Uplers: managing the talent of today and tomorrow

CXOToday has engaged in an exclusive interview with Nital Shah, COO at Uplers.


  1. Uplers have emerged as one of the leading tech talent matchmaking firms. So, what is the success recipe behind this?

Uplers is a talent matchmaking platform that attracts India’s top technology and digital talent, vets them thoroughly for technical and communication skills, and matches them with global companies offering full-time long-term remote jobs using machine learning signals that ensure a high-level of fitment. As a matchmaking platform, Uplers supports both talent and clients. We strike a balance between the interests of both parties. To support this, we clearly define our optimal governance practices to address the concerns of either party, thus ensuring that a gain for one side isn’t a pain for another. Our vision is to uplift everyone associated with the business including our people, clients, talent, partners, and the society at large. We also support client companies and the deployed talent with payment processing, legal and compliance, HR activities, and Learning and Development. Uplers Talent Success Coaches, assigned to each deployed talent, ensure that the talent has all the support needed to succeed in the client’s mission. Uplers focuses exclusively on Indian talent, and primarily on full-time and long-term job opportunities. Additionally, Uplers Community has thousands of highly engaged Indian tech and digital talent wherein Uplers supports this community through networking, upskilling, guest lectures and other programs that prepare them for global remote careers. With nearly a million engaged tech and digital professionals as followers on Social Media, regularly awarded as a top employer brand by Great Places To Work and LinkedIn, its popular workations, and the full-remote set-up, Uplers truly offers a one of a kind value proposition. Our hundreds of clients and talents are proof of that. Having said that, we have a long way to go. But, if anything, we owe our small and big successes to simply having the empathy and perseverance to deeply understand the pain points of our audience and working with focus in the right direction. We now have a clear understanding of the product-market fitment, and are well poised for a sharp growth curve.

  1. What changes have been made in response to changes in the remote working landscape since your company’s inception?

Indeed, remote work practices have evolved over the past few years. Partly influenced by the pandemic and partly by our conviction for the model, we took the decision to go fully-remote. We certainly believe it works, and like any other model organizations have to make intentional efforts to make it work most effectively. And here is where organizational culture plays a key role. We have invested in building our culture, and this is a top priority for us since it is critical in a remote setting. We believe the culture and values of an organization can truly help organizations navigate difficult times and scale at opportune moments. Agility and the ability to pivot are deeply influenced by culture. Trust is implicit in a remote setting where we know a result-focused mindset is critical to stay productive. With power comes responsibility. In this context while remote work offers the flexibility to work from anywhere, a culture of outcome oriented mindset is important to balance the autonomy that comes with the remote work model. We foster a result-focused culture with clearly defined KPIs for our people, apt measurability of success, and most of our people have strong performance based incentives. All of this helps build a mindset of ownership and accountability. To specifically answer your question, since going remote and ever since thereafter, we have had to look carefully at operational aspects like technology and collaboration tools. We have ensured that we have built practices for effective use of virtual meetings and digital whiteboards, and comfort with asynchronous communication. Respecting personal time is important too. Finally, occasional meet-ups, like our popular workations, help in retaining the in-person interactions which certainly have value.

  1. What are the industry’s challenges, and how is Uplers, as a prominent player, dealing with them?

The hiring industry deeply cares about reliability, which is to say that the selected candidate actually joins the organization and then delivers on the agreed goals. The industry also cares about simplifying the otherwise complex and tedious process of hiring. And finally given the dynamics of the age we live in, and accelerated by the pandemic, the industry cares about the speed and agility of hiring. Hence our mission is to make hiring, and getting hired, reliable, simple, and fast.

I would present the major challenges into different buckets, both for talent and clients. On the clients’ side, there are some businesses who struggle to attract a high number of quality talents hence their pool becomes very narrow. Then there are businesses who manage to attract quality talent but they struggle to screen and assess talent effectively to match their requirements. Finally there are businesses that struggle with both. Uplers solves this problem through our model. We attract a large number of quality talent, our screening and vetting process follows. Our communication and technical vetting process vets the top talent and thereafter our machine learning algorithms match the right talent with the right job opportunity. A quick interview with a fully screen talent, and the engagement commences. Post deployment support is another key aspect of our model. The hassle of sourcing and screening many candidates is eliminated hence bringing a level of convenience for both parties. Uplers promises that in most scenarios one out of two interviews will lead to a selection thus saving a lot of time for interviewing managers, and talents too.

Timely hiring also helps our clients meet their customer commitments. They are able to capture business opportunities faster and are able to deliver results that fulfill expectations of their internal and external stakeholders. Owing to our thorough vetting processes, our talent-client fitment analysis is strong. We also handhold the client and talent post matchmaking as well as during their engagement. So we don’t simply find top talent, but we stay connected to ensure the client’s end goal is met when they on-board a top Indian tech and digital talent through Uplers.

On the talent side, they simply register at Uplers, build a strong profile, and clear various assessments thus becoming vetted. This is largely a one-time effort. Talents may choose to apply to live jobs, and in addition our machine learning algorithm and our expert matchmakers work hard to find appropriate remote global jobs for the talent. It’s unlikely that the talent would have access to such jobs elsewhere. With Uplers as a facilitator, we help the talent to establish their credibility and meet the client’s requirements. We ensure that Uplers talent doesn’t have to keep looking out for new opportunities in multiple places or worry about the monthly compensation, it’s something that we take care of for them. With Uplers, Indian tech talent has amazing global opportunities where they get full-time, long-term remote jobs, earning up to 2X of their peers, and integrating directly with global clients.

  1. With a lot of big and small players entering the space, what the future really looks like?

Like every growing category, ours too has and will continue to have new entrants. We welcome that. It keeps us on our toes, forces us to innovate even faster, and in the end enables greater value for talent and companies alike. There is a lot of room for several organizations to find their niche, so to speak. There may be consolidation at a later date. But for Uplers, we have 200,000 Indian tech and digital talent at different levels of vetting and ready to be deployed, we have a million active followers on our social media platforms, and most importantly we have proved the success of the model for both talent and clients. We have only just begun.

  1. What is it that distinguishes you from your competitors?

We believe our top-quality machine learning driven matchmaking is a strong differentiator. Beyond that there are other aspects, such as our dedicated talent success coaches ensuring a smooth journey for all our talent and supporting them during and after getting deployed via Uplers. This in-turn ensures success for clients, as it helps talent deliver their best for the clients. We understand that communication and soft skills are as important as technical skills, so our multidimensional assessment tests are designed to ensure right vetting and matchmaking in terms of technical skills, soft skills, cross-culture fitment, and remote readiness. In addition, through our Community and Learning Platform, Indian tech talent have access to several learning and upskilling material, access to top quality guest lectures, and networking, to build amazing global remote careers. And that’s why more and more Indian tech and digital talent, and global companies, are choosing Uplers for amazing remote distributed work.


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