On Tuesday, PowerToFly, an online platform that works to match companies with women in tech, announced that it has raised $6.5 million in Series A round of funding led by Crosslink Capital along with other participants like Hearst Ventures and Lerer Hippeau Ventures.
Founded in 2014, PowerToFly is serving as platform for more women to find career opportunities in major companies and fast-growing startups like Hearst, The Washington Post and BuzzFeed. The platform offers women with backgrounds in tech, design, sales, marketing and editorial to help find new work at any of these great companies. The startup has a unique niche by focusing on helping women find remote work with the companies, providing them the flexibility to focus on both life and work. The company was started when the founders Milena Berry and Katherine Zaleski confronted problems in careers after they started their own families and decided to try to solve it.
PowerToFly cofounder and president Zaleski said, “Since we started in August 2014 we have seen incredible demand from hiring managers to bring on more women in technical roles, as well as other positions. At BuzzFeed, alone, we have placed over two-dozen women because the company understands that to bring on top female talent, you shouldn’t judge them on hours spent in the office.” She also added, “PowerToFly is leading the charge to change the nature of work for women and to prove that building diverse teams is as easy as creating a profile on PowerToFly.com.” Until date, the company has created 50,000 profiles on the site and collected $2.5 million in pay to women workers in 93 countries.
At 30s when women get to be most experienced that happens to be the same time when they start a family and it gets difficult to be in a company culture that judges one on the basis of hours at a desk rather than looking at the work done. If affects a lot of women around the world and it also affects the company as they tend to lose lot of women in their 30s, said Zaleski. Only way to solve it is to allow those women work in flexible schedules and reducing the travel for the job. The work wasn’t piece of cake to the ladies. It was quite a tough job to get companies on board as remote work jobs are not easily accepted by companies as they would require people to be in person to manage serious projects.
Overcoming the hurdles, the founders are happy to say they are making revenue. Zaleski said, “The business model is similar to Airbnb, charging the companies that use their site, not the women looking for jobs. A lot of companies at this stage are not even generating revenue.”
Adding up with a seed round the founder raised last year, it brings the total funding to $7.5 million. With the fresh funds in the company, PowerToFly plans to triple its team focusing more on tech, sales and client roles and growing into marketing, content creation and customer relations. Also it intends to invest in PowerToConnect, a content platform of the company that was launched more than two months back. It was started as side experiment to engage the online community that is already job hunting on the site, said Berry. The community turned out to be a virtual water cooler for the women. Berry said, “Women are on the forum because they want to talk about changing the nature of work.”