Content Marketing

eHarmony Launches a Match-Making Site for Jobs … Srsly

Job search sites are a dime a dozen. There are so many of them a few of them even try to differentiate themselves by claiming to be, “the eHarmony” for jobs. According to Dr. Neil Clark Warren, the founder of eHarmony, “They’re not.” Now his company has a legit product to prove it and it’s way more smart and sophisticated than you might think.

Warren and his product team launched Elevated Careers by eHarmony in Los Angeles last week. (Disclosure, they are a PR client of Elasticity, the firm I work for, via Branded Strategies.) The platform takes the marriage matching algorithm approach from their original platform and applies it to the job matching problem. But they were careful to explain that it’s not the dating/marriage algorithm jammed into a job search site.

“We used the same philosophy from our experience building the eHarmony engine and asked similar questions about job matching,” explained Steve Carter, Vice-President of Matching at eHarmony, but largely responsible for the technology behind Elevated Careers. He and his team built a separate algorithm that takes data from a job seeker and data from potential employers then matches them along 16 key factors, much like the 29 relationship factors their research uses in the eHarmony product. The 16 factors are certainly proprietary, but they fall into three major buckets of focus: Personality, Culture and Relationships.

So to boil it down, they’ve created a job matching service, not a job searching service, that companies can pay to subscribe to since, in theory, it can help an organization hire employees that are a better fit, have more chance to be successful and stay with the company longer. That can not only increase productivity but decrease the surprising costs of hiring new people. Turnover, as they say in the HR world, is a bitch.

Job seekers can use the site for free and it has an expected personality type questionnaire for the on boarding process. From there, the site recommends employers that would be a good fit for your personality, culture needs, experience and such. If you’ve ever taken a job only to quickly realize you don’t really fit in or like the culture, you can see the individual benefit of something like this.

And as you would expect from a relationship expert, Warren rattled off all kinds of interesting correlations and statistics about how if you’re unhappy in your job, that permeates your personal life, relationships, health and more. So, in essence, Elevated Careers would argue it can help a company have happier employees who live happier lives and yada yada.

My questions, which I pose to you and would love your feedback in the comments, are these:

  • Can human psychology and relationships really be boiled down to a survey-driven algorithm? Being a tech-savvy audience, my guess is you’d say “yes” but what about the human error factor on entry? When I’m looking for a job, I’m much more apt to say what I think the company wants rather than what I actually feel, think or believe about me as a candidate. While Elevated Careers isn’t set up as a resume or search site, the mentality filling out that form is going to be one of, “What do I think prospective employers want me to say?”
  • Companies are adopting technology for everything from marketing to supply chain and beyond. But are they willing to trust an algorithm to select, or de-select, prospective job candidates? It’s sure better than checking their Facebook page for beer bong pics, and Elevated Careers matching won’t be the final hiring decision for anyone, but how willing to invest in technology are HR operations, really?
  • What happens to the recruiters who are paid to place candidates when a personality/culture/relationship match may work against their job-seekers?
  • How far can an approach like this go? Can we develop an algorithm to match agencies with clients? (I’d be in favor of seeing that data. Heh.) Certainly the same approach could apply to vendor relationships and partners. But it requires some level of third-party assessment of the organizations involved. How many companies will realistically open their doors to an organization personality test?

I find Elevated Careers fascinating. It will be interesting to see it at work. So the real question remains: What do you think? Would you use it as a hiring manager if you had access? Would you use it as a job seeker? The comments are yours.

Jason Falls

Jason Falls is SVP for Digital Strategy at Elasticity, a digital marketing firm with offices in St. Louis, Chicago and Louisville. His the author of two books on digital marketing, a frequent keynote speaker on the topic and a social technology analyst. Connect with him at jasonfalls on most social networks.

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