Kalibrr Helps Filipino SMEs Boost Their Hiring Process with FedEx Small Business Grant

Today’s small businesses and start-ups are reshaping the global economic landscape to be stronger and more inclusive by playing a crucial role in addressing social adversities and opportunities. From providing affordable healthcare to embracing sustainability and advancing the digitalization in various industries, many start-ups are meeting the challenge head-on to make a difference and transform their communities by leveraging innovation and technology.

Mr. Paul Rivera of Kalibrr

In Asia, FedEx recognized four companies that use their technological capabilities to offer solutions to some of the world’s most pressing problems through the FedEx Small Business Grant Contest (SBGC).

SBGC’s aim is to enable small businesses to achieve their full potential and amplify their impact by bringing their businesses to a broader arena. One of the winning startups is Philippines’ Kalibrr, an online job-matching platform that utilizes artificial intelligence (AI) to simplify the applicant screening process for employers. This is especially useful for small- and medium-size enterprises (SMEs) with limited recruitment resources.

With a US$13,000 (Php 600,000) grant from the 2021 FedEx Small Business Grant Competition, Kalibrr is offering small businesses free premium subscriptions so they can utilize the company’s smart features and hire better-suited talent to transform and scale their businesses.
“In the present job market, postings from SMEs may get buried by thousands of job listings from established companies. Small businesses are at a competitive disadvantage as large companies have the budget to make highly visible job advertisements,” said Paul Rivera, the CEO and co-founder of Kalibrr.
Kalibrr enables SMEs to customize and highlight their strengths and needs better so they can target a particular niche or sector and connect with ideal applicants. “We want to give Filipino SMEs equal power through our platform to build their dream team by connecting them with skilled talents swiftly and more efficiently,” Rivera added.
The company is currently processing 10 million job applications annually and is working towards beating its own record in the coming years.

Understanding the job description
Helping people land their dream role is the top goal for Kalibrr.

“Unlike many other job search platforms, we use AI to solve a discovery and match problem. We let jobseekers discover opportunities rather than search for them. This means that our AI leverages the jobseeker’s profile histories and behaviors to quickly serve relevant job opportunities,” Rivera shared.

On the hiring end, Kalibrr’s algorithm helps companies to screen applicants more efficiently by analyzing the skill level, work environment, responsibilities and education needed for the position. Its AI-powered system and qualification tests can thoroughly scan and filter the profiles of candidates then match them based on employers’ preferences and online patterns. The service we provide is smarter, faster and consistent across all clients, big or small. Today, Kalibrr is serving over 5 million Filipino jobseekers,” said Rivera.

According to Rivera, Kalibrr produces more compatible company-jobseeker matches by recommending applicants with advanced scores in the assessment examinations for interviews with partner companies, or endorsing them for additional special training to prepare them for future interviews. 

Getting the job done
Kalibrr has catered to over six million jobseekers and has helped over 300,000 customers find jobs globally since 2013.

“Our business has always been anchored in our mission to help transform the way businesses find great talents, and talents find career opportunities. For me, these figures represent 300,000 dreams and 300,000 lives we’ve helped change for the better,” Rivera said.

Kalibrr has earned recognition from various organizations such as Endeavor Business Media in 2020, the Unreasonable FUTURE Program, and the World Economic Forum in 2021.
Learning through experience

“Recruiting pretty much stopped in Q2 of 2020 due to the economic disruptions brought on by the pandemic – nobody was hiring,” said Rivera, who had to make sacrifices to keep the company afloat.

“We had to restructure and right-size the business in order to survive, and those decisions allowed us to be in a position to thrive today. These were very hard decisions, especially when it affects our people, but it was necessary in order for us to continue,” Rivera added.
Now with the economy and the rest of the world slowly starting back up amid vaccination rollouts and loosening lockdown restrictions, Rivera is confident that Kalibrr will be the go-to job board for Filipinos for whatever career they seek.

“The pandemic has dramatically altered the job market globally – the labor market today is truly global. Opportunity is no longer defined by where you live. I believe that companies that have leveraged technology to adapt through this pandemic will come out strong and formidable,” Rivera said.

Tip to fellow SMEs
Rivera breaks down his key learnings: “First off, be patient. Be consistent in putting in the work, and soon you’ll see that you’ve come so much farther than what expected.”

“Second, listen to your customers. It may be a no-brainer, but how you handle feedback, positive or otherwise, can really make or break your business,” Rivera added. “And, finally, your team defines how far and fast you can go. If you want to go fast, go alone, but if you want to go far, be with like-minded people. At Kalibrr, we’re committed to going the extra mile for our users,” he concluded.

Rivera’s plan for Kalibrr is simple but powerful: To be the number one player in global remote hiring.

Indeed, the SME and start-up community is the backbone of the country’s economy, and a key driver of post-pandemic recovery. As an enabler of cross-border trade, FedEx fuels the growth momentum of small businesses by providing them with digital solutions and services for contactless delivery, network expansion, and seamless logistics experience.

For more success stories of SMEs and start-ups across Asia Pacific, head on to FedEx Business Insights.

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