Horizontal growth will be an essential component to employee happiness and fulfillment: Ben Reuveni, Gloat
Ben Reuveni co-founded Gloat in 2015 with a vision of bringing AI and data science to career development. Founded in 2015 and based in New York and Tel Aviv, Gloat is building the workplace of the future and pushing the boundaries of career expectations. The AI-based career development platform matches a user with personalized open career opportunities in real time while they remain completely anonymous. The platform and app compare a user’s skill set and career history with millions of others to provide data driven recommendations for smart career moves. Gloat recently released its InnerMobility platform, enabling employees to enhance their skill sets and grow within their current place of work.
In an exclusive interaction with People Matters, Ben Reuveni shares his thoughts on how Gloat is helping enterprises deliver a happier, more satisfied and productive workforce, while simultaneously improving company retention rates.
What was the tipping point behind creating Gloat?
Over the past five years the workplace has rapidly changed. The needs of millennial and Gen Z workers differ substantially from previous generations, and employers have been at a loss on how they should adapt to recruit and retain talent. Having worked on an advanced AI-based recruiting system for the Israeli army as part of my service in the elite 8200 intelligence unit, I knew that technology could be used to drastically enhance the HR space.
Initially, at Gloat we focused primarily on utilizing technology to provide unique opportunities for those looking to advance their career - smartly matching people to new jobs that will offer real value for their long-term ambitions, while they remain anonymous.
Having worked on an advanced AI-based recruiting system for the Israeli army as part of my service in the elite 8200 intelligence unit, I knew that technology could be used to drastically enhance the HR space
We have since turned our attention towards tackling an even bigger issue in the industry and that is internal growth and retention. It is clear that companies and corporations are struggling to retain their top talent and are confined by notions of old on how a workplace should operate. They are often out of touch with their employees needs and expectations and thus suffer immensely from high-turnover and unproductive, stagnant employees.
Gloat created InnerMobility to address this problem and enable companies to be responsive to their employees’ demands while simultaneously improving their output and growing their business. Beyond salaries and perks, today’s workforce expects employers to provide them with a variety of development experiences that will bolster their skill set and ensure they are constantly learning and growing. InnerMobility meets this challenge by leveraging AI and machine learning to prompt a radically different work environment characterized by fluidity and personal growth.
Through our two-sided internal talent marketplace that identifies personalized opportunities across a company, employees are provided a wealth of opportunities to take on new challenges and grow. From job swaps to mentorships, to part-time projects and full-time job changes, InnerMobility provides employees with the framework to meet their long-term career ambitions within the company. With millennials already the largest generation in the workforce, future-focused companies must adapt to keep their employees happy and motivated at work or risk being left behind. InnerMobility provides a win-win solution for employees to achieve their career dreams within the company, while companies can significantly increase their output, grow their business, and prepare for the future of work.
How exactly does Gloat help companies to deliver a better talent and employee experience? Please explain in layman's terms.
Gloat is helping enterprises deliver a happier, more satisfied and productive workforce, while simultaneously improving company retention rates. How? By providing access to new opportunities for employees to develop themselves professionally on their own terms without leaving the company.
With horizontal growth opportunities, employers are demonstrating a commitment to their employees, by providing them with the opportunity to expand their skill sets far beyond their core role, and constantly progress
InnerMobility is a two-sided marketplace that uses artificial intelligence and machine learning to smartly match employees with exciting opportunities for individual career growth such as part-time projects, mentorships, job swaps, and full-time positions, across functions and geographies. Enabling part-time projects through InnerMobility empowers employees to take part in cross-functional projects that interest them often out of the scope of their daily jobs which develops new skills, helps foster diverse human connections, and facilitates horizontal growth.
As millennials and Gen Z’s come to dominate the workforce, horizontal growth will be an essential component to employee happiness and fulfillment, as it facilitates the constant growth and variety of experiences employees crave. The positive impact horizontal growth has on employee happiness results in substantial bottom-line improvements. A recent study from the SM Foundation showed that employee happiness results in a 20% spike in productivity across the board. This number spikes even further with salespeople, with up to 37% of them producing better results than their unhappy counterparts.
Not to mention, in an environment of low unemployment, individuals unsatisfied at work can simply leave their companies altogether. According to recent research, it costs $12,000 to replace an entry-level employee making $36,000 and $20,000 to replace a manager making $60,000 a year. Think of the costs of high turnover rates at large enterprises. By creating an environment in which employees want to grow internally and be the best they can be, companies can transform their future forecasts.
Furthermore, a 2018 report on Workplace Learning by LinkedIn showed that 93% of employees will stay at a company longer if it invested in their careers. With horizontal growth opportunities, employers are demonstrating a commitment to their employees, by providing them with the opportunity to expand their skill sets far beyond their core role, and constantly progress. This is crucial as 87% of millennials think professional growth and development opportunities are top priorities, according to Gallup. The InnerMobility platform is giving employees the opportunity to do what interests them in their careers, be happier, more satisfied, and thus more productive in the workplace.
How has the traction been since its founding? How many customers does Gloat have? How do you monetize the platform?
Since founding, our traction has been excellent with over 600 leading companies including Cisco, Mobileye, and Yahoo utilizing the Gloat recruitment platform.
For our InnerMobility solution specifically, traction has been growing rapidly since it first went live less than two years ago. We license the product to a company and work closely with them as they roll out the platform to their employees based anywhere in the world. Our team assists with the communications and engagement efforts along with the companies’ as this kind of democratization of talent experiences requires change management and a cultural shift in most companies. Currently, the InnerMobility platform is being used by several Fortune 500 companies, including industry leaders like Unilever and Schneider Electric.
What differentiates Gloat from competitors that offer similar solutions?
Gloat’s InnerMobility solution is really in a league of its own as our AI is two or three years ahead of competitors in this space targeting the internal talent mobility and retention market. Our two-sided talent marketplace matches employees with highly personalized career development opportunities, providing unprecedented visibility on internal opportunities and concrete opportunities to enhance targeted skills.
InnerMobility is the best way for individual employees to future-proof their careers, while upskilling themselves and making real strides to achieve their career dreams within their current companies.
With InnerMobility, enterprises gain full visibility of their talent, close impending skills gaps, and empower their employees to achieve happiness and maximum productivity at their organization, increasing satisfaction, retention, and business growth.
What are going to be your future plans as far as product and expansion are concerned?
We recently launched our mentorship feature on the InnerMobility platform, enabling employees to connect with one another based on targeted skills and experiences they’d like to gain. Work mentorships have profound effects for employees across the board, including making them feel happier, more satisfied, and better compensated for their work.
91% of respondents to a recent Workplace Happiness Survey, who have mentors, claimed to be satisfied with their jobs. Moreover, 59% of them reported being “very satisfied,” and among those who don’t have a mentor, each of those numbers fell by double digits. 71% of employees with a mentor reported their company provides them with excellent opportunities for career advancement, while just 47% of those without a mentor said the same thing.
The benefits of workplace mentorships are very clear, and this is a feature we are extremely proud of. The fact that our AI platform is based entirely in the cloud allows people to connect across functions, departments, and geographies. We can’t wait for more employees to find their mentors at work to increase their happiness, productivity, and advance their careers.
Advancing employees' skills through the use of technology and providing them continued learning experiences will help people future-fit their careers as well as expand the horizons for opportunity of the workforce
How do you see talent recruitment space changing in the coming years? What will be some of the trends? What do you see are some of the challenges in this space?
Over the past few years, the talent recruitment space has undergone a technical revolution. Companies are not only utilizing AI and advanced tech to recruit new employees, but to help employees at their companies advance their skill sets and fill positions internally. Innovative programs like interactive L&D platforms and internal talent marketplaces such as the InnerMobility platform are examples of this technological revolution and the shifting focus of companies away from recruitment towards retention and career development.
The advancement of employee skills through the use of AI will help companies remain agile as automation advances and both eliminate and create roles - a key challenge ahead. A recent IBM study found that up to 120 million professionals need to be reskilled to deal with AI and new digital business environments. Another challenge facing organizations now is an overall shortage of qualified young professionals - according to a recent McKinsey study, in 2020 companies in Europe and North America will need 16 to 18 million more educated employees than are going to be available.
Advancing employees’ skills through the use of technology and providing them continued learning experiences will help people future-fit their careers as well as expand the horizons for opportunity of the workforce. In this regard we see the use of AI as a key trend in the industry that, if harnessed correctly, will prove crucial to the future of work and the companies who thrive in it.