Beta Byte: Homi

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Beta Byte is a series underwritten by Bust Out Solutions for that early stage tech found somewhere between idea and traction.

What is the name of the company and/or product? Where is it found online?

Homi is short for Humans of My Institution and you can find us at www.homi.io.

What problem does this solve?

We started Homi to help our friends find jobs. Companies want to hire students but can’t find them and students want jobs but don’t know what they want to do. Homi is a student-alumni Q&A platform that helps students meet alumni and learn more about careers. We built algorithms to aggregate networking data and quantify characteristics like hustle, grit and intellectual curiosity. We then use this data to help employers find smart and motivated candidates who would be a good fit for their organization.

What is the full launch/release date planned?

We are currently only at Carleton but will be opening the app up to early adopter schools via our Campus Ambassadors program in early September.

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Who is on the team?
Philip Xiao (CEO)
Adam Canady (CTO)
Robert Lord (Lead Designer)
Matt Cotter (Database Engineer)
Young Lee (Head of Marketing and Gamification)
Jiatao Cheng (Lead Mobile Developer)

What is the specific technology or combination of technologies is used?

Homi is powered by Node.js and uses MongoDB for data persistence. Test driven development drives our engineering methodology. Our responsive web layout emphasizes use on mobile and desktop browsers, but our RESTful API allows for upcoming native apps on both iOS and Android to engage users on the go with push notifications and mobile interactions.

We are working with IP lawyers to patent our algorithms and site features.

What is the size/scope of your market and how will you scale?

We built a two sided marketplace. On one hand we create connections between students and alumni to generate content. On the other, we work with corporate clients to help them source talent from non-target schools. We will start at a couple early adopter schools in the Midwest before expanding to every university in the country. In terms of clients, we hope to work with a wide range of industries, ranging from business/finance to tech to media.

What is your revenue model?

We do not charge students, alumni or colleges. Instead, we monetize by creating a recruiting tool that allows employers to hire from schools where they would not traditionally recruit. Employers can purchase an annual subscription and view candidates from every school on the Homi platform.

What is your greatest strength?

We understand college kids. Many students see networking in a negative light and think that it involves building shallow relationships just to get a job. We are on a mission to show that networking is about meeting incredible new people and hearing their stories. We incorporate game elements like badges, achievements and points to make it exciting to engage alumni on the site. By doing so, we rebrand networking into something dynamic and exciting.

What is your biggest weakness?

We recognize that our age and lack of track record might raise eyebrows. We have taken measures to mitigate these risks by putting together an advisory board that will offer support and mentorship as we build the company.

What is one resource you could use that would take this to the next level?

Mentorship. This experience has been a steep learning curve and we are excited to meet new people and learn from them.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

Homi started as a way to meet cool alumni and help our friends find jobs. After 2 months, we have over 400 users, 7 kids in jobs/internships and just got the first check of our seed round. We moved into Homi HQ in Uptown where we live and work together and are hard at work building something that people will love.

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