently commercialized by leveraging psychometric data collected from over 30,000,000 professionals over the last 3 decades and this data is from an extremely diverse cross-section [of] participants from 40 countries ranging in gender, ethnicity, age, experience, income, educational, location and socio-economic status,” explains Erik.
Hiring managers receive the Packfinder data for all their job applicants in a highly organized, easy to sort format in an automated dashboard that ranks the applicants based on their eligibility and predictive “fit”. In order to further reduce hiring biases based on gender, ethnicity, race, etc, the name and other personal information of a candidate can be kept concealed from the employer during the preliminary screening rounds, with only the applicant’s assessment results being shared.
“We believe in inclusion and diversity and have built technology that automates filtration of candidates and eliminates both conscious and subconscious hiring biases in an attempt to undo the systemic inequality seen in today’s job market.”
The Workwolf technology solution is compliant to international privacy standards and is secure. Erik says that “every day the Workwolf ecosystem gains additional direct data feeds from sources of truth, establishing end-to-end encryption upon data retrieval and granting new users the ability to control data transfer, by granting, denying or revoking Digital Work Passport access. This is managed through the proprietary, patent-pending implementation of IBM’s HyperLedger Fabric and a Permission Ledger which ensures that the owner of the Digital Work Passport and employers/recruiters can securely exchange verified information in real-time while maintaining compliance with international privacy standards.”
Creating opportunities, leading the pack
An industry agnostic, Erik has been an innovator and a problem solver throughout his career. Leading change in medical, music, recruitment and technology markets, he has a history of success and disrupting industries. Prior to WorkWolf, Erik founded www.magnushr.com a healthcare staffing company that oversaw thousands of hiring cycles with some of the biggest and most successful companies on the planet. When the same problem kept arising with no solution available to solve it, he founded Workwolf. Initially, the technology was built for his clients at MAGNUS, but once commercialized, the tech was quickly adopted by clients and consumers outside his customer base.
Even after 5 years of being associated with Bitcoin, “many people are not aware that blockchain has other uses than just digital assets or cryptocurrencies. In fact, Workwolf and the Digital Work Passport is one of the first real use cases for HR using blockchain,” says Erik. Recognized globally in 2020 at the Enterprise Blockchain Awards, Workwolf beat finalists from Asia, Europe and the United States as the winner in the Entrepreneurship & Transformational Platform Category. In 2021, Erik was invited as a finalist to VivaTechnology in Paris, France, Europe’s biggest technology conference. Competing against 170 companies representing over 30 countries, Erik and Workwolf won the VivaTech Start-Up Challenge for Automating Recruitment. The award helped secure a multi-national deal with recruitment company super power ManpowerGroup.
“In the real world, blockchain technology has several limitations when using an entirely public network like Etherum or Bitcoin, so we partnered with IBM and used a private blockchain to improve data quality and direct-verified data transfer between candidate and employer.”
In more recent times, Workwolf had to wade through some rough seas when Covid-19 shook the world. Talking about their pre-financing round which was scheduled for March 2020, Erik says “we had $400,000 USD, more than half the financing round evaporate overnight and it took us 6 months more to complete the round. That’s when founder’s don’t get paid for 6 months.” With customers who are raving fans of Workwolf and who say they’ll “never go back to hiring without Workwolf”, Erik and team are in an excellent position to scale the business and plan to raise their SEED round in the fall of this year.
As Covid-19 has hurt many businesses, the transition to working from home has increased the need for Workwolf technology as hiring has become virtual and borderless. This change has made candidate verification and validation even more difficult. “Our technology has greater benefit for companies who hire remotely,” shares Erik
Looking ahead, Erik is excited to create and deploy additional innovation, features and upgrades to the platform, starting with the ‘Alpha-Board’. This is a feature that matches users on the network to employers based on an organization’s benchmarking for a specific job function and a user’s personality traits. The network can ping both the employer and candidate when a near perfect personality fit has been identified through the algorithm. As users and employers continue to join the network, the value of these passive candidate pools will grow exponentially. Free at first while in BETA, the tool can be turned on without even having an open job posting. This helps recruiters and employers build highly relevant candidate pools so when it’s time to hire, ideal matches are pre-populated and ready to engage. This innovation explains Erik, “when coupled with the pre-clearance capabilities of the Digital Work Passport, Workwolf could literally reduce the time-to-hire for companies using the technology by almost 80%.”
Despite the recent troubling times for employers and employees all over the world, Workwolf remains poised, ahead of the curve, and well prepared to “introduce to the employment market an entirely novel, innovative and uniquely effective methodology to identify passive candidates who may never have been recognized or accessible before the release of this technology.”