As the youth of India go for more eclectic careers such as that of ethical hackers, wildlife conservationists, dance therapists, fashion curators, oceanographers and mariner biologists, career counselling has become imperative in identifying skill sets, aptitude and training requirements. Two of the major challenges with career counselling are the wide student base and limited awareness about new opportunities. “About 80% of the student population is interested in the same set of six to seven careers and they don’t even know about the massive opportunities in the market,” said Prateek Bhargava, founder and CEO of Mindler.
Mindler started operations in 2015 to address career counselling through technological innovation. “Through our research we found out that about 90% students are looking for a scientific way for career counselling but there was no organisation or structure to fulfill this need,” he added. Mindler has employed technology and merged psychometrics, aptitude testing and machine based learning algorithms to create a tech automated platform for career counselling.
With the help of its automated solutions, Mindler gives an analysis of the user and suggests what kind of career suites her best. The user must enter details under five categories—style or the dominant way of thinking, interest zones, personality skill set, aptitude, social and emotional intelligence. It has a team of school teachers, counsellors, industry and career experts to help in the final decision making.
Mindler works under three models—business to business (B2B), business to consumer (B2C) and via collaboration with NGOs, institutions and government bodies. B2B model is driving 70% of the business. In this, the company enters into a contract with schools and each partnership gives it about 500-1,000 students. It has about 15 schools under its fold and seeks to onboard another 60 schools by end of 2017.
nder its collaborative model, any counsellor can use the Mindler technology and work on a revenue share model. The user can choose from three sets of counselling services—Mindler Learn, Mindler Explore and Mindler Realise. For a subscription of R3,400, Mindler Learn handles the assessment part and gives access to information for one year. Subscription for Mindler Explore is for R6,400 and gives additional two-three sessions with the experts.
Mindler Realise is a more engaged programme where the user gets a personal coach for a year. The service is priced R15,000-25,000. Bhargava pegged the average ticket size for the platform at R3,000 but sees it growing to R5,000-6,000 as the collaboration model picks up. Bhargava declined to share the revenue but said that Mindler recorded 100% growth in volume and 82% growth in revenue, last quarter.
“We can get a break-even situation in the last quarter of 2018 but if any of the large collaborations with the government comes through, we would reach break-even much earlier,” he added. Mindler closed seed funding of R1.2 crore in June 2016. In January 2017, it initiated talks with investors to raise R7 crore in Series A funding, of which it has raised R2.1 crore from existing investors till now.