TAtech Global News Bulletin: Upwork files for an IPO, Eightfold and PandoLogic launch AI-based products & Recruiter.com prepares for HIRE tokens

Meagan Micozzi

A weekly summary of trending news & commentary for busy talent acquisition technology execs and professionals.

Don’t miss The TAtech Leadership Summit on Programmatic Ad Buying on June 5-6 in Minneapolis, Minnesota USA – the only conference for both publishers and advertisers that is totally focused on the technology and applications of programmatic ad buying for talent acquisition.


“In 2013, Joaquin Phoenix starred in Her, a movie about a man who falls in love with a natural language processing (NLP) system” named Samantha. According to the Consumer Technology Association, in 2013 NLP systems could understand approximately 3 out of 4 spoken words. Today it’s just shy of 4 out of 4. That is an amazing amount of technological ground to cover in only three years.

Why do we care about NLP? Well, at the current pace of technological change, the science fiction female NLP system that Joaquin Phoenix fell in love with in the movie is just a few years from becoming science fact. We’re just waiting for AI to improve a bit – not all the way to pseudo-consciousness (however that may be defined), but just good enough to fool you.”

Shelly Palmer, Sex With Robots Is Almost Here, April 22, 2018

Movers & Shakers

Lucas Martinez, co-founder of job search engine Neuvoo, has joined the TAtech Board of Advisors.

Shane Gray, EVP at ClinchTalent.com – a mobile-optimized recruitment platform – has joined the TAtech Board of Advisors.

Job Boards, Social Media Sites & Recruitment Advertising

A flaw in LinkedIn’s AutoFill plugin that websites use to let you quickly complete forms could have allowed hackers to steal your full name, phone number, email address, ZIP code, company and job title. Malicious sites have been able to invisibly render the plugin on their entire page so if users who are logged into LinkedIn click anywhere, they’d effectively be hitting a hidden “AutoFill with LinkedIn” button and giving up their data. Researcher Jack Cable discovered the issue on April 9th, 2018 and immediately disclosed it to LinkedIn. The company issued a fix on April 10th but didn’t inform the public of the issue. Cable quickly informed LinkedIn that its fix, which restricted the use of its AutoFill feature to whitelisted sites who pay LinkedIn to host their ads, still left it open to abuse. If any of those sites have cross-site scripting vulnerabilities, which Cable confirmed some do, hackers can still run AutoFill on their sites by installing an iframe to the vulnerable whitelisted site. Source: TechCrunch

Online staffing firm TaskRabbit’s website was back online Thursday; it had been down in response to a cybersecurity incident earlier this week. TaskRabbit CEO Stacy Brown-Philpot discussed the incident in a post on the company’s website. “While our investigation is ongoing, preliminary evidence shows that an unauthorized user gained access to our systems,” Brown-Philpot wrote. “As a result, certain personally identifiable information may have been compromised.” She continued: “We have an outside forensics team working diligently to determine what information may have been compromised, and will notify every affected individual, but as an immediate precaution, Taskers and Clients should monitor their accounts for any suspicious activity. Also, anyone who uses their TaskRabbit password on other websites and apps should change them.” Source: Staffing Industry Analysts

The California-based tech firm Upwork has moved toward its public launch in the U.S. – a signal that high-value private companies are viewing the initial public offering (IPO) market as a potential avenue for capital. Upwork is a merger between freelancer sites Elance and oDesk, and plans to go public in the second half of 2018. Collectively, they have raised more than $100 million in funding from investors such as T. Rowe Price, Benchmark Capital, and FirstMark Capital. Source: JobsPortalWatch

Wonolo, a tool to connect companies with temporary workers in order to fill the unexpected demand those companies might face, announced it has raised $13 million in a new financing round led by Sequoia Capital, including existing investors PivotNorth and Crunchfund, and new investor Base10. Sequoia Capital’s Jess Lee is joining the company’s board of directors as part of the financing. Wonolo is essentially looking to replace the typical temp agency experience, which helps workers find positions with companies that need a more limited amount of time. Meanwhile, those workers get an opportunity to fill in extra shifts that they might need for additional income on a more flexible schedule. Once a company posts a job to Wonolo, employees will get notified that it’s available and then get a chance to pick up those shifts, and when the job is approved those workers get paid right away. Source: TechCrunch

Sourcing, Matching, Assessing, Communicating (SMAC) Technology

NRD Capital, an Atlanta-based private equity firm, announced its minority investment in Harri, LLC (“Harri”). The technology company, whose mission is to revolutionize employee-facing technology in service industries through its Workforce OS™ platform, was launched in 2013 and is based in New York City. The Harri Workforce OS™ platform streamlines the full breadth of the employee lifecycle. A unique aspect of the platform is its purposeful build for service industry verticals, with an initial focus on the hospitality industry. The software offers a full suite of talent-technology solutions, with more than 30 modules around candidate sourcing, hiring and onboarding, labor management, learning, performance management and more. Harri’s clients currently include restaurants, hotels and other hospitality businesses. With nearly 500,000 job seekers and 8,300 employers enrolled, Harri’s innovative and intuitive platform maximizes efficiency for all parties. Source: Media Release

PeopleFacts and SNH Capital Partners I, LP (“SNH”) announce the acquisition of TRAK-1. The combination of PeopleFacts and TRAK-1 will create a leading competitor in the U.S. background screening market, serving more than 10,000 companies across all major industries in all 50 states. Based in Tulsa, Oklahoma, TRAK-1 offers a robust screening platform and data interface with an expansive database containing millions of criminal records that complement both platforms’ suite of screening products. Source: Media Release

Recruitment marketplace Recruiter.com is laying the foundations to begin accepting HireMatch‘s HIRE tokens as a currency on its Job Market Platform. Initially announced in January of 2018, the partnership between HireMatch and Recruiter.com is now taking its next steps as Recruiter.com prepares to bring HIRE tokens to its users. “We are anxiously awaiting the beta versions of HireMatch’s software, and we look forward to the implementation on the Recruiter.com Job Market Platform,” says Recruiter.com CEO Michael Woloshin. “We aim to launch the full integration by end of Q3 or beginning of Q4.” Source: JobsPortalWatch

AI & Machine Learning

Eightfold.ai, the first Talent Intelligence Platform to address the talent gap by harnessing the power of AI and search, announced the unveiling of its platform and $18M in Series B funding led by Foundation Capital and Lightspeed. Inspired by the “eightfold path” philosophy that empowers people to find the career path of their choosing, Eightfold.ai is the brainchild of two of the most decorated minds in AI, Ashutosh Garg and Varun Kacholia, who have over 6000+ research citations and 80+ search and personalization patents. Formerly known as Volkscience, Eightfold.ai’s Talent Intelligence Platform (TIP) has been built for enterprises to address talent acquisition and management in a holistic manner. Source: Media Release

PandoLogic announced the introduction of the “Pando” algorithm, the industry’s first AI-enabled job description classification algorithm designed specifically for programmatic job advertising. The Pando algorithm leverages PandoLogic’s proprietary real-time job classification engine and robust recruitment taxonomy to automatically index job ads and match them to the optimal job-specific campaign strategy. In addition to eliminating the hassles associated with manual job classification and campaign budget allocation, the powerful algorithm also identifies and extracts 37 attributes found in the job description that are used to predict job ad performance. The Pando algorithm is available within pandoIQ, PandoLogic’s programmatic job advertising platform for enterprise recruiting. Source: JobsPortalWatch

Read the results of the inaugural TAtech-Fluent Survey of Consumer Perceptions of AI. Every consumer is either a potential or actual job seeker or a recruiter, and this annual survey will provide one-of-a-kind insights on how they view the role and impact of artificial intelligence in the workplace. Though limited to American workers, it offers a fascinating look at emerging perceptions of this powerful technology and how jobs and careers are or will be changing.

Standards & Best Practices

TAtech is launching the next phase of the International Working Group on Traffic Quality. Click here to see the Declaration on Traffic Quality produced by the first phase. If you’d like to be a part of this unique group that is setting definitions and standards for online recruitment advertising, please contact Peter Weddle at peterweddle@tatech.org. The Group is open to all publishers worldwide.

TAprose and TAtech Global News Bulletin are brought to you by TAtech: The Association for Talent Acquisition Solutions.

Mark Your Calendars! TAtech’s 2018 events include:

• February 12-13, 2018 Scottsdale, Arizona USA: The TAtech Leadership Summit on AI/Machine Learning in Talent Acquisition – the only conference totally focused on the capabilities and impact of AI/ML/NLP in recruitment. See you next year!

• March 13-14, 2018 Dublin, Ireland: TAtechEurope 2018 – the premier event for recruitment advertising and technology thought & business leaders in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. See you next year!

• April 18-19, 2018 Las Vegas, Nevada USA: The TAtech Spring Congress & Meetup – a unique conference designed to maximize opportunities for B2B networking, trending topic discussions and the exploration of partnerships and business opportunities. See you next year!

• June 5-6, 2018 Minneapolis, Minnesota USA: The TAtech Leadership Summit on Programmatic Ad Buying – the only conference for both publishers and advertisers that is totally focused on the technology and applications of programmatic ad buying for talent acquisition.

• September 26-27, 2018 Bourbon Street New Orleans, Louisiana USA: The TAtech Fall Congress & World Job Board Forum – the Global Economic Forum of recruiting, this event brings together thought & business leaders from job boards and all other talent acquisition technology solutions companies around the world.

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