18 June 2024

From Classroom to Silicon Valley: how Joinrs is revolutionising Talent Recruitment

Joinrs - POLIMI GSoM

In an inspiring journey from the academic corridors of an Executive MBA to the bustling innovation hub of Silicon Valley, Gabriele and Patrizia have steered Joinrs into the spotlight as one of the world's top ten startups. Representing Joinrs at the Global Conference in San Francisco, these visionary professionals share their remarkable story of growth and innovation.

Their paths crossed during a cross-class event, sparking a collaboration that would lead to the evolution of Joinrs.com. Leveraging their combined expertise — Gabriele's entrepreneurial spirit and Patrizia's extensive HR experience — they embarked on a mission to revolutionise the recruitment process for recent graduates and junior professionals. Their platform, enhanced by artificial intelligence, now boasts over 700,000 users and serves more than 300 companies worldwide. Recognised among the top ten startups at the 2023 Web Summit in Lisbon, Joinrs continues to scale new heights. This dynamic duo's story is a testament to the power of education, networking, and innovative thinking in driving entrepreneurial success.

Gabriele and Patrizia, you have recently attended the Global Conference in San Francisco representing Joinrs, one of the top ten startups worldwide: can you tell us about your journey from the Executive MBA to Silicon Valley?

Gabriele attended the 2019-2021 edition of the Executive EMBA, while I was enrolled in the 2020-2022 edition. During a cross-class accessible to all different courses, we connected. Gabriele thought it could be useful to involve a profile like mine, with many years of experience in the HR field, in his adventure as a partner of an HR Tech startup.

So, in the spring of 2021, we started working together on the growth strategy of Joinrs.com, putting into practice all the knowledge we had gained during the EMBA! Together with the other Co-founders and the team, we evolved the platform by incorporating artificial intelligence and began the scaling phase at international level.

More than 700,000 recent graduates and junior profiles, mainly from engineering, science, and business backgrounds, use our AI model-based app to launch their professional careers.

And more then 300 companies are using Joinrs to recruit their young talents.

In autumn 2023, Joinrs was recognised among the top 10 startups in the world at the Web Summit in Lisbon. In March this year, we closed an investment round of €1.7m and are continuing our growth in Italy while scaling globally. In April, we attended the Startup Grind in Silicon Valley and now we have been selected, among the best 100 startups in the world, for the South Summit Madrid 2024 competition, in the category "Future of Work and Talent."

Among all the competencies, knowledge, and skills you acquired during the Executive MBA, which have been most supportive of your entrepreneurial growth?

Among all the competencies, knowledge, and skills we acquired during the Executive MBA, several have been particularly supportive in our entrepreneurial growth. We agree that the entrepreneurial track was fundamental for us, as we attended courses on lean startup, digital transformation, strategy, and innovation strategy.

The lean startup course taught us how to efficiently develop and test our business model, focusing on rapid iteration and validated learning. This approach has been crucial in helping us quickly pivot and adapt our strategies based on real market feedback, minimizing waste, and maximizing our chances of success.

Understanding the principles and technologies driving digital transformation allowed us to leverage the latest tools and trends to enhance our platform. This knowledge has been vital in staying ahead of the curve and ensuring that our business remains competitive in a fast-evolving digital landscape.

The strategy courses provided us with frameworks to develop long-term plans and make strategic decisions. This has been essential in setting a clear direction for the company, aligning our team’s efforts, and ensuring that all our actions contribute to our overarching goals.

The innovation strategy courses equipped us with the skills to foster a culture of innovation within our organization. We learned how to systematically approach innovation, from ideation to implementation, which has helped us continually improve our product and stay relevant in the market.

Finally, we gained a deeper understanding of the complexities of managing and optimizing a two-sided platform. Learning how to balance the needs of both sides of the platform, and strategies for scaling and monetizing it, has been particularly beneficial as we grew Joinrs.

These courses, combined with the practical application of their concepts, have provided us with a robust toolkit to navigate the entrepreneurial journey. They have enabled us to build a solid foundation for our startup, optimize our operations, and drive sustainable growth.

Have the relations and connections developed thanks to the school network added value to your business?

The relationships and connections developed thanks to the school network have added incredible value to our business. Not only did we start working together, but we also brought in advisors and consultants from the EMBA programme, enriching our team with their expertise and insights. Furthermore, we had the opportunity to present our platform to many managers we met during our respective courses. These managers introduced our platform to the companies they work for, helping us gain traction and credibility in the market. Their valuable feedback has been instrumental in refining our product and strategy, ensuring that we meet the evolving needs of our clients and stay ahead in the competitive landscape. The network has truly been a catalyst for our growth and success, providing us with a wealth of knowledge, connections, and opportunities.

What suggestions would you give to our students and alumni who aspire to an entrepreneurial adventure?

For students and alumni aspiring to an entrepreneurial adventure, here are some suggestions.

First, leverage your network. Make the most of the connections you develop during your studies. The relationships you build with classmates, professors, and industry professionals can open doors to valuable resources, advice, and opportunities. In your network, seek out mentors who have experience in your industry or in entrepreneurship. Their guidance can help you avoid common pitfalls and make more informed decisions.

Then, build a strong team. Surround yourself with people who complement your skills and share your vision. A diverse team with a range of expertise can drive innovation and help you tackle challenges more effectively.

Of course, you also must validate your ideas: before fully committing to your business idea, ensure there is a market need for it. Conduct thorough market research, seek feedback from potential customers, and be ready to pivot based on what you learn.

Entrepreneurship also requires a broad skill set and the ability to adapt quickly. So, you need to stay curious and committed to learning, whether through formal education, mentorship, or self-study.

Entrepreneurship is filled with highs and lows. Develop resilience and stay committed to your goals, even when faced with setbacks. Learn from failures and use them as steppingstones to success.

Finally, entrepreneurship is not just about the destination but also about the journey. Therefore, enjoy the process, celebrate small wins, and stay passionate about what you’re building.

18 June 2024

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