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If working from home anywhere isn’t part of your business strategy, it should be. Things in the world of work are different – there have been radical changes to the new digital workplace, and we’re never going back.

So this is adapt or die? Kind of, yes.

SmartRecruiters has not only adapted their product to function in a remote-first world, they’ve embraced it internally and made it the core of who they are. Not long after the pandemic hit, SmartRecruiters announced they would be a “remote-only, remote-first, remote-forever” organization going forward.

A hiring success company, SmartRecruiters helps large enterprises attract and retain talent with their proprietary software – Talent Acquisition Suite. SmartRecruiters Founder and CEO, Jerome Ternynck, calls their solution the “Salesforce of recruiting.”

Transitioning to a remote-only company drives who SmartRecruiters is  as a company, including who they hire and how they work. Two years into the new working model, Ternynck says they’ve seen in improvements in three key areas:


Having the freedom to hire outside an office’s physical location instantly expands access to a larger pool of talent. You can hire people anywhere in the world. SmartRecruiters has done just that. Since their transition to remote-only, they’ve hired people of 20 different nationalities based in 100 different cities. This inherently encourages their team’s diversity and breeds an inclusive culture.


When no one comes together in the office, communication must be structured and intentional. SmartRecruiters quickly discovered they had to find the right mix of real-time dialogue and structured communication. And when the homefront doubles as a workplace, it is important for SmartRecruiters to set boundaries so work doesn’t permeate into people’s personal lives. For example, the company launched a “shutdown week” where the company completely closes for one week twice per year, protecting shared time where employees don’t feel like they have to check their email or get back to anyone. Ternynck also reiterated they will not contact employees when they’re out of office. He makes this very clear and communicates and reinforces this often.


In a remote-only world, culture isn’t physically seen or heard as often, and it has to be reinforced.

“We are on a noble mission to help everyone find a job,” Ternynck said. “It’s a good mission, but in times of high pressure and stress, we had to keep reinforcing that and bringing people back to the why.”

Committed to their mission, SmartRecruiters launched two websites – one to help recruiters find jobs, and one to help people get jobs in Lebanon, supporting Ukrainian refugees. “We are recentering our values to keep it top of mind.”

The benefits are clear, but how do you actually make work from home work for you? It takes intention and reinvention.


Remote working is great, but Zoom isn’t always easy. A year ago SmartRecruiters introduced a program for showing gratitude and being grateful for each other, where they are and what they do. At the end of the company’s monthly town hall meeting, they collectively take a few minutes, go on slack and express gratitude. With more than 600 employees around the world, it ends up being thousands of notes of thankfulness, and it fosters meaningful connection among the team.

Remote work has made their software better, too. Because SmartRecruiters supports large enterprises with locations all over the world, recruiting for remote work capabilities was always built into their solution. During the pandemic, they pivoted their product to better function in this new landscape, by beefing up collaboration capabilities and treating recruiting as marketing.


Being remote forces teams to collaborate in far more efficient ways. One of SmartRecruiters’ founding values is collaboration, and this is what Ternynck believes has made them successful. Collaboration capabilities were built into the software. No one is sitting side-by-side anymore during an interview, and things are done in silos. To enable communication, every step must be very well documented and communicated, and the software facilitates this.

“This situation forced everyone to raise their hiring game,” Ternynck said. “It’s been incredible to watch. “


Similar to what SmartRecruiters experienced internally, the world is their clients’ oyster when it comes to finding talent. There is no more “ten-mile hiring radius,” and their clients can hire people from anywhere they typically didn’t have access to. Likewise, people all over the world, especially those in underprivileged communities,  have access to jobs they didn’t have before.

But how do you support that kind of global reach? Marketing. Even better? Turn your recruiting INTO a marketing tool.

“You have to be strategic about it,” Ternynck said. “Suddenly, the whole job market has been flipped on its head. It’s this incredible moment in time where recruiting is going through a digital transformation.”

The transformation isn’t over. As companies like SmartRecruiters continue to adapt their solutions to meet people where they are, remote working will remain at the forefront of how people want to work today. Ternynck believes marketing and advertising capabilities within recruiting will become more intelligent, and those who adapt to this model while setting intentional boundaries will flourish.

At Leapgen, we put our money where our mouth is when it comes to investing in and promoting smart, innovative technology. Leapgen is a SmartRecruiters customer. We use AND love their Talent Acquisition Suite. And SmartRecruiters is a Leapgen customer—they leverage our research and thought leadership services to understand how best to position workforce solutions in the Now of Work. It’s a match made in Heaven.



Jess Von Bank is an 18-year industry veteran and impassioned evangelist of the modern candidate and employee experience. As both a former recruiting practitioner and an expert in bringing TA Tech and HCM vendor solutions to market, Jess looks to broaden executive mindset to better design and deliver a workforce experience that exceeds the expectations of talent and the needs of the business.

Jess offers specialized expertise in talent acquisition, recruitment marketing, employer branding, DEI&B, brand-building, and storytelling. She iis the Head of Marketing for Leapgen, a digital transformation company shaping the Now of Work. She also runs the Now of Work, Leapgen’s global community for HR, Talent, and workforce experience professionals.

Jess is an active community emcee, ambassador for women’s and girls’ organizations, and President of Diverse Daisies, a nonprofit for girls’ enrichment and empowerment. She lives  in Minneapolis, where she races for free swag and raises her 3 daughters.


Leapgen is a global digital transformation company shaping the NOW of work. Highly respected as a visionary partner to organizations looking to design and deliver a digital workforce experience that will produce valued outcomes to the business, Leapgen helps enterprise leaders rethink how to better design and deliver workforce services and architect HR technology solutions that meet the expectations of workers and the needs of the business.


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Recruiting is a fragmented, opaque process undermined by outdated technology that turns off candidates and hiring managers.
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