36. Debut

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Founder: Charles Taylor and Michele Trusolino
March 2015 (Launched November 2015)

An arduous process, applying for jobs is never easy or fun – particularly if you’re a student looking to get on the career ladder.

So, what if you could just simply play games on your phone and attract big brands to recruit you? Sounds too good to be true? Well that’s what Debut offers users.

The business was founded by Charles Taylor, an entrepreneur who arguably boasts the most diverse CV in our entire Startups 100 list.

Having studied politics, philosophy and economics at the University of York, the entrepreneur originally trained as a policeman, before working in the House of Commons, then the Royal Navy, and as a senior consultant advising multinationals on exporting via the Ernst and Young graduate programme.

For Taylor, Debut was created out of his own frustrations in finding a job after leaving university when he applied for 40 different jobs and attended 10 assessment centre days to no avail.

Using Debut, businesses use a ‘Talent Spot’ feature to invite prospective candidates to interviews or fast-track them to assessment centres without the need for CVs or a covering letter.

Significantly, the app also provides mobile games designed in collaboration with employers to test particular skills and abilities. Students can sign up for free and immediately enable push notifications for potential careers that suit their interests, while employers pay a 12-month subscription.

Having raised £2.2m worth funding to date, including a £1.7m of seed funding from LocalGlobe, Initial Capital Entrée Capital and Indeed co-founder Paul Forster, the London-based start-up aims to grows its team to 20 by the close of 2017.

Already counting the likes of Microsoft, Barclays and L’Oréal among the employers on its app, Debut is set to go from strength to strength. Looking for a job? Get playing!

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