How Curious Thing helps CSIRO's ON scale the intake shortlisting process

See how Curious Thing helped CSIRO get the most out of their candidate pool, improve recruiting efficiency and screen candidates beyond their resume.


“By using the Curious Thing tool, my team saved a huge amount of time they would have spent making repetitive phone calls.”

David Burt | Executive Manager of CSIRO’s ON


The Problem: Scale the Unscalable

CSIRO's ON program is Australia's national science and technology accelerator, aimed at supporting teams of researchers to take their ideas and research out of the lab and into the world through products and services commercialisation.

For each cohort, the CSIRO ON team receives more than 300 applications. They then have to select these down into 10 teams. The intake process is extremely competitive, and the real challenge for ON team is: “How can we make the process consistent, fair, and scalable?”

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Make the process efficient and analysable

Curious Thing started working with the ON team for their Accelerate Cohort 5 intake. The Curious Thing AI interviewer worked as the first step of the intake process. All candidates performed the 15-20 minute phone interview with Curious Thing’s AI.

The ON team would then look at the results derived from the interviews, make the shortlisting decisions, and prepare for the next round of “in-depth” conversations.


The Results

“By using the Curious Thing tool, my team saved a huge amount of time they would have spent making repetitive phone calls. We reduced the total shortlisting time by around 60%. We see Curious Thing collecting consistent data points conversationally, which is very aligned to our data-first policies and decision making. My team now has additional time to be more strategic within their roles.” Said David Burt, Executive Manager of CSIRO’s ON.

Within 5 days, a total of 5,304 minutes of interviews were done. An interview completion rate of 91% was achieved. 67% of the interviews were conducted after work hours and over the weekend. The candidates performed their interviews across 5 different countries. The average time per interview was 16 minutes.


The unexpected benefit

In addition to delivering the benefits of efficiency and consistent data points, Curious Thing helped ON quickly identify the candidates who were adaptive and felt comfortable using a technology they have never used before.

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