It’s easy to think that innovation in the tech industry is driven by the FAANGs of the world — companies with well-publicized, lofty goals and seemingly unlimited resources.

Of course, these companies haven’t cornered the market on ambition. Not by a long shot, in fact.

Take Unlearn, an artificial intelligence company developing digital twins to help speed up clinical trials. That’s groundbreaking work itself, but the company’s moonshot goal is nothing short of revolutionary: creating a single artificial intelligence model that can eventually forecast health outcomes for anyone in the world. 

Human resources tech company Personio has equally audacious plans. Europe is home to more than 1.7 million small and medium-sized businesses, and the company sees them all as potential customers.

Construction industry software maker HCSS doesn’t have its sights set on upending healthcare or becoming a major force in Europe. Its ambition is turned inward — set on turning a single department into a “talent factory” that enables rapid scaling without the need for constant hiring.

What these three companies have in common is that they aren’t waiting to start work toward their big goals. Unlearn, Personio and HCSS all see 2024 as a transformative time and are hiring to ensure they hit their goals — for next year and beyond.

 

Maria Angelidou-Smith 
Chief Product and Technology Officer  • Personio

Personio’s platform is designed to enable HR teams at small and medium-sized companies to do more, whether that’s bringing payroll in-house or fully managing recruiting.

 

What major changes are you anticipating for Personio in 2024?

Personio is gearing up for a transformative year. In 2024, we’ll launch new products such as native payroll, compensation management and surveys, as well as AI-powered capabilities to help HR teams be more productive and get access to deeper insights on key people trends. In response to growing customer demands, we’ve expanded by opening a new office in the heart of New York and are actively growing our team. 

Whether it’s through new product offerings, platform enhancements or our growing presence, we’re dedicated to supporting our customers in navigating the ever-changing landscape of workplace trends and challenges in the years ahead.

 

“In response to growing customer demands, we’ve expanded witha new office in the heart of New York and are actively growing our team.”

 

What’s the biggest challenge your team faces in regard to that shift, and how are you working to overcome it? 

I lead the product and technology teams at Personio, so a big part of my role is to ensure the development of high-quality products for our customers — at speed. Our rapid growth means we’re often building the plane while flying it, which involves onboarding lots of new team members while putting in place the required systems for scaling, all while making sure we deliver exceptional value and impact for customers.

To do this, we are investing in developing and growing our workforce. We are also welcoming diverse leaders with fresh perspectives and extensive scaling experience to our team. 

 

What impact do you anticipate this change will have on your business? What about your industry? 

There are 1.7 million small and medium-sized organizations in Europe, and we currently serve 0.4 percent of them. We are only at the very beginning of our journey. With the global talent shortage being a significant trend, our focus on attracting, retaining and enhancing the employee experience through our platform offers significant benefits for small and medium-sized organizations. 

Furthermore, our dedication to delivering modern, intuitive and user-friendly products will set new industry standards, meeting the expectations of growing generations in the workforce, including Gen Z.
 

 

George Melvin 
Head of Platform  • Unlearn.AI

Unlearn uses artificial intelligence-generated digital twins to help pharmaceutical companies conduct smaller,more efficient clinical trials.
 

What major changes are you anticipating for Unlearn in 2024?

Unlearn is on a mission to advance AI to eliminate trial and error in medicine. This entails making clinical trials faster so that the next generation of treatments are available to patients sooner. We’ve already released novel AI-powered digital twin technology that can reliably be used to reduce the size of clinical trial control groups in a growing number of disease areas. 

Since our founding, Unlearn has been at the forefront of AI research and development in healthcare. We’ve built data products from messy, non-standardized historical clinical trial data in multiple disease areas that have powered the development of AI models — which we call digital twin generators — that model disease progression in control-arm participants. In 2024, we’re doubling down and scaling our efforts horizontally by supporting clinical trials in more disease areas and vertically by including more quality data to build better AI models. 

This will include powering our digital twin generator assembly line with a rich, exceptionally high-quality source of longitudinal clinical data. And then there’s our moonshot: developing a universal digital twin generator. This is a big, bold goal and achieving it won’t be easy, but we are up for the challenge.
 

“We believe that we can develop a single AI model that can forecast the future health outcomes of anyone.”

 

What’s the biggest challenge your team faces in regard to that shift, and how are you working to overcome it?

I’m responsible for building a group of talented software engineers who will deliver our digital twin technology directly to customers. This means engineering robust systems and applications that securely expose our expanding AI-powered technology suite to users and realize value to our business. 

Our challenges include establishing and maintaining trust with our customers’ data, engineering a stellar user experience when serving AI products and developing systems that are nimble enough to stay aligned with the pace of our R&D efforts. I’m hyper-aware of the challenge of building a strong team that’s able to execute, deliver and grow together. 

We’ve established a core group of engineers who I’m excited to grow with, and I believe we will overcome all challenges if we focus on finding people with the right attitude, “people who give a s***,” as our general counsel put it. We need people who are willing to adapt, are obsessively focused on building for the customer; value technical competency and accountability, and are willing to take the initiative. 
 

What impact do you anticipate this change will have on your business? What about your industry? 

As a growing, venture-backed business, Unlearn’s existence depends on our ability to establish market fit. We believe that making our customers feel like they can’t imagine a world without our digital twin technology is a path toward success. Accelerating how and where our technology can be used to solve customer problems and drive faster decision-making in clinical trials will move us several steps in that direction and be transformative to how all clinical trials are conducted.
 

 

Jordan Real
Director of Support Services • HCSS

HCSS develops software to help construction companies streamline their operations.


What major changes are you anticipating for HCSS in 2024?

Real: We anticipate a year of dramatic growth. Scaling the business will be crucial for maintaining operational, customer support and process excellence. Departments like professional services, customer success, development and even sales want to hire internally from support. This year, we are on track to promote almost 25 percent of our support staff into other departments. Due to the success we’ve seen from HCSS support being a “talent factory,” hiring and training support techs has to be handled strategically. 

We are excited to move exclusively to cohort hiring for technical support analysts so they can be trained and onboarded as a class, allowing our new hires to make connections with others who are also working through our world-class technical support onboarding program. This allows us to get talent in the door more efficiently, getting them on the phones and supporting our customers more quickly. 

 

“We anticipate a year of dramatic growth.”

 

Courtney Brown
Director of Talent • HCSS

 

What’s the biggest challenge your team faces in regard to that shift, and how are you working to overcome it? 

Brown: I lead both the talent acquisition and talent development teams at HCSS. My talent acquisition team is responsible for executing large hiring events several times a year where we invite candidates to our beautiful campus in Sugar Land, Texas, to interview and highlight our people-first culture. On the talent development side, we are excited to partner with our employees and their managers on development plans and programs to assist in achieving career growth. 

The biggest challenge we face here is the amount of promotions happening out of our support team: It’s hard to keep up on the recruiting side! Therefore, moving toward large hiring events rather than individual recruiting efforts creates a better and faster experience for both our candidates and hiring managers.

 

What impact do you anticipate this change will have on your business? What about your industry? 

Real: Other departments are able to pull fully trained and customer-centric talent from support, and they can be effective in their new roles almost immediately rather than requiring a considerable amount of product onboarding. Also, providing career growth opportunities goes a long way in increasing employee satisfaction. It’s comforting to know that the company values your skills and wants to help you get promoted rather than always hiring mid to high-level roles externally.

 

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