Sydney recruitment startup Sourcr has secured $310,000 in seed funding from the Sydney Angels, for its data-driven platform bringing recruitment into the 21st century.
Founded last year by former recruiter James Jennings and co-founder Chris Almond who as a background in finance, Sourcr provides a platform that uses data to match jobs with the perfect candidate.
Speaking to StartupSmart, Jennings says the platform takes away the technical aspect of hiring, allowing recruiters to focus on the ‘people’ side of the job, “blending technology and interaction in a positive way”.
Now, the startup is working with 250 recruitment companies and 40 employers. And its algorithms are getting smarter, Jennings says. Now, it can look at data points, and assess who a certain job should be distributed to.
“It’s somewhere between machine learning and artificial intelligence,” he says.
Aside from an early, “very small” friends and family round, this is the first funding the startup has secured. It’s also the first time the founders have been through a pitching process this vigorous.
Pitching to the Sydney Angels “was a long process and a detailed process,” Jennings says.
“It moves quite quickly in the first part, then the due diligence takes some time,” he adds.
The investment was led by Daniel Tillett, chief executive of DNA sequencing software company Nucleics, and also included angels with experience in the HR space and in finance.
“They’re clearly experienced investors — they have a process they have to go through,” Jennings says.
The funding will be used to propel the startup into its next phase of growth, and the process is already underway. The founders have started hiring into the sales and account management team, and appointed a new chief technology officer and a chief marketing officer.
“It’s around investment in people, and through that growing market capability,” Jennings says.
Where previously it has just been the two co-founders running the show, having some more hands on deck — and some time to take a step back — means they can “put processes in place rather than just putting out fires,” Jennings says.
The startup secured the funding six to eight weeks ago, Jennings says, and since then, “the growth we’ve seen is off the charts”, he says.
Jennings’ “next-level goals” are to grow beyond Sydney and Melbourne, to reach the rest of Australia, as well as building on the capabilities of the product.
“We’re continuing to improve customer experience,” he says, and “finding ways to expand the product”.
For other early-stage startups trying to raise that first crucial bit of capital, Jennings warns that “it can be a long process and it’s really about relationships”.
He recalls some advice one investor gave to him: “Ask for investment, you’ll get advice. Ask for advice, you’ll get investment.”
People who treat the fundraising process as purely a numbers game, asking for money “rather than building relationships with [investors] over time”, are probably less likely to succeed, Jennings says.
Through building these relationships, startups not only increase theirs chance of investment, but of securing backing from people with relevant skills to bring to the table, he adds.