Job seeking is never easy for anyone. Of all the things we hate about looking for a job, the worst is probably the amount the time it takes. Looking through lists of job applications, doing research on each company, working through application after application, and finally the dreaded waiting. The latter may take months, and chances are you wouldn’t really know if Human Resources has seen your resume at all.
On the flipside, there is a new government guideline that takes effect this month that may create hassle for job seekers and recruiters alike. From August 2014, job openings must be advertised in the National Job Bank for at least 14 days before firms can even begin consider filling any vacancy with a monthly salary below S$12,000.
A survey conducted by JobStreet in September 2013 revealed that employers are concerned about the compulsory job posting of vacancies on National Job Bank, as it creates a delay in recruitment, as the time and work needed to fill a job vacancy is now doubled.
Job Relate wants to change all that, for both job hunters and recruiters. With the tagline “Let The Jobs Find You”, Job Relate has created a system designed to make job applications easier for job seekers, and for recruiters to manage.
Vulcan Post had the opportunity to speak to Denny Asalim, Co-Founder and Executive Director of Job Relate about the problems job seekers face, his personal experiences as a job hunter, and how Job Relate helps people in their job search.
The Perilous Task Of Job Hunting
Almost everyone has been a job hunter at some point in time. Asalim speaks not only from his work in Job Relate, but also from his experience out in the work force, and he in turn draws his inspiration for Job Relate from his personal experiences while job hunting. He has been in the position as an employed job seeker, and laments that the current options in the market doesn’t allow for nuances in job statuses.
“I myself have my CV registered in one of the top job site in Singapore,” says Asalim. “But if you check my profile today, that profile is an 8-years ago profile when I started my first job. Till today, I have not make any changes to that profile. Why?”
“First of all, I don’t see the need to update my profile as I was not in the urgency to find a new job, and with the commitment of time for my job, I simply don’t have the time to go and update, let alone to browse for job postings. But if there’s a good opportunity come by, I definitely would be interested to know about it. Sadly, there was no such platform that allows me to do so.”
According to Asalim, job seekers usually fall into two categories: job seekers who are usually unemployed, or employed job seekers who are looking for better opportunities. They may face different restrictions, for example a fresh graduate would have ample time to apply for as many positions as possible but lack the relevant experience, while employed job seekers will have far less time to browse for job advertisments. However, both share a common problem – getting the attention of the recruiter.
“For recruiters, a job position advertised will receive hundreds of applications that needed to be sorted out,” says Asalim. “They will never look into all the applications they received. Once they find the resume they deem suitable, the rest of the applicants are ignored. Your resume might not even be noticed by recruiters regardless of whether it is suitable or not.”
When asked if he had been in a situation where he could have relied on Job Relate, Asalim recalled his work as a property developer, where success meant expanding his business networks.
“The ways that I (could meet my job responsibilities) were through a lot of leg work – browsing for newspapers ads to find out agents, go to bank branches to get to know bankers and so on. It really was a lot of hard work, and I wished that someone had created a platform for career people that not only catered mostly for job seeking, but to help me in my career.”
Job Relate Vs. The World
The number of tools available out there for job-seekers is enough to make the market somewhat saturated. There are, after all, many platforms that promise the same things – networking, easier job searches to name a few. There’s LinkedIn, currently the world’s largest professional network. But Job Relate does claim to triumph LinkedIn in its ease of usability.
“Using Job Relate doesn’t require you to take time to build your profile like LinkedIn, We want our users to utilize this app to expand their professional networks which is very important if you want to succeed in whatever you do.”
According to Asalim, Job Relate is closer to portals like JobStreet or Jobs DB in its ability to match you with potential recruiters, but taking the networking capabilities of LinkedIn. The networking capabilities and the accessibility of the app from your phone will keep your job profile as up-to-date as possible and ever ready for employment, should you decided to begin looking for new opportunities.
Changing your job status would be as easy as changing your relationship status on Facebook – Actively Looking For A Job, Employed But Looking For Career Opportunities, or Not Looking For Job, Open To Professional Networking. As long as you’re actively looking, you will be targeted by recruiters to fill positions they already know will suit you.
For recruiters, this is a godsend in their recruitment needs. Candidates that match the requirements the recruiter is looking for, using specific details beyond simple keywords that other professional networking sites use. Upon selecting the desired candidate, an offer is sent directly to the candidate through the app. It would take just a few days to a week to fill a vacancy.
How To Use Job Relate
You would be surprised, but Asalim doesn’t expect you to rely on Job Relate alone. Instead, he believes it should be used with other job search efforts.
“Using Job Relate is equal to you having a website for your business,” explained Asalim, “In a sense that your profile will be discovered by recruiters that are looking to hire a candidate with a specific requirement, while you continue to send out applications.”
“With Job Relate, the ultimate goal is that you it will be an app where you don’t have to leave it there and only utilize it when you want to find a job (like other job sites app), but you can utilize it daily to help you in your career. The idea is to incorporate networking capabilities that not only will help expand your networks, but at the same time your profile will be up to date for recruiters to find you.”
Tips For Job Seekers
When asked if he had any tips for job hunters, Asalim enthusiastically gave a list.
1) Building and expanding your business networks is very important if you want to succeed in your career. Build up your network not helps you in your job tasks, but also increase your chance of landing your next dream job
2) With the existence of Jobs Bank, most jobs openings that are advertised will be consolidated in that website. By combining Job Relate and Jobs Bank, your chance of finding your next job will increase now while saving time from browsing job postings from another job sites.
3) Catching the attention of the recruiters is very important as you can only do so in the first few paragraphs of your email to them. Make sure not to be generic and at the same time, outline what matters to them.
4) Know what you want for your career. It’s never a good impression if your resume stated that you have 4 jobs in different companies in the span of 3-4 years. So get to know the companies better, understand what do you want to be in, and dedicate yourself to it.
5) Don’t give up. Believing in yourself and the fact that there are opportunities out there. How much commitment you put in to get your exposure out there matters to the recruiters.