Hiring staff is a high-stakes process. Good choices can enhance your business and deliver invaluable synergies; poor ones can cause significant operational, financial and reputational damage. The trick is to identify who falls into which category as early as possible in the process – and certainly before making a final decision.
Background-checking services can do some of the legwork, but recruiters and hiring managers often need more specific information than whether a candidate is being entirely honest about their academic qualifications. Just how strong are their coding skills? Can they really work equally well with design and marketing? A resumé can’t always be trusted to provide a reliable answer. Step forward, Kandio, the industry-leading skill-based assessment test platform.
Founder and CEO, Kasper Dam, first developed the concept of Kandio in his native Denmark. “I was involved in recruitment, and as often happens, ideas start with the things we need ourselves,” he recalls. “And I really needed a way to find better IT staff.”
Dam saw that many businesses have to take job applicants’ claims about their technical skills on trust alone, with no effective means of testing them in-house, so why not use external testers operating at the top of their respective areas of expertise? It was a seed of an idea that he decided to develop.
Dam had already been introduced to Citrix Podio at his previous business and admits to some initial skepticism. “You hear so many platforms and tools promising the world, but as we started to adopt Podio into the business, it quickly became clear that it was a true game-changer.”
Dam’s resolution to start Kandio from scratch involved a few big decisions, including relocating to South East Asia at the suggestion of one of the business’s main investors. The more straightforward choice for Dam was that Podio would, from the business’s outset, play a critical role in Kandio’s operations.
Kandio’s basic premise is relatively simple. Dam has assembled a roster of the most senior IT industry experts, each of which created a testing process for their particular specialty. Any business in the process of recruiting IT staff can then send the appropriate tests to candidates and use the results to narrow down the field. This allows any company to interact with and hire IT professionals with a similar process to the FAANG companies and without any prior IT experience.
“Some of the bigger tech companies can have thousands of applicants for each job,” notes Dam. “Using Kandio, they can easily identify the top five or ten percentile and be confident that their skills are a good match.”
Crucial factors in Kandio’s use of Citrix Podio are its broad suite of functionalities, and its ability to integrate with other platforms. “Citrix Podio is the key tool that we use for Kandio,” Dam explains. “Even our custom tools are Podio byproducts. Why build something from scratch when you can put it together in Podio and know it will work absolutely seamlessly?”
Dam continues: “We use Citrix Podio to structure our dashboards and data, and collect client data through web forms, email or even text messages. There are really very few boundaries to what we can create with this tool.”
Dam is reluctant to pick a single aspect of Citrix Podio that brings the most value to Kandio. “It’s a complete infrastructure; it’s difficult to highlight one feature because we use the full suite,” he says. “Having said that, when it comes to process automation, nothing comes close to what I can get from Podio.”
Podio has now automated over 95% of man hours and has enabled Kandio’s staff to focus on less routine, more strategic areas of work. These automations have given substantial time back to three departments: contributor, partners, and HR operations; giving the business the flexibility and scalability to meet spikes in demand quickly and efficiently.
Highlighting one key application, Dam explains that Kandio issues its contributors a monthly compensation slip, detailing how much they have earned, when they can expect to be paid, and what aspects of a specific test can be improved to make it more marketable. The bulk of this calculation and issuing procedure is now handled using Podio-based automation. “Podio is the cornerstone in facilitating this process,” says Dam. “It just scales so well. Handling thousands of contributors a month would be the same work as for just one hundred using Podio.”
Citrix Podio has also, to date, completed over 200,000 calculations that are key to conducting their business model seamlessly. These computations are far beyond human capabilities and creates efficiencies in payment processes and contracts resulting in 30 minutes saved for each automated calculation. With native automations handling repetitive and manual tasks, there was no need to hire additional staff, saving on overall costs. Dam also acknowledges Podio’s role in ensuring Kandio’s continuation during the COVID-19 lockdowns, when staffing issues and business suspensions threatened its very operation. “Without Citrix Podio, we would have been at significant risk of closing shop during COVID,” he adds. “It’s automation capabilities helped us through a very tough period.”
Dam continues: “Many people use Citrix Podio as a tool to organize data, but when you apply automation, you make the data come to life so it can move you to the next stage.” And for Kandio, the next stage is scaling up and moving beyond IT recruitment. Citrix Podio will help to enable this, and Dam plans to extend his use of other Citrix tools, Citrix RightSignature in particular, which is currently integrated into Kandio’s automated onboarding procedure when signing initial contracts with test contributors.
“Citrix RightSignature is like Podio in that it goes hand in hand with company growth,” Dam explains. “If and when we scale from hundreds to thousands of contributors, RightSignature will become even more important to us as we look to handle that additional volume.”
“What can easily take a 4-to-6-person team in comparable companies, is handled by 0.25 of an employee in our organization with Citrix Podio.” Dam explains. “Our Podio platform covers all recruitment, and the IT aspect has proved it can work as well. When we expand to other verticals, Citrix Podio will be with us. We can’t live without it now!”