SocialDice incorporates artificial intelligence and machine learning to streamline job recruitment

Startup Spotlight

The workplace is constantly evolving. Interdisciplinary teams, cross departmental communication and collaborative platforms are the latest in vocational jargon. But practices that have recently come into vogue have spawned new challenges for managers and workers alike.

Human resources bears the brunt of this trend. As the newfangled wisdom of tearing down cubicles mandates that employees must be equipped with diverse skillsets, matching talent with vacancies may have never been harder. Moreover, the web has made it exceedingly easy to apply to heaps of job postings online.

Everyday, recruiters are flooded with resumes. To tackle this challenge, recruiters scurry to harness the latest tech. One such company is SocialDice, a startup from Ramallah with a new approach to recruitment. Founded by two Palestinians, 29-year-old Saed Shela and 42-year-old Nael Ramadan, SocialDice utilizes artificial intelligence to streamline hiring.

SocialDice is not a job portal. Instead, it adds a smart layer to already existing recruitment channels and processes. Primarily, it does two things: it helps recruiters spread the word about the vacancy and narrow down the pool of candidates.

Founded in 2013 and headquartered in Dubai, the company left beta in November 2015. Last year, it managed to attract 50 paying customers. Of the 150 jobs they posted, 143 have already been filled. In February of this year, it closed a second round of financing, which included Sadara Ventures, 500 Startups and RAED Ventures. The first round had taken place in April of 2015 and included Oasis500, Sadara Ventures and angel investor Zahi Khouri. This year, SocialDice made it to the final round of the MIT Enterprise Forum Arab Startup Competition

How does it work

Users create job posts on SocialDice using a job post creation wizard. The wizard includes a number of editable job specific templates, such as .NET developer, 3D software engineer, acceleration officer and so on, with exhaustive lists of criteria for the job description, responsibilities and required qualifications.

The job profile can be promoted on any of a number of job sites – Bayt, Monster Gulf, Indeed and LinkedIn. The number of promoted postings depends on the plan that the recruiter is using – which can be either free or premium. After the job has been posted, SocialDice aggregates and displays the data from the applicants on a dedicated page.

Applicants are ranked automatically. Using machine learning technology, the system is able to analyse CVs and extract insights about the candidates’ careers. Those insights can then be used to score candidates relevant to specific job and company requirements. On the other hand, the needs of the hiring company is also determined by the system, which is also able to extract the hiring preferences from their job listings.

So for instance, whenever there is a match between a candidate’s strength and a company’s need, that applicant earns extra grades for his ranking that indicate that he is more suited for the job on offer.

The system also takes into consideration other qualities. The level and type of education as well as previous job experience play a part too. For example, candidates that have attended a renowned  college or worked at a Fortune 500 company typically score higher. Applicants that have worked similar jobs are a better fit, applicants that have experience in a required skill more so; the longer the experience, the better; and so on.

Ranks of the applicants include gold, silver and bronze medals, as well as a five-star scale for education, experience, loyalty and skills.

SocialDice also streamlines the hiring process by allowing several individuals from the hiring company to weigh in on the decision. Multiple individuals can view the candidates’ profiles, they can comment, communicate directly on the platform and advance the hiring process.

If all goes to plan for SocialDice, recruiters might find new meaning in the old adage that says talent is cheap.