AI management tool to objectively assign people to project teams.
During their international internships, Madalina Plosnita and Amalia Balan ran into the same issue: when creating project teams, managers often tend to be unconsciously biased, causing not everyone to get the same opportunities. When they returned to Twente, they made it their mission to create a more equal working environment with their platform Managescape.
Managescape is a consulting tool to help managers of medium and large companies to objectively assign people to projects based on chemistry. Madalina explains: “They need to fill out a science-based survey, the manager enters the requirements for the project and then the AI algorithm creates the teams.” Amalia adds: “Often, people with more social skills are favored. People are biased, even if we’re not aware of it. But with our platform, getting the job is always a possibility, regardless of your age, gender or nationality – or even if you lack social skills.”
Fixing things that don’t make sense
That this idea comes from two young women isn’t surprising. Amalia: “We based our idea on our personal experience during our internships. We were reflecting on our internship, and we realized that we had faced the same challenge. There was a pattern. It’s time to keep up with the technology from the human aspect.” Madalina elaborates on that. “Technology has evolved a lot, but personality and soft skills were left behind. And that makes sense because previous generations had to keep up with the technological transition, so they only focused on the operational side of the technology. But when you’re starting as a young professional – especially as a digital native – you see the small things that don’t make sense. That’s why with Managescape, we combine the technology with the soft skills for efficiency and wellbeing of the employee.”
Big wins at the UT Challenge
However young the business may be, Managescape holds a lot of potential. Amalia: “We won two awards during the UT Challenge, the ASML Makers Award and the 4TU Impact Challenge wild card. Even though our goal was to win, we didn’t expect these prizes. This was exactly the proof we needed that companies need us.” Madalina adds: “We’re really grateful. We’re still in touch with ASML, which gives us a lot of perspective. It’s nice to have a conversation in which you can brainstorm about how Managescape would be used in practice.”
Likeminded people at Slush
Winning the 4TU Impact Challenge wild card gave the two a ticket to Slush in Helsinki. A huge smile appears on Amalia’s face. “Slush was always the goal. We were planning to use the prize money of the UT Challenge to go to Slush. But we actually won the wild card and we’re now in the finals of the 4TU Impact Challenge at Slush. I’m really looking forward to having a great pitch there.” Madalina chimes in: “Furthermore, we want to network and spread awareness about Managescape. And the goal is to find an angel investor. We’re going to do our best to make that possible. We’re just excited to be in an environment with like-minded people.” Amalia agrees. “We’re going there with our hearts and minds open to embrace the entrepreneurial vibe. We want to make memories that will last a lifetime. And in a way, it already is because we’re part of the official Dutch delegation. For us as internationals, that’s such a big deal. We’re grateful to be welcomed into the family, so to say.”
That they’re part of the family is clear, also when we look at Next Icons. Amalia: “To be able to pitch on that stage wasn’t just a big step for us, but for young female entrepreneurs everywhere. We gave the right energy, and we got it back as well. And that same energy is why we’re going so fast. We complement each other as a team, and it shows on stage. You can only become successful with a great team.” Madalina adds: “We make it work. Going so quickly from idea to prototype is a challenge because you need to validate it in a short period of time. But our perfectionist mindset is always there, and we show up. Now we’re testing the prototype with early adopters.”
Take away the dread of Mondays
And the future looks bright for Managescape. “We’ve got the technology for us, not against us,” says Madalina. “Our technology can make the working environment better for management and employees.” Amalia nods. “It just needs the human touch,” she says. “Managescape is not going to take the managers’ jobs – they still need to lead the team. We only help with team composition to increase productivity and ensure employees feel appreciated. We enable organizations to use the talent they already have to save effort, time, and money. Basically, we want to take away the dread of Mondays.” Madalina agrees. “We create an impact on an individual level, but we also focus on the bigger picture. We want to create more equality in the workplace. And with Managescape, we can.”