Israeli on-demand freelance management startup Stoke has raised $4.5 million to better its platform which helps companies access a growing talent pool of self-employed freelancers and contractors as well as manage a flexible workforce at scale, the company announced last week.
The seed round was led by venture capital firm TLV Partners, with participation from Google’s former VP Cloud Recruiting Solution Bogomil Balkansky, Flatiron Health founder Zach Weinberg, and Clarizen CEO Boaz Chalamish.
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The company says it will provide organizations with a management platform for their existing external workforce as well as integrate with popular online freelancer marketplaces. This will enable Stoke users to search these sites from Stoke’s own unified interface.
“The new generation who’ve entered the workforce in the past decade want a different contract with life; they want flexibility and ongoing self-development,” said Shahar Erez, CEO and co-founder of Stoke.
“I’ve faced the challenge of locating and onboarding on-demand talent, both at a 20-person startup and during my stint at Google. Regardless of company size, hiring managers are wasting an inordinate amount of time sourcing and screening contractors and then chasing statements of work, invoices and payments. That’s why I was excited to back Shahar and Hilik’s vision at Stoke and be a part of solving this economy-wide problem,” said Bogomil Balkansky, who invested in the company.
“Companies, meanwhile, are changing their operating models and becoming learning, evolving organizations. On-demand talent provides the scale, knowledge, and flexibility these organizations require. Stoke will bridge the gap between enterprises and freelancers, providing a one-stop management platform for the Open Talent Economy,” adds Erez.