Vahed Qazvinian and Ken Klein are the co-founders of Praisidio, a talent risk management startup based in San Francisco. We talked to Vahed (CTO) and Ken (CEO) about Praisidio and what it’s like working with Commit.
Can you tell us about the origins of Praisidio and your area of focus?
Ken: Vahed and I met in mid-2019 and we founded Praisidio in late 2019, after a lot of ideation and talking with literally hundreds of customers. Our product, Procaire, is a talent risk management and intelligence system of action solution, helping companies do a better job of caring for their employees at scale and improving retention. By gathering system metadata in the enterprise, and applying A.I., we detect talent risk months in advance and provide actionable insights into areas like work, compensation, connection, growth and recognition. Talent retention activities are subsequently workflowed within Procaire, which ultimately improve employee work life and protect the enterprise.
What role were you hoping to fill when you came to Commit?
Vahed:We had a very particular role in mind: a backend Engineer writing application software in Python. We even had the toolset in mind for what that person needed to know. We came to Commit, they got back to us with a list of candidates, and we ended up bringing on Rafael Jacinto. It didn’t take very long at all.
What about his skills and background made Rafael a good fit?
Ken: In terms of his background, first and foremost Rafael was a great culture fit for us. He’s outstanding at his craft, which is one of our cultural values, and he’s helpful and humble, which is also very important to us. And he believes in our mission to improve employee work life and protect businesses. Plus, he had enterprise software experience from working at Hootsuite.
What are some of the advantages in working with Commit to find the right person for this kind of role?
Ken: I think there are three big benefits to Commit.
The first is that you can try before you buy. You actually experience what it’s like to work with a developer. You can evaluate each other before making a decision. Commit’s business model allowed us to have Raf do real work for us, and we could see how we work together, culturally, process-wise and in terms of delivery.
The other benefit of the Commit model is the recruiting cost, which is typically very high. With the Commit model the cost gets spread out as a subscription over time, tied to Raf’s tenure with us. We’ve come to realize that it’s not just the smoothing out of that expense and pushing those expenses. The real advantage is alignment, meaning that Commit and Praisidio are completely aligned on making sure that Raf is happy and he’s doing good work for us.
And I think the other part of the Commit model, although it’s invisible to us, is the Commit community and platform that the Engineers are connected with. It helps them grow and have access to other folks and other technology to support their work.
Speaking of the Commit community, what value do you think it offers?
Vahed:As an Engineer you might spend a week debugging something, and the answer is extremely obvious to someone in your community. So just by reaching out to your network or community you can get answers very quickly. We are a small startup with a small team, and we can’t afford to micromanage people and check in on everybody twice a day. When Engineers are stuck, they find the answers on their own, and the Commit community definitely helps with that.
What would you say to other startups about working with Commit?
Vahed:You should try Commit. There’s no downside. You have three months to try out Engineers to find someone who’s the right fit for you.
Ken: Replacing a highly effective employee is extremely expensive—we preach this every day, believe me. This idea of really getting to know someone, on both sides—startup and Engineer—is something Commit is uniquely positioned to facilitate.
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