Here Are My Top 3 Jive Turkeys for Thanksgiving 2018

Recruiting Turkeys

In addition to mass quantities of turkey, pecan pie, and cold beverages being consumed on Thanksgiving this week in America, it’s the perfect time of the year to dishonor the year’s biggest jive turkeys. In no particular order, here we go:

Indeed's Baby bathrobes
Going too far: Baby bathrobes
  • Indeed. Maybe babies in bathrobes was its pivotal jumping-the-shark moment, but 2018 has largely been a big turkey for the world’s most-popular job site. I know, I know, profits, headcount, and real estate holdings are ballooning, but Indeed has been a loose cannon this year, largely brought on by the launching of Google for Jobs last year. In addition to not putting its jobs onto Google for Jobs, Indeed has stuck it to staffing firms and talent networks this year. It (its parent Recruit Holdings) acquired Glassdoor,, and Canada’s Workopolis, when it didn’t need to. And I wish the Job Spotter ads would disappear from my Instagram feed. Here’s to hoping Indeed becomes a less reactionary company in 2019.
  • This one is still pretty fresh. After a four-month investigation by AIM Group, StartJobs was caught using legitimate jobs to farm way too much contact information from site visitors, including debt and mortgage information. Victims of the scam were bludgeoned with emails and text messages seconds after filling out lengthy contact forms. Sadly, scams like this aren’t the first, and they certainly won’t be the last. And each one puts a fresh black eye on the entire industry.
  • CareerBuilder. 2018 was the year that just kept on giving for industry bloggers and podcasters, thanks to CareerBuilder. Things started to unravel shortly after being acquired in mid-2017 by private equity firm Apollo. In addition to cost-cutting, layoffs and departing executives, the job board icon put a former CFO in the CEO’s office after saying goodbye to Matt Ferguson after 14 years. It capped the year by unveiling a less-than-extraordinary augmented reality feature on its mobile app.

If I had to predict which one of these cluckers gets themselves erased from this list next year, Indeed would get the nod. Too much brand and brainpower to keep acting like it’s 2015. Gobble! Gobble!

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Joel Cheesman has over 20 years experience in the online recruitment space. He worked for both international and local job boards in the late ‘90s and early ‘00s. In 2005, Cheesman founded HRSEO, a search engine marketing company for HR, as well as launching an award-winning industry blog called Cheezhead. He has been featured in Fast Company and US News and World Report. He sold his company in 2009 to He was employed by EmployeeScreenIQ, a background check company. He is the founder of Ratedly, an app that monitors anonymous employee reviews. He is married and the father of three children. He lives in Indianapolis.