JobDiva, software provider to the staffing industry, has filed a federal suit against Monster Worldwide, claiming the technology behind the company’s popular 6Sense search and matching engine infringes on patents it holds.
The complaint alleges “Monster has infringed JobDiva’s patents by incorporating JobDiva’s patented resume search technology into Monster’s products and services.” It goes on to say that Monster did this “despite being informed that JobDiva held patents covering the technology.”
Monster had no immediate comment on the suit, which was just filed Monday.
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Details of the alleged infringement are skimpy. The complaint itself cites four patents, one dating to 2003, each of which involves an automated means of parsing resumes and matching candidates. The earliest patent, obtained by JobDiva founder and CEO Diya Obeid, relates to extracting experience levels for various skills based on context.
The other patents, also obtained by Obeid, involve how the extracted data is stored, retrieved, and matched with job descriptions and recruiter search terms.
Contextual search lies at the heart of Monster’s 6Sense search technology. Monster acquired the components of this semantic search when it bought Trovix in 2008. In 2009, it unveiled Power Resume Search, which is powered by 6Sense. It allows searchers to more quickly narrow potentially hundreds of candidates to just a relevant few without having to construct complex Boolean strings. The strength of 6Sense lies in its ability to intuit experience levels and skills from job titles and similar parts of a resume or a job description.
Monster introduced its first products based on 6Sense in 2009, and has since added its cloud-based candidate search, SeeMore, and one or two other products to the roster.
JobDiva’s attorney, Dale Cendali, with Kirkland & Ellis in New York, declined to discuss the specifics of the suit or how JobDiva believes Monster is specifically infringing on its patents. She would only say that the patents involve “a specific way of doing resume search that is infringed.” Nor did she want to discuss why it took JobDiva four years after Monster’s introduction of 6Sense to bring an action.