WayUp merges with Yello to diversify recruitment – TechCrunch


Despite studies, statistics and so many commitments, a large number of companies continue to struggle to recruit diverse talent. Some say it’s not the pipeline issue, it’s an issue with the way recruiting tours and technical interviews are conducted. Others point to the success of hiring diverse entry-level talent, but companies fail to retain and reinvest in these people as they progress in their careers.

As entrepreneurs continue to widen the gap between talented and diverse individuals and large-scale recruiting, a new merger today between two venture-backed companies paints an ambitious picture of what a promising solution might look like. .

Today, WayUp, a sourcing platform for diverse candidates, announced its merger with Yello, a recruiting software company. The two HR tech companies will operate under Yello as a legal entity, but will continue to maintain their independent branding with now 200 employees combined.

“We can send all the diverse candidates into candidate tracking systems or CRMs, but if companies don’t have the automation workflow, tools, and analytics they need to make sure those candidates are really successful, so these candidates are sitting in a black hole, ”said Liz Wessel, co-founder and CEO of WayUp, in an interview with TechCrunch.

Wessel’s awareness of the “black hole” the contestants fell into quickly turned into conversations with Yello, which she describes as “the most robust [candidate relationship management solution] in the early career market.

Now, by joining forces, startups will be able to create an end-to-end recruiting tool that brings together a group of diverse candidates with varying backgrounds from main and non-main schools, ethnicities, majors , location, gender and ethnicity, then place them with recruiters in a software-powered job funnel.

Data-driven diversity

Wessel has spent the past seven years building WayUp around the concept of “data-driven diversity”. The platform differentiates itself from other sourcing and employment platforms by requiring applicants to self-declare their race, ethnicity, gender, and veteran status. As a result, employers, who are WayUp’s clients, can prioritize diversity when hiring, while early-career professionals can explore selected opportunities based on their profiles.

Most recently, WayUp launched a dashboard to help employers see where their hiring process is losing diverse candidates. While this dashboard was WayUp’s first foray into the world of candidate recruitment management, today’s merger with Yello suggests that it simply foreshadowed the partnership to come.

Yello manages the recruitment processes for companies, from funnel events such as career fairs to virtual candidate engagement and interview scheduling. The company has won clients like Johnson & Johnson, Tableau, eBay and Adobe for its sourcing, engagement and placement software.

“They provide a ton of automation workflows for businesses to dramatically, quickly, efficiently and easily get candidates through in a fair and equitable manner,” said Wessel. “Companies often don’t have a hard time asking themselves ‘how can I recruit more candidates’ at the start of my career, it is really ‘how do I recruit the most qualified and talented candidates'” .

Yello has been working for years on a sourcing arm in its campus recruiting solution. Now, with WayUp, the database will grow to over 6 million applicants on 7,000 campuses. The candidates, though self-reported, are 71 percent black, Hispanic or female, along with “tens of thousands” of veterans, a statement on the merger revealed.

“In addition to offering a data center, recruiters will benefit from the opportunities to automate two solutions from a single company,” said Corey Ferengul, CEO of Yello, in a statement announcing the merger.

Yello, which previously did not have an explicit diversity angle in its software product, is now adding WayUp’s talent database to its suite of services. And WayUp, which previously did not have a candidate relationship management tool, can now offer one to its talents.


Even with 6 million top market professionals in its sphere, companies have a billion dollar competitor worth considering. Handshake, which last raised $ 1.5 billion in funds, is a networking and recruiting platform for students. The job recruiting tool recently surpassed 18 million users in thousands of universities, including some 120 institutions serving minorities, which include historically black universities and colleges, and Hispanic service institutions in the United States. United, as well as community colleges. Handshake’s focus on diversity is not as commercialized as WayUp’s, but its footprint, as well as an organized network that brings HBCUVs to chat with its 550,000 employer clients, shows its commitment to groups under -represented. Canvas, another venture capital-backed startup in the HR tech world, also offers a self-reported data-driven recruiting platform aimed at helping various candidates land jobs.

With WayUp joining the Yello brand, it strengthens its competitive advantage over Handshake, Canvas and other competitors by adding software services to its recruiting tool. It has been almost four years since Yello and WayUp last raised VC funds, but the merger does not appear to be a lifeboat as Wessel stressed his company has exceeded sales expectations. four quarters in a row.

“Yello is not at all competitive with Handshake,” Wessel said via email. “I’ve never heard of one of them winning a deal over the other and we only compete with Handshake if a company doesn’t prioritize D&I as their primary focus. [For what it’s worth], we have not yet lost a call for tenders for the supply of D&I. “

In the long run, it is not clear what is preventing more and more companies from combining CRM tools with talent management tools, including handshake.

“It’s really tough,” Wessel said. “We both have enterprise-grade software that took a decade to develop to where it is today. “