Today, it’s even easier to get free labor at your startup. Nakhweh, a Jordanian volunteer-matching portal, just launched a new service aimed at helping startups and small businesses to easily post and promote any unpaid opportunities that they have.
As part of a re-launch of their entire website, Nakhweh has added several new services to allow businesses- not just individuals- easier access to volunteers. Instead of filling out an entire post on Nakhweh, startups can now simply add the title and location, and redirect users back to their own page to receive applications, said founder Kamel Al Asmar. Startups can also now post remote volunteering opportunities- for instance, to get blog writers from around the region.
To ensure quality control, startups can review applicants’ CVs and also leave comments about volunteers in a private backend system. For the first time, organized company feedback will make it even easier for companies to select good applicants.
While Nakhweh’s goal is to support corporate social responsibility programs in larger companies, they are also heavily focusing on promoting startups. “We are a startup enabling other startups,” says Asmar. “A lot of startups can’t afford to post on job search sites, so they can come to us instead to get volunteers for free.”
It’s not just the startups that benefit, he points out. “In contrast to working for a big company, volunteers at a startup gain experience and skills, and probably more responsibility.”
The move also marks a pivot for Nakhweh itself. Founded in 2009, the non-profit has relied heavily on social media for its outreach, in its work to generally encourage volunteerism and social entrepreneurship throughout the Arab World. Now, Nakhweh is looking to share its knowledge by hosting workshops in social media strategy—a move that may eventually become a monetization strategy.
As other internship portals such as fursa.me from 7arake.com begin to crop up, Nakhweh remains differentiated in the market by being the only online service for volunteering. They may look to partner with offline volunteer services in the future, as an archiving and feedback platform. But for now, Nakhweh is focusing on folding startups into its volunteer community, says Asmar.
“In general, Nakhweh is about empowerment and community service, and startups are very important for today’s economy and the community building. That’s why we support them and why we got into this business.”