I am extremely proud to announce that, four years after my twin sister Fleur and I started Equalture, we have raised €2.75M funding to further support companies in making unbiased, objective hiring decisions, by trusting on neuroscience instead of gut feeling. The funding round was led by Dutch investment company of serial entrepreneur Pieter Schoen, Shoe Investments, joined by our existing investor, Dutch VC firm 4impact.
With this funding, we plan to further grow our international customer base, and expand our test library of game-based neuro-assessments, helping companies to evaluate their teams’ and candidates’ (soft) skills and behaviours in an unbiased, scientific way. All with the ultimate goal to shape the world of unbiased hiring.
The story behind Equalture
When you and I see someone, we will always see a different person. As the two of us have different frames of reference, we will also have a different first impression of this person. And that first impression is very difficult to come back from.
Without us being aware of it, we are constantly putting people in boxes. We let our frame of reference interpret the things we can see, and make an estimation of the things we can not see. So, we interpret someone’s personality, just by looking at someone’s appearance. We interpret what someone’s skills and talents must be, by looking at their resume. And we unconsciously discriminate against people, based on their name, age, ethnicity or sexual orientation.
The painful truth is that we act on blind spots. We trust on biases that we have had to develop in order to allow our brains to make thousands of decisions a day. However, judging a person isn’t just one of these decisions. Wrongfully judging people can have a tremendous impact. It leads to treating people differently. It fosters inequalities. And eventually, it makes us hire the wrong people.
On a mission to shape the world of unbiased hiring
Objective hiring, resulting in (neuro)diverse teams, is a proven business case. According to research conducted by BCG, diverse teams generate 19% more revenue. With Equalture, we want to help companies achieve this, by providing all candidates with an equal opportunity to get hired, by getting to know them beyond what’s written on their CVs. We have built a library of scientifically-validated gamified assessments, which enables companies to get to know both their teams’ and their candidates’ cognitive skills, cultural preferences and behaviours. Candidates are asked to complete these gamified assessments, which take around 15 minutes to complete, at the start of the hiring process, which ensures a first impression based on science instead of gut. We firmly believe that this will be the key to shaping a world of unbiased hiring, in which (neuro)diverse teams are a standard, rather than an exception.
The proof that it works?
We obviously use Equalture for our own hires as well. Today, our team counts 34 team members who together represent 19 different nationalities, and consists of 52% women. This led to Equalture winning the Dutch Diversity & Inclusion Award last November.
I dare you to hold yourself accountable
If you are reading this, realising that you’re one of the many people out there who still rely on traditional screening methods when hiring someone, I dare you to hold yourself accountable. Labour market discrimination, whether it’s about cultural backgrounds, sexual preferences, (mental) disorders, or simply about feeling more connected it one person over another, is a deep-rooted problem that still exists in all its heaviness. And as long as you don’t hold yourself accountable, you will be a contributor to this problem. You will be the one perpetuating this problem.
Last, but certainly not least, I’d like to thank every single team member of our amazing Equalture Crew. This would not have been possible without you. I can only be grateful to be able to work with such a dedicated and passionate group of unique human beings. Every one of you breathes and embodies our mission to shape the world of unbiased hiring – and that’s the most inspirational feeling I could have ever gotten. Thank you team, you’re all rockstars!
Co-Founder & CEO