Exciting Cleveland Onboarding Automation Startup Rebrands Amid Rapid Growth

EmployStream is now Able, aligning the company’s name with its promise and vision

One of Ohio’s quickest growing young startups has a fresh new look this summer on the back of a major year of growth. Cleveland’s EmployStream, an onboarding automation platform, is now called Able. The change comes after multiple encouraging funding rounds, with the company raising $3.5 million in 2019 and $7 million early in 2020. Able’s product is now used by more than 160 companies, according to VP of Marketing Shawn Gaines, and the company’s new name should match both their exciting trajectory and their mission.

“The name EmployStream doesn’t necessarily reflect the fact that we’re all about the new hire and their experience,” said Gaines. “We think Able reflects that really well. We’re at a time in history where tons of candidates are out there ready and willing to work. Let’s tear down all the processes that stop them from getting to work. It reflects what’s really happening in the workforce today — it’s a strong, resilient group looking to get going and take care of painful processes that prevent it.”

To make their impact on the market, Able wants to replace the old ways of hiring. While improving processes for the companies and partners they work with is certainly a part of their plan, Able’s main goal is to put the workers first, easing the “pain points” that they see throughout the hiring process.

“We’re making it all about those candidates and meeting them where they are,” said Gaines. “There’s so much of the hiring process that everyone just glosses over and doesn’t understand. We make that easy — you can do it all remotely on your device without logging into a bunch of different systems. And if you think about the staffing world, it’s not just placing 10-20 new hires in a month, it’s hundreds or thousands in a week in very different roles. You might be placing healthcare workers with a lot of credentialing and education and at the same time working with industrial employees who don’t have access to a desktop computer at home. You have to create an ideal onboarding process for everyone.”

While many companies have either struggled or been forced to adjust their work during the pandemic, Able has managed to maintain much of their forward momentum. The company has been hiring new workers, bringing their team up to nearly 60, and has branched out their users. Able’s onboarding platform, which simplifies and streamlines hiring, is now used by multiple large staffing agencies, allowing Able to reach more customers than ever before. And while COVID-19 isn’t the only reason Able’s platform is needed, the pandemic has showcased just how useful their tech can be.

“With COVID-19, a lot of agencies who had very manual processes are now accelerating their need to make staffing safer and more efficient,” said Gaines. “Those staffing agencies have been strong and they’re placing a lot of folks in jobs, and they’re accelerating what might have been a longer-term process. In tech, there are often a lot of pain points before something moves forward due to inertia alone, but we’re starting to replace a lot of the old methods.”

Able’s name might be new, but its Cleveland home has remained consistent since its founding. Northeast Ohio has been a contributing factor in the company’s growth, with business resources and a huge employee talent pool within easy reach. Gaines said the Midwest is the perfect place to position a growing tech company.

“The tech scene here is a very supportive and positive one. Being in Cleveland sets us apart in some capacity because we’re not competing for talent in the same way the coasts are, and we have the opportunity to build a cool company that’s more and more known for our tech. There are a lot of resources available that are creating a really meaningful tech community in Ohio and Cleveland is also a big enough city where there’s a lot of good talent to pull from, so we’re able to make great hires here.”

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