The fact that at any given moment there are scores of job seekers looking and so many companies looking to fill positions is testament to the fact that we have not completely figured out the perfect hiring paradigm. So instead of being stuck going playing the temp agency or recruiter game, try Hyr, the AI job matcher that matches based on intent for a given position. Hyr attempts to fix some old age problems in the business and is making the job search much more convenient in the process. Their AI personality, Madison, is free for job seekers to use and is stacked with features to make ‘hyring’ someone as seamless as ever for the on demand labor market.
Today we sit down with cofounder Erika Mozes to learn more about Madison and how the AI platform will tackle the burgeoning market of on demand shift-workers.
Tell us about the product or service.
Hyr’s innovative mobile platform uses A.I. to hyper-efficiently connect traditional companies – like restaurants and bars – with independent labor to fill hourly paid shift work, on demand.
How is it different?
Hyr’s intent based A.I. recruitment bot, which we call Madison, effectively connects the companies and independent workers. Madison recognizes intent on the part of both parties in our marketplace and connects them to fill hourly paid shift work, on demand. In the simplest of terms, in a system where hourly-paid shift workers and the managers who hire them have hammers and nails respectively, Madison is the carpenter. Madison only connects parties if there is intent and a skills and requirements match. In short, Madison acts as a recruiter for hourly paid shift work. Think of it this way – if a job is valuable enough, a company or a worker can talk to a recruiter. The recruiter then takes down all of the relevant information; background, skills, pay requirements, etc. – and then attempts to match up the parties, and is incentivized to do so. Madison does all of this for hourly paid shift work, managing all the activity in app and over text message.
What market are you attacking and how big is it?
The population of hourly paid shift workers in North America tops 77 million. That said, Hyr’s initial vertical is focused on hospitality. In New York City alone there are 24,000 eating and drinking establishments staffed by almost a quarter million workers. From discussions with Hyr’s initial customers, we narrowed our go-to-market to the hospitality industry, which demonstrated the strongest initial need and interest.
What is the business model?
Hyr operates a per transaction fee based model, with all fees charged to companies. Using Hyr, workers pay no fees.
What inspired the business?
Our inspiration came from the need for change in the recruitment space, an industry that’s hungry for innovation! Before Hyr, there was no true way to efficiently recruit hourly paid shift workers, on-demand. More, it is an expensive cost of doing business to keep hiring and replacing even the lowest wage earners – replacement costs vary depending on the industry, but studies show it costs as much as $8,000 to replace an hourly low-wage employee. And once recruited, those employees have an exceptionally high turnover rate.
As a co-founding team with complimentary backgrounds, we recognized an opportunity existed to come together and innovate in the recruitment space. More, we recognized the swath of legislative changes on the horizon, such as predictive scheduling and increased minimum wage, and saw the opportunity to build an on-demand model that would entice both companies and workers.
Why is the work marketplace well suited for AI?
There is a broken rung in the work marketplace. The problem on the company side is that it’s an antiquated, complicated, and inefficient process to find quality talent. And the problem on the worker side is that it too is an antiquated, complicated, and inefficient process to find quality jobs. Basically, most companies rely on mass asking, and most workers on mass answering, in order to find each other. For specific members of both groups, temp agencies and recruiters sit in the middle, trying to make connections. And when we spoke to companies and workers, the recurring theme was that while shiny new HR platforms make mass asking and mass answering slightly slicker, matches are more often made by luck than made in heaven. Tom and our tech team recognized that there could be a better way – that they could use an AI to match both parties, if both had intent. In short, we know that both sides of our equation intend to find each other, but existing platforms are static and rely on humans at each end to do the heavy lifting. Madison replaces the need for humans to find each other, instead matching only those with a skills and requirements match that are actively searching on Hyr.
What are the milestones that you plan to achieve within six months?
Launch, iterate, and have Madison evolve as we onboard companies and workers. Within six months we have plans to be active in three North American markets, rolling out with a number of strategic partners.
What is the one piece of startup advice that you never got?
That HBO’s Silicon Valley is a resource…kidding…well, kind of! In all seriousness though, the one piece of startup advice that I never got was learn how to take a “no” and make it positive. Do not take old hands spouting reasons why new ideas can’t work, particularly from a legislative or regulatory perspective. Instead, focus on establishing consumer and investor trust, and understand that demand can be created and exploited.
If you could be put in touch with anyone in the New York community who would it be and why?
We have been very fortunate to have met so many talented people in the NYC tech community; whether that be Angles or VC’s, who have been very supportive and helpful. It is pretty cool to have relocated here in February and to attend an event, meet someone, and find out that they have already heard about Hyr. At this point, we are looking for Advisors from New York’s hospitality space and would be thrilled to be put in touch with a prominent New York restaurateur like Danny Meyer, CEO of Union Square Hospitality Group.
Why did you launch in New York?
We had two main deciding factors: first, as one of the only cities in North America that truly needs a huge crop of hourly paid shift workers 24-hours a day, New York is where our customers are located. And second, we were looking to launch in a city with a thriving tech community. New York was a perfect fit for both.
What’s your favorite restaurant in the city?
Since we are focusing on the hospitality industry, I’m not sure if we should pick favorites…but, for me it is definitely Eataly. That’s also a bit of a running joke for our team, since before we relocated to NYC, Eataly was always an obligatory stop when visiting the city. And I was told many times that once I moved to New York I would not go there as often, but now Eataly’s become my local grocery store.