Rite of Passage

May 6, 2008
This article is part of a series called News & Trends.

In the hot and heavy world of executive recruiting, less sometimes is more. Of course, the “more” has to really be more — as in more (and better) candidates with longer staying power. And not all executive-recruiting sites are created equal. (Who hasn’t seen the Ladders tennis ball commercial, after all)?

Then there is, which is to bells and whistles what Sparta was to Greek hedonists. Aimed at C-suite executives, the site is clunky and extremely non-intuitive – especially compared to sleeker, more streamline executive boards like or Heidrick & Struggles.

Obfuscation is part of the business plan at RiteSite, which was founded by Manhattan executive recruiter John Lucht in 2001 — about the same time executive-recruiting websites were gaining momentum. Lucht fashioned the site to give C-level execs another option among the job-board scrimmage. Only execs looking for their next $100,000-plus gig need apply. They get membership to for a yearly fee of $94 — the same amount Lucht used to pay his secretary years ago to put together recruiting lists. For that nominal sum, members get e-mail alerts, job-hunting advice and other free information every week.

It’s tough standing out from the crowd, especially if you’re a niche job site. But does offer a number of twists. For one thing, membership is not required for an executive to post a resume. may be the only site to date to separate jobs by both industry and function. Recruiters don’t have to pay to post jobs or review available candidates, and they can post as many jobs as they choose for free. actually consists of two databases of executive resumes, with preferential treatment shown to retained recruiters. They get to see an “identity-revealed” database that provides not only list of an executive’s credentials, but also direct contact info.

Contingency recruiters aren’t treated quite so generously. Although they are able to view jobs in RiteSite’s “identity-concealed” database, they are restricted from the more exclusive listings. Still, Lucht estimates half to three-quarters of jobs listed on are posted by contingency recruiters. This sounds surprising until you consider that does not charge other sites to republish its internal listings.

Thus, recruiters can toss a dragnet around larger pools of candidates. Lucht boasts: “Nobody has the sorting system that we have. It’s a great benefit to finding the jobs you want” if you’re an executive, while recruiters are able to target specific industries.

Recruiter Larry White of Staffpointe tells me he receives more “measurable candidates” from than all other Internet recruiting sites combined. He sends these people out for job interviews and almost always gets great results. That’s quite an endorsement. This seems like a more-than-fair deal for recruiting professionals.

It’s too bad isn’t a little more aesthetically pleasing. That probably would get people to linger longer. As it is now, the heavy black-and-red homepage is forbidding and a bit intimidating to first-time users. Some of the job descriptions also suffer from being a little too generic at times. Also, if you elect to use the site, be prepared for relentless self-promotion of Lucht’s recruiting book. But if you’re a recruiter, it’s at least worth taking a look.

This article is part of a series called News & Trends.
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