Wednesday ‘Unlocks the Human Side of Recruiting’ With Video Testimonials

The platform allows job seekers to watch employees answer questions in selfie-style videos.
Written by Jeff Rumage
June 22, 2022Updated: July 19, 2022
Wednesday team
Wednesday’s founding team (from left to right) includes engineer Scott Edkins, CEO Jeremy Hamel, engineer Daniel Pinghero and sales manager Brady Loeck. | Photo: Wednesday

Sure the latest initiatives from the Teslas, Apples and Googles of the industry tend to dominate the tech news space — and with good reason. Still, the tech titans aren’t the only ones bringing innovation to the sector.

In an effort to highlight up-and-coming startups, Built In launched The Future 5 across 11 major U.S. tech hubs. Each quarter,  we will feature five tech startups, nonprofits or entrepreneurs in each of these hubs who just might be working on the next big thing. Read our round-up of Colorado’s rising startups from last quarter here.

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Many companies try to capture their organizational culture through written statements on their website or videos with upbeat music that show coworkers laughing at the water cooler, but Jeremy Hamel thinks job seekers are looking for something more authentic.

Hamel is the co-founder and CEO of Wednesday, a platform that allows job seekers to watch a company’s employees answer questions about the role, the team or the culture in a pre-recorded, selfie-style video. While most workplace culture videos are highly-produced like a Netflix show, Wednesdays raw, selfie-style videos feel more like a post on TikTok.

“The more authentic it feels, the more real it feels, the more it works,” Hamel said.

Hamel believes that candidates want more information and context about the role and their potential coworkers. He also believes that Wednesday’s videos will not only engage more applicants but also weed out any uninterested or unqualified applicants so that only the highest quality candidates are interviewed.

It may sound a bit unfamiliar to some, but Hamel said Wednesday simply “unlocks the human side of recruiting.”

 

The Lightbulb Moment

Hamel’s interest in HR tech started nearly a decade ago when he worked as a product manager at CultureIQ, which helps companies assess and manage their organizational culture. He went on to co-found management training platform Hone, which he left in 2019.

After trying out several other startup concepts, Hamel started developing a platform for apprenticeships. Although the apprenticeship concept received mixed reactions from companies, one specific piece of the platform — team members introducing themselves on video to prospective apprentices — was so popular with companies that Hamel decided to simplify the startup down to a video testimonial platform called Wednesday.

It makes sense that candidates would want to see their future coworkers. When people talk about why they like their job or what they will miss about the job, Hamel said they almost always talk about the people, which is notably lacking during most recruiting processes.

Candidates typically apply to a written job posting and then have a conversation with a recruiter before eventually meeting the hiring manager. Coworkers are often introduced late in the process, if at all.

“We think that is crazy,” Hamel said. “One of the most compelling reasons to join a team is the people you get to work with.”

 

How It Works

The Wednesday platform comes pre-loaded with video prompts that HR teams can send along with other custom questions to selected employees. Those employees answer the questions about their role or the company culture in a selfie-style video.

Wednesday then processes the videos, clearing out all the “ums,” “ahs” and dead air, and then sifts through the video footage to find clips that capture the company’s story in the most compelling way.

“A lot of what we’re focused on is not just collecting the video, but finding the right videos from what you’ve collected that are going to be most helpful in publishing,” Hamel said.

From there, the videos are shared onto the company’s career page, integrated into their applicant tracking system or shared as a standalone piece of content. When a prospective candidate is viewing a video testimonial, they can click on several prompts to direct them to the topic or department that is most relevant to their interest.

If one of the videoed employees has an open role on their team, Wednesday will ask the job seeker if they want to work with that person, and then provide a link to the open position. In that way, candidates can guide their applicant decisions based on who they want to work with as opposed to what they want to do.

Wednesday also provides data insights about the candidate’s experience, such as how they were referred to the website, which topics they found most interesting and which of the team members they enjoyed the most.

Wednesday is working with 12 clients at the moment, and it plans to announce a funding round during its public launch later this year.

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