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Nick DeJesus
Nick DeJesus

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Pivoting TalentMatch: Our Revamped Approach in Sourcing Black Technologists

Black Tech Pipeline’s TalentMatch recruitment platform is going in a new direction. We’re migrating those who had previously signed up to our new recruitment platform (still named TalentMatch) or allowing those who are no longer interested to opt out.

Here is the TL;DR
While we’re proud of the initial launch of TalentMatch, the platform didn’t provide the value that we were hoping for. There were a number of variables at play that lead to this outcome; if you’d like to learn the in-depth details of our journey then please keep reading!

What happened?

Just to recap:

Pariss did manual sourcing and recruiting out of her own talent database that she built on Airtable. This talent database consisted of over 2,000 Black technologists open to new job opportunities. As Black Tech Pipeline gained more recruitment clients, they consistently asked us, “Can we search your talent database ourselves?” The answer was “No” at the time, but we knew the next step in scaling the business would be by automating the recruitment service and delivering this recruitment experience that so many clients wanted from us.

My tasks for building an MVP for TalentMatch consisted of:

  • Building a sign up experience for candidates where they can create and update TalentMatch profiles for our clients to source through
  • Keeping Candidates profiles anonymous by removing their name and any identifiable information to help mitigate bias
  • Building a searchable interface for clients to source through talent profiles
  • Building a communication system that allows Clients to reach out to anonymous Candidates if their skill set and experience fit a role they’re hiring for

These tasks were executed within 6 months.

Soon after announcing our launch, we had over 2,600 new interested TalentMatch candidates and 100+ new interested clients. Everything felt like it was off to a great start! Or so you’d think…

Things didn’t go as well as we hoped

First of all, right as we launched the new platform, the biggest names in the tech industry decided to do their layoffs and many companies followed shortly after. Many of our job board clients canceled their subscriptions to our job boards due to layoffs, hiring freezes or tighter budgets.

Of all the clients that wanted this new recruitment experience, not a single one of them followed up on their initial interest after we announced our launch. This meant that we had to prioritize getting potential new clients to sign up for our TalentMatch platform.

Getting new clients

Fortunately, there was always a stream of clients signing onto, or expressing interest in, the Black Tech Pipeline job board. During Pariss’ sales calls, she’d demo TalentMatch to her potential clients in case it'd be a better fit for their hiring needs. I did a lot of those calls as well!

However, from the few clients that did sign up and use the platform to source candidates, it just wasn’t enough to solidify keeping it around as a service and paying for the software we were using to maintain it.

The platform wasn’t as valuable as we hoped

The proposition of a database full of profiles of Black technical talent is very valuable, however, I think we missed the mark on trying to keep our candidates anonymous. Sourcing talent for companies is very difficult, even when profiles are public on places like LinkedIn. One of our goals is to remove friction from the recruitment process when it comes to sourcing Black technologists. However, giving employers a database of talent where they are totally anonymous just added another layer of friction for an already tough process.

Why did we keep candidates anonymous?

To help remove bias. We had our candidates omit things like places they previously worked and their names so that they wouldn't be discriminated against for any reason. It sounds like a cool idea, and maybe there is a way to make it work really well from a design and experience standpoint, but it’s not something we’ve quite figured out or that anyone, clients or candidates alike, even asked for.

What we're doing now (what we should have done)

I don’t think it’s fair to ignore the fact that the market got significantly worse by the time we launched TalentMatch. However, I do think if we took a slightly different approach, things may have worked out a bit better. That "slightly different approach" is what we’re launching with soon.

Check out some of the images below to see what we have in store for TalentMatch!

Login Page
Hiring partners will log into their accounts to access our talent database full of talent profiles. Candidates will login to their accounts to view or update their talent profiles.

Edit profile page
Candidates can upload their resume and let our AI resume parser fill out some of the profile fields for them. Or they can do it manually!

Profile Page
This is an example of what a candidates profile will look like to a hiring partner when sourcing candidate profiles in the TalentMatch database. When they click, ‘I’m interested’, a modal pops up that allows them to write and send the candidate a message that will go directly to the candidates email. If a candidate is not on the job market, they can simply ‘hide’ their profile from employers by using our switch feature.

Search Candidates page
This is what our interface for employers will look like. They can filter through our database to source candidates with the skill sets and requirements that they’re looking for.


Sometimes you gotta get things wrong before you get them right. Despite things not working out, we both learned a lot from this experience. Our clients are excited for this revamp and we hope you are too!

We’ll be announcing our launch of TalentMatch in the coming weeks. Subscribe to our free newsletter to be notified here.

Thank you for supporting Black Tech Pipeline. We hope to support you with your job hunt or hiring needs!

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