What We Do





Free Consultation


(920) 309 - 5605


The ultimate recruiting platform for students, employers, and career centers


Build, Grow


UX, UI, Development



What is Handshake?

Handshake is the ultimate recruiting platform for students. It’s the place where students, career centers, and recruiters come to meet, talk, and share opportunities.

From 2015 to 2017, Handshake grew from 250,000 users to almost 4 million.

During that time, Headway helped them move forward on their key initiatives. Ranging from front-end, back-end, and API integrations to UX, UI, and marketing design.

Timing & Progress

The Problem

Handshake approached Headway at a pivotal time early in their company. They had just raised a seed round of investment and needed to move the needle on key metrics by improving ease of use and decreasing a user's time to achieve their desired outcomes. They had a great internal team but needed some more firepower to gain traction faster.

The Solution

We worked alongside their team beginning July 2015 through February 2017, becoming an external crew to help them accelerate efforts. Throughout our time with them, five different Headway crew members helped augment and assist their team on a variety of projects, working directly alongside their team in a sprint-based approach.

Testimonial quotation mark
The feedback that we've gotten from customers for all of the features Headway's helped build has been that they're all a step above any other feature that we'd built up to that point, from a user interface and frontend perspective. They're more aesthetically-pleasing, easier to use, and more thought-out.
Brian Reath
Director of Customer Success, Handshake

First Destination Survey

The first interactive outcome survey with real-time reporting

In academia, the First Destination Survey (FDS) is the primary method for universities to measure their placement rates of students at jobs when they graduate. This is where the career center proves its worth, but it's constrained.

We helped Handshake create their very own FDS to help universities build their own, where traditionally they would have employed a third-party service and relied on all inherited limitations.

Career Interests

Providing insights to students through the personalization of events, articles, and jobs on the platform.

Sales & Marketing Design

We also worked closely with the Handshake team to create and standardize many of their direct sales and marketing tools, which helped their team move faster and more efficiently.

  • Marketing Site

  • Information Architecture

  • Case Studies

  • Customization of Knowledge Base & Support Platform

  • PDFs & One Pagers to Highlight Key Value Propositions within Sales Efforts

Data Importer for Universities

A substantial problem that universities faced once they transitioned from a competitor to Handshake was the ability to get up and running quickly. The data migration needed to provide a great experience was significant. The app needed to be seed with the student and IT data from the registrar's office.

Our engineering team worked with them to round out their current importer that previously failed without continuation.

The existing tool was called the “parser," but it was finicky. It would frequently error out, and usually with only 10% of the import left to go. There was no way to re-run a partial import, and debugging the code was challenging. The error didn’t always happen when the same data was being ingested. As you can imagine, this provided a pretty frustrating user experience.

After being handed a skeleton proof-of-concept project on a new build, we fleshed it out with unit and integration tests to cover existing functionality. Unlike parser, the importer was designed to keep data in sync, not just a one-time import of key data from university legacy systems.

Student Dashboard

We also created a more engaging, informative, and successful student dashboard. The new dashboard was the first component-based UI within the app that helped set the pattern for future development.

  • Completely revamped UI student dashboard got a much-needed facelift -both in aesthetics and interactions

  • A card-based, pinterest-style layout

  • Primary development on the dashboard for the first release

  • Helped establish patterns for component-based UI's

Handshake has been featured in

Testimonial quotation mark
Headway has been the first consultant that has handled its own project management. We didn't have to ride them every day and keep track of what they were working on. There were no long periods without feedback. From the perspective of our interaction, the work with Headway has been great. From a project management perspective on their end, every feature built by Headway has been delivered on time. We sat down, came up with timelines, figured out rough implementations, roadblocks, and risks.
Brian Reath
Director of Customer Success, Handshake

Focusing on Customer Success

Brian Reath

Head of Customer Success, Handshake

Andrew Verboncouer

Partner & CEO

More Case Studies

View All Case Studies

Let's make traction together

Hire a team that cares as much as you do.

Get a Free Consultation