slide image

Recruiters’ Secret Sauce Connections

By Peter Weddle, CEO TAtech

The conventional wisdom is that successful careers in talent acquisition are built with skills, experience and connections. It’s also generally accepted that the first two require constant development, especially given the field’s growing reliance on technology. What’s not as well appreciated is the need for a diverse ecosystem of connections. Sure, you want to be in contact with your recruiting peers and former bosses, but they’re only a portion of those who can help advance your career. The others are your secret sauce connections – those that heighten both the real and perceived value of your contributions on-the-job.

While TA leaders and professionals have always recognized the importance of networking among their peers, they have not devoted the same priority to engaging with those in a neighboring but increasingly important community. They are the designers, developers and producers of talent technology. They are the men and women who provide CRM platforms and programmatic ad buying solutions, conversational AI products and online assessments and video interviews. Getting to know them, therefore, isn’t a nice-to-have connection, but is instead the difference-maker in your ability to conduct effective and efficient recruitment.

Though not commonly recognized, there are actually two kinds of connections you can make with the talent technology community.

• The most familiar kind, of course, involves the interactions you have with the company representatives who staff exhibit booths at the recruiting and HR conferences you attend. These conversations will help you acquire information about specific products and how they stack up vis-à-vis others with similar capabilities.

• The other kind of connection – the kind that is in fact the secret sauce of TA career advancement – involves the discussions you have with the leaders – the CEOs, Chief Product Officers, Chief Technology Officers, Chief Revenue Officers, and Chief Marketing Officers – of talent technology companies. These interactions will give you an understanding of the vision and values of a solution provider, its roadmap for future product enhancements, its commitment to effective product implementation and the caliber of the company’s leadership.

Each month, TAtech convenes a RoundTable webcast with some of the smartest people in talent acquisition. The show is just 30-minutes long, but it tackles the issues and ideas that are shaping the world of work, the talent market and the role of recruiters. April’s TAtech RoundTable explored, “Are today’s job seekers really all that different from those in the past?” Watch the show here.

Why are these latter connections so advantageous to your career standing? Because they enable you to make a qualitatively superior contribution – one that is informed, relevant and up-to-date – to both your employer’s acquisition and its implementation of new talent technology.

While all secret sauce connections can be helpful, the best have three attributes: They are:
• face-to-face, private interactions that support open and candid dialogue;
• in-depth conversations that are relevant to your technology interests; and
• regular occurrences that provide timely insights and information.

Shameless Plug Alert

Where can you make such connections?

To be sure, talent technology executives do attend HR and recruitment conferences, so that’s certainly one way to connect with them. To reach a critical mass of such individuals, however, the best venue is TAtech’s industry congresses. Specifically designed for talent technology company CEOs and their direct reports, there are two held every year:
TAtech North America & The World Job Board Forum (Austin, May 22-24)
TAtech Europe & The EMEA Job Board Forum (London, December 4-6)

What do you get? Literally hundreds of talent technology executives all in one place, all at one time. That’s what makes these conferences different. They deliver secret sauce connections on steroids.

Moreover, in order to ensure there’s plenty of opportunity for those face-to-face, relevant connections, only TAtech Professional Members are able to register and attend these events. However, membership is free and open to all. So, join the TAtech Professional Member Program and take advantage of the secret sauce connections it provides. Your employer will thank you and your career will flourish.

Food for Thought,

Peter Weddle is the author or editor of over two dozen books and a former columnist for The Wall Street Journal. He is also the founder and CEO of TAtech: The Association for Talent Acquisition Solutions. You can download his latest book – The Neonaissance – FOR FREE at And, if you don't have time to read the entire book, just download a short excerpt of his inspirational message.