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In the communities we come from, college students and young developers often feel lost when starting off, or looking for new opportunities in the IT industry. They struggle to find someone who has already gone through this path to give them advice, as they always find that there's a gap between what they've learned in University and what companies are looking for in the real world.
What it does
We help connect students and young developers with experts in a certain field of interest. Recommendations of the most suitable people from the field are generated based on their skills, years of experience and geographical location. Once connected, experts can guide them through their career journey and give them advice on where to start and what to expect.
How we built it
- Messenger API as the user interface for people to register as volunteers or search for experts in the field.
- Graph API to fetch basic user information.
- Nodejs as the back-end to store, manage and retrieve user information.
- Web API to transfer messages between and experts and people reaching out on Messenger.
- Algolia APIs to store the experts and search for the most suitable picks relevant to their skills and location.
- Labiba.ai platform was used to developer a Chatbot experience, to collect users interest, age, location and so on.
- Facebook's built-in NLP was used to transform general user expressions into structured data.
Challenges we ran into
- Connecting people via Facebook messenger without compromising their privacy.
- It's not possible to create a group chat between two users through a Facebook page, so we had to find other ways to overcome this issue.
- Finding means to reach out to people and give them motivation to volunteer for the program.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
- Building a system where people can register as volunteers or ask for help.
- Giving industry experts a chance to help and connect with the younger generation, and possible recruit them later on.
- Providing a way to bridge the gap between academic education and the industry.
- Creating a sustainable community where people with different skills can connect to share their experiences.
What we learned
- Usage and best practices of Facebook products, especially Messenger API.
- The importance of considering the social aspects such as how to motivate people to join the program, instead of just focusing on the technical part.
What's next for Hey Expert!
- Connecting the Chatbot experience with Facebook Developer Circle groups and other local tech communities.
- The ChatBot to search for possible experts on Facebook and reach out to them proactively, inviting them to join the program.
- Following up on the communication between students and experts to ensure a sustainable relationship.