WorkHere Wins Innovation of the Year Award in Home State

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Jul 11, 2018

I wrote about WorkHere back in February. At the time, I had heard rumors that the startup was in trouble and wanted to investigate. After sitting with the company’s executives, I became convinced the company was at a crossroads and was more pivoting in a new direction than digging its own grave.

I said back then, in response to WorkHere’s high-touch pivot, that vendors moving more and more toward automation would be a major challenge, but WorkHere’s leadership felt confident based on user feedback.

“An intern outperforms automation in our model,” Mike Seidle, cofounder and COO at WorkHere said in February. “Everyone from employers to ad agencies and especially job seekers love the fact that we have real people bringing everyone together. The overwhelming opinion is jobs are important enough to talk to a human.”

A recent award won in the company’s home state of Indiana says it may be on the right track. In April, WorkHere won the Innovation of the Year, given by local organization Techpoint. The organization’s Mira Awards celebrates the state’s tech success stories of the year. They tout their awards gala as the “Oscars for Tech” in Indiana.

In WorkHere’s case, judges noted the company’s patent-pending technology for its originality, and highlighted a number of innovations added to the application in 2017. New features included instantaneous texting, social media messaging, geo-targeted and geo-fenced recruitment advertising, as well as the launch of community coaching services that assists new users in finding opportunities.

“Winning the Innovation of the Year award was a huge surprise for us,” said Seidle. “We were up against amazing competition — Raytheon, Purdue, and IU all with groundbreaking technologies. Indiana has really become a leading place to start and grow innovation, and it shows in the quality of competition at this year’s Mira Awards in every category.”

Here’s an interview with the company’s brass following the win.

Seidle says human interaction holds the key to its success. “We committed HR tech sacrilege: we actually started talking to job seekers. And we kept doing it. Reality is and will be for some time that bots and AI just can’t handle an unconstrained job search conversation with a real person. We still use bots and AI where it makes sense (simple conversation funnels and matching), but most of our conversation is human to human.”

Granted, Indiana is no California. Winning a tech award in the Hoosier State doesn’t get you much clout outside of its borders, but the recognition is noteworthy. Seidle says job seekers agree.

“Job seekers are extremely satisfied with the WorkHere engagement experience. Our average rating on Facebook and our own chat platform is now 4.8 of a possible 5 stars. Best of all we’re seeing more hires being made and more job seekers referring WorkHere to friends.”

For a complete rundown of the winners, click here.

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