Talmix and Technology: Building an Industry-Leading Platform

Pedro Mata-Mouros

When we decided it was time to re-architect the Talmix Platform back in the summer of 2016, we knew exactly what we were getting ourselves into - a digital transformation rollercoaster ride, equal parts ambitious, optimistic and terrifying.

Legacy systems are often critical for day to day operations but are based on obsolete or otherwise outdated technologies and architectures. Generally, companies spend as much as 80% of their technology budgets into simply maintaining their systems, which are often very difficult to maintain - some of the underlying technologies have either reached their end of life-support or lag behind important security and performance updates. Legacy systems can be an obstructive hurdle in fast-paced businesses, as they can significantly slow down adaptation and innovation of features.

Greenfield projects are a rare phenomenon; as a technology leader, more often than not, you will inherit something already running in a production environment, with its own set of unique processes and ancillary systems around it - a product of all the good and bad technical decisions made along the way. The vast majority of these will be legacy systems and architectures, which will allow you to continue moving forward to a certain degree. If you have a bolder vision, however, you will not be able to achieve this by simply piggybacking onto a legacy system.

Talmix was hardcoded into its legacy system. So much so, in fact, that many of our processes ended up having to adjust and contour around the awkwardness of its system. We knew early on that our future would be dependent upon and intertwined with large amounts of data - but in order to be truly able to tap into and utilise the data available to us, would involve us developing much further than the pre-existing technology foundation allowed us.

Our Vision

Our top-tier, industry wide business talent network extends across the globe, encompassing over 60,000 members across 182 countries. We currently work with over 72,000 data points per month, and each individual profile we work with has 600 data points - our vision is to continue to increase exponentially all the possible combinations of these points. We also want to improve the experience of interacting with all these data points, both from a talent and a client perspective, to offer unprecedented speed, precision and convenience in a state-of-the-art, end-to-end user experience with a next-gen sophisticated searching and matching algorithm.

We are proud to say that we have now come a long way to achieving this. We now have real-time searching and matching on our platform, tapping into all the different data points that we have on our talent, including soft skills.

This effectively means that we are able to instantly find the right match for a project, full-time position or interim work - the operative word there is instantly. We now regularly match project with preliminary consultants in under 24 hours, and our record turn-around time, from engagement posted on our platform, to chosen talent deployed on the ground, is 48 hours - every day we aim to bring that down further.

We transitioned our software development team and practices into continuous delivery and now deploy, in just a few minutes, weekly releases in production - and are on our way to becoming a fully automated continuous deployment practice. Our platform now has a consistent track record of sub-second response times for 98% of all requests, with 80% being served in less than 0.2 seconds.

Key to all this was the architectural shift to the client-side that we started back in the Summer of 2016. We successfully transitioned from an old monolithic server-side application to a client-side architecture which allowed for much more scalability and opened the door to a much more improved user experience by making use of a modern Redux architecture. Our client-side app has less code, less logic complications, and is now easier to test, maintain and build upon. We can now iterate on a feature much more rapidly, truly applying a measured learning mindset, prototyping better and adjusting faster as we go.

Our flexibility and agility proved absolutely fundamental in developing our boldest vision yet - our replacement of the CV at Talmix. We have moved forward from from the traditional one-dimensional profiles, into a multi-layered and inter-connected data points profile. The Talent Passport™ combines information from multiple sources to create a single and complete view that will allow for more precise and faster matching of skills to opportunities. The passport categorises information into demographics, micro-experiences, soft skills, feedback, work style preferences, and future releases will:

• Update dynamically based on application and screening question data to enrich career experiences and expertise, learning the strengths of the talent over time

• Renew work history as Talmix projects are completed

• Include soft skills ratings

• Provide feedback and reference information at a granular project level

The Talent Passport, laden with rich curricular and extra-curricular data, dynamic and semi-automatic mechanisms for augmenting, improving and validating data, and a fresh next-gen user experience, is nothing short of a monumental step forward within the talent acquisition space, and Angular has been critical for us throughout this developmental journey.

We always had a bold vision of one day replacing the traditional CV and reshaping the talent acquisition face of the industry. But we’re not done yet - this is just the beginning.

Pedro Mata-Mouros

Pedro is the CTO at Talmix, always striving to find new ways to implement cutting-edge technology solutions, and revolutionize the staffing industry.