Job seekers turn to technology to find jobs in competitive market

INDIANAPOLIS -- These days, there are more job openings than there are people looking for work. The U.S. Department of Labor says the unemployment rate is now at 4%. Before that, it was at 3.8%, the lowest in 18 years.

With the low jobless rate, some people are using different resources to find the right job in this competitive market.

Local hiring agencies, like That’s Good HR are busy keeping up with the trends.

“What we’re seeing is, candidates are delving into their job search in different ways, that we may not be used to,” said Lana Bobb, a staffing specialist with That’s Good HR.

Bobb says research shows that candidates in an active job search are now using their phone for the search 40% of the time, instead of a desktop computer.

As more people turn to their smart phones to find work, apps geared toward professionals are growing in popularity.

Apps like Shapr allow you to match with other people in your field, using a concept that combines the professional side of LinkedIn and the convenience of “swiping" on Tinder. 

"The app is actually going to use a smart algorithm to match you and to find people in your area who share those interests who are up for a cup of coffee,” said Mandy Menaker, head of brand for Shapr.

“It’s tremendous, we have about 3,000 new people joining every day at this point. It’s not a tool that’s just for job seekers, it’s a tool that anyone can use at any point in their career to help to build new connections,” Menaker said.

Other networking apps like LetsLunch aim to help in the same way.

Whether it’s a professional app, or a dating app, experts say the concept is the same: finding a good “match” between employers and employees is a process.

“I always compare it to building a profile for dating services, really trying to understand what type of jobs are you're looking for, what’s the environment, the scope of the roles, so we can do a better job of setting that person up for success,” said Kate Stephens, Staffing Specialist with That’s Good HR.

According to the Federal Reserve economic data, the average time it takes for most people to find a job is about 10 weeks.