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Job seeking goes mobile

Those looking for jobs should turn to their smart phones as a new mobile app has been launched by ACareerJob. The venture is a subsidiary of Theonera Inc., a recruitment, assessment and outplacement firm based in St. Agatha.
The app is a comprehensive mobile employment program designed to ensure both the job seeker and a potential employer receive quality and qualified matches in real time.

The app is the brainstorm of John Francis, president of ACareerJob, who came up with the idea while standing in line at the grocery store.

“I had been on a train a few days before going to Toronto and I saw everyone with their Blackberrys and I know everyone is mobile and there has to be a way of interacting with them,” said Francis. “Then I found myself at the checkout at a grocery store and for some reason I noticed a singles wanted ad so I started thinking if I could take the idea of the singles ad, apply it to the mobile devices for jobs searchers and employers and make it so that the search is direct.”

There were two main issues Francis wanted to address with the app. He knew that companies used newspapers and online job boards to post jobs but that would generate a slew of résumés more than they could handle and very few proper matches.

“Companies would be getting close to 500 résumés but that is not saving time or money and can be a big issue for companies looking for the right person to employ,” he said.
For the applicants who send in a résumé, they don’t know if the company received or if they are still hiring, so Francis wanted to change that as well.

“What the single ads do from my understanding is someone creates a profile saying what they are looking for and the responding person that matches all the criteria contacts them and I figured a company can do the same thing with potential hires. The problem right now with all the popular job sites is that they work off the résumé, so if an applicant was an architect 15 years ago and they put it on the résumé and an architectural company is looking to hire someone that résumé will be sent to them even though the applicant is no longer in that field.”

For employers, the app’s focused search ensures only qualified professionals whose credentials match the employer’s specified job criteria are connected. For professionals seeking new employment, the app helps them job-search while directing them to career opportunities that match their defined interests and skill sets.

Applicants make a profile with general information, the job they are looking for and include how long they have worked in a certain industry or field. They then upload a résumé but the program only uses the criteria in the profile to match jobs with people. If a match is made an employer can have access to the résumé to have further look at the candidate.

“Basically a person looking for work puts up a profile and is contacted by a company that is looking for the criteria that is in that profile,” said Francis.

An email is sent to all applicants when a job with their criteria is posted and vice a versa for companies, this allows companies the opportunity to view five to 10 résumés, not 500 and give applicants the chance to review the company to see if it is a right fit for them as well.

“I find it frustrating that the overall system to date with online job searches is not user friendly for applicants,” said Francis. “When people post résumés to a websites that is a lot of personal information out there that should be treated with respect but with the current system it just becomes a pile of résumés where as our app contacts people when there is a strong match for employer and applicant.”

It can be very frustrating for job seekers who do not know where jobs are or if they resumes have even be read, says Francis, adding the app allows users to know that their résumé has been seen and that it is not one of 500 but one of five and which companies have looked at the résumé and how to contact them.

“If I have a company and receive an email from a potential hire who is interested in the company that shows me initiative,” he said. “Companies don’t want hundreds of people contacting them, but five or 10, that is not a problem.”
The app was released at the beginning of April and is iPhone, Blackberry and Android friendly.

“The online sites are primarily a web-based platform, where our vision was always to set up as an app for mobile devices and the web side is a secondary component. Our whole aim is to make it mobile.”
Feedback from users of the app have been positive, said Francis, adding it is the quickness of the app to upload a profile that most people prefer.

“The aim is to make it quick and easy for users to upload the information to a profile as it only takes two or three minutes to finish.”

The app is free to download and does not cost applicants anything to upload a profile. For employers there is a six-month free trial where they can upload as many job opportunities with no future fees attached to those postings. After the trial period one job posting will cost $280 but can be revised or amended at anytime.
For more information on the app visit www.ACareerJob.net.

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