How Ashleigh Went From Zero to 11 Job Interviews With Teal

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May 15, 2024
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Edited by
Camille Trent
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19
min read

The Candidate

Name: Ashleigh Bergh Duggan
Title: Customer Success Manager, Scaled
Company: Lavender
Industry: Tech
Years of Experience: 10+ in non-profit, 4 in SaaS
Location: Boston, MA

The Challenge

Facing a layoff after transitioning to a new career

After over a decade of working in nonprofits, Ashleigh Bergh Duggan felt burnt out and ready for a change. Wanting something different but not knowing what that looked like, she began exploring opportunities outside her familiar space.

"I had a friend who worked for a SaaS company. I reached out to her one day and said, 'I don't know what you do, but you seem to really like your job. And I need to do something different, but I don't know what different is.'"

Encouraged by her friend's positive experience and feedback, Ashleigh decided to explore opportunities in the tech industry.

As luck would have it, after several conversations with that same connection (and five rounds of interviews over two months), Ashleigh was able to pivot successfully into a customer success role in SaaS. She dug in deep and fell in love with learning, her customers, the energy, and her decision to pivot.

But everything changed when she was part of a layoff in March 2023.

After dedicating time and energy to establishing a new career, Ashleigh found herself without a job. She turned to LinkedIn and job listings to recalibrate her strategy. Recognizing the tech job market demanded a deep understanding of job roles and requirements, she identified and aligned her transferable skills—many of which she developed during her 10+ years in nonprofits.

What Ashleigh's job search looked like before Teal

Before Teal, Ashleigh's job search was filled with manual work and hours of research, trying to understand job titles and descriptions and how her skills aligned with them. It was also a struggle to keep up with the status of every application, which led to missed opportunities.

A self-described "Google Sheet Girlie," Ashleigh would spend hours daily combing through job boards and saving interesting opportunities to a sprawling Google Sheet. But she struggled to copy and paste all of the details for each role. Keeping track of all of the jobs, titles, where she applied, and whether she followed up quickly became one of the hardest parts of her search.

"Pre-Teal, I'd open a bunch of job descriptions. I'd then have to open Google Sheets. I'd copy and paste the title, copy and paste the job description, copy and paste the link, and copy and paste the date. It was a lot of back-and-forth and manual work just to keep track of stuff. And inevitably, I would end up forgetting to apply to something."

Ashleigh also spent significant time navigating well-meaning advice on her resume—but without any positive impact—leaving her with zero interview opportunities.

The constant context switching left her feeling scattered and stressed.

"There's just a lot of noise, and you're eager. In my case, I was eager, excited, and very determined to find my next role. And trying to sift through who to listen to and what kind of advice to follow was hard. It was just really, really hard."

She also felt frustrated and burnt out by the effort required just to apply for jobs, let alone land interviews.

There are just so many pieces to it rather than sending your resume out. That's not the world we live in anymore, and it was just overwhelming. There were a lot of moving pieces and a lot of stuff to keep track of, and pre-Teal, there was no easy way of keeping track of all of that information in one place."

Ashleigh knew there had to be a better way to manage the volume of a modern job search.

The Solution

Leveraging Teal to manage, track, and optimize applications

Without much clarity about what could or would be next, Ashleigh relied on LinkedIn to understand the tech job market.

"When I got back on LinkedIn in 2023, I was overwhelmed with influencers, content creators, people giving advice, and resume coaches. All of this information was presented in a very loud way that was overwhelming and intense."

But LinkedIn, despite the initial overwhelm, had its benefits.

Not only was Ashleigh exposed to companies she wouldn't find through a simple Google search, but she also discovered Teal through a LinkedIn influencer.

"Following a recruiter at a particular company, I started getting her newsletter. She referenced Teal, and I signed up right away."

Ashleigh initially used Teal to test the Job Application Tracker. Once she realized it was more than a glorified Google Sheet, she began tracking her entire job search and tailoring her resume in Teal.

"As I started to play around with it more and really spent time digging through the resume builder and leveraging it, I just fell in love with everything being all in one place and not having to search through a thousand different apps to keep track of my job search. It was all very handy and all in one place. It was great!"

Ashleigh used the Teal Job Tracker and the Chrome Extension to save and monitor the status of every job, manage what version of her resume she sent for a specific role, rate her excitement, and get a high-level overview of each position's status in her job search pipeline.

"It was the virtual assistant for my job search. It gave me a way to organize things and a way to track things. It also was a way to see which version of a resume I sent to what job so if I was being interviewed, I could look back and think, okay, this is the version I sent; these are the things I need to talk about versus having to search through all of my files and my drive and find, figure out which one it was." 

Before Teal, Ashleigh quickly learned links to job postings often expire or are removed when a company is no longer accepting applications. Teal helped remove the guesswork from the equation.

"In my pre-Teal days, I would save the job posting link. But if I would go back and the job had been closed to applicants, the job description would often just disappear. And then I'd panic and think, 'What did I even apply for? I don't even see the job description!' I needed those details. Having that information immediately pulled into Teal meant that even if that link disappeared or it was archived, I could still go back and reference it."

But the Job Tracker wasn't the only helpful tool Ashleigh found. She also used the Teal Resume Builder to create a base resume with all of her achievements, skills, and experience. Then, she used Matching Mode to tailor that resume so each version had only the most relevant information and language for a specific job.

"I had this long base resume of everything I've ever done and loaded it all into Teal. Then, I'd use Matching with each job. And if it was a 20 percent match or a 30 percent match, I'd look through it and see if it was low because I need to change the wording or because I literally have not done any of these things. Am I matching on the low side because I can't do the job, or am I matching on the low side because I can't articulate I can do the job?"

This process helped Ashleigh refine her approach to resume customization, so she presented her skills in a way that resonated. It also helped her learn how to adjust her language. With over a decade of nonprofit experience and just a few years in tech, Ashleigh used Teal to bridge the gap between each industry.

The Teal resume content that landed Ashleigh a job at a funded SaaS startup

Why it works: Ashleigh's resume incorporates the language used in tech to meet the expectations of the field—showcasing how her experience is relevant. She strategically highlights measurable technical skills to demonstrate her proficiency in areas aligning with tech job descriptions. Ashleigh also uses metrics to illustrate her impact—making her achievements concrete. Finally, less impactful details are found on the second page, so her most pertinent skills and experiences grab attention first.

The Impact

A streamlined job search and multiple interviews

Integrating Teal into Ashleigh's job search significantly improved her process and the outcome—starting with getting her resume in front of the right people.

I had a former colleague who worked at a company I was interested in and pursuing an opportunity. There was an opening there, and using the job description, I edited my resume and sent it to her. She didn't have any follow-up questions. She scanned through my resume, and she was like, 'Yep, this looks great.' And sent it on.

Before Teal, Ashleigh would spend two to three hours on each application, copying and pasting relevant information from the job description into her spreadsheet, editing and updating her resume, and then filling out the application.

An added layer on top was all the administrative stuff and keeping track of your job search: editing your resume, reminding yourself, and keeping track of things like, did I email that person? Did I follow up? Do I know anybody?

But after adding Teal to her process, she reduced the application time to about an hour on average. With the time she saved? She was able to apply for more jobs, increasing the volume of applications by up to 50 percent.

But just getting more resumes in front of hiring managers wasn't the only benefit. Ashleigh also improved her interview response rate.

"I can tell you with almost a hundred percent certainty that I had no interviews before I started using Teal. None."

After Teal? Ashleigh's interview count skyrocketed from zero to eleven across the first and second rounds.

I think those potential obstacles that might have gotten in the way of getting my resume to the right people were removed because my resume was much clearer and much more aligned with the job description."

And when it came to her original reason for trying Teal, managing the overwhelm of the job search, Ashleigh found what she was looking for.

"Having everything in one place was just so helpful. I could log in and look at my dashboard and see everything in one place, see when I applied, if I had followed up, or what my follow-up date was. Visually, it was so clean and easy. And it just made it so much easier on me every day."

While 90 percent of Teal's tools and features are free and can support a job search, after experiencing the benefits of Teal+, Ashleigh opted for the more advanced and unlimited features.

"And then I paid for a Teal Plus membership. Basically, the whole time I was unemployed on my own, I put it in my budget. I was like, okay, I'm going to sacrifice something else, but it is worth it. It was worth every penny."

The Offer

Landing a job at funded SaaS startup Lavender 

Ashleigh successfully landed a job at the funded SaaS startup Lavender, leveraging the tailored resume content she developed using Teal.

The role not only marked a significant career shift but also came with a compelling compensation package.

"I initially started at Lavender in User Success; the comp was listed in the job description at $85k a year, which was about a 15% increase from my previous role."

The benefits at Lavender are well-suited to her needs and include essentials like health, dental, vision, and a 401k match. Lavender is also chock-full of adaptability and support.

"I'm very lucky that our team is small enough that if there's something I need to help me be more successful in my role, my manager is always open to those conversations."

But for Ashleigh, the most standout benefit of a job at Lavender is the work-life balance.

"For the first time in my 15 years working in a professional capacity, I recently took an entire two-week vacation—no email, no Slack, nothing—and nothing fell apart while I was gone." 

The Tips

Staying visible and asking for help

Beyond leveraging Teal to organize and optimize your job search, Ashleigh shared some tips on how to manage a noisy job search.

"Someone I connected with during my job search said something that I will never forget. She said The only person who has your job search top of mind all the time is you. Family, friends, they might think about you and your job search every once in a while, but you are the only person who is always—always—thinking about it.' It helped me realize that I would need to be more proactive in reminding folks that I was still looking and that it was on me to help them help me."

Keeping visibility in mind, Ashleigh developed a social template to clearly communicate how connections can assist job seekers.

Help Needed: I'm reaching out to my network for support in my job search.

About Me: [Concise 1-2 sentence description of your career history and experience.]

Looking For: [List the title or titles you're seeking, and general areas of interest, e.g., customer success.]

Strengths: [Top highlights about what you bring to the table.]

Achievements: [A few top achievements.]

Preference: [Remote, hybrid, or specific location.]

Call to Action: Please share this post or connect me with contacts who might help. In return, I'd love to assist in [specific area of expertise].

Lavender is an AI Sales Email Coach that assists you in real-time to help you get more positive replies and write better emails faster.

Frequently Asked Questions

Kayte Grady

Kayte, Senior Copywriter at Teal and Champion of ADHD professionals, is a seasoned writer passionate about storytelling and career growth. With a data-driven approach to content marketing and a word-nerd knack for resume builder analysis, Kayte’s on a mission to empower job seekers to land a job they love. Constantly pivoting and reinventing herself, this social-worker-turned-marketer found growth and camaraderie in tech—a genuine surprise given her never-ending devotion to the paper calendar.

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