Flexiple is an exclusive community of full-time self-employed professionals. They assist top-tier independent professionals to work with scaling startups across the world. To start working on projects, there is an onboarding process that will help Flexiple understand the skill-set that you would bring in, and suggest projects that are more relevant to you.
With Flexiple, every part of your hiring process is now supercharged! It provides a vetted talent network, AI-driven hiring platform, and 1-stop hiring solution. Karthik Sridharan, Co-founder and CEO, Flexiple, tells us more. Excerpts from an interview:
DQ: How has technology transformed the hiring process, from sourcing candidates to onboarding, in recent years?
Karthik Sridharan: Technology has had an impact across every part of the hiring pipeline. Let’s look at each part:
Sourcing: In the past decade, beyond the obvious impact of being able to find candidates across the globe through various online talent networks, companies have also been able to tap into passive candidates (those not actively looking for jobs) by smartly using communication platforms. With the right set of tools, targeting relevant candidates has become much better.
Evaluation: Online assessment tools have helped in significantly reducing the amount of time and effort needed to shortlist the top candidates, in addition to helping reduce any manual bias that can creep in.
Matching: After shortlisting, AI-assisted resume screening has made it easy for recruiters who otherwise might not be conversant with tech to have a high level of accuracy to handpick and match with the right candidates.
Onboarding: The process has almost become paperless, and even remote employees can be easily onboarded with the use of various digital platforms.
DQ: What are some specific examples of how AI/ML are being used to streamline candidate sourcing and screening?
Karthik Sridharan: With the rise of GPT, analyzing a job description and finding candidate profiles that are a good match has become far more easy. On the shortlisted candidates, closer resume screening is possible by even those who don’t have a good knowledge in technology.
We are seeing interesting use cases of asyncronous interviewing tools that further analyze candidate responses and share keen insights for companies to leverage in the hiring process.
DQ: In what ways are video interviews and online assessments reshaping the traditional job interview process?
Karthik Sridharan: Phone (purely audio) screening rounds are being used lesser and lesser as video calls have become so ubiquitous. Video interviews enable the interviewer to assess the candidate also on visual cues and body language. Further, remote on-call coding sessions are possible to actually validate the skill level of a candidate.
Online assessment tools have particularly helped companies reduce the time invested in the hiring process. This allows them to tap into a wider talent pool and find the right candidate for the role. Further, this has also addressed the challenge of avoiding any manual bias in shortlisting candidates.
DQ: Does automation play a role in reducing bias and ensuring fair hiring practices?
Karthik Sridharan: Both, yes and no! With less manual touch points in screening and shortlisting, it definitely plays a role in reducing any human bias that likely comes in the process.
However, over-reliance on automation can be dangerous. Technology (in particular AI) has its shortcomings and does not provide a 100% accuracy in evaluation. Therefore, the goal should be to tastefully use automation and have an AI-enabled recruiter manage the hiring process and not an AI-driven platform running it.
DQ: Can you provide insights on the role of social media and professional networks in talent acquisition and employer branding?
Karthik Sridharan: Firstly, professional networks have made the discoverability of jobs and candidates a lot easier. Targeting candidates who fit your ideal persona across skill, geography, past experience and more is a reality.
Further, these platforms have leveled the playing field by giving companies of all sizes a chance to build their employer brand economically. Founders can work on their personal brand and leverage it to tap into candidates that they would have otherwise not been able to access.
This becomes especially important for startups who might not have the same resources as larger companies, but can work on honing their employer brand through social media to give them an edge in the hiring market.
DQ: How does Flexiple approach the hiring process?
Karthik Sridharan: At Flexiple, our approach is to tackle the problems of the tech hiring end-to-end, whether for a full-time or contractor role and across technologies. This includes managing the three main parts of the process: Finding candidates, evaluating them and matching companies with the best.
The goal of Flexiple is to help companies offload their tech hiring so that they can focus on building their product while we take care of hiring entirely. Working as a partner instead of a vendor has ensured that we have been able to make this vision a reality and succeed in achieving that goal.
DQ: What sets you apart from other such service providers, nationally and internationally?
Karthik Sridharan: Hiring typically has three parts: sourcing, evaluation and final selection. In today’s fast-paced business environment, each company faces enough of a battle in their core offering. They therefore, cannot and also should not, spend significant bandwidth in hiring. That’s where Flexiple comes in as a 1-stop hiring solution by enabling companies to fully offload their tech hiring process to us.
Firstly, we have built a vetted talent network of 100,000+ developers. This talent pool is ever increasing and helps us ensure our clients get access to the best talent in the market. We have then automated evaluation so that we can help identify the best talent easily.
Finally, being a bunch of engineers ourselves, we understand talent requirements very well and make handpicked recommendations to our clients. This ensures they only speak to those who deserve their time.
Overall, we take on all the responsibility of sourcing talent, evaluating them, and then giving handpicked matches for each role. Along with all of this, we are able to cover a wide range of requirements, be it full-time or contract, remote or on-site work, across all expertise levels and technologies.
The goal is simple: To help companies build dream teams on auto-pilot that will power their future growth, all while saving significant time and effort involved in the process.
DQ: What are the challenges you face from using AI and other technologies for hiring?
Karthik Sridharan: Technology has played a very important role in helping us streamline the process of hiring.
In sourcing, we receive 1000s of applications each month to join our network from all across the world. We are able to easily collect and organize their applications and data safely to enable quality matching. In evaluation, we have developed various assessment modules to automate the process. With such a talent base, we are able to help clients, anywhere in the globe, to connect with the right candidate for their requirements.
All of this has been possible with really solid technology built and honed over multiple years. This also includes AI-features that are used in shortlisting and even screening resumes.
However, in a “people” industry, AI (and technology in general) is better used as an enabler rather than the sole solution of all problems. So, we have a human layer to ensure that the hiring challenges of companies are truly solved.
We do believe that AI has improved multi-fold in the past couple of years. Those solutions have helped us improve our offering for our customers. But, the technology has a significant room to mature to solve the specific use cases of the hiring industry.
DQ: What trends do you see developing in the hiring sector, and how does Flexiple aim to keep up with them?
Karthik Sridharan: We expect that there will no longer be local talent, but a single global talent pool of top engineers. As ever, new technologies will keep trending from time to time as blockchain did a few years ago and generative AI is now. In such a context, companies need to be innovative in their hiring process and have a streamlined approach to it.
Flexiple, with its global talent network and the goal to become a full-stack tech hiring solution for companies, is ideally placed to help companies meet these challenges and succeed.
DQ: How does Flexiple envision its growth and expansion in the coming years, especially in the context of the evolving technology and hiring landscape?
Karthik Sridharan: Flexiple has largely been a major player in the tech hiring market for contractors. With a vetted talent network, we have grown well and solve a variety of problems for companies. Our goal is to grow 10x in that market over the next three years. Earlier this year, we also added the solution to hire full-time engineers. We offer this solution as both a product and a recruiter service. This allows us to take a consultative approach and provide flexibility to align with the specific hiring requirements of each company.
The goal that we aim for each day is to enable companies to completely offload the entire tech hiring process and allow them to concentrate solely on building their products. With a vast and engaged talent network, a robust assessments platform, and a streamlined hiring product, we are confident that we will soon become the preferred tech hiring partner for companies in India.