Applyr, the AI startup that will bring radical innovation to the recruitment process

Applyr, the AI startup that will bring radical innovation to the recruitment process

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Applyr is a Dutch AI startup that tries to solve a number of issues regarding candidate recruitment processes in corporations. The company uses multi-lingual chatbots and machine learning to engage with, pre-select and schedule interviews with job candidates. 

Foundation of Applyr

Applyr was founded with the financial support of Amsterdam startup studio VentureBuilders. The startup is managed by an experienced international team of four; Steve Parkins (founder of MyDeliChef; former derivatives trader at BP and Axpo Trading), Michael DeFazio (award-winning designer and product strategist), Rense VanderHoek (highly experienced tech leader, full-stack developer and systems architect) and Jennifer Boulanger (acclaimed talent acquisition executive, consultant and speaker; former Head of Recruitment at

Paul Montagne, CEO of VentureBuilders, initially introduced the four individuals. CEO and co-founder Steve Parkins stated the following about him: “Paul Montagne is very skilled at identifying the complementary skills required to build strong founding teams.” Parkins continued stating that after a number of months of working together on the foundations of their product and commercial proposition, they felt the time was right to found Applyr.


According to co-founder Jennifer Boulanger, unmanageable volumes of applications are currently overwhelming recruiters. Because of this, they are unable to focus on the right candidates. She also states the following rather catchy: “Applyr manages the quantity, so the recruiter can focus on quality.” Corporate recruiters will be able to perform their duties more efficiently.

But the candidate experience will also become a lot better. According to Steve Parkins, the chatbots are designed to deliver a uniquely personalized conversation and provide the most “human” candidate experience possible. “Candidates deserve better than a ‘black-hole experience.'” Candidates currently have to endure issues like long wait times, email ping-pong or no response at all.

What’s different?

So what is different about Applyr’s chatbots? Most chatbots heavily rely on third-party platforms such as Facebook Messenger. In contrast, Applyr’s chatbots integrate directly with the hiring company’s careers website and applicant tracking system. This way, candidates will avoid the often uncomfortable overlap between their private life and their job applications.

Secondly, the chatbots are configured to reflect the employer’s unique brand and culture. This was stated by Michael DeFazio, VP of Product and Design and co-founder of Applyr. the chatbots can be consistently used by “global organizations who communicate in multiple languages over a range of markets.”

Acquiring Top Talent

But the most important and interesting part of Applyr is its ability to learn from previous interactions. Rense VanDerHoek, CTO and co-founder of Applyr, states the following: “Our machine learning capabilities won’t just enhance chatbot performance; they will also advise the company on how to improve its hiring processes and acquire top talent.”

While Applyr deals with the overwhelming quantities of applications, it will perform even better after each interaction. It will also be able to advise corporate recruiters themselves during recruitment processes. Applyr recently began demos with a number of big-brand corporate clients and pilot partners in Europe and North America, ahead of a full commercial roll-out scheduled for late 2017.

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