Knockri Raises $3 Million to Reduce Hiring Bias, Improve Diversity and Help Hire Exceptional Talent

TORONTOJuly 28th, 2020  —  Knockri, a leading developer of artificial intelligence video-based soft-skill assessment and talent mobility solutions, today announced it has closed an oversubscribed seed round of $3 Million led by Differential Ventures with participation from Grand Ventures, MaRS IAF,  BDMI – Bertelsmann Digital Media Investments, Amplify Capital and others to transform talent acquisition and increase diverse hiring.

Headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, Knockri has enabled Fortune 500 customers in technology, consulting and pharma to assess thousands of candidates worldwide, reduce hiring bias and eliminate unsuccessful interviews.

Knockri’s hiring solution assesses skills of candidates by merging industrial-organizational (I/O) psychology and artificial intelligence to better quantify key performing skills for a job role.

Knockri was co-founded by Jahanzaib Ansari in 2016. Ansari couldn’t find work because of his long ethnic name. He would often apply to jobs and never hear back from employers. While feeling confused and looking for answers, Maaz Rana, Knockri’s COO and co-founder, suggested Ansari anglicize his name. Soon after anglicizing his name, he started receiving interviews and job offers from the same managers that had previously overlooked him.

Ansari and Rana collaborated with childhood friend, Faisal Ahmed, a machine-learning scientist, to create Knockri – a skills assessment tool deeply rooted in I/O psychology.

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The current Knockri executive team – including co-founders Faisal Ahmed, CTO, and Maaz Rana, COO – will continue to lead the company with the addition of Differential Ventures co-managing partner Nick Adams to the board of directors. Knockri has raised almost $3.4 Million in seed funding to date.

“Our ability to oversubscribe during this period of global unrest is a testament to our dedicated team and the world’s need for a fair and scalable hiring solution that is deeply infused in science and predictive analytics,” said Jahanzaib Ansari, Knockri CEO and co-founder.

“Knockri has harnessed machine learning in a brilliant and innovative way to simultaneously improve efficiency and reduce bias in hiring. Their technology is ideally suited for dealing with many problems in enterprise hiring today, and Knockri’s product introduction is timed well to have a significant impact on improving fairness in hiring practices and speeding the growth of workforces as our economy grows,” said David Magerman, who is a co-managing partner and chief technology officer for Differential Ventures as well as an advocate for responsible use of data science.

The company’s video, audio and written screening platforms seamlessly integrate into existing Applicant Tracking Systems, and Knockri’s API is compatible with the most widely used and best-in-class talent acquisition solutions. The company’s services are also offered in multiple languages.

“Shifts in hiring practices are likely to continue long after COVID-19,” said Ansari. “Knockri reduces the need for face-to-face interaction by assessing candidates remotely, and our mission to create a strong and safe talent acquisition process is more important now than ever. With our growing global footprint, coupled with customer allies seeing the benefits of our platform, we aim to employ evidence-based artificial intelligence across worldwide organizations as a catalyst for social change, while generating competitive advantages and transforming talent acquisition and identification functions.”

About Knockri

Knockri is an AI video based, soft-skill assessment tool, that helps reduce unconscious bias and shortlists the best fit job candidates to interview, during the early screening process of hiring. Knockri helps eliminate unsuccessful interviews, while identifying exceptional candidates and increasing candidate diversity by merging video intelligence, artificial intelligence and science to quantify soft skills like confidence and empathy. 

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