Blog post by Lindsy Gamble
MIT-created edtech startup Authess, a member of LearnLaunch Accelerator’s spring 2015 class, has created a product that submits candidates or current employees to complex, open-ended, job-specific problems rather than personality or aptitude tests. They believe their complex analyses of people’s actions in real-world scenarios will provide employers with the best indicator of how efficiently and competently one will perform in a given role, not just how well someone tests or how suitable his or her background is. Their product—based on machine learning and data analytics—can broaden opportunity, close skill gaps, and reduce organizational risk.
Authess recently concluded their first customer deployment with the New England College of Business, who called it a meaningful benefit and something “[they] intend to use in the future to add value to [their] courses.” The Department of Education chose to highlight this collaboration in an upcoming publication as an example of innovation in higher education.
Authess is already making strides by forming a partnership with Cengage and entering the contract stage with three other large customers, according to CEO and co-founder Paul Crockett. After an initial close in September, the team is working to close the rest of their seed round. Their investors include a mix of angels, strategics, and institutional, including new investors such as EduLab, Social Capital, and Bisk Ventures. Early revenue, the three clients in contract stage, and a pipeline with 3x projections are all contributing to solid traction as they continue to work on their primary product.
In regard to product development, Authess is working quickly toward an authoring framework that will be licensed to customers
to create their own assessments. In addition, over the next 12 months the company will be focusing on establishing a repeatable sales model, optimizing the delivery and sales processes for scale, and hiring. Two new hires have already come on board, including David Martz as VP of Business Development and Anna Shults as Project and Client Services Manager. Check out their website for more information or to request a demo.