Indy startup launches first text-based interview platform

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- What do you do more often: Do you call people? Or send them a text? For many, texting has become their preferred way to communicate. One Indy start-up company is adapting to these habits by launching the world’s first text-based interviewing platform, called "Canvas."

"We started seeing a real shift in communication preferences for this next generation of talent," said Canvas CEO and founder, Aman Brar.

After interviewing hundreds of job candidates for his previous company and dealing with different communication challenges, Brar had an idea. He figured, if people are using dating apps to screen people first before talking and meeting, why not do the same with the interview process?

"Imagine if Match.com or Bumble worked where you had to schedule a phone screen with everybody you’re interested in?" Brar said.

Brar created Canvas to help recruiters screen more people more efficiently, while allowing candidates to respond to questions through text on their own time. Recruiters get the phone numbers for candidates just like they normally would. From there, they can use Canvas to reach out. The job candidate gets an invitation to text, explaining Canvas and the process.

While Cavas just officially launched in June,  some recruiters have been using it ahead of the launch and say they’re already seeing the benefits.

As the President and Founder of the Carmel-based staffing agency, Aegis Worldwide, Kirby Cuniffe says he figured Canvas was worth a try, but didn’t know what to expect.

"With my generation, I came from more of the 'technology kind of scares me so I use my phone to call and text on a good day,' but not much else. So coming into this, I was a little skeptical about the texting thing, would it really work?” Cuniffe said.

"I've been proven very wrong, very quickly, in a short a very short period of time. It's been very well received," Cuniffe said.

Cuniffe says he's already witness scenarios where Canvas has benefited both his recruiters and the candidates they're trying to reach.

“The theme we always talk about is, time kills all deals. So there’s times you call somebody and you don’t get in touch, then you try again the next day. Then a couple days have gone by. If you have a five minute window, you can respond to a text," Cuniffe said.

Both Cuniffe and Brar agree: Cavas is a starting point. Brar says Canvas isn’t meant to replace the traditional interview process entirely.

"Just like you’re not going to marry someone on Match.com you haven’t had a date with, we also are still big believers in companies continuing on with their talent assessment process, which includes live interviews. This is just a great way to candidates at the top of the funnel," Brar said.

For more information on Canvas, click here.