We covered MatchFWD back in January 2011. Back then the company was focused on social recruiting through the hyper-connected. Today, MatchFWD remains squarely focused on making social recruiting a reality, but a lot has changed.
We spoke with Phil Gauvin to learn more.
NextMontreal: What’s new with MatchFWD?
Phil: Quite a bit to be honest. Hiring managers have now access to a Social Recruiting Campaign Management Tool. It offers at-a-glance analytics of their recruiting effort. See how many people shared, who they shared with, and who applied. Understand the quantity and type of talent they are reaching via traffic stats and aggregated candidate profiles. We also follow up weekly with new contact suggestions, a summary of the past week’s activity and suggestions of action to take based on their current results.
Now job seekers can also specify what type of contracts or jobs they are looking for and get suggestions of people that can help them connect with the best hiring managers. Furthermore, they can do it in stealth mode, so only people they select will know who’s behind the profile to avoid problems with their current boss.
We’ve also added Facebook as method to register and expand the contacts pool of our users.
Another cool thing we’ve just launched is a very easy way for someone to ask for referrals when visiting another user’s page, without filling a full post. A simple form (see attachment) mimicking someone asking “Would you know a good [inser-job-title]?” And that’s a signal of where we want to go: more conversational, less job board like. But it’s hard to change behaviour, so we do it slowly. Similarly, we’re about to test a prototype of Twitter integration where we parse your network feed to identify opportunities like ” I am looking for [insert job title].
Finally, we’ve re-designed most of the site and we’re pretty proud of the feedback we’ve got. Much simpler and easier to use and pretty good looking
NextMontreal: Why the change?
Phil: Well there’s no magic: We build features, we listen to our users, we see what works and what doesn’t and we do it again. We have a clear vision of what we’d like to offer but the path to get there is less clear.
NextMontreal: Are these changes mostly to usability, or fundamental to how MatchFWD works?
Phil: The goal has always been to serve 3 actors of the recruiting process: the hiring manager, the connected networker and the opportunity seeker. We decided to start by offering a minimal feature set to the hiring manager and we’re slowly adding features that were in our first prototype but never made it to the first release.
So yes and no I guess. But better usability has been a major priority and I think we’ve done a good job there.
NextMontreal: Since July last year (when you released the first version) what have been some of the positives? What was working and continues to work?
The re-share proportion: when you share to someone, how likely are they to re-share. It’s a key number for us as it measure how hiring managers and now opportunity seekers spread the word about their availabilities or job openings.
We’d like to have it much higher but it’s good enough for us to keep on pushing the model.
NextMontreal: What about the negatives? What wasn’t working?
Phil: We’ve understood pretty fast that the “post-and-forget” behaviour of people used to job boards was not going to work. Social recruiting calls for a more active approach and it’s the same on matchFWD. That’s why we’ve released the Campaign Management Tool: to help hiring managers take action (re-share to new connectors, edit their posting, share to co-workers, etc.) not only when they post, but continually during their 4-6 weeks campaigns.
NextMontreal: How have people responded to the new version so far?
Phil: It’s very good. Design/UX-wise we’ve done a great job and it shows in the comments but also in the usage we see on the site. Now we want to sit down with our users again and see how we can do better and show them even more value.
We also see more and more matches and hires done and obviously that’s the real metric for us.
We’re also very conscious of what needs to be improved but nothing seems impossible.