In ‘In the Spotlight’, a promising recruitment tech vendor will tell its story. Bynd is an AI automated business development tool for busy recruitment agencies. Nick Khrushchev, Co-Founder of the Utrecht-based tech vendor, tells us more about the organisation.
For the people who don’t know bynd, can you tell us what it is?
“Bynd is a research automation platform made specifically for recruitment consultants. We help recruitment consultants and business developers within the recruitment sector to find their next clients in an easy, quick and more efficient way. We use the power of artificial intelligence and specifically machine learning to automate the client research process for recruitment consultants, gathering all the information they need in one single platform, thus cutting the costs of researching and the time of more than 75%. On top of this, we also created recruitment specific proprietary metrics that enable recruiters to better identify their prospects’ needs and prioritise their work.”
Why was bynd founded?
“We have been working on Bynd Idea since september 2019 but the company was officially Founded in December 2019. Along our journey, crucial was the contribution of Holland Startup, that acted not only as a partner and investor, but as coach, mentor and guide. The original idea comes from our own working experience as 360° recruitment consultants and our general experience within sales and marketing. During these past careers, we have experienced on our own skin many of the problems that we are currently trying to solve and that have been highlighted by recruitment and sales professionals during the hundreds of interviews we have conducted for our research.”
“In particular, we have created bynd to solve the many inefficiencies that characterise the current B2B business development process, especially within the recruitment sector. We have decided to start by optimising client research. As 360° recruitment consultants we have often found ourselves spending entire mornings trying to develop our client pipeline, jumping from one website to the other researching for interesting prospects and the various information and details needed. With all the technologies & solutions arising everyday, recruitment consultants and business developers still have to manually search through all the possible websites and job boards to find the next relevant client. That’s why we decided to make an ultimate solution for recruiters, to automate their client research providing all the necessary information in one place and cutting prospecting time by more than 75%.”
What makes bynd unique?
“Every quarter we analyse the competition. We do this to stay ahead of our competitors, and we actually learn a lot from them. In the market, there are so many softwares (some really good ones too) made for pure sales teams, not really shaped for any particular industry or market, not built to solve a specific problem of a specific customer segment, but rather general ones. Nothing wrong with this, but this is our first unique point. We are specific for recruitment agencies and recruitment consultants. Recruitment consultants are not regular sales people. They operate in a specific industry and have specific problems that we, at bynd, target and solve.”
“We offer search criterias that are used specifically by recruitment consultants. We gather all the necessary information that is interesting for recruitment consultants. We built proprietary metrics, triggers and signals that target specifically recruitment consultant needs. Before us, recruitment consultants and business developers within recruitment used to spend hours to find the necessary information or they simply guessed it, but now they are packed with it and ready to hit the target in seconds.”
“A second unique point worth mentioning, is related to our business model. Most of the sales tools out in the market are lead generation tools usually based on the ‘pay per use’ basis. Very often you can see ‘100 euros for 200 leads’. Our model is the opposite of that: we allow our users to map the market and research as much as they need for a fixed monthly subscription.”
What are you guys currently working on to improve client research for busy recruitment agencies?
“We aim to use Artificial Intelligence to automate B2B business development, starting by automating recruiter consultants and business developers client research. We are developing a SaaS B2B tool to automate recruitment consultants client research and help them in making their business development process more efficient. In particular, based on the criteria established by the user, the tool will search the internet, gathering all the necessary information about companies, vacancies and decision makers, in one single place. On top of this, based on the data we gather we have built proprietary metrics that will help the recruitment consultants in their business development job.”
“Our tool can be adapted to the different business development strategies that the user wants to pursue. For example, it is perfect for simply mapping the market, researching and generating promising leads, as it is to identify cross-selling opportunities or set triggers and signals when relevant events happen (for example raising new funds, announcing new projects or signaling huge hirings activity). Cutting the time needed to perform business development activities of more than 75% and providing all the necessary information in one single place.”
Why is automating the client research so important?
“Research is at the basis of any sales process. It is proven how research is vital for business development and without it the success rate drops considerably (+50%) and you end up losing precious time and resources.
However, research is tough by its definition. You have to find, filter and merge all the relevant information for each of your new “possible prospects”, and everything is currently done manually.”
“It is highly inefficient. Recruiters and business developers spend between 2 and 4 hours, every day (!) doing so: researching for new prospects, jumping from one website to the other searching for companies’ information, vacancies, the right decision-makers and their contact details, news and anything else that can help them in their job. This whole process can take up to 15 minutes for every lead, and usually ends up with very low or even no positive results. Leaving recruiters to deal with rejection after rejection, every day. Clearly highly demotivating and one of the reasons why agency recruitment is one of the industries with the highest turnover.”
“Automating client research would allow companies to remove a highly inefficient and many times inaccurate process, saving time and money to companies and making recruiters and business developers much more productive and satisfied. Our research also shows how agencies are aware of this problem and are already trying to tackle it by either creating their own internal software or, sometimes, adopting unusual solutions. For example, one agency we have been in contact with, even hired interns just to make them do this research activity! The results were not particularly great and they were still bothered by the inefficiency and the costs related to it. In conclusion, by automating their client research, agencies would save up on unnecessary costs and allow recruiters to better spend their time: e.g. let them spend more time on candidate experience.”
How does your tool work for organisations that would like to use it now?
“bynd.ai is very intuitive and easy to use, making it very easy to be integrated into your daily business development activities. For any organisation, especially recruitment agencies and freelance recruiters that can be interested, the steps to start using bynd.ai are few and quick. Being a Saas solution, interested parties can directly sign-up on our website, from any device or browser. After this initial step, we usually organise a call, to properly understand the needs of our prospects and show how bynd.ai can help. Organizations and individuals can then register, creating their accounts and access the platform.”
“The final step consists of defining their search criteria, which can be modified whenever is needed. In order to do this and make the search as accurate as possible, we will give access to more than 100 filters. From that moment onwards everything is done by bynd.ai. Our tool searches the internet gathering all the necessary information about companies, vacancies and decision makers in line with the criteria selected. Then using artificial intelligence we are able to identify the right decision makers to contact and provide their contact details. On top of this, we have created our own proprietary metrics (algorithms), such as, for example, ‘likeliness to work with recruiters’, that will tell you in advance if a company is willing to work (or maybe is already working) with agencies.”
“At the moment, we are in a developing stage, so our key goal is to constantly learn and improve our service such that we can better shape our product. Consequently, at the moment we do not work with all the companies that sign-up to use our service but only with the “visionary” ones that are willing to provide us with constant feedback and suggestions. Moreover, at the moment we only offer a limited version of our final product, with a restricted amount of features and functionalities, such that we can better keep track of the performance and the improvements that are needed. For this same reason, our pricing structure at the moment is very simple and heavily discounted. We offer our clients a monthly subscription per account, completely flexible such that if you are not satisfied you can cancel anytime.”
What is your roadmap for 2021?
“As we mentioned, we are a quite young startup. We were officially born at the end of 2019 and until now we have focused mainly on studying and understanding the market needs and problems, and shaping the best solution possible. Consequently, we expect 2021 to be a crucial year for us and our company’s future. In 2021, our focus will mainly be on two sides: the product development and the scaling-up process.”
“In the first two quarters of 2021, we expect to continue researching the market and de-risking our business model such that we can finish shaping and then deploy the first (complete) version of our product. Regarding this side, it is especially important for us to thank the many recruitment agencies that decided to be our visionary customers, providing extremely valuable feedback and suggestions, that help us testing and shaping our platform, in the best possible way.”
“The second half of the year will be mainly dedicated to scaling up and finally properly “going to the market”. We already have a waiting list of more than 100 recruitment agencies waiting to start using our services, this will be the moment we can finally open up to them and set the basis for long term collaboration and development. All these key activities are done with the constant help and support of Holland Startup, our partners, and investors.”
Where will bynd be in 5 years?
“bynd.ai has grown a lot in his short but intense life. 2020 has been a challenging year, especially due to covid-19 and its effects on the whole recruitment industry. Despite this, we managed to grow, attract our first customers, raise new fundings and most importantly welcome new people in the bynd family. The premises seem to be good and very promising, so we hope to continue on this path.”
“In our mind, the natural development of bynd.ai (our long term vision if you want) is to use Artificial intelligence and specifically machine learning to completely automate the whole B2B Business Development process. In this way, we aim to create a “Partner” for recruiters and business developers in general, that will take care of mapping the market, researching the most interesting prospects and eventually performing the first approaches and automatically tracking these activities in the CRM system.”
“In this way, recruiters and business developers would not have to deal with rejection over rejection on a daily basis, spending hours every day on inefficient and repetitive tasks like researching decision-makers and their contact details or tracking their activities in the CRM. Instead, they will be able to focus on the key activities, where the so-called “human” component is vital. For example, dealing with client companies or candidates, understanding their needs, and finding a perfect solution for them. Having this long term vision in mind, the goal is and always was to help companies get rid of inefficiencies, changing the way they see and find new clients. Especially when talking about B2B business development. Creating real value to recruiters and business developers and improving their daily life by removing inefficiencies and demotivating components. Hopefully, in 5 years we will do this at a global level.”
About ‘In the Spotlight’
Recruitment tech talent is present all over the world: vendors that stand out and help you find the ideal candidates. Every month, a promising recruitment tech vendor will tell its story in the ‘In the Spotlight’ column on recruitmenttech.com. Previously appeared in this series:
- Greek startup Owiwi lets your candidates play games to measure their soft skills
- Headstart uses Machine Learning and Data Science to hire a more diverse workforce
- Intrro matches candidates from your employees’ network to open roles in your company
Do you know a vendor that’s not to be missed in ‘In the Spotlight’? Or are you working for a recruitment tech vendor with a special story, advanced technology or a great mission? Feel free to send an email to Erwin Hokken, editor at Recruitment Tech.