Jumpstart, which describes itself as a diversity recruitment platform, announced its rebranding as Canvas. The company also said it closed $20 million in new funding led by Lachy Groom and Sequoia Capital, with participation from Four Rivers Capital. According to TechCrunch, the investment brings Canvas’s total funding to $32.5 million.

Canvas intends to use the investment to expand its platform into industries and verticals beyond technology, and address the recruiting process for the later stages of people’s careers. The company currently has 70 employees and expects to have 100 by the end of 2021.

Canvas said its platform is showing “strong signs of momentum” and turning in 3X revenue growth year-on-year. Customers include Airbnb, Bloomberg, Coinbase, Lyft, Pinterest, Audible and Stripe.

Diversity and Accountability

“We have finally entered an era where companies are being held accountable for their promises of equity and hiring diverse talent,” said CEO Ben Herman. He called Canvas, “the only platform that helps CEOs and hiring managers to truly walk the walk on diversity, equity and inclusion.”

The Canvas Diversity Recruiting Platform is a fully virtual product that’s based on self-reported data. By foregoing inferred data that could be inaccurate—or illegal—it helps create a more accurate data set to help identify diverse candidates. The company said 56% of all hires on the platform are made from underrepresented groups.

The platform also provides diversity analytics throughout the employer’s pipeline to help them identify possible problem areas and make corrections. Candidates can apply to one company, then get exposure and be considered by other Canvas customers. This can help put diverse candidates in front of more potential employers. The Canvas platform includes filters to make it easier and faster to review applications.

Herman told TechCrunch that artificial intelligence isn’t one of the platform’s conceits. “We don’t believe that AI is the future. It’s not about getting someone’s gender or ethnicity based off of their name, or to inform the hiring decision without candidates knowing,” he said. “It’s all about how to empower talent to self-identify…We want to enable the talent to own their data, and truly be able to represent themselves in unique ways. That’s not leveraging AI.”

Mark Feffer

Mark Feffer is executive editor of RecruitingDaily and the HCM Technology Report. He’s written for TechTarget, HR Magazine, SHRM, Dice Insights, TLNT.com and TalentCulture, as well as Dow Jones, Bloomberg and Staffing Industry Analysts. He likes schnauzers, sailing and Kentucky-distilled beverages.


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