High-Tech Tools for the 21st Century Job Search

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In response to New York City's 9.1 percent unemployment rate, many New Yorkers are exploring new tech-based strategies to find jobs on their tablets, smartphones and even "dumb" phones.  

This week on New Tech City, WNYC's Ilya Marritz reports on new service offered by New York City called TXT-2-Work.  It sends text messages about job openings directly to the cell phones of New Yorkers who receive public benefits.

It's about "meeting the client right where they are, getting the info right in their pocket," said Katy Gaul, deputy commissioner for employment at the city’s Human Resources Administration. According to Gaul, the program also helps employers fill jobs fast.

Nearly 4,000 recipients have signed up for the text messages, but as the program is new, the city has yet to release numbers on how many people have found jobs as a result. 

Also on this week's show, host Manoush Zomorodi tours the New York-based startup TheLadders, which recently launched a service called Scout that matches a job applicant with open positions and provides information, like current and requested salary, about the other people vying for the same job.

"We're not showing you their name or the company they work for," said TheLadders CEO Alex Douzet. "What we’ve done is show you their title, what skill sets they have."

In fact, TheLadders itself is going through a technological transformation of its own as job seekers conduct searches on the go instead of at their desks.

"Our traffic coming from mobile has doubled every year for the past couple of years," Douzet said. "Today, one out of every three persons will access TheLadders from a tablet or a smart phone. We think that by the end of this year over half of our users will come from a mobile device."