The Athens-based HR tech startup Owiwi is offering a game-based talent assessment platform that helps businesses measure the soft skills of their applicants through immersive gaming. The two founders, Ilias Vartholomaios and Athina Polina Dova, were only 23 and 24 years old when they started the company in 2014 with the mission to apply gamification to human resources.
By using Owiwi, CEOs and HR professionals can easily reduce the risk of a “bad hire”. After a long initial research phase, the Owiwi team is convinced that gaming is the ideal way to attract, identify and select the best talent available, as it humanises the recruiting process on a mass scale, and creates a positive impact on candidates lives and business results.
Currently scaling up, Owiwi already counts more than 30 employees, partners and consultants. The company is based in Greece, but also operates in several additional markets such as US, UK, Western Europe, and the Balkans. The client list of Owiwi’s SaaS-based HR platform includes global brands such as Turkcell, Coca-Cola, Leroy Merlin and L’Oreal.
Owiwi CEO Ilias Vartholomaios believes: “The soft skills of potential employees are a key determinant of how high they will climb on the career ladder. Hard skills are the technical skills; those that are easy to quantify. They may help you get a job, but they won’t help you to rise through the ranks.”
Soft skills factor into how your applicants interact with people and future colleagues. Owiwi focuses on that because they are sure that with the right combination of soft skills employees can achieve basically anything. Even if they don’t know a certain tool or lack a specific skill, they can adapt and overcome it. Businesses are becoming more human-centric, and therefore soft skills are getting more and more important. According to the Owiwi founders, the personality of any candidate will remain largely consistent over time, but soft skills are fluid, and can be continuously developed.
Owiwi can help companies to find hidden talent within their workforce or within their extended network. The idea Owiwi resonated that well with companies and their HR departments, that the startup was able to raise €180,000 in seed funding in 2016 – during the height of Greece’s economic problems.
Companies who have tried the Owiwi product have experienced some remarkable results. For example: A 50% reduction in the duration of interviews; a 47% drop in the number of interviews; a 30% improvement in soft skills following the training of employees using Owiwi’s tools.
The Owiwi team consists of scientists who have a long experience in the field, and spent the first two years of the company’s life conducting psychological research to ensure that what Owiwi was doing is also valid from a scientific standpoint. Unlike most of Owiwi’s competitors, the young company also shares its scientific data with others, and always ensures to deliver on validity, reliability and credibility.
Everyone who has gone through a recruitment process knows that it allows rather little opportunity to really showcase your skills, your capacity, and your personality. Owiwi provides a solution here, both for applicants and employers!
The next step for Owiwi is to build a database of talents. The young company is about to reach a critical mass of data and will incorporate machine learning to map how companies and clients are using the product. In 5 years time the Owiwi founders want anyone who goes through a hiring process to ask themselves: “How was this done before Owiwi?”
Most recently, Owiwi was awarded as one of 11 National Champions for the European Business Awards and shortlisted as one of the six best companies for the “New Business of Year” Award. Since 2007, the renown European Business Awards honours the most innovative businesses on the continent by promoting success, innovation and ethics in the European business community.
Great opportunity for startups and innovative SMEs: Owiwi is willing to offer a big discount of up to 80% to interested startups – based on what “stage” they are at. This way Owiwi wants to help your company grow into hopefully, one day, a large multinational.
Start the free trial now! It allows you to have 14 assessments over a period of 10 days. For free!