Metaverse Hiring, with Esther O’Callaghan of Hundo


Metaverse Hiring, with Esther O’Callaghan of Hundo

Esther O’Callaghan is an inspiration. She has dedicated her life to tackling youth unemployment and has been awarded the Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE), an impressive title for her good works. Hundo, a project she has founded, is based on similar themes. It aims to empower young people with the right mindset and the relevant skills needed to meet the demands of the ever-changing workforce.

Posted by Metaverse Hiring, with Esther O’Callaghan of Hundo - February 2022


Metaverse Hiring, with Esther O’Callaghan of Hundo Outlier Ventures

  • Left school when she was 16
  • Grew up in a small seaside town in England with little opportunities
  • Grew up on free school meals because of financial issues. Had a tough journey
  • Has worked with the harder edges of society (e.g. male suicide, teenage self-harm, homelessness)
  • During COVID, young people lost their jobs 3-5x more than every other age groups. Concurrently, companies were looking for software engineers with $150k salary roles
  • It’s a systemic global breakdown between the education system we have versus the hiring market and the skills needed for the future of work
  • Observed her son building worlds from Lego to Minecraft. Her son has been working, learning, and earning online since he was 13 years old
  • Saw the possibility of Web3 and the Metaverse to upskill a generation of young people worldwide
  • Founded Hundo to address this need

I found this particularly heartbreaking, because it spoke to me about the fact that it isn’t a lack of jobs. It is a chronic, systemic global breakdown between the current education systems and structures that we have, and the hiring market and the skills that are needed for the future of work.

– Esther O’Callaghan

Her OBE Title

  • Stands for Officer of the Order of the British Empire
  • It’s an impressive title bestowed upon people who do good and impactful work here in the UK
  • Has been the result of Esther dedicating her life to tackling youth unemployment

What Does The Skills Gap Look Like?

Metaverse Hiring, with Esther O’Callaghan of Hundo Outlier Ventures

  • The main thing is about access
  • The education system is not able to keep up with the pace of change in the employment market
  • During her schooling days, she was learning how to make a clock. Realized that the syllabus was outdated — watchmaking is not a growing industry
  • Their domain expertise lies in understanding what the fundamental barriers are to employment for young people
  • 90% of the young people they have worked with didn’t even believe they were eligible for the roles they now do. Hence, their goal is to first break down those barriers before looking at the skills required

The CV is a redundant piece of paper, it doesn’t really tell you anything about a young person. You can’t really validate what’s written on there. You would have to deep dive into someone’s background, and you can’t, it’s a very analog, two dimensional way of looking at a person and making a judgment about them.

– Esther O’Callaghan

  • They will be building a campus this year, which is the product of coming off Outlier’s Base Camp program
  • Hundo’s campus will go live this year. Users can augment their learning and gain the skills needed for future jobs
  • Will have bite-sized bootcamps to train people to have a basic level of technical proficiency. While on campus, they will be able to view the sheer range of roles that are available
  • Roles are not limited to just tech
  • Will also provide opportunities for re-skilling. Plenty of young people have done digital marketing courses or event management courses. They could translate their skill set to Metaverse fashion or Web3 Discord community managers

Organizations That They Are Partnering With

  • Epic Games, Adobe, Salesforce
  • From Web3, they are building on Polygon and Fluf World
  • The blockchain space cannot grow if there’s no future talents coming into the space. Hence, they are providing a solution to market demand

The Systemic Issue Affecting Young People

  • Plenty of young people are coming into the space because of inflation
  • Inflation is a stealth tax that affects young people and poor people the most. Crypto is an alternative economic system for them
  • Would have to retrain 2-3 generations of teachers to catch up with what’s in demand on the job market
  • Africa is fascinating in the context of people going straight to smartphones
  • India and the middle east are facing high levels of youth unemployment
  • She went to the European parliament as part of the Female DeFi delegation earlier this year. The current system is afraid of crypto because they don’t understand it
  • Though at a policy level, they know that they have a real problem on their hands if they don’t address what happens to a disaffected and hopeless generation
  • Thinks that bridge-building conversations between the existing systems and the new ones are more beneficial

The Platform She’s Building And How It Leverages Crypto

  • Their campus has taken in the play-to-earn principles and will be turning it into a learn-to-earn platform
  • Each person who signs up for their campus will receive 100 HDO tokens
  • Users can start to look at courses, stake their HDO against these courses and earn rewards once they have completed those courses
  • Skills learned will be stored in a permanent skills wallet on-chain
  • Employers can start making hiring decisions based on skill
  • Campus will be an agile self-directed learning
  • Wants young people to make their own choices about self-sovereign data and to be able to monetize that if they want to. They will have a data union as part of the campus

How Can People Follow What’s Going On With Hundo?

  • They are on all social channels — Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn
  • Have a website at hundo.careers
  • People can DM her

Metaverse Hiring, with Esther O’Callaghan of Hundo Outlier Ventures

This podcast summary was prepared by The Reading Ape in collaboration with Outlier Ventures. The Reading Ape is a humble servant of the written word.

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