AI-Powered TechWolf Raises $43M for Internal Talent Management

TechWolf Raises $43M for Internal Talent Management

Layoffs continue to impact the technology sector, but with the increasing demand for tech talent, there’s a growing focus on managing internal talent. A startup from Ghent, Belgium called TechWolf is addressing this need with a unique approach.

It has developed an AI engine that analyzes data from internal workflows to understand employees’ interests and skills better. This data helps managers and recruiters connect employees with suitable projects and provide better training.

TechWolf has garnered attention with its technology, attracting customers like GSK, HSBC, and Booking.com. The company recently raised nearly $43 million ($42.75 million) in funding to expand its business.

TechWolf Company

London-based Felix Capital led this Series B round, with SAP, ServiceNow, and Workday co-investing together for the first time. Other investors include Acadian Ventures, Fortino Capital Partners, Notion Capital, SemperVirens, and 20VC, along with unnamed “AI leaders” from DeepMind and Meta. The startup is now valued at around $150 million.

CEO Andreas De Neve co-founded TechWolf with Jeroen Van Hautte and Mikaël Wornoo in 2018 while they were computer science students at the University of Ghent and Cambridge in England.

Initially, they aimed to build an HR platform to help source and hire external talent using their own language model. However, this approach failed as employers didn’t need AI to filter applicants. Instead, their target customers highlighted the need to identify the skills of existing employees.

De Neve explained, “They asked if our AI model could be used on their employees instead of applicants to recruit internally. HR leaders pointed us to the real problem: identifying employee skills.”

This issue of understanding employees’ roles is significant in large organizations. De Neve noted, “You can have 100,000 employees who are all capable and generate a lot of data, but companies know very little about them structurally. That’s what we set out to solve.”

TechWolf's AI Models

TechWolf’s AI models integrate with systems like project trackers and documentation repositories to infer employee skills from their digital activities. This approach addresses key market trends:

  • Innovators’ Dilemma: The book “The Innovator’s Dilemma” explains how large companies can be disrupted by smaller, more agile businesses. The ability to form flexible teams around projects is crucial, and organizations are willing to invest in technology that helps with this.
  • LLM vs. MLM vs. SLM: While large language models generate buzz with applications like ChatGPT, there’s a growing interest in smaller language models for specific use cases. These models are less complex, easier to build, and less prone to errors. TechWolf is part of this trend, focusing on a specific use case.
  • Focus Matters: De Neve emphasized that TechWolf is dedicated to solving the skills problem and has no plans to expand into areas like enterprise search or business intelligence. The company’s focus on processing data to solve this specific issue has attracted investors.

Julien Codorniou, the partner at Felix Capital who led this deal, believes TechWolf’s focused approach will help it outmaneuver larger competitors. He stated, “Doing one thing well can really pay off. They don’t want to be Workday or ServiceNow. They want to be the Switzerland of the HR department.”

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