Three local teens create award-winning software to improve hiring process • Current Publishing

A trio of local student companies took first place in an Indianapolis high school regional business presentation competition, and although the three did not win the competition at the State, they plan to continue their activities.

Isaiah “Izzy” Branam, who will be in her final year at Zionsville Community High School, and Emma Hamilton and Krishna Thiru, who will be in their final year at the Brebeuf Jesuit Preparatory School, have teamed up with nine coding students from the Carmel high school to create FIA, a software program that supports companies in their recruitment process.

The young entrepreneurs, who describe themselves as siblings, pitched their idea to Innovate Within, an Indiana high school business pitch competition, on April 30 and took first place in their area. As the winners, Branam, Hamilton and Thiru received $ 3,000, which they reinvested in their business, and an all-expenses-paid trip to Scottsdale, Arizona in late June with other entrepreneurs and investors.

The team’s software uses predictive machine learning and personality testing to create a “more efficient and accurate representation of what a corporate culture should look like,” Hamilton said. It analyzes not only the resumes and skills of candidates, but also their personalities. The data helps companies narrow down the fields of dozens or hundreds of candidates to those whose interpersonal skills would likely be a good fit for the company’s existing team.

“He can identify where the weak points are in this team and what more we need to have a more complete squad,” said Branam. “And then that also gives us data points about team culture. We can then generate an algorithm that we can pass to candidate data and then assess, rank and sort candidates based on the value they bring. to the team and their integration into the existing business.

Thiru said personality traits are a priority for the team due to the emphasis many companies place on workplace culture.

“Corporate culture matters a lot. A good corporate culture has greater long-term value creation for companies, ”said Thiru. “We do the same thing as our competitors and go further to enter into the personality (of the candidate). “

Hamilton said human resources departments in the United States spend thousands of hours and billions of dollars every year trying to find the right candidates, making the process long and expensive. But she said it also tends to be “often inaccurate”.

“As people, we have a lot of unconscious biases,” Hamilton said. “We tend to hire people who are more like us or who are more like us or who we just connect more with, but these people don’t necessarily always work well together. “

A beta test of the software is expected to launch in July after achieving an 85% prediction accuracy rate in small-scale alpha testing. Branam said the team was eager to see the results they could get from the beta test. To participate in the beta test, visit

“We are really confident going into it,” Branam said. “None of us are really coders by trade. We’ve put together a team of hungry high school coders who want to get their hands on a project and add something to their CV.

At the start of FIA’s development, the team wanted to see if their software solutions reflected the needs of businesses in their community, Branam said.

“When we were trying to market our idea, we contacted a group of businesses in the Indianapolis area,” Branam said. “We reached out with the goal of, ‘Hey, can we meet for 15 or 20 minutes and ask you what are the issues you are having in your hiring process? “”

Local business leaders responded. In addition to receiving advice from local organizations such as the Zionsville Chamber of Commerce, the team met with talent acquisition teams at some of Indiana’s largest companies, including Cummins, Rolls Royce, and Cook Medical. Group as well as Purdue University.

“The more people we talked about, the more we found common themes of pain points that we were targeting,” Branam said.

Over the nights and weekends, the team developed FIA, sometimes working in a coworking space from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m.

“I think it ultimately depends on how difficult you are willing to work,” Hamilton said. “I think our drive to show off has been one of the things that made us successful.”

“The three of us as a team come together like puzzle pieces,” Thiru said. “If one person lacks motivation or knowledge in one area, the other two can pick it up. So I think together as a team we’re really good at learning from everything, whether it’s failures or successes or other people. We’re not afraid to ask questions because that’s where the learning happens. In our mind, there is no such thing as failure. It’s super generic, but either you succeed or you learn.

Three local teens created FIA, a design software to improve companies’ hiring processes. (Photo submitted)

Looking forward

Isaiah “Izzy” Branam, Emma Hamilton and Krishna Thiru plan to continue their education in college and consider attending the same university, but they are still considering the best courses for themselves and for the FIA.

“Even though we don’t end up in the same college, I think we all hope to continue the business no matter where we are,” Hamilton said. “As for the future of the FIA, I think it will depend a lot on our success with the beta and the changes made from there. But we hope to continue (FIA) in the future.