Hiring continues to get more digital in the food retail world, with the pandemic adding some fresh complexities. But a new funding round for a mobile tech firm — along with a recent deployment of virtual reality technology — shows how some companies are rising to the challenge, and what’s coming next for hiring and onboarding.
Landed, which has created a mobile app connecting hourly food and retail workers with local employers, recently announced the official launch of its platform. It uses engaging video profiles to help candidates stand out, leverages artificial technology for matching candidates to jobs, and automates much of the hiring process for employers.
The company also announced the close of a seed funding round: $1.4 million led by Javelin Venture Partners, which has backed the likes of MasterClass and Thumbtack, with participation from Y Combinator, Palm Drive Capital, and key angels.
Vivian Wang founded Landed after working in the retail industry where she saw the extremely high employee turnover of 130% on average. That meant managers had to be constantly recruiting.
Landed — which is designed for retail and food businesses, including grocery stores — automates much of the hiring process by matching candidates, scheduling interviews, and following up with candidates. It also provides hiring accountability, by tracking each hiring manager’s activity and progress towards hiring goals, the company said.
For candidates, Landed helps them stand out through engaging video profiles that are much more compelling than paper applications and resumes.
Landed launched its beta solution just as COVID-19 hit the United States last year. The pandemic fueled the need to do more hiring virtually, and Landed’s focus on mobile and video has been a big advantage, enabling the company to continue growing throughout 2020.
“Vivian and the team at Landed have developed a sophisticated AI platform to help the food, retail, and hospitality industries find and hire high quality candidates with less effort,” said Vivian Cheng of Javelin Venture Partners. “Landed is also well positioned to help businesses tackle their diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts by sourcing a larger number of diverse candidates, helping more people land the right job during these difficult times. Vivian is exactly the type of founder we like to back — she has incredible drive and a far-reaching mission of improving the lives of the 90+ million hourly workers across the US.”
How Landed Works
Job seekers download the Landed Jobs mobile app, and are guided through setting up their Landed candidate profile, which includes short videos plus details on their work experience, location, and shift availability. Candidates can then browse jobs available near them. Landed’s AI-based intelligent matching technology matches candidates with employers for whom they might be a fit.
Hiring managers download the Landed Employer mobile app, and input hiring goals such as role titles, headcount, pay rate and locations. Landed then presents the employer with candidates who are the best matches for their open positions based on its intelligent matching algorithm, driven by AI tech. Hiring managers can see matched candidates, organize their candidate pipeline into different folders, and communicate with candidates all from within the app. Employers pay Landed a monthly subscription to access candidates to meet their hiring goals.
Landed matches candidates with employers using a proprietary, intelligent matching system driven by AI, machine learning, and natural language processing. The system evaluates each candidate on 50+ data points, such as communication skills, body language, work longevity, etc. to determine fit for specific jobs. Landed can then prioritize different attributes in candidates depending on each employer’s focus.
Grocery Outlet Ventura is an early customer of the Landed app.
“My time spent on scheduling and performing interviews has been cut in half by utilizing the Landed app for most of my communications,” said Eric Sawyer, owner/operator. “I receive a continual flow of new potential candidates and stay up to date with notifications on the app, which seamlessly integrates with how I am already using my phone with emails, text, and social media. I’m at a ratio of 1 hire for every 3 interviews versus 1 hire for every 10 interviews…