Startup dramatically expands candidate pool using AI-powered coding assessment in a highly competitive internet space

Learn how Meicai found top quality programmers from Tier 2 and Tier 3 colleges thanks to Aspiring Minds Automata solution.


Industry: Technology

Size: 100+

Region: China

Meicai_Business Impact

Meicai, an emerging vegetable supply startup, struggled to attract quality programmers amidst the intense competition for talent in the startup ecosystem. Students from top colleges preferred to join established companies with proven track records over new players like Meicai. Graduates from Tier 2 and Tier 3 institutions were plentiful, but identifying high performers among them proved a challenge. Meicai relied heavily on traditional coding assessments. Their existing recruitment process lacked standardization, which increased the chance of selecting average or even poor candidates.

Meicai wished to streamline their technical recruitment process and standardize the scoring of their skills assessments in order to evaluate candidates more evenly across various colleges. Their goal was to first broaden the candidate pool by opening the recruitment drive to a greater number of students; and then to identify which candidates possessed the strongest cognitive skills and the best programming knowledge.



Aspiring Minds’ assessments enable a fair, accurate and reliable selection process capable of identifying talented programmers even from institutions that are often overlooked. Our platforms allow clients to enlarge their talent pools by evaluating thousands of new candidates remotely. Our AI-based Automata makes it possible to evaluate a candidate’s code on logic, functional correctness, complexity and programming practices, in addition to the usual test case performance. This unique feature ensures that good programmers do not get excluded from consideration because of minor errors in syntax or failed test cases. Furthermore, Automata’s AI-proctoring eliminates the possibility of candidate misrepresentation and fraud.



Meicai partnered with Aspiring Minds to administer a campus hiring program for thousands of students across China. Our logical and quantitative ability assessments — combined with Automata — ensured the comprehensive evaluation of candidates’ cognitive skills and coding prowess. Our proven and established scientific methodologies helped Meicai streamline its evaluation process and identify remarkable talent even from Tier 2 and Tier 3 colleges. Automata’s AI-functionality holistically evaluated programming skills to prohibit small mistakes from derailing otherwise talented candidates. And, our 100% cloud-based deployment allowed Meicai to scale its recruitment efforts by evaluating thousands of candidates.

Wider pool of candidates. Standardized evaluation process. Reliable and fast results. Better experience. Better candidates. Problem solved.



The combination of Automata and logical and quantitative ability assessments helped Meicai expedite its hiring process, systematically screen over 10000 candidates and select the best talent. Most importantly, Automata identified highly talented students from traditionally overlooked colleges and provided Meicai with an effective strategy for enhancing the caliber of its workforce.

Spot the top talent. Meicai was able to identify top programmers not only from the traditional elite institutions but also from Tier 2 and Tier 3 colleges. A detailed analysis of Automata scores revealed that 8% of candidates from a regional northeastern college achieved similar results with students from Tsinghua University. This not only helped to broaden Meicai’s candidate pool but also assured a steady flow of talent in the future.

Standardized hiring process. The use of automated assessments in its campus hiring program guaranteed that candidates across various campuses were evaluated along the same parameters. The resulting scores served as a benchmark for all future hiring.

Superior candidate experience. The Aspiring Minds’ experience also helped Meicai strengthen its brand among jobseekers. Our recruitment tools and methods provide candidates with an engaging evaluation experience through one-click test initiation, cutting-edge coding tools and reduced wait-times.



An AI-powered online coding simulation that tests the programming skills of candidates with the help of well-structured and curated coding problems. Automata assesses the correctness, performance and quality of code. AI helps Automata calibrate for minor coding errors and grade uncompiled code to ensure that no good programmer is overlooked. Automata is available in over 40 programming languages.