A couple of weeks ago we successfully released our first iPhone app for job seekers. We managed to get more than 140k downloads within the first week, and got great coverage on TechCrunch, Reuters and many other news outlets. “That’s great news,” you might be saying, “but what does that have to do with recruiters or hiring managers?” Glad you asked, because, as it turns out, it has rather big implications. And here is why:
Like any industry, the recruitment industry is an ecosystem. There are job seekers on one side and jobs (and recruiters and hiring managers) on the other. If you change one side of the equation it affects the other side as well. That’s why, when we started building the app, we thought about this as a holistic experience. The goal was to create something that is valuable to the ecosystem. We did this by considering every feature with the impact it has on both sides. Let’s start off with one of the main differences between our app and any other job search app:
There is no “job search”
This one was a tough battle. As you might imagine, everyone wants to be able to search. But we decided that search is actually not a good way to discover relevant jobs on the mobile phone. Here is the reason: Job seekers are, unfortunately, not very good at searching for a job. And it’s not their fault, because they search for a new job maybe every few years. You, as a recruiter or hiring manager, can probably attest to this as you have seen multiple applications in the past where the candidates are just too far off. So instead, we focused on delivering matches to job seekers that are based on their target job title, areas of expertise, level of experience and salary requirements. We took the labor and errors out of searching, and that, in turn, should be of benefit to you: You will no longer see people applying to software engineer jobs when they are in sales.
There is no option to apply
Here is a fact: A job application today means that the candidate has to send in a resume and a cover letter. This is a complex process which requires adjusting resumes and composing compelling introductions, or cover letters. What we didn’t want to create is a “one-click-send-your-resume” experience, because that doesn’t benefit the candidate or recruiter. Candidates should take applying to a job seriously, take their time, and put their best foot forward. By suggesting it is as simple as “one click,” you end up with a sea of useless applications. We needed to come up with something that is better.
We show you what they like
This is why we allow candidates to “like” a job. Liking a job will prompt an email to be sent with a link for them to apply later from their laptop or desktop computer. That’s when they have time to do research on the job and company, and access to all the resources needed to submit a formal application.
Liking a job is where you get a glimpse behind the curtain: You can reach out to the best candidates right away – before they even apply. Knowing that a matched candidate likes your job is important information. This is the competitive edge you need to find the right candidate fast, and engage immediately. We created the app for job seeker use, but at the end of the day it is you, the recruiters and hiring managers, who reap the benefits of the app: well-matched candidates, thoughtfully tailored applications and real-time candidate interest alerts.
Benjamin Grohé is the Head of Product at TheLadders, the premier mobile and online job-matching service for career-driven professionals. When he is not coming up with innovative ideas to delight our customers, he is celebrating his European heritage by cruising the streets of New York City on his Vespa or playing football (the REAL football). Follow Ben and TheLadders Dev team at @BenGrohe and @TheLaddersDev.