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Basics of Mobile Job Searches

Finding a job with a smartphone or tablet is no longer breaking news. Even the formerly staid New York Times — nicknamed "The Old Gray Lady" — has adopted a mobile attitude.

Joining countless numbers of today's media enterprises, the famous national newspaper has redesigned its popular online publication, Today's Headlines, to be more readable on the mobile digital devices you carry around with you.

Who else has mobile on the mind? Job seekers are racing to hunt for employment anytime, anywhere. A recent major breakthrough in recruiting technology made the mobile gold rush possible. Until that happened, candidates couldn't submit a complete job application on a mobile device.

Although substantial problems remain in mobile technology, job seekers can use it on any device that has Internet access. Typically, this means a smartphone or tablet, but it also means a laptop or desktop.

Companies that capitalize on mobile moves seem to knock on new digital doors every week.

Who mobile job searches benefit most

Mobile job search currently skews toward a younger crowd. Recognizing that dedicated mobile usage is correlated with age, many employers recruit via the mobile web for new college grads and other entry-level workers.

The mobile choice also is a natural for fields with well-defined requirements, such as health care, finance, and technology, and can include some professional jobs.

Mobile scouting continues to be a popular method of job finding in high-turnover industries, such as retail outlets, restaurants, theaters, hotels, and hair salons. Temporary and contract jobs are magnets for mobile.

But managerial and executive job seekers are more likely to gain interviews through traditional hands-on recruiting channels because the cost of a failed management hire can be disastrous to a company's profitability — and even to its survival.

What mobile job searches offer everyone

Mobile frees you to make updates and connections in real time. For example, suppose you just met someone at a party who works at a company you want to join. The minute you leave the party, you can find out if your new acquaintance has a professional profile on a social network and follow up the next day.

Mobile search offers a number of positive factors. Among steps in the job search that you can achieve with mobile are the following:

  • Search for jobs by location, company, and employment type

  • Receive job alerts about openings you may want

  • Apply for jobs

  • Find friends in companies now hiring and request referrals

  • Research companies and interviewers before an interview

  • Research salaries

  • Track the status of your application for each job you go after

  • Calendar upcoming tasks, events, follow-ups, and interviews

  • Keep track of accounts you create on company career pages and job boards when storing your resumes and cover letters

  • Maintain notes from successful and unsuccessful interviews

  • Pursue your job search during a commute or other down time so you're not missing opportunities

Say hello to job search apps

Apps are convenient programs that make your life easier when you're on the go. Apps turn your smartphone and tablet into little computers that you can hold in your hand. The word itself, app, is short for application, a software program used for a wide variety of purposes, including ones that make it super convenient to search for jobs wherever you are.

For more information about apps, hop on to the Department of Labor website OnGuardOnline.gov, and click on "Understanding Mobile Apps."

Want to use mobile apps on a laptop or desktop computer (not on a smartphone or tablet)? Make the technical switch at BlueStacks.

Among the estimated hundreds of apps in modern job search, 15 of the best known or most advanced follow in alphabetical order (find others by browsing for "mobile job apps"):

Career Builder JobAware Monster
Dice Job Search Jobrio Proven
GlassDoor JobStreet Simply Hired
Good Job LinkedIn StartWire
Indeed LinkUp TweetMyJobs
Greet mobile company job pages

Are mobile job apps here today but not tomorrow? Highly respected Internet pioneer Mark Mehler thinks so. Mehler, who's seen web technology bubbles come and go over the past two decades, co-owns the consulting firm CareerXRoads: The Staffing Strategy Connection. The firm regularly tracks recruiting trends within the largest American companies.

A recent CareerXRoads study brings Mehler to the following perspective:

Apps to apply for a job are dead.

As Mehler explains, "Major corporations now use new technologies so it is seamless to apply for a job using a mobile device. There is no reason to download an app. Our 2013 research with the Fortune 500 companies reveals that 85 corporations already have mobile-enabled career pages, and half of those allow job seekers to apply seamlessly."

Other experts in the job space are not convinced that apps will soon be road kill on the Information Highway. Here's the gist of an alternative outlook:

"Targeting a specific company and applying directly to its website job section is ideal. But the needs of a candidate who doesn't know which specific companies have open jobs to fill, and who would rather expand employment prospects by searching generally, make job apps a viable option."

Check out sample mobile job search messages

While various formats work for constructing short messages for mobile job finding, here's one that works well for resume cover notes and more:

  1. Subject of message

  2. Space

  3. Sender's name and contact information

  4. Mobile cover note information

  5. Closing and sender's name signature

The following three samples illustrate this format.

  • Getting to know you

    image0.jpg
  • Showing you the money

    image1.jpg
  • Scoring in the consulting business

    image2.jpg
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