October 31, 2014
Based out of the Innovation Pavilion in Centennial, Colorado, Test My Tech has been focusing their entrepreneurial efforts on the recruiting and hiring world. Granted, they’re not out to shift any major paradigms, but they’re making it easier for companies to hire for job positions.
Specifically, Test My Tech is a cloud-based technical assessment tool. According to the team, recruiters and hiring managers traditionally rely on resume key words and written tests to qualify a job candidate.
However, resumes are often embellished and Q&A tests don’t accurately capture a candidate’s expertise. Test My Tech solves this problem by validating a technical skill on a real server for both Windows and Linux. The ensuing results are used by companies to rank job applicants, reducing their cost per hire and accelerating the recruitment process.
Even though they’re in private beta until January, we were able to sit down with Test My Tech and hear about the origins and early life of this startup.
Tech Cocktail: Where did the idea come from?
Test my Tech: During Denver Startup Weekend 6, in June of 2014, I pitched an idea for a cyber-security based assessment platform, but the audience wasn’t very receptive and I didn’t advance to build a team. On day 2, another team’s idea was rejected because it was too far along in the process.
We combined all of our ideas, drank a gallon of coffee, and drew a ninja on the whiteboard because we were bored. But then Lizelle Van Burren, from Women Who Startup, came by and asked what us tech-ninjas were working on.
That’s when I realized that only 2 in the group were actually tech people. Who would have known any differently if hadn’t told her?
So, we asked people at the event if they had lied on a resume to get a job. We found that about 90 percent of them actually admitted that they had, in fact, lied. Then we asked how difficult it was to find a technical person for a specific job fit. The results was: overwhelmingly difficult.
Tech Cocktail: What were some of the major challenges you encountered starting up?
Test my Tech: We initially started out approaching recruitment firms, but we quickly learned that they don’t care about the quality. They’re in the market to provide candidates to companies that they wouldn’t otherwise be able to find, and we misunderstood the market.
We spent three months getting in front of executives and managers only to be told: “This doesn’t fit with our business model.” But we used this as a pivot and headed in a new direction, and our customers love it; they can qualify a candidate 30 to 40 percent faster.
Tech Cocktail: What are your plans for the future?
Test my Tech: We have transitioned towards small and medium sized business (SMB) where we have been quite successful in launching and honing the product. The companies have been much more receptive to the platform and like the reduction in impact on their HR, Tech, and Management staff.
There are a few companies competing in the space, but we’re constantly differentiating ourselves by having a cloud-based solution. Our clients can now access Test my Tech anywhere in the world, 24/7, 365.
Also, our Incubator Innovation Pavilion has been extremely helpful in getting us in front of prospective customers, as well as mentioning us as often as possible at events. The word of mouth has been explosive since Denver Startup Week and the Tech Cocktail Denver Mixer & Startup Showcase.
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