While the crisis in the Middle East, which has recently led to a flow of refugees into Europe, has led to a considerable amount of tension and anger, there are some who are trying to make the best of the situation. This has typically included providing the newcomers with food and water, or even housing, but one Austrian startup, called Refugees Work, is going a step further by connecting these refugees with companies, NGOs, and public institutions, in an attempt to get them working.
The platform that they have designed allows refugees to sign-in and find work with just one click, as well as give employers the ability to sift through potential employees, based on characteristics like background/skills, language proficiency, place of residence, and asylum status. To aid employers, the team at Refugees Work has developed an algorithm designed to create optimal connections.
In addition to simply functioning as a job platform, Refugees Work says that they are aiming to stand out by providing easy-to-understand legal information and necessary documents to refugees, helping to integrate refugees into organizations (providing downloads with info on language and communications, cultural knowledge, and technical knowledge), and offering an online messaging platform and calendar.
In terms of revenue, Refugees Work has opted for a fee-based model, taking an annual fee from employers. What is interesting here is that, while they intend to charge larger employers 500 Euro for the privilege of using the platform, they are allowing smaller companies (up to 15 employees) to decide how much they would like to pay.
Refugees Work does not intend to formally launch for another 3 weeks, but did have a soft launch a few weeks ago and says that they have connected with about 1,000 refugees and 130 employers (primarily companies).
The startup tells me that they have not obtained external funding at this point.