Pay $2,500. Follow the Program. And Get a $100K Job. Guaranteed

Here’s an offer that’s going to be hard to refuse: For $2,495 TheLadders will guarantee you a job offer in six months. And not just any job, but one paying at least $100k.

Signature, as TheLadders calls the program, was announced on CNBC this morning by CEO and founder Marc Cenedella.

“You sign up. We assign you a career adviser. We rewrite your resume. We have a 10-step program that walks you through the job search; takes the mystery, takes the stress, takes a lot of the anxiety out of the job search,” he told CNBC. “And we believe in it so much — we’ve been working on it so long — that at the end we guarantee you’ll get an offer in six months.”

This is no JobSerf program, where someone else applies for jobs on your behalf. Or even a RiseSmart Transition Concierge that sends participants job listings, and includes access to a coaching library, webinars, and some phone consultation.

Signature is a career coaching program; an online equivalent of executive outplacement. It requires the active engagement of participants who must follow certain rules, including attendance at a majority of online meetings, in order to qualify for the money-back guarantee.

If that seems like a catch, it is. But one that only makes sense. The FAQs tell prospects right up front: “Signature is designed for the job seeker who is dedicated, motivated, and willing to put in the time and resources to get the job that’s the right fit.”

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The terms and conditions tell prospects that in the first 60 days they must:

  • Attend seven sessions;
  • Complete the first several steps of the program;
  • Apply to six “well-fitted” positions;
  • Complete additional assignments, presumably from the personal coach.

There are other requirements for the balance of the program, including attendance at a majority of the online meetings, and continued applications.

Signature, as Cenedella notes on his personal blog, isn’t for everyone. That’s probably why there is no online signup; interested job-seekers have to call TheLadders to discuss the program.

In testing for several months, Signature claims a 90 percent success rate. Says Cenedella, “More than a hundred people have already completed the current edition of the six-month program with a success rate of more than 90%.”

John Zappe is the editor of and a contributing editor of John was a newspaper reporter and editor until his geek gene lead him to launch his first website in 1994. He developed and managed online newspaper employment sites and sold advertising services to recruiters and employers. Before joining ERE Media in 2006, John was a senior consultant and analyst with Advanced Interactive Media and previously was Vice President of Digital Media for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group.

Besides writing for ERE, John consults with staffing firms and employment agencies, providing content and managing their social media programs. He also works with organizations and businesses to assist with audience development and marketing. In his spare time  he can be found hiking in the California mountains or competing in canine agility and obedience competitions.

You can contact him here.


8 Comments on “Pay $2,500. Follow the Program. And Get a $100K Job. Guaranteed

  1. I am still trying to figure this out but the guarantee is of a “job offer” not a “job”, correct?

    I have seen it reported both ways but in the video I posted from CNBC he says “job offer”.

  2. Any program that requires money up front should be a concern to a potential employee.
    A fee for a resume rewrite or interview coaching I think for many candidates is a worthwhile investment.
    If it is guaranteed why not take a bigger % / fee on placement / Start date / or after probation is complete???
    Well that might be because in Hong Kong (still English Law) and in the EU I thought that would be illegal.

  3. Gullibility has reached a new high. Wow. Why is this pick-pocketing? There are several compelling reasons but here is the main one: you wont get the right job. You will get the job that you feel you must take after all of that cajoling and influencing. We need a system to get the right people in the right job. It can be done, my company is doing it and we aren’t alone.

  4. Do the terms and conditions state that one must possess the qualifications and aptitude to land a position of that scope?

    Personally, I’ll stick to a lesson I learned as a child – the only things promised or guaranteed in life are death and taxes.

    This program is nothing new, if you open up the newspaper jobs section in any major city across the U.S., there are firms that advertise the same program and want the same people (motivated, dedicated, etc.).

    I find that programs like this prey up on the desperate and unknowing.

  5. When I started in Executive Search, AFP( Applicant Fee Paid)was fairly common, however, if you charged a fee from an applicant, you had to be licensed in every state that you operated in. I wonder if these laws are still on the books, and whether this situation is applicable

  6. These questions come to mind about this deal.

    Who decides if the candidate is a fit? The candidate or TheLadders “career advisor”. Suppose the candidate says,”that’s not a fit for me” but Ladders says it is and if we say it is you must submit your resume and interview or you are not following the program so sorry you don’t get your money back.

    Why are all of the restrictions on this deal not published and require the person to call in to see if they qualify for it? This program not a fit, our other program may be..bait and switch.

    Would someone who has been unemployed for two years, over 55, disabled, require sponsorship or on and on not be qualified?

    Would a candidate who had been making over 200K be submitted to jobs that only paid 125K and be willing to interview for that level, relocate anywhere in the US and pay their own relocation? If not would turning down the offer of less money and paying their own relo knock them out of getting their money back because all that is being guaranteed here is an “Offer” of 100K.

    Edward, i don’t think that AFP situation would exist with this deal because they are not charging a fee for the job based on the salary. They are only offering a service for a fee. Shades of a poor man’s Haldane.

    There will be some success stories coming out of this, there always are or people would not still buy lottery tickets. If there are not a few winners people would quit buying even if the odds are higher that one will be struck by lightening somebody somewhere wins.

    Sounds to me like another of the flim, flam marketing schemes. “Oh, since you are not willing to relocate or take a cut or you have been unemployed you might do better with just paying $35.00 dollars a month for our regular offering where there are no guarantees and a lot of the jobs aren’t 100K but see they should be so if you get the interview you can probably get them to pay you that much, let me transfer you to one of our other career advisors who will direct you to where you sign up online” Be sure you have your credit card available when you sign up.

    Bait and Switch or Switch and Bait. Who knows, time and the boards will tell the tale. At least their current commercial doesn’t have ugly writhing bodies in it.

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