When Chandrakanth Shettigar was building a team of six programmers for a Ruby on Rails-based startup, he discovered firsthand how tiring and cumbersome it can be to screen candidates for an open position. He became so frustrated with the manual interview process that he created his own tool for assessing candidates. This is how he came up with the idea to create a platform that could automate the recruitment lifecycle and make the undertaking more timely, cost-effective, and productive.
Screenom, the child of that frustration, is a startup tool that recruiting professionals can use to evaluate software-developer candidates for open positions. Screenom’s team of experts develop the problem-solving and programming question bank that recruiters need, and then presents the employment candidate with a customized assessment to determine how well-suited that candidate is for the position.
“We asked other organizations about their talent management process,” co-founder Anshul Kumar says. From those conversations, Kumar and Shettigar have built a team of experts in talent management and programming that draft the questions and develop the assessment examinations. These experts come from organizations such as Microsoft and other reputable industry leaders. The questions included in Screenom’s test bank are a unique set of inquiries that cannot be found using search engines, ensuring candidates’ answers are their own, and not Google’s.
Having these outside experts draft the questions for recruiters differentiates Screenom from its competitors. Kumar points out, “New stuff is coming in every month. Because we work with outside experts, we have a better set of up-to-date questions,” meaning the questions used in the assessment will be timely and relevant to the current software development environment.
“We provide the candidates with the capability to take the test on any platform, desktop or laptop,” Kumar says. Candidates need only some sort of computer and a webcam, along with a reliable Internet connection, to take the assessment. Shettigar adds, “We capture key events, the candidate’s picture, and so forth, to make sure the candidate isn’t cheating.”
Through capturing those key events, Screenom is able to ensure the candidate is the one taking the assessment exam, not someone else. Added to this level of security is the fact that only the recruiting company has access to the candidate’s assessment answers and feedback.
The assessment profile goes beyond just objective questions, which Kumar says is just the first phase of the assessment. “We have a three-step assessment platform: the objective questions, coding questions, and then a face-to-face interview,” says Kumar. The third phase, the face to face interview, won’t be ready for several more months, but Shettigar says that “some recruiters really like the idea, because they don’t come from a technical background.” When live, the recruiting team will have the option of having industry-leading experts conduct the face-to-face interview.
Screenom is in the early, beta stages right now, and is being selective about its clientele until the first week of April. The company’s goal, though, is to expand throughout the United States and then move into the Indian and Southeast Asian markets, which have been a major backbone of the IT industry for a number of years and are growing markets for talent assessment.