Smart Recommendations @ Werkspot

At Werkspot, we strive to become the easiest and most reliable way to arrange home services online! Our mission is simple:

  1. Delight consumers by connecting them with motivated & qualified service providers.
  2. Turbo-charge the ability of great service professionals to win jobs.

Every month, we have thousands’ of active service professionals interacting with the tens of thousands’ of service requests submitted by consumers. Connecting the right service request with the right service professional is non-trivial!

What tools do we use?

To tackle this challenge, we use state-of-the-art artificial intelligence algorithms.

In traditional software engineering, logic is encoded into a system using a series of hand-written rules (i.e. if-else statements). For example, one rule might be to only recommend service professionals that are within 50kms of the consumer. However, this list of rules could become incredibly long and still may not adequately capture the complexity of service professional preferences and the shifting dynamics in the home services market.

Artificial intelligence takes a different view. Instead, an algorithm (or model) looks at the data and tries to discover these rules for itself to optimise some objective (i.e. accuracy). Two familiar examples of artificial intelligence applications are Netflix movie suggestions and Amazon’s product recommendations.

How do we use these tools?

Our particular set of algorithms looks at the history of proposals on our platform and learn the preferences of service professionals for certain locations, job details, job sizes, seasons etc. For example, our recommendation system learns whether a service professional prefers indoor or outdoor painting in July, how many jobs in Amsterdam he is likely to propose for in the next month and whether he will travel 85km for a large kitchen renovation in Groningen.

We currently introduce these smart recommendations on the side of the consumer. When a consumer submits a service request, we recommend a list of service professionals that are highly likely to propose and win the job. The consumer can then view their profiles and send a direct request to these service professionals to contact them about their job.

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In this way, Werkspot promotes transparency and consumer choice, while rewarding top service professionals with unprecedented access to highly-engaged consumers!

What’s next?

We are only just beginning on our journey to revolutionise the experience of our users with artificial intelligence. A logical next step is to provide smart recommendations to service professionals, whereby we alert them to service requests that are predicted to be highly attractive to them. We strongly feel that this will dramatically cut down the search costs that service professionals incur to find, propose and win jobs!