People experience the Web dramatically differently now than when TheLadders was founded in 2003. Its cofounder is now reinventing the business in kind by pairing its extensive jobs database with the functionality of popular mobile dating applications.
TheLadders began as a VIP-styled employment service for high-income professionals; it matched $100k+ job seekers with suitable employers (and nobody else). The company opened its proverbial doors to all professionals in 2011, and has since attracted over 6 million job seekers and more than 43,000 recruiters as active members on its Web site.
Its next phase is a reinvention of TheLadders into a mobile-to-mobile network for professionals and employers. The app functions like the “dating” application Tinder in which singles select individuals that they have a romantic interest in. Users are notified when the feeling is mutual. Job seekers on TheLadders signal intent with a “thumbs up”. Recruiters have a different interface on their apps, and receive “likes” in their inboxes.
TheLadders launched an iOS app in June, which Alex Douzet, CEO & co-founder, says has proven the concept. It is preparing to release an Android app next month, coinciding with a large advertising campaign (it will run subway ads in places like New York City).
The iOS app has yielded the following results:
· 500,000 downloads
· 316,000 jobs liked
· Average user launches the app twice a day
The object is to become the world’s top mobile recruiter, said Douzet. He noted that recruiters and not internal referrals identify 70% of job placements. Recruiters may ultimately be the audience for this new app, because it helps to qualify job candidates.
We’re unsure whether the stats above signal any change in how job seekers use the existing TheLadders website and whether there’s been any meaningful uptick in engagement. However, TheLadders is demonstrating its belief in a mobile device-centric future.