[THE INVESTOR] Korean startup Aroundus has rolled out an eponymous website for the talented, but often underrepresented in the job market, namely students and freelancers.
The job-searching service is roughly tailored after existing platforms such as LinkedIn, but the similarities stop at the surface, according to founder and CEO Daniel Sung-jin Kim.
“Most global, cross-industry job searching platforms usually work in favor of regular workers who have a wealth of experience and are graduates of prestigious universities. They’re also mostly text-based, meaning that people with experience in acting, for instance, have a tough time showing exactly what they can do,” said Kim.
Aroundus is designed to fill that gap, and to give irregular workers and students -- particularly those serving in arts, culture, media and entertainment industries -- a chance to optimize their resumes. Actors and singers, for instance, can post clips of their performances. Employers on the other hand, can look up people with a specific talent, such as German-speaking actors with a French accent.
The database is also designed so that people can look each other up without knowing their exact names. Nicknames, or words depicting the talent they need, such as “cute” or “singer” are enough.
Another pain point that Aroundus hopes to address is certification. On the platform, people who have worked together can certify each other’s project and employment experiences. This is something that is presently close to impossible for freelancers or nonpermanent workers.
Touching on future plans, Kim said that Aroundus will eventually evolve from its current SNS-like form to adopt technology such as machine learning and artificial intelligence.
Aroundus founder and CEO Daniel Sung-jin Kim
“Our goal is to create the best people data base out there,” Kim said. “We also hope to help create an optimized job market where the right people can be matched with the right employers.”
Aroundus launched its commercial services on May 2 after a demo session with over 100 drama school students at Chung-Ang University’s Department of Theater in mid-April. The two sides are now discussing an MOU.
The platform is currently available in Korean language only, but an English version will be added in a few weeks.
Founder Kim graduated from the MIT Sloan School of Management. He has worked at LG Display and Google.
By Kim Young-won (firstname.lastname@example.org)