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Employment and networking apps – consider, download or avoid?

For those seeking new opportunities, there are now various apps that promise to match you with the perfect job, employer and candidate – it’s effectively Tinder for the job market. That’s not just clever wordplay, Tinder has actually developed an app for people seeking employment, with the same blueprint as the divisive dating app. It’s called Ripple… true story.

 So, are employment and networking apps taking the recruitment world by storm? Or are the traditional methods of group networking and allocating 3 hours a week to LinkedIn still the way to go? Let’s take a look.

 WHAT’S WRONG WITH TRADITIONAL NETWORKING?

 Well, nothing, but it’s not for everyone. For some people, the thought of walking into a room full of people clutching a tepid tea and a stale croissant is their idea of hell on earth. Couple that with the fact that so many of the worthwhile networking groups often start at 6.30 in the morning and have pretty rigid attendance rules, well, you see where we’re going with this….

It can also feel pretty overwhelming when it comes to choice. There’s city-wide networking, profession specific networking, entrepreneurial networking, gender-specific – it really is a choice phenomenon and finding the one that’s right for you can be daunting.

If all of the above resonates with you, you may have been tempted by one of the many employment apps on the market and indeed, getting ready to download.

 

THE APPS – ON THE PLUS SIDE……

 Apps that bring employers and candidates together arguably save time. The recruitment process can be laborious for both applicants and employers alike. It’s a lengthy process of advertising, CV writing and polishing, shortlisting- and that’s before you even find out whether you’ve been offered, or will offer, an interview.

Job apps pretty much take all that away. You click; you swipe right and Eureka! You’ve connected with your ‘perfect match’ and are chatting over a carbonara within a matter of days. Let’s Lunch is a perfect example of this. The app’s developers claim remarkable success; it has over 2,000 businesses on board and has organised over 100,000 lunches.

It might also be considered a positive that whilst many of the apps out there require you to upload your CV or refer to your LinkedIn profile, they allow you to liaise directly with your ‘matches’ and get straight to the point. You cut out all of the red tape and meet, face to face, no holds barred. There’s an argument to say that this will allow you to get the measure of someone and go with your ‘gut’.

 

……..ON THE DOWNSIDE 

Not to rain on anyone’s app downloading parade, but it’s not all meet, eat, employ.

Many of the apps provide very little detail about employers or candidates, meaning that there’s no way of knowing whether the recommended ‘matches’ are of any relevance to you. We turn again to Ripple, where the profiles are endless but don’t really tell you anything. The lack of detail makes the process more confusing, time-consuming and downright frustrating.

Whilst you might trust your gut, it doesn’t mean you’re right. There’s a reason that the CV and humble interview remain stalwarts in the recruitment game, and that’s because, in the main, they work. The rules of recruitment are certainly less rigid with online apps, but this can mean that there’s the very real risk of sensibility and reason going out of the window. After all, employer relationships that last, take more than a meeting of minds over a glass of red and a chateaubriand (we exaggerate, but you catch our drift).

Employment and networking apps are just the next level in social media, and the danger is that there’s no way to calculate the amount of talent you’re potentially missing out on. Just as not everyone uses Facebook or Instagram, not all employers and candidates will be using online job apps. This means that there’s a whole host of untapped talent out there if you rely solely on the apps.

At the end of the day, we can’t help feeling that the apps are a little lazy. And laziness is not a desirable quality when you’re looking to recruit to your business. The effort that candidates put into their job hunt is usually fairly tangible; it takes time, focus and energy to create a good CV, it takes patience to make the shortlist, and it takes a certain ‘je ne sais quoi’ to perform well at interview and impress you into the hire.

 THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS

 If you’re an employer, finding the right candidate for your business is no easy task. If you’re job-hunting, neither is finding the right role and employer for you. There’s no app in the world that’s going to change that, but we get that it’s a tempting proposition.

However, here at Headway, we’ve developed INSIGHT, a unique and innovative recruitment process based on the premise that what you’re looking for often comes when you’re not looking at all. We use outbound strategies that attract the best candidates for the roles of our clients, and our digital and physical networks ensure that we have access to that pool of high-performing talent that isn’t necessarily seeking a change.

So whether you’re thinking of downloading one of the apps on the market, or sticking with the more traditional methods of recruitment, remember that as with most things, recruitment is generally best left to the experts.

Mark Gill

By Mark Gill

Recruitment Director with a proven record of providing world class hires at all levels of office and management positions within the Leeds Bradford region. We use our unique Headway Recruitment Platform incorporating psychometric testing to find the top candidates. If you want access to the full local talent pool get in contact with the team at Headway. We help companies achieve growth through our unique approach. This ensures the candidates we place are the perfect fit. Companies are then best placed to get the best from each individual as they understand their motivating traits. Proud to be recognised as preferred supplier for several businesses in the Sunday Times top 100 firms to work for.
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