Own a smartphone? Want a new job? You can now use the former to look for the latter. Many recruiters have lately begun using mobile technologies to seek out prospective candidates.
Smartphone penetration in India is still modest, but is expected to rise exponentially soon. Around 120 million have smartphones , while industry estimates maintain this will increase to 250 to 300 million in the next two or three years. "Only around five to eight per cent of smartphone users employ them at present to surf the Net," says Sanjay Modi, the India Managing Director at job portal Monster.com. "But we expect this to grow to around 25 per cent in the next 12 months." And if these users can look up weather forecasts and book movie tickets with their mobiles, why would they not hunt for jobs as well with the same device?
Recruiters are preparing for this in different ways. For one, they have been creating mobile apps to help jobseekers reach them. Monster.com launched its app for jobseekers using Android devices in 2011 and followed it up with one for employers as well. The jobseeker app allows users to search and apply for jobs, while the employer app enables employers to post job openings, read submitted resumes and connect with jobseekers.
Both apps are now available on mobiles using the iOS and Windows operating systems. Career networking portal LinkedIn has recently created an app for both Android and iOSbased mobiles. Even a few companies, such as Goldman Sachs, have introduced such apps to reach candidates. These apps help employers too.
"Now I can access all job applications on my phone," says Kartik Swaminathan, Assistant Vice President of HR at drugmaker Wockhardt. "I have every candidate's data at my fingertips."
A Bangalore start-up, Interview Master, has also devised an automated solution with which employers can, through their phones - whenever they need to and no matter where they are - access previous interviews they have conducted of applicants, both in text and video form. "This software saves companies Rs 1 crore in time, travel and logistics costs for every 1,000 positions," says Sanjoe Joseph, the company's founder, adding he has 40 companies as clients. And hirings too are taking place using it. "Three senior manager-level positions have been filled using this process," says Swaminathan.
Again, Monster.com has begun holding "virtual career fairs", which employers and candidates access through phones. The last one, in mid-April, saw 12 companies offering 275 jobs and 34,000 applicants responding.
"Recruiter and applicant interact with no time lag through chats and video," says Modi. "We replicate the real world career fair online."