Human capital management (HCM) is arguably the most important aspect of any successful business, which is part of the reason organizations now spend about $65 billion a year on HR technology. Despite this large spend, however, enterprises still lose about 25% of their white-collar workers alone each year, and replacing lost talent is a costly and time-consuming process.
Technological advances have made it easier to centralize employee data, but until recently the tools available for HCM did not provide a true understanding of the skills required to be successful in each role within a company. Legacy HCM systems give employers basic outlines of employee skills―and often only if the employee self-reports this data. There is no single source of truth that gathers and analyzes knowledge about workers’ skills, capabilities, and experiences, and how they connect to business needs. Instead, organizations rely on a variety of point solutions, none of which provide talent acquisition and optimization across the enterprise.
At Citi Ventures, we’ve been thinking about this problem as part of our thesis on the Future
of Work. In conversation after conversation, we kept hearing about a fast-growing organization working with many of the Fortune 500, called Eightfold AI. We were told that if we wanted to understand what was possible in talent management at large enterprises, we should learn about the Eightfold platform.
Our interest was piqued and we reached out to the Eightfold team. We were instantly blown away by Ashutosh Garg and his vision to build a single AI platform for all talent, with the goal of enabling “the right career for everyone in the world.”
Ashutosh and co-founder Varun Kacholia had seen an opportunity for artificial intelligence to fundamentally transform the way companies hire, develop, and retain their talent. By properly leveraging both internal data and data available in the public sphere, the founders saw the potential for enterprises to better match people with roles and to guide people as they progress through their careers.
Eightfold now provides a single platform, delivered on a software-as-a-service (SaaS) model, to acquire and manage an organization’s talent intelligence. It aggregates data already in existence within an organization’s HCM, applicant tracking, enterprise resource and customer management systems, then bolsters that information with external data. Eightfold also uses AI to understand job roles and success factors for each role. That makes Eightfold well-positioned to understand an employee or candidate’s skills, career aspirations and trajectory, and the positions for which they are most suitable. Eightfold also uses AI to help eliminate bias by masking evidence of personal characteristics such as race, gender, and age.
The results have been impressive. One company using Eightfold saw a 49% increase in the number of employees finding their next role in-house. Another had 60% more highly qualified candidates applying to open jobs. Eightfold’s sales have more than quadrupled since April 2019, and the company now has more than 125 enterprise and government customers including AirAsia, Bayer, Capital One, and Micron.
In addition to helping more people find the right jobs, Eightfold is making a dramatic difference for hiring managers and HR departments. Enterprise customers have seen successes such as a 500% ROI because of reduced spending with recruiting agencies, 85% reduction in the time necessary to identify diverse candidates, and a 50% reduction in the time needed to hire.
The unique skills and background of Eightfold’s founding team inspire confidence that the company will continue to increase the scope and scale of its impact. Before co-founding Eightfold, Ashutosh was co-founder and CTO of BloomReach, an ecommerce personalization platform. Prior to that, he was a staff research scientist and led search personalization at Google. Varun came to Eightfold after leading Google’s video search team and Facebook’s newsfeed optimization group. They have additionally built an excellent team around them as they have scaled the business.
That’s why we’re extremely excited to announce that we participated in Eightfold’s recent $125 million Series D round, alongside investors including General Catalyst, Capital One Ventures, Foundation Capital, IVP, and Lightspeed Venture Partners.