How BuzzFeed Uses TapRecruit to Attract 125% More Qualified Applicants

Learn how BuzzFeed, a leading global media and tech company, is using the TapRecruit Smart Editor to write job descriptions that narrow the confidence gap and attract more female software engineers.

BuzzFeed logo.

Founded in 2006 as an algorithm-driven lab without writers or editors, BuzzFeed has grown into an international journalistic powerhouse delivering news and entertainment to people around the world. They’ve received numerous awards including the National Magazine Award, the George Polk Award, and the Michael Kelly Award. They were even shortlisted for the Pulitzer Prize.

Today BuzzFeed has 1,300 employees located in offices across 18 cities in 9 countries. They’re passionate about inclusion and hire hundreds of new employees each year.


BuzzFeed’s distributed recruiting team was struggling to keep up with the high volume of applications they receive; sometimes over 1,000 per day. While the number of candidates was high, they weren’t always applying for jobs that were a good match for their skills. BuzzFeed was looking for a solution that would do three things:

Improve applicant quality
Thoughtful job content can improve the quality of applicants who find and apply for jobs.

Maximize inbound funnels and reduce the use of sourcing
Attracting higher quality candidate pools would reduce the cost and time spent sourcing candidates.

Attract more qualified female candidates to technology jobs
Improving female representation in candidate pools would increase the chances of hiring a female candidate.


BuzzFeed recruiters now collaborate on job descriptions using TapRecruit, with a goal of only posting jobs that score at least 85+. As a result, their jobs are not only attracting substantially more qualified applicants overall, but more women are applying for their engineering and data science positions. A hiring process that was once stressful and time-consuming is now quicker and easier.

A graph showing BuzzFeed jobs attracting more candidates who qualify for interviews as the job scores rise.

BuzzFeed’s high-scoring jobs attract 125% more candidates qualified enough to receive an interview.

BuzzFeed attracts a higher quality talent pipeline

Jobs scoring 85+ attract 125% more organic applications that make it to the interview stage. Organic applicants are candidates who apply via a company’s career page or from job search engines like Indeed and LinkedIn. This is significant because BuzzFeed doesn’t have a problem when it comes to attracting applicants. Their career site receives hundreds of thousands of applications every year. Their problem was that too many people were applying for jobs that don’t fit their skill set. That’s why improving the overall quality of their job descriptions is a big deal. When jobs are written well (clear titles, correctly calibrated skills, etc.) it makes it easier for candidates to apply for the jobs that best match their qualifications.

A graph showing BuzzFeed jobs attracting more candidates who qualify for initial phone interviews as the job scores rise.

BuzzFeed’s high-scoring jobs attract 50% more candidates qualified enough to receive a phone interview.

BuzzFeed is hiring more organic candidates

Because of the meaningful increase in applicant quality from organic sources, BuzzFeed’s recruiting team has seen a 50% decrease in the number of candidates required to be sourced to fill a role. Direct sourcing is time-consuming and expensive. The fact that BuzzFeed has been able to help candidates better identify which roles are right for them by writing thoughtful job descriptions means that they’re now able to source fewer candidates while filling roles at the same rate and saving money.

“TapRecruit has brought a lot of clarity to our hiring teams and helped us understand how candidates find and experience job descriptions. We’ve seen huge increases in both the quality and diversity of candidates who apply to our jobs.” – Dan Geiger, Manager, Recruiting Operations

BuzzFeed’s jobs now attract more female engineers

When a job description is poorly calibrated for the talent market, for example by having a laundry list of requirements, it is known to attract a less diverse candidate pool. Poorly calibrated job descriptions create ripe conditions for the ‘confidence gap’, a phenomenon where most candidates won’t apply unless they’re confident they meet every requirement.

TapRecruit’s Skills and Title Guidance helps you avoid inadvertently creating confidence gap issues by making sure that jobs are titled correctly and that skills are properly paired. An increase in the number of qualified women applying for an engineering role means a greater chance of hiring a female engineer.

When a job scores higher than 85+ the number of women applying for Buzzfeed’s engineering roles increases by 40% and the number of women reaching the phone screen stage increases by 100%.


BuzzFeed’s high-scoring engineering jobs attract 40% more female candidates.


BuzzFeed’s high-scoring engineering jobs attract 100% more qualified female candidates.

BuzzFeed uses TapRecruit Analytics to see and measure results

TapRecruit’s comprehensive analytics suite helps you monitor and correct issues with your talent pipeline. Learn more.

Screenshot of TapRecruit’s Job Performance Report with metrics like total applicants, open jobs, average job scores.

Job Performance Report

TapRecruit’s Job Performance Report contains tons of actionable information. Track and measure the health of your pipeline at the company, department, or job level. Filter by department, job seniority, date, or kind and then run weekly or monthly reports to find out if you’re on the right track.

Language: Semantic Usage

Not sure if you’re using the right language in your job descriptions? TapRecruit’s Language Report will give you a detailed look at the language you’re using in your job descriptions so that you can determine how it might be affecting the diversity and quality of your candidate pool.

Screenshot of TapRecruit's Language Report with metrics like semantic language usage, most used phrases and biased language.

Try TapRecruit for free

Want to take TapRecruit for a spin? No problem! You and your team can try TapRecruit for free. See for yourself how easy it is to write winning job descriptions that attract more qualified and diverse candidate pools. You can register here or schedule a demo and we’ll show you around.