By Tobin Harris, October 22, 2020

Managing Director at Pocketworks, app development specialists.

Planning Your App 

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Just for fun, I was doing some research around "Job Search" apps last night. If you're thinking of doing something in this space, you might find this useful...

Firstly, you'll be glad to know that the leading apps in this space, such as Indeed, are receiving almost 100K downloads a month in the UK alone. So, this kind of app can build quite an audience if marketed and built well. 

Given the horrendous pandemic we're in, I know unemployment is on the rise so I'm not saying this is a good thing. It's just that connecting people to work is a good problem to solve right now, assuming the work is there.

The number one complaint about these kinds of apps is that job seekers don't get a response from their job application. These are the kinds of complaint that can be found on almost all job-seeking apps. 

Apply for millions of jobs not 1 reply the app is good for searching though
-- Indeed app user

As an aside - I think this is a really cool problem to solve. For example, you could stick an AI customer service bot that mediates between the candidate and recruiter, and helps ensure everyone is kept up to date. Yeah I know, you might not even need to go that far - a simple bit of process automation might do it. 

As another aside - it's also worth remembering that when you see an apps star rating on an app store, that's not really the app rating at all. People don't review the app, they review the overall service. So, don't just design an app, design a service. If you don't know what this means we could chat about it over a coffee :) 

Moving on...

If you're thinking of launching a job seeking app, it's worth noting that some of the newer apps are only getting hundreds of downloads a month. It's tough to get downloads without some marketing clout. And, because there is a lot of competition for job-hunting apps, you may find that paid marketing costs are expensive.

I'm no marketing expert, but I'd consider two things if entering this space:

  1. Organic growth. Do design your app and service to be spreadable. Meaning, give people a good reason to talk about your service, share it with others etc. You can design this right into the product.
  2. Niche. If you have to pay for advertising, it will be cheaper if you pick a niche. For example, "The job-seeking app for marketing and communications graduates" 

Beyond solving the big problem of no responses, there are some other pain points worth considering:

  • How do we put enough jobs on the app to give relevant search results from day one?
  • How do we ensure job seekers don't waste time on expired jobs?
  • How do we make the job application process quick and easy?

The app will constantly suggest completely irrelevant opportunities, phrasing every notification as “Congratulations!”
-- Debut app user

It's a pretty cool space with lots of challenges, will be interesting to see how companies look to disrupt this at a time when the world needs better ways to find work.

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About Pocketworks

Pocketworks is a mobile-first software company that helps organisations improve their customer experience with mobile technology. We enable our clients use research and data to find the right solution and deliver apps and digital products that increase customer satisfaction and retention.
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