Mobile phone conference addresses job apps

September 30, 2011 6:45:03 PM PDT
Here is an indication of how much things have changed in the last few years. There are more cellphones in the world than computers and televisions put together and some companies are betting that you'll use your smartphone to look for your next job.

"The three things that you walk away with in the morning when you step out of your house -- your keys, your wallet and your mobile device," said Michael Marlatt, a conference organizer.

iPhones, iPads and Blackberries aren't just about playing "Angry Birds" anymore. They're quickly becoming the major way we get information.

"There are really three screens. There's the TV of which there are two billion of those worldwide, there's the PC, of which there are one billion, then there's the third screen, the cellphone. There are more than five billion cellphones globally," said Chuck Martin, a mobile technology author.

"The Third Screen" is the title of Martin's new book, urging businesses to embrace the cellphone, reaching out with mobile apps and web sites -- not just to customers, but also to job seekers.

"Some of these employers that want to be leading edge, bleeding edge, and looking at how do we stay connected with the folks when they're on the go?" said Marlatt.

Marlatt heard that question so many times, he put together a conference about it. Though record numbers of Americans are looking for work, companies report that finding the right candidate is even harder than before, especially if they already have a job.

"Retail, hospitality, transportation -- these are the hot categories around mobile recruitment," said Tom Daly, the AppVault CEO.

Tom Daly's company, AppVault, creates mobile HR sites for companies looking to hire those employees who rarely sit down at a computer. Just like your BFFs, AppVault can text you when a job opens up. Research shows -- it works better than email.

"Ninety-eight percent of us will look at an SMS text within two minutes of receiving it and reply," said Daly.

Lindsay Stanton's company takes it a step further. Phone-friendly videos point candidates straight to a mobile job application. It's called the Job Search Television Network.

"Google indexes video at a higher placement than it does text, so if you want to show up on social media, if you want to show up on blogs, you have to have video as part of your platform," said Lindsay Stanton from the Job Search Television Network.

Developers attending the conference say the mobile platforms are changing so fast, they often have to update their apps every three months just to keep pace. That's one reason organizers say they want to make this conference a yearly event.


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