Article sponsored by Textkernel

About Textkernel: 

As a global leader in AI-powered recruitment and talent management solutions for over 20 years, Textkernel has been at the forefront of driving efficiencies in the HR and staffing and recruitment industry. Our innovative technologies empower more than 2,500 staffing and recruitment agencies, leading employers, job boards, and HR software vendors worldwide. This enables them to work smarter, fostering a culture of innovation and faster advancement.

About Gradleaders:

GradLeaders was founded in 1993 under the name “Careers OnLine” in Columbus, Ohio, United States. Initially, the company focused on providing online job search and career management tools for college students and recent graduates. In 2004, the company rebranded itself as “GradLeaders” to better reflect its dedication to helping graduates launch their careers. GradLeaders continued to grow and adapt its platform, becoming a leading provider of career services software for colleges, universities, and employers worldwide.

The challenge

Gradleaders was fighting against competition in the market for several years and around 2019, they were losing the battle due to well funded competitors with prices they could not undercut. This resulted in losing revenue stream and the amount of jobs they could offer on their platform.

“We had more comprehensive functionality, but we weren’t providing as many jobs, and we started to hear that even from our graduate business schools – we want to keep using you. But we have this side thing that we’re doing with competitors, so that our students have access to all their jobs too because we don’t want them to miss out on an opportunity. So we’re paying your competitor to provide us their jobs while we’re using your software, which is superior to theirs.”
David Hoy, Senior Vice President, GradLeaders

At that point GradLeaders started looking at changes to the product. David Hoy, Senior Vice President at GradLeaders, mentioned they lost clients who stated, “I don’t want to go to another provider, but the University is forcing my hand.”  This sparked GradLeaders’ investigation into product changes and enhancement, changing the direction of the product to stay above the competition. The leadership team recognized that the number of jobs they were providing was a limitation of their platform although they were already importing jobs from external feeds such as ZipRecruiter, College Recruiter, and Monster. Gradleaders was providing job postings as an offering to the candidates at the universities using their platform. The problem was that the companies were all providing different amounts and sets of data. “We had all the jobs posted into our system in one place of the menu,” says David. “And we had all these external feeds coming in, posted in another place off the menu and the students weren’t interested in going to both places and doing two different searches to find their jobs”

The solution

GradLeaders clients did not only need access to a sufficient number of jobs, they also needed sufficient search criteria to narrow down their job search from a single menu. “We just wanted the ability to get a feed of jobs with the required fields and data we could search on in our system,” David indicated.

Textkernel gave GradLeaders access to all the US jobs at the time, between 4 million and 10 million jobs. That solved the challenge of insufficient jobs within the application. Textkernel provided GradLeaders a demo and sample access to the Textkernel portal, which not only gave access to the Jobs Data application but to additional functionalities as well.

That is when David saw the opportunity to do a lot more. “There were a couple of things that attracted me. First of all, the depth of data, just the fields of information. But then, when I started looking at additional functionalities, the ability to normalize related terms, or synonym searches, the relevance scoring and all the artificial intelligence behind all of that, pushed me to think we can do way more than just receive a bunch of jobs from Textkernel.”

GradLeaders explored the opportunity of intelligent searches based on related terms and the ability of scoring jobs based on their match. According to David, what really sealed the deal is the ability for GradLeaders to take their own jobs and feed them into Textkernel to be parsed. This way they have the same functionalities as Textkernel’s Jobs Data.

Textkernel provided us the opportunity to put all data/jobs in one place,” says David. “With that we’re providing our users with one portal for all their searches, instead of having to do separate searches to find opportunities. At the same time we decided to take advantage of all the APIs Textkernel offered, and to execute a single search and return jobs that were provided by Textkernel’s Jobs Data along with jobs that were posted to this school individually.”

With the help of Textkernel’s Source & Match APIs, GradLeaders decided to take it a step further. They found students having trouble using the right key words and doing effective job searches, because they were simply unaware of the right words. They decided the portal needed to do it for them. GradLeaders built a widget called JobMatch that appears on their dashboard , using Textkernel’s Source & Match APIs. The widget will find user relevant jobs based on the information they have in their profile. GradLeaders takes their resume or profile information and converts this into a search, then it is sent to Textkernel and matches are returned based on their profiles. 


GradLeaders created various dashboards in their Career Center to compare how many searches are done and how many jobs are being applied to in January 2023 versus the amounts in the previous year. David says: “We see upwards of 400% increase in engagement, in the number of searches that are being executed and the number of jobs that are being used with the new tool that we’ve built with support of Textkernel.”

GradLeaders’ search started with simply adding Jobs Data to their application to give their users access to all available jobs out there. Currently they take full advantage of: