Solution overview

Our Solution

CareerKi

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Tagline

CareerKi is a career development platform for youths and a talent matching solution for employers.

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Pitch us on your solution

CareerKi seeks to fix the broken youth employment system in Bangladesh. 75% of employers cannot recruit local youths due to their skill gap. While almost half of our highly-educated youth population is underemployed or unemployed, there is a severe skills gap across industries. The youth employment problem is further amplified by rampant peer pressure and lack of evidence-based solutions to discover career options.

Interventions are required in 4 major areas related to career building, starting from (1) discovering career opportunities, (2) skill development and assessment, (3) career guidance and (4) skill-based talent recruitment. 

To solve this complex problem, CareerKi is building a comprehensive career development platform for youths and talent matching tool for recruiters. Here youths can choose their career path by exploring information about 300+ careers, take tests to assess skills, connect with professionals for career guidance, and be found by employers based on their digital profiles.

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What is the problem you are solving?

According to a 2015 report, more than 75% of Bangladeshi business leaders claimed that a scarcity of skilled workers was a challenge to hiring youth. Although Bangladesh still has 2 decades of demographic dividend window to become a developed country, it will be difficult to achieve, particularly due to lack of a skilled population pool. At present, 47% of Bangladeshi educated youths are underemployed or unemployed. The lack of skilled manpower has resulted in foreigners taking away USD4-5bn every year. A BIDS 2017 report titled “Labour Market and Skill Gap in Bangladesh” mentioned that Bangladesh had only 10.4% trained laborers in 2013 while the rest 89.6% were untrained. And the demand for skilled workers will rise to 72.41 million in 2020.

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A World Bank report (2018) identified several reasons behind this frustrating scenario - low social perception of TVET jobs, lack of information on career opportunities, absence of career guidance or support system in academic institutes, lack of assessment tools to identify skills gaps, unrealistic expectations of job seekers etc. In an economy where skill gap is rampant, no job solution will work unless skill & career development support is parallely implemented.

20890_CareerKi%20Pitch%20Deck%201_1440x810.jpg

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Who are you serving?

Our target group is youth (ages 18 - 34) who are post-secondary students, graduates, and young professionals living in urban and semi-urban areas. We will primarily focus on the youth with internet access, the number of which (our immediate addressable market) is, according to a BRAC 2018 survey, at least 2.4 million . 

Initially, we surveyed 140 youths. In 2018-19, our nationwide 14 career guidance sessions with 500+ students helped us to learn about their pain points to pursue careers in Bangladesh. 

The World Bank report “Bangladesh Skills For Tomorrow’s Job” helped us to sketch the systemic map of needs to tackle youth employability challenge. Our solution shall help youths to-

  1. Understand existing career opportunities in the labor market.
    Inspiration: 36+ countries use career guidance/support systems to effectively combat social exclusion and increase youth employability. Like O*net or myskillsmyfuture by US Department of labor/employment, training and administration (USDOL/ETA).

  2. Assess their skills and identify skill gap.

  3. Get proper career guidance/mentoring from professionals.
    Inspiration: Our neighboring country India saw the birth of its career guidance and career assessment industry worth Rs3000-5000 Crore with 20+ startups in the last 5 years.

  4. Have skill-based talent recruitment. 

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What is your solution?

CareerKi's solution tries to tackle problems at every stage of building one’s career and becoming a skilled professional. Our approach - inform them, guide them, give them skill assessment tools and then match them with potential recruiters. Based on this approach, our solution consists of -

  1. CareerKi Content Feed: For career discovery
    (Status: Developed, personalized feed is under development) 

    - Users can search careers based on industries. In these 300+ career profiles, they will find information on skills, salary, education & qualification, challenges, and opportunities.

    - In case of indecision, they can take our psychometric test to find their potential careers based on their personality traits. We had  adopted internationally recognized "Holland Code Test" to fit Bangladesh's cultural context.

    - General blogs/articles on career-related topics.

  2. CareerKi Connect: For career guidance and networking
    (Status: Developed, Beta rolled out)

    CareerKi Connect is a service platform for career guidance where youths can connect to professionals for a session (0.5 to 1 hour) and get predetermined services in exchange for fees. The tool will also help graduates to build a network with industry professionals.

  3. CareerKi Test:  To assess skills
    (Status- Developed, yet to release)

    CareerKi is going to offer its users several types of skill tests to assess themselves, especially the skills that can be tested online. If users pass these skill tests, the skills will be added to their digital profile as verified skills.

  4. CareerKi Talent: Skill-based job match
    (Status- users digital profile developed, search tool for employers under development)

    We intend to launch this solution next year after building a significant user base/talent pool for employers. 


Tech:

Content site: Wordpress
Main site: Progressive Web App (PWA)
Front end: Vue.js
Backend: Node.js (Express framework), MongoDB (NoSQL Database)


Process for Users: 
Download or browse PWA> Sign up your digital profile> Select industry>

  • CareerKi Connect: mentee
    > Browse the list> Select the mentor> Pick date, location, time (predetermined by mentor)> Send request> If mentor accepts pay and confirm
  • CareerKi Connect: mentors
    > Register> Verification from CareerKi> Complete orientation> Set location, date and time > Receive mentoring request through CareerKi PWA> Serve the user> Get payment and rating> give commission to CareerKi.
  • CareerKi Skills test: 
    > Browse the list> Select  test/pay for test> Take test and pass> Skills added as verified in digital profile
  • CareerKi Talent: 
     > Opt for "talent match"> Get connected by recruiters

Process for Recruiters: (CareerKi Talent)

  • Register> Verification of the company from CareerKi> Pay and subscribe> search users based on skills
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Select only the most relevant.

  • Upskill, reskill, or retrain workers in the industries most affected by technological transformations
  • Support underserved people in fostering entrepreneurship and creating new technologies, businesses, and jobs
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Where our solution team is headquartered or located:

Dhaka, Bangladesh
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In which sector would you categorize your solution?

  • Other
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If you selected Other, please explain here.

Intersection of Human Resources and Education

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More about your solution

Describe what makes your solution innovative.

CareerKi is not reinventing anything in the field of human capital/human resource development. Instead, we are adopting several global solutions to address local needs, which makes our approach uniquely suitable for the local market. 

Our innovation lies in helping the youths through every step of their career journey. While the existing solutions focus on job seekers applying for jobs or skill training, our approach enables the youths to explore a wide variety of careers and prepare accordingly.

Our 300+ career profiles are not just job descriptions one can find on job listing websites and apps. Instead, they show the users what having that career is like.

Our platform does not just tell the users to take random training or courses. Instead, it allows them to assess their skills first. Then it helps them improve those skills.

Our mentoring tool has been designed in a way that our users can get actionable feedback on their CVs, interview skills and industry-specific skills.

While traditional job sites give recruiters access to thousands of CVs without any context, CareerKi will connect its users with potential recruiters based on skills, saving time and cost for both parties.

Our approach to youth employment in Bangladesh is unique as it:

  • helps the youth understand that they have different career options, regardless of what the family or peer pressure has gotten them to think;

  • helps the youth identify their skill gap and build industry-specific skills;

  • increases professional networking opportunities for the youths.

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Why do you expect your solution to address the problem?

If Bangladeshi youths are provided with tools on CareerKi platform to help them discover their career path, assess their skills, connect with industry professionals and match them with recruiters based on skills, then the youth will be more employable and tackle skills gap crisis better because it will help them to take informed career decisions, identify and improve their skill gap, have direct guidance and networking opportunity from industry professionals, and employers can offer them jobs based on their skills and save money while finding talents locally and employing foreign workers.

(we have presented our ToC in “If>then>because” format, which represents the inputs/actions to be taken, immediate outputs and expected outcome in the long term)

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Select the key characteristics of the population in Bangladesh your solution serves.

  • Children & Adolescents
  • Urban Residents
  • Low-Income
  • Middle-Income
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In which countries will you be operating within the next year?

  • Bangladesh
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How many people are you currently serving with your solution? How many will you be serving in one year? How about in five years?

1. the current number of people you’re serving: 16,662 (MAU)*

2. the number you’ll be serving in one year: 100,000

3. the number you’ll be serving in five years: 10,000,000


Total users served since March, 2018 (inception) 106,566 till September, 2019.

69.6% users came through organic search. MAU is increasing at 10-15% rate month by month organically. 

*MAU= Monthly Active Users of August, 2019

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What are your goals within the next year and within the next five years?

In the next 5 years, CareerKi shall become the largest youth employment and career development platform in Bangladesh. 

5 years planning: 

  1. Establish a functional business model for CareerKi.

  2. Expand to more cities (locally).

  3. Build a robust technological solution to ensure high scalability. 

  4. Continue improving the value proposition, with other products like salary calculator, company profile/review system, career pathway mapping, online courses etc. 

  5. Find solutions for assessing skills which are tough to assess online.

  6. Find a solution for verifying users’ ID, academic background, work experience  

Next years target: 

  1. Find the product-market fit and settle on a comfortable pricing strategy. 

  2. Establish partnerships with major every major stakeholder (national/international) involved in skill development and youth employment in Bangladesh. 

  3. Reach the monthly active users (MAU) goal of 100,000. 

  4. Improve user experience based on user feedback.

  5. Keep participants engaged with relevant and timely content and data.

  6. Continue improving the value proposition, e.g. online mentoring solution, variety of skill tests, etc.

  7. Establish a rigorous vetting process for service providers.

  8. Reduce churn (esp service providers for career guidance and test makers)

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What are the barriers that currently exist for you to accomplish your goals for the next year and for the next five years?

Macro factor, which shapes the ecosystem and is considered a barrier for the next 5 years

  1. Financial

    1. Though the rise of seed funds in Bangladesh is very promising, there is a lack of local institutional funds for later rounds of VC investments. The number of seasoned investors who can mentor local entrepreneurs to build global multi-million dollar businesses is also low. 

    2. Though we remain tax-exempt due to being a tech startup, filing tax reports and VAT docs is still laborious process which takes a lot of unnecessary time. 

  2. Technical/Cultural:

    1. Local talents are scarce and expensive. Few want to take the risk to join a startup. 

  3. Market: 

    1. At a large market of Medium and Affluent Consumer or MAC (80%) is limited to two major cities like Dhaka and Chittagong

    2. Employers do not have a clear understanding of what kind of skills/qualities to expect from fresh employees


Micro factor, which we can try to solve and considered as a barrier for the next one year: 

  1. Financial: 

    1. Limitation of a good social impact fund/ investment. 

  2. Market: 

    1. Yet to achieve product-market fit and a good pricing strategy for this price-sensitive market. 

  3. Cultural

    1. Copycat culture of ideas. 

  4. Technical

    1. Lack of a verification system for user ID, academic background, work experience.   

    2. Assuring quality of the professionals/service providers.  

    3. Lack of a strategy for constant content supply for the users. 

    4. Lack of a fraud detection system. 

    5. Lack of quality online course and training providers.

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How are you planning to overcome these barriers?

Probable solutions to the Macro factors, 

  1. Financial: 

    1. Possibly bootstrap in the long run and build a sustainable business before going for Series A funding from VCs.  If we seek investments from regional investors, India or Singapore can be a viable option. Meanwhile on-board country’s few best seasoned investors as advisors.

    2. Get help on VAT/tax issues from a 3rd party service provider 

  2. Technical/Cultural:
    Build in-house talent pool. CareerKi itself is a human capital development company, so within the next 5 years it shall have the best HR practices and skill development strategies in Bangladesh to retain, if not all, few of the best minds of the country.
  3. Market: 

    1. According to BCG report of 2015, by 2025 medium and affluent consumers (MAC) population will be available in several major cities across Bangladesh. Our strategy will be to maintain the dominance in Dhaka and Chittagong, and then expand to other cities and towns. 
    2. Work closely with HR associations and HR teams across companies to standardize competencies expected in jobs.


Micro factor, which we can try to solve: 

  1. Market: 

    1. Find product-market fit ASAP and a good pricing strategy for this price-sensitive market. 

  2. Cultural

    1. Anyone can program our tech but our content/career data can be the biggest entry barrier for our competitors.

  3. Technical: 

    1. Find a solution for verification of users ID, academic background, work experience.   

    2. Assurance of quality professionals/service providers.  

    3. Device a strategy for curated 3rd party content. 

    4. Establish a anti-fraud management system or a rigorous vetting process.

    5. Partner with 3rd party online course providers. 

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https://my.careerki.com/connect

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About your team

Select an option below:

For-Profit
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If you selected Other for the organization question, please explain here.

NA

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How many people work on your solution team?

6 full time. 

  • 1 full stack developer
  • 1 front end developer
  • 1 UI/UX Designer
  • 1 Team lead 
  • 1 Content lead
  • 1 Operations
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For how many years have you been working on your solution?

1.5 years (18 months)

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Why are you and your team best-placed to deliver this solution?

Our team cover skills from web development, product development, fundraising, UI/UX design, data analysis, content, SEO, digital marketing, etc.

We are educated in Systems & Synthetic biology, MBA, Environmental Management & Policy, Naval Architecture, CSE and Multimedia Studies. 

Our founding team consists of problem solvers, avid learners and risk-takers. Though trained from prestigious universities in Australia (University of Adelaide), France (University of Paris- 7), India (Bangalore University) and Bangladesh (BUET), we did not walk into traditional careers. 

The average work experience in the team is 3 years. 

This present team has worked together for the last 2 years and was awarded 3 USAID grants, 2 ICT Division Innovation funds. This team is working closely with USAID, A2i, Kormo (Google's Area120 Team) etc partners to solve the issue of youth employability. 

Finally, the only thing that may set us apart is the belief and vision of the company - Bangladesh can only become a developed country by developing human capital and local innovative solutions. 

Team leader, Shazzad Hossain Mukit is a synthetic biologist turned tech entrepreneur. Prior, he was a gold medalist in iGEM 2015 at Boston/MIT, winner of Genopole Young Biotech Award 2016, winner of Thought For Food Challenge 2016, cofounder of french synbio startup Unibiome (2016-17) and winner of SOS Children’s Village Bangladesh Community Award 2019.

Team achievements (for previous works): 

  1. Top 10 most promising websites in Bangladesh by G&R and Futurestartup 2016

  2. BRAC Manthan Digital Award 2016

  3. Young Bangla Award 2017

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With what organizations are you currently partnering, if any? How are you working with them?


  1. Govt ICT Division: Donor (as we won ICT division's innovation fund) 

  2. USAID: Donor (we are an awardee of 3 small grants/projects)

  3. GP Wowbox: Content distribution 

  4. ICT Division's A2i Project: Service and content distribution partner and strategic partnership.

  5. Kormo: Content and co-marketing partner (Google's Area120)

  6. Payment gateway partner: Portwallet


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Your business model & funding

What is your business model?

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CareerKi's business model will be based on three types of users: 

  1. Customers: Young graduates/Youth

    1. CareerKi Test
      Different skill assessment tests will be sold on the platform. Upon successfully passing these tests, they will be added to the user’s digital profile as verified skills. Recruiters will be able to match with them based on these skills.

      Pricing: Starting from zero to max a few hundred takas depending on the tests.

    2. CareerKi Connect
      CareerKi Connect is a service platform for career guidance and networking where users can connect with professionals for a session (0.5 to 1 hour) and get predetermined services (CV review, mock interview, career guidance etc) in exchange for fees. Users can find and book a suitable professional. 

      Pricing: 25% transaction fee on each successful connect session. Price ranges from BDT500 to BDT2000 depending on online or offline sessions and the hourly charge decided by individual mentors/professionals.


  2. Customers: HR managers

    CareerKi Talent: Skill based talent solutions for employers. Here recruiters can find their desired talent through a search tool based on skills, education, etc.

    Pricing: Monthly/yearly subscription fee for a particular number of profiles to surf or pay-as-you-go strategy for every successful match/recruitment. 
  3. Customer: General Users (including both 1 and 2 types of customers)

    CareerKi Content Feed: Personalized or industry specific general blogs/articles on career related topics.

    Pricing: Manually managed 3rd party advertisement relevant to the topic. E.g., training institutes, academic institutes, HR recruitment notifications, etc

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What is your path to financial sustainability?

We will adopt a combination of several strategies including- revenue, equity and donor fund. We will launch our products/services after 30th September (as per project agreement with the USAID we were not allowed to generate any revenue, during the project period). 

With our own funds, we can sustain ourselves till Jan/Feb 2020. Considering our projection, we cannot reach break-even by the end of next year. So we will raise equity fund or our pre-seed/seed round so that it can sustain us for at least a year. We will also seek additional donor funds to experiment with innovative interventions to increase the employability of Bangladeshi youth.

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Partnership potential

Why are you applying to the Tiger Challenge?

Help we can get from Tiger Challenge:

  1. Recognition: 
    If our solution is selected, it itself is a recognition of our innovative solution for a major local challenge which also matches with one of the main agendas of Tiger Challenge- skill development and youth employment. It is also an acknowledgement of importance to help youths through every step of their career journey - Inform them, guide them, assess them to upskill and match their skills with recruiters.

    This recognition will create awareness among local communities on the importance of these interventions at every step of building meaningful careers and creating economic opportunities for youth. 

  2. Financial:
    As we are raising our first round of investment (seed), being selected for the Tiger challenge can be a smart way to raise money without compromising equity.

  3. Technical/Cultural:
    Tiger challenge can help us to recruit/attract a few of the best talents to work with us to solve one of the major problems of Bangladesh. We will immediately get access to the best local and international mentors to solve the problem together.

  4. Market:
    Winning Tiger Challenge can help us to make connections with major HR teams across multiple industries to test the “Careerki Talent” solution for recruiters.  

  5. Technical:
    One major help we can get from the Tiger challenge is to help us with technical solutions for these problems. 

  • Find a solution for verification of users’ ID, academic background, work experience.    

  • Establish an anti-fraud management system or a vetting system.

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What types of connections and partnerships would be most catalytic for your solution?

  • Business model
  • Technology
  • Funding & revenue model
  • Talent or board members
  • Media & speaking opportunities
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If you selected Other, please explain here.

NA

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With what organizations would you like to partner, and how would you like to partner with them?

Potential partners-

Content distribution/marketing channel: 

  • GP/Robi/BanglaLink/10MS

Content/course partner:

IT tech solutions: 

  • Tiger IT Pvt Ltd (particularly to find a solution for verification of users’ ID, academic background, work experience.)

Incubation/Space:

  • Startup Bangladesh (ICT Division, BD Govt.)

Outreach: 

  • Labour Ministry/Education ministry/TVET authorities (to find opportunity how to incorporate career support system among technical and general schools and colleges.)

  • National Skills Development Authority (NSDA): Bangladesh participated in World Skills Competition for the first time in 2019, from now on NSDA will conduct nationwide skills competitions every year. CareerKi wants to be a partner of these events to raise awareness on skills required in different careers. 

  • Tiger IT Foundation 

Technical Support on competency/skills data and assessments, and consultancy

  • National Technical and Vocational Qualification Framework (NTVQF) (Bangladesh)

  • International Labor Organization

  • World Bank

  • US Department Of Labour/Employment, Training and Administration  (USDOL/ETA): To share their experience and expertise on developing O*net and Myskillsmyfuture for US. 

Mentorship

  • MIT SOLVE

  • Tiger IT foundation

  • Bangladeshi Tech Angels/Investors (SBK Tech ventures, Bangladesh Angels, etc)

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Solution Team

 
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