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The Ladders / Scam

1 NY, United States Review updated:
Contact information: is a job site where an applicant pays to see postions advertised on the web. Inorder for you to apply for any positions you have to join by paying a subscription. They give you an option of 3 months +. I chose 3 months inorder to find a job and paid $75.00. Once a found a job I notified them via their website that I wanted to cancel my memership and remove my resume. I just received my credit card statement and they went adhead and charged me an additonal $75.00. I wrote to them as well as called them and left a message demanding that they issue a credit of $75.00 and they refused said it was their policy to renew. It does not say anything on the page about any renewals.
This site is a scam. Not one person has ever been able to get a position off the Ladders.

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  • Ri
      10th of Aug, 2009
    +1 Votes

    "Not one person has ever been able to get a position off the Ladders."

    LOL...when you make sweeping statements like that which are in fact untrue, you lose credibility and cast your entire story/complaint in doubt. I am researching the Ladders right now, trying to figure out if I want to use it or not (still undecided), but I did come across a blog posting by a Microsoft staffing manager who stated that she has hired a significant number of people from the Ladders.

  • An
      2nd of Nov, 2009
    +1 Votes

    I did a one month. Went to cancel and the web site said I was auto-renewed for another month. I sent a message through their contact form and got a response back in about two hours, with a credit towards my account.

  • Po
      24th of Mar, 2010
    0 Votes

    I've been a member for 2 months, my third is coming up and I am not planning to renew at the end of the subscription. If I have issues canceling this subscription - THEY are going to have problems.
    My main complaint is that they claim to be posting 1300 new jobs a day - where the heck are these jobs? I'm lucky to find one job a week within a 50-75 mile radius of where I live and even then, I have to go to the company's website and resubmit all my information because they are not affiliated with The Ladders. Sometimes it goes 10 days between jobs being posted to my "geographic area" - which really is much broader than I would be willing to travel and I'm not living in Podunk, either - I'm close to three good-sized cities.
    To broaden the scam, they nitpicked my Resume, trying to get me to pay $800 to have them re-write it for me. They even called me on the telephone (the girl sounded like she was about 12 and I could tell she was reading from a script).

  • Sa
      6th of Jun, 2010
    +1 Votes

    My experience with The Ladders was one of immediate distrust and complete dis-satisfaction. First let me say from the very moment I submitted my application and went through the process they had their hands out for more money. Let me preface this by saying, before submitting my resume, I had it done by a professional resume writing service. I thought the resume was outstanding, as have many other prospective employers. Yet The Ladders sent me a critique that I now realize was a cookie cutter letter to get more money out of me. When I told them that $800 to re-write my resume was too much money they said they could discount that amount. Then I thought I'd break it to them that I had it done before I even applied to their service.
    That said, the support I received was a joke. Even after numerous calls and complaints, no one bothered to lift a finger. Why would they? The Ladders already had my money! I finally sent them copies of every complaint from complain boards I could find. I emailed it to them and demanded a refund or else I would take this complaint to the Consumer Affairs department of our local media/tv/radio stations. Within 24 hours I was told I would receive a full refund. I did have the refund deposited within 72 hours back into my account. I wish I had checked the complaint boards before I went through this experience. In my estimation, The Ladders is a trap for those unemployed people with hopes of finding employment. They promise you the world and deliver next to nothing. Sites like Monster, Career Builder are free and deliver much more.
    Case closed!

  • Ca
      4th of Aug, 2010
    0 Votes

    Complete waste of time and money. The "jobs" they advertise are already posted in other boards and are 99% of the time late (the position has already been filled, etc). Their Resume critique system is a joke. Just google the horror stories you see online, they will send you the EXACT same letter they send to everyone, with scare tactics to make you pay their Resume writing fees (around $700).

    My guess is that sooner rather than later they will go out of Business...

  • Sv
      15th of Sep, 2010
    0 Votes

    Agreed with primary complaint. I've heard of more success rates through other sites, but never one through Ladders.

    As for Rick Wingender, do you work for The Ladders;) given your sweeping dismissal of the original complaint?

  • Ri
      12th of Nov, 2010
    +1 Votes

    The Ladders is posting the same job with the exact same description for multiple cities all with the Mergis Group. This appears to be a phishing scheme.:
    Company: The Mergis Group
    Jobid: 2392749
    Job Title: Vice President of Audit
    Austin, TX

    Vice President of Audit Denver, CO 11/11/2010 TheLadders
    with a prestigious Fortune 500 financial services company to identify an exceptionalVice President of Audit. The ideal candidate will have a public accounting background with excellent industry...
    More Details
    Vice President of Audit Minneapolis, MN 11/11/2010 TheLadders
    with a prestigious Fortune 500 financial services company to identify an exceptionalVice President of Audit. The ideal candidate will have a public accounting background with excellent industry...
    More Details
    Vice President of Audit Houston, TX 11/11/2010 TheLadders
    with a prestigious Fortune 500 financial services company to identify an exceptionalVice President of Audit. The ideal candidate will have a public accounting background with excellent industry...
    More Details
    Vice President of Audit Saint Louis, MO 11/11/2010 TheLadders
    with a prestigious Fortune 500 financial services company to identify an exceptionalVice President of Audit. The ideal candidate will have a public accounting background with excellent industry...
    More Details

  • Ji
      19th of Nov, 2010
    0 Votes

    I cannot understand why anyone would pay to join a jobsite that simply recycles jobs that are already posted on free job sites/aggregators like monster, LinkedIn, salestarget etc etc etc (depends what country you're in, here in the UK there are loads of free job consolidator sites). I signed up for the free service but then discovered to actually apply for anything you had to be a paid up Member, swapped a few emails with them telling them they were a load of scammers (in a polite way...), got the usual smooth talking drivel back 'we're sorry you don't see value in our service, most of our customers think the sun shines out of our a**' etc. Have no intention of paying for anything from them

  • Sc
      21st of Nov, 2010
    +1 Votes

    Not worth the money -Customer service is nonexistent. Resume service is a RIP OFF!

  • Rz
      19th of Jan, 2011
    0 Votes

    I have to disagree with all the nay sayers. I have received reach outs from corporate head hunters (one last week to be exact) as well as contract head hunters, I have received job interviews (both local and travel paid) and multiple job offers over the years. So, a scam it is not. And, before anyone asks "Do I work for The Ladders", the answer is "No".

    For anyone complaining about posting of the same job title with the exact same description for multiple cities, blame the poster of the job, not The Ladders. If anyone is fishing, its the organization doing the posting. Complain about them.

    For anyone complaining about the use of their or anyone else's resume writing service, caveat emptor. If you believe your resume is great, stay with it. If you haven't received a call concerning your resume, maybe your resume needs some work.

  • Go
      26th of Jan, 2011
    +1 Votes

    So let me get this straight, the two champions of THE LADDERS service on this blog actually took time out of their outrageously busy executve days to search out and log onto a complaint board, hunt out complaints about the service and then defend it? We we gullable enough to believe the false cliams once "Mr. Wingender" and "RxRob". Shame on you for even furthering your deceit

  • Om
      10th of Feb, 2011
    0 Votes

    This is not an easy time to get a job. A friend of mine had suggested the ladders. I was on it for a few months...nothing. I was starting to get depressed. I took advantage of their free resume critique, thinking why the hell not. Well, their response nearly made me fall out of my chair. They make you feel like your resume is the worst thing that you have ever written in your life. Now, I will say this - that part of it I'm not sure I'd call as "scam" - but they certainly are just doing a big sales job for their services, and I realized that they do that on purpose. That said - it gave me a huge wake up call at the time and I went and bought a lot of books on job hunting. I realized, I was being lazy - just uploading resumes, and waiting for the phone to ring. Different days - you have to work a lot harder, and I realized my resume did need some work. Well, after I gave myself a good kick, I changed my resume (tailoring it to each job), and carefully worded my cover letters, among lots of other things. Well, I started getting responses, and what I like about The Ladders is it seems to have many more recruiter-posted jobs then other websites - and a recruiter contact in my opinion is great. Anyway, after that I am on my second interview with a job that I will most likely get the offer, and I have two other interviews next week. Sometimes you have to ask yourself if you can be doing better, not just assign blame. Sure, they could do things better, and I never had credit card issues, but it is certainly possible for it to work to someones advantage.

  • La
      15th of Mar, 2011
    0 Votes

    The Ladders Resume Critique Review is a SCAM!

    Here’s the situation: You send a resume to The Ladders for their free critique. Then you get back a letter telling you what all the problems with your resume is, and for a fee they will get you a new one. Last I remember the fee is around $700. Remember, we are usually talking about resumes for executives.

    The biggest red flag is that the critiques are form letters! They will even critique their own, The Ladders generated, resumes! It’s a simple process that a salesperson goes through to make a sale, not a real resume critique that a professional resume writer would give.

    In other words, it seems they hardly even look at the resume… they just get you back a scary letter saying how bad your resume sucks, and that they can make it shine like new. Scare tactics. I’m sure it’s done well for them.

  • La
      15th of Mar, 2011
    +1 Votes

    The Ladders Free Resume Crituque / Review is a SCAM! Here is the form letter we got after sending in 6 different resumes for the free critique. THEY WERE ALL EXACTLY THE SAME EXCEPT FOR A FEW PERSONALIZATIONS!

    My name is Michael, I am an Executive Resume Analyst and have reviewed over 20, 000 resumes throughout my career. Because many candidates have difficulty viewing their resume objectively as a marketing tool, it is my job to evaluate how well your document distinguishes you from your competition.
    Before I begin the critique, I would like to warn you about my style because my comments can seem frank. But the reality is that the job market is very competitive now, so I find it beneficial to help you develop your resume by being direct.
    In the analysis below, I have outlined the weaknesses I currently see in your resume, which include the lack of focus with regards to accomplishments and missing introduction, but these are not all. Overall, I am concerned that your resume doesn't effectively communicate your value as a Marketing Director - the resume lacks the ability to capture an employer and make him/her say, "I must have this person in for an interview"
    Now, here are the major issues I see on your resume:

    There is a monumental problem glaring at me in the top section of your resume. You are completely missing the most important part of a resume: the summary statement! The summary statement is the most-read section of an entire resume; it is your ticket to the interview. By not having a summary, you are not providing the hiring manager a quick peek into your past, present, and future to see where you've been, where you're at, and where you want to go professionally.
    A requirement for any top-tier professional resume is a "Core Competencies" section. This section both provides a quick and comprehensive look at your strengths from the beginning of the resume and acts as a keyword-rich area that enables your resume to be quickly found by HR technology on the internet.
    Michael, this introductory section is increasingly important to employers as the job market becomes more competitive, and they have to read through more and more resumes each day. This is a great opportunity to stand out from the crowd right from the start and you haven't taken advantage of it.

    Let's look at your experience section next...
    Where are all of your powerful, hard-hitting job descriptions? Your job descriptions are much too generic and unexciting to support your extensive and impressive background as a high-caliber Marketing Manager or Director. Employers want detail, and need to clearly see how you are better than the other candidates with similar experience.
    One of the main issues right now is that from the way the resume is worded, you seem to be more of a "doer" than an "achiever". Too many of your job descriptions are task-based and not result-based, meaning they tell what you DID-not what you ACHIEVED. To be effective and create excitement, it needs to be results-based: What was achieved as a RESULT of what you did? Employers are looking for results. They want to know you have solved problems similar to theirs and that you achieved the results for which they are looking. Look at these:
     Support other marketing and advertising professionals for company events.
     Build and generate marketing collateral and materials while managing budgets.
     Research and obtain information on marketing trends and competition to drive and formulate change.
    What are the results? What are the tangible outcomes? This is the focus that your resume lacks. You need to paint a vivid and informative picture that successfully captures the full scope of your achievements and value in an effective and logical manner. Believe me, your competition is not hiding their lights under baskets, so neither should you.
    Because you are targeting Manager or Director level positions, where you need to be focused on strategic thinking along with many other different constituents, your accomplishments need to put more emphasis on specific, measurable highlights that reflect your ability to produce great results regardless of external factors. Employers look for potential in the quantitative evidence you show of your success. You need to make sure you get that type of information in the resume in a highlighted way and a way that is going to convey the extent of your caliber to someone that does not know you.
    Overall, the content of your resume is too bland. The "WOW" factor isn't there. It does not generate interest or show how you are any different than the other candidates against whom you are competing. Employers need to see clearly how you are better than the other candidates with similar experience. The employer will only call the candidates who have the best qualifications that are presented in the most convincing way on their resume.

    Moving on, we really need to work on elevating the language throughout the document! The document's verbiage doesn't support your goals. It's "average" - not what you want when you are trying to sell your abilities and position yourself above the competition. Step up the language by using stronger action verbs to create excitement and keep your reader engaged!
    I spotted an issue that undermines your resume's effectiveness here: sentence structure. Most of your sentences use what I call "procedural structure." Terms like "Other duties include..." or "Prepare..." are not the most powerful verb phrases to use. Not only do these introduce a task rather than a result or success, but they make your job descriptions sound more like obligations rather than opportunities. By making your resume task-oriented, you're obscuring your best work.

    Your resume isn't formatted and organized to give the reader what he/she seeks quickly. Resumes aren't read start to finish like a book. Instead, the summary is read and then the rest of the document is scanned quickly with job titles, bullet statements, and other highlighted material being read first. The primary interests of hiring managers come in the following order: summary, job titles, experience, bullets, education.
    I highly recommend a more professional design to provide a more executive impression. A lot can be done with the formatting and design to improve first visual impressions while still maintaining a conservative appearance. It's crucial that your resume stands out from the pack, in a polished, executive way. Keep in mind that your resume goes first, it's their only initial impression of you, make it appear as you would walking through their office door.
    Michael, go back and reread your resume, and you will see that this document is selling you short. The bottom line: Your resume simply does not fully reflect your professional caliber, and you are not making the first impression count. You are clearly a strong candidate, but that is simply not enough to get an interview! Frankly, your resume positions you for a lower-level job and salary than you desire-or deserve.
    Only the BEST RESUMES-NOT CANDIDATES-get the most attention and eventually an interview.

  • 12
      9th of May, 2011
    0 Votes

    The Ladders is one of the longest running online ripp offs on the Web. First let me say that I signed up and paid for a subscription as a job seeker several years ago ( 2005 ) Paid over $300 for monthly fees. Everytime I found a postion I wanted to apply to, the system told me it required a premium subscription (not my basic subscriptions) so I signed up for the premium subscription and immediately the system says the position is no longer available. Okay so now I have the premium subscription and literally every postion is closed, no longer available etc. Throughout my entire membership with the Ladders, I received a number of calls from Headhunters, recruiters for horrible positions. I finally cancelled my membership and had similiar issues as the other posters, my credit card still charged. Finally I cancelled the card and they were no longer able to charge me. I did land a position and a few years later I decided to post on the Ladders as a recruiter(30 day posting cost $ $295 or 395 I don't remember the exact fee) I also posted on other sites. My job posting on the ladders expired after 30 days. I recently did a search for the postings after 90 days, to make sure they were all deleted because e I filled the position. Well behold!, TheLadders is still showing the posting live, then tell candidates, to view the posting they must sign up for a subscription because the Job Posting requires a premium subscription. As the poster I know the job posting is expired and already filled and I'm livid they are using my expired posting to trick people into paying them money. It is companies like this which give the internet such a horrible reputation. Its a legal Scam and I honestly hope people do their reseach and come here before paying their hard earned money. The cost of posting a job to recruiters and employers is very high from $300 -$1000 just to post one job, no wonder so many people are out of work and unemployment so high. there are jobs out there and I don't blame employers for not posting them and paying high fees to scams like the Ladders. I am sure there are recruiters and employers who've hired from the Ladders or interviewed candidates from there, after all its really designed for the recruiters and employers willing to pay the high fees for good candidates. However I caution any candidate looking for a position to be very very careful about signing up for a subscription. Keep in mine that employers are paying hefty fees to posting openings, there's no need for such greed to require candidates to pay money in addition to the poster. This is just pure greed. Yes the Ladders has a number of employees which make commissions from the sale of additional subscriptions and other fees that are paid. I understand they have to make a living as well, but how do they sleep at night knowing they are asking people out of work and struggling to make ends meet pay hefty fees to find a job. I equate them to the snake oil and insurance sales people, let me throw some of the mortgage brokers in this group. Compare this group to attoneys and the above group will eat lawyers alive. The online job boards are really designed for recruiters not the candidates or the employers so please keep this in mind before you pay any subscription fees to view jobs.

  • De
      18th of May, 2011
    0 Votes

    The Ladders Trial Offer:

    My situation is a bit different than most, or so it seems. This is the first time is over 20 years I find myself in the awkward position of being a job seeker.

    I have participated with standard Internet sites including Career Builder, Monster, Indeed and Dice. Predicated upon skill set and with respect to those sites, it appears some job seekers do very well, while others fail. Most jobs filled seem to be "contract jobs" with no benefits and terminal longevity. Therefore every six months or so the job seeker is again hunting for a new position in an effort to stay ahead of the monthly bills. I am sure there are exceptions and some job seekers actually secure a rewarding, permanent position. Personally, I have not experienced such fortune.

    Enter The Ladders... I recently joined The Ladders on a free trial basis (14 days) fully cognizant of the negativity that seems to gravitate to Mr. Cenedella's firm. I made it abundantly clear to my "Ladders Advisor", prior to the trial subscription, that, at this time, I did not seek to be inundated with a barrage of emails on everything I am doing wrong with respect to job seeking. This included my resume, which I believe is well written. Well here is the first email from my "Ladders Advisor" which I shall share with everyone.

    "Resume Critiques

    Hi JC,

    Today, I wanted to touch base with you on your resume. Having a powerful, professional resume is essential to a successful search.

    Our team of Executive Resume Analysts sees tens of thousands of executive-level resumes from $100K+ job seekers like you every year. Unfortunately, 94% of the resumes we see are not what recruiters are looking for. It makes sense: While most of our members are experts at their jobs, very few are experts at writing professional executive resumes.

    As a Premium member, you can find out if your resume will work for recruiters: An Executive Resume Analyst will critique your resume for free so you can apply to jobs with confidence.

    Get your free resume critique now.

    They'll be honest with you: if your resume is great, your analyst will confirm that. If not, they'll tell you what you can do to make it better.

    If you'd like to learn more about resumes on your own time, our News and Advice team has gathered some great articles on Resume Advice.

    You can't afford to be wrong about your resume. So get your free critique now. Good luck with your search!

    Regards, "

    ... I would surmise many others have received the same boilerplate letter. If I am in err, my apology to Mr. Cenedella. As I stated to The Ladders' representative and prior to joining, I am not interested in having my resume rewritten. I would think the resume should be authored by the person actually applying for the job. After all, job seekers can not have someone from The Ladders show up and do the job interview for them as well. It would be like having someone else take a LSAT exam for you to get into law school. I do understand, however, a constructive critique is a good thing.

    My first "session" with my "Ladders Advisor" included site navigation and the fine tuning of "My Job Ladders" settings . The site is complex, and for those who like to play around on an Internet site, The Ladders is for you. I have three "Job Ladders" categories and each ladder has several sub categories. I will say the "Ladders Advisor" did follow up and was helpful in clicking the appropriate job nodes. After I completed this task, I would learn that I have over 1, 057 jobs to browse. I was hoping The Ladders would streamline the search process, eliminate the clutter but at this point, it simply appears the subscriber is paying for access to job postings exclusive to The Ladders. Or are these the same jobs that are resident on other site?? Perhaps I am wrong, but it will take many man hours to review each job to determine which ones are appropriate for me. The question I can't help but ask are the jobs current or is this just indeed another colossal waste of time.

    This is my initial experience with The Ladders. I welcome your thoughts. JC

  • Wr
      14th of Jun, 2011
    0 Votes

    The bottom line is if you have the skills necessary that sites are looking for, using Monster, Careerbuilder, et. al., there is no reason recruiters wouldn't be calling you. I use LinkedIn quite a bit to keep contacts with people I have worked with in the past as well as other recruiters who have come through on contracts (I work in Healthcare IT). There is no way that Ladders would ever get a penny from me. Although I find their free article newsletter in my inbox to sometimes be filled with interesting tidbits, I don't think I would pay them money to regurgitate what all the other job boards have. Take the time and hunt for yourself and save a lot of money. Best advice I ever had about my resume? Make VERY certain you have no mistakes in spelling or grammar. That is an instant red-flag and a deal-killer for many places.

  • Fa
      24th of Jul, 2011
    +2 Votes

    Used to work there, quit after 6 months. Marc is a smooth-talking crook who pretends to "love the customer" but in reality employs an auto-renew policy to exploit job seekers as much as possible. Horrible way to run a business, and always felt sorry for those who were taken for money they couldn't afford to lose. Overall, it's pretty darn close to a full-blown scam, for several reasons.

  • Mi
      24th of Sep, 2011
    0 Votes

    Like so many people on this forum, I consider my membership of The Ladders in the UK, a total waste of money. Despite cancelling my subscription they have continued to remove money from my account and fail to respond to my emails.
    Interestingly, when I now try and log in to the "cancel my subscription" element of their site, they state that my email address is not recognised! Perhaps this is all part of a scam?

  • Lo
      30th of Oct, 2011
    0 Votes

    I used The Ladders 14 months ago for one month. I ended up buying a company so did not need them anymore. I cancelled all the emails and though I was done with them last August or September. They just charged my account $75.00!!! I have emailed them anc caled them but have not heard anything back from them. I emailed the class-action website about this.

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