Waterloo co-op harnesses AI in predictive hiring pilot

Monday, July 30, 2018

Plum and the University of Waterloo announce partnership

Starting this fall, Co-operative and Experiential Education will be piloting Plum.io’s predictive hiring platform to help better connect co-op students with the 7,000+ employers that recruit from Waterloo each year. The Plum platform marries artificial intelligence and machine-learning with industrial organizational psychology to give hiring managers an additional, distinct dimension to predict candidates' on-the-job performance.

The objective is not to reinvent campus recruitment, but to increase recruiting success through innovative use of information available to hiring managers and campus career service personnel.

"We’ve long been dedicated to helping our students cultivate a clear sense of career direction and purpose, both of which play a big role in job satisfaction and performance," says Dianne Bader, Director of Co-operative and Experiential Education Services. “While we have excelled at helping match students with employers based on skills and knowledge, we wanted to add a dimension that captured who our students are as humans. Research, including our own here at Waterloo, has shown that human talent - things like work ethic, teamwork, leadership and creativity - is just as important as skills and knowledge when predicting job performance.”

Rolling out this summer, the partnership will initially span the following:

  • All University of Waterloo students will have the option to complete a Plum profile. By taking a 25-minute assessment test, students can learn about what makes them happy and fulfilled in their work, which work environments best suit themor and how their personality affects their job interviews.
  • All employers recruiting at the University of Waterloo will have the option to complete a Plum match criteria assessment. Plum match criteria are the behavioral job requirements that hiring managers and their teams set for a job. Match criteria - also known as a Competency Model or a talent model - outline which behaviors are most important for being successful on the job and are determined when one or more of a hiring manager's team completes a 25-minute match criteria assessment test.
  • Based in part on the intersection of match criteria and the findings of Plum assessment tests, students will be matched with open employment positions (and employers) where there is a high predictive degree that they will succeed based on qualities that make them unique.

"We're really excited about launching this partnership with the University of Waterloo. Thanks to funding from the Build in Canada Innovation Program, employers can now quantify students' potential for success in their unique roles," said Caitlin McGregor, co-founder and CEO, Plum. "Employers will be able to understand students' ability to execute, be innovative and work well on teams. This is unparalleled insight that Waterloo is uniquely positioned to offer their employers. Together, the University of Waterloo and Plum can provide the data and insights to help companies build agile, innovative and collaborative workforces."

If you have any questions about this pilot, please reach out to Sharon Kimberley.