Want Diversity in Events? Hire Diverse Job Candidates Faster.

Event Tech Brief

Want Diversity in Events? Hire Diverse Job Candidates Faster.



By Michelle Bruno

The event industry values diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). It presents frequent panel discussions on the topic at industry meetings and openly expresses disdain for non-gender diverse speaker panels. Many industry leaders rank the creation of diverse and inclusive events and organizations as not only a priority but a moral imperative. However, hiring for diversity remains a challenge. New technology may provide a solution.

More representation across gender, age, religion, race, ethnicity, and other employee attributes is a coveted objective for event companies. It provides them with inspiration and first-hand knowledge to create inclusive event experiences. They’re also keen to enjoy what research has shown to be the higher profits, improved company culture, and better problem-solving capabilities diversity affords.

Although the intention to hire diverse candidates exists, companies struggle, says Neil Patwardhan, Founder and CEO of Cambio, a software as a service (SaaS), video-based job matching platform. Fear of discrimination lawsuits, possible bias, and an overdependence on resumes puts a damper on companies’ efforts to move diverse talent through the hiring funnel, he says.

How Cambio makes matches

Cambio aims to speed up the hiring process and facilitate better matches, including those with diverse candidates. It integrates with existing applicant tracking systems (ATS), including Greenhouse, Breezy, Taleo, and others. It can also stand alone as a kind of “ATS lite,” Patwardhan says. Plus, Cambio can ingest jobs from diversity job boards to create an end-to-end diversity experience.

Rather than targeting resume keywords—"an old and outdated technology,” Patwardhan says—Cambio emulates the lead-scoring process that many customer relationship management platforms use. It deploys a Natural Language Processing (NLP) algorithm to score applicants on how closely they match a job’s requirements based on ten pre-identified attributes.

Because “more data makes the algorithm better at matching,” Patwardhan explains, Cambio gives employers and job seekers ample opportunities to beef up their contributions to the platform data pool. For example, instead of manually adding desired skills to a job description, Cambio lets employers select from a dropdown menu of over 150,000 competencies.  

Cambio pinpoints diverse candidates by letting employers tag the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) compliant sub-classes covering ethnicity, gender, veteran status, or ability suitable for a position. When job seekers voluntarily self-identify as a member of one or more of the same EEOC sub-classes, “Cambio does its best to make a match,” Patwardhan says.

Closing in on the perfect match

"Video is at the forefront of what we do," Patwardhan says. It adds authenticity and credibility to a job posting or job seeker profile. It helps employers ferret out candidates' soft skills and assists job seekers in deciding whether a position and company are a good fit. Cambio encourages both employers and job seekers to upload 30-60 second videos. Employers can share their company culture or have the hiring manager share his or her ideal candidate, and job seekers can show their personality, answer a specific question about themselves, or talk through/show a project they completed.

Cambio's employer dashboard pinpoints where applicants are in the hiring process so recruiters or hiring managers can (with a swipe) take continuous next steps. Employers can see candidates that have already swiped on them to apply or they can search for potential matches. From there, they can click or swipe to decline to interview (applicants are immediately notified they were not selected), start the interview process (initiated through a chat feature, or save for later (possibly for a different position).

Cambio's data analytics feature helps employers uncover efficiencies and potential gaps across their hiring practices, including how many individuals pass on applying for a job. Most notably, it surfaces how and if the company is meeting objectives in hired candidates that fall into EEOC sub-classes and hiring patterns of specific managers. It offers a data-based picture of potential bias to educate and support companies in improving their diversified workforce goals, Patwardhan explains.

How the event industry can benefit

Currently, Cambio has positioned its standalone platform as a service (ATS lite) primarily for enterprise use cases. However, Patwardhan says, it’s also capable of serving event-industry organizations with ongoing recruitment programs, such as large event producers, restaurant chains, or hotels. It can also support efforts to match employers with curated, qualified AV production contractors, and other freelance event staff.

Cambio’s pricing model accommodates organizations at multiple levels. All prospective clients can take advantage of a 30-day free trial. From there, tiered pricing ranges from no charge for the first two jobs with a reduced feature set to $250 per month per license for 3-15 jobs. Organizations can process unlimited jobs for $750 per month per license.

Matchmaking is already an emerging event-technology category in which providers facilitate peer-to-peer or buyer-seller networking at meetings and conferences. It’s conceivable that technology providers, such as mobile app, smart badge, or meeting-scheduling software developers, could find Cambio’s algorithm-driven matching as a service to be a sensible add-on.  

To espouse diverse values, support diversity initiatives, and innovate as the current and future global business climate demands, organizations need diverse thinkers. While Cambio is making its initial inroads as a startup outside the event industry, its technology has universal appeal and a broad value proposition for any entity seeking to match people with opportunities.

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