Founded in 2019, BiaScan’s software detects and corrects unconscious bias in various document types, such as job descriptions, policies, and marketing documents. A strong, bias-free job ad can lead to diverse and creative hires. By using BiaScan on both internal and external documents, organisations can transform their work cultures to promote belonging, innovation and productivity. Staff aren’t just recruited; they stay and they thrive.
An excellent scanner requires excellent data, and this is where the company’s approach is innovative. Much of their data is curated by hand, by experts on inclusive linguistics. BiaScan taps into the best evidence, drawing from documents, and crucially, also creating their own by listening to real people with lived experience of disadvantage. Lastly, ethical use of machine learning and artificial intelligence is broadening the company’s scope.
Through their Resident Entrepreneur project, BiaScan explored creative datasets that focus on language, but that might not be obvious first choices to train the scanner. They also delved into multiple fields, including theatre, creative writing, and journalism. Not only did this research result in new additions to their scanner’s database, but it also inspired various new ideas.
Barbara Melville, who took part in the Resident Entrepreneurs’ programme said: “By providing both funding and support, Creative Informatics have been instrumental in moving this work forward. They’ve been on hand to answer queries, talk through ideas and provide essential contacts and funding leads, especially in the furthering of our machine learning and AI aspects of the project.”
BiaScan has achieved real growth since joining the Resident Entrepreneurs’ programme. They have now completed their minimum viable product which the team considers to be better informed and more innovative.
The company has also made real headway with incorporating machine learning and artificial intelligence. Crucially, their networks have grown significantly, including gaining supporters, advisors and prospective clients.