Belong, which uses dedicated technology to help companies hire, raised $10 million in a funding round led by Sequoia Capital India. Existing investors Matrix Partners also participated in this round. The company plans to use funds to expand client base and improve product, launches BelongExperts—a marketplace of recruiters.
Entrepreneur had interviewed the company last year to understand the Belong story.
On entering this startup’s office I realized that the marketing team and the co-founder himself knew everything about me. From my native language, to my professional background and even asked me about the background picture on my Twitter account.
It clearly showed that Belong, a Bangalore based organization, had the knack of tracking people concerned to their business. Belong is primarily using big data and analytics to re-define the way the HR function has been designed across industries and organizations. The company believes that what an organization needs today are not just candidates with the right qualifications, but those who will “culturally fit” into their company.
Co-founder Vijay Sharma, who had earlier worked with Exotel and Practo, said that entrepreneurship was never a planned ambition. Vijay, who liked tracking social media data , once received a call from his mother in 2014 asking why he hadn’t tweeted about his current company for a while. “I realized I had subconsciously switched off from my current company. That got me thinking especially because I was heading marketing at that company.” Vijay then realized that he regularly posted questions about hiring on Quora and penned his thoughts via blogs on the same topic. Things like these made him realize that anything that helped organization hire smart people made him and his co-founder Sudheendra Chilappagari happy.
Belong helps in cracking data from all over the internet including social media profiles, blogs, professional platforms and others to understand a potential employee’s profile and then through the right algorithms and analytics identifies the right fit for a particular job description.
Today hiring both in large corporate and startups is a tedious task. Companies often grapple to retain good quality employees these days. “I think human beings are now at the spot where they are evolving so fast in terms of what they like and dislike and what they want to do. Especially due to the onset of internet! Our generation has the access to a lot of data and has allowed us to dream much more,” Vijay said.
The future I think will be a replay of the history. Earlier candidates had to apply for jobs via classifieds and today the companies are more in need for good, skilled and trained employees. “The best people are not searching for jobs anymore, the best people cannot be found on job portals today,”
Vijay thinks that outbound hiring is going to become very crucial and that candidate description is going to be very important.
Vijay and his team moved to a new, plush office in one of the startup hotspots in Bengaluru from working out of a 2 bedroom apartment earlier. He believes in having a lot of transparency in his company. Most of the front line decisions are taken by his team members because there is a lot of clarity within regarding targets and Belong’s ambitions. Vijay believes that these are few things that have really worked for the company!