TrueAbility Pivots to Include IT Training and Certification

TrueAbility photo featuring Co-Founders Luke Owen, Marcus Robertson,  Dusty Jones and Frederick Mendler. Photo by Gary Hartman

TrueAbility photo featuring Co-Founders Luke Owen, Marcus Robertson, Dusty Jones and Frederick Mendler. Photo by Gary Hartman

TrueAbility, which created a platform to test job candidate’s technical skills, has pivoted.

The San Antonio-based tech startup still offers its AbilityScreen which tests job candidates’ technical aptitude but it is no longer offering its jobs board and instead plans to focus on the information technology certification and training business. It wants to help companies manage and execute performance-based exams securely from anywhere in the world.

The company, which has raised $3.7 million in venture capital, also recently let go ten of its 15 employees and moved out of its Geekdom offices and into a home-based office.

As part of its reorganization, co-founder Luke Owen has left the company. Frederick “Suizo” Mendler, also a co-founder, is now CEO. Marcus Robertson and Dusty Jones, both co-founders, are still with the company as well as two engineers.

TrueAbility is bullish on its new market, Mendler said. The three-year-old company has seen the highs and lows of running a tech startup, he said.

The team of founders spun out of Rackspace, won the Startup Weekend competition, graduated from the Techstars Cloud program, landed funding, had an idea to change the way companies recruit technical talent, but it wasn’t as easy to execute, Mendler said.

“We had success but we had moderate success,” Mendler said. “For us it was about solving a global problem. Today, we haven’t changed anything about our platform.”

TrueAbility grew its community to more than 20,000 Linux professionals.

Meanwhile, TrueAbility started getting requests from large software companies to provide certification in a cloud-based environment and test skills in a live environment. So now TrueAbility is going to focus on certification for IT programs.

“We’re creating a standard for which no standard exists,” Mendler said.

TrueAbility officially made the decision to abandon the HR and recruiting side of things in May and it re-launched on July 20th focused on online exams and certifications.

“We have a proven track record,” Mendler said. “We’ve executed over 40,000 assessments. We have over 400 different working scenarios.”

Today, TrueAbility offers three clear product lines: certification, training and the IT skill assessments, Mendler said.

MapR Technologies, a big data software company, is using TrueAbility’s AbilityScreen platform to train and certify both employed and incoming developers. Innovative Exams is also a new partner with TrueAbility.

“We’re excited to be back to the platform which was the original idea,” Mendler said.

Comments

  1. Good moves, all of it. Unfortunate about the downsizing but growing pains I suppose. Would have still liked to see you guys doing some partnering with accredited universities, they were hungry for it & you’re basically building a pool of consumers familiar with/that have an affinity for your platform. None the less, best of luck & continued growth.

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