After nearly a year of speculation, a search engine optimizer in Australia capturing screenshots in the wild, and an official announcement from the CEO, Google for Jobs officially launches today. Now, when you visit Google and type in “marketing jobs,” “jobs near me,” “teaching jobs” or similar job searches, you’ll see results that allow users to explore jobs right from Google’s organic results pages. The one caveat is searches have to be in English on desktop or mobile.
“For many people, a job needs to satisfy some key criteria, like commute time, job specialties they’ve honed, or the hours they have available to work,” said Google in a release. “Looking for jobs is a personal and complex journey, and one that we are trying to support in this new search experience.”
Job search is the next step in Google’s march toward gaining market share in what’s becoming a very competitive landscape of very large tech companies. The first step was launching a job search API that Google calls Cloud Jobs API, which, says the company “provides access to Google’s machine learning capabilities to power smarter job search and recommendations within career sites, jobs boards, and other job matching sites and apps.”
The next step was unveiling Google Hire, which looks to be a lightweight applicant tracking system for small businesses. However, the product remains mysterious; as TechCrunch said at the time, “At this point, we don’t know what the back-end looks like, and it’s unclear whether Google Hire is derived from or even inspired by Google’s own internal Applicant Tracking System. The business model of Google Hire is still unknown. If access to the platform is expanded, it’s unclear what access to Google Hire will cost and whether it will be available as an a-la-carte service or will only be available in a broader enterprise cloud services bundle.”
And now we get job search.
“With this new experience, we aim to connect Americans to job opportunities across the U.S.,” said Google. “So no matter who are you are or what kind of job you’re looking for, you can find job postings that match your needs.”
Google is currently working with organizations you’ll recognize in order to fill its index with content. Companies and organizations participating include LinkedIn, Monster, WayUp, DirectEmployers, CareerBuilder, Glassdoor, and Facebook. Google promises job postings from these sites and others will be searchable as soon as they are posted.
One company left off the play-nice list is the world’s most popular job search destination, Indeed. Once touting itself as “Google for jobs,” Indeed now gets to deal with Google being the Google for jobs. “We are happy to see that 13 years after Indeed launched, Google has woken up,” said Chris Hyams, president at Indeed.”
“Big companies like Google will keep trying until they get job search right,” added Paul D’Arcy, Indeed’s SVP of marketing. D’Arcy added that jobs posted natively on Indeed would not be searchable with Google’s new offering, which hints at one of Indeed’s strategies to combat this new competitor.
Worried that your jobs won’t be listed in Google’s index? If so, Google has made open documentation available for developers at third-party platforms or direct employers, both big and small. Time will tell if Google will start giving preferential treatment to uploads from direct employers versus postings on a job board. In the early days of Indeed, job boards enjoyed the free and easy traffic. As time went on, however, postings on employer sites received the lion’s share of traffic, forcing job sites to pay for traffic.
Some additional features Google will offer are 1) job alerts in the form of email, which I assume integrate smoothly with Gmail accounts; 2) reviews and ratings of the employer from trusted sites, right alongside the job description; and 3) if a user is signed in, for some jobs they’ll even see how long it would take to commute to the job from home. “We will continue to refine your ability to search the best job by adding additional filters and information in the future,” said Google.
Game on. Facebook, Microsoft, along with LinkedIn, which it owns, and even Amazon are getting into employment as well, each in its own way. The days of Monster, CareerBuilder, and others ruling this space are seemingly in the rearview mirror. Indeed, to its credit, is damning the torpedoes and taking on these Goliaths.
“People from all walks of life, experience, and background have undergone a job hunt at some point in their lives,” Google said. “Whether you’re a young adult looking for your first job, a veteran hoping to leverage your leadership experience in civilian life, or a parent looking for a job with better pay to support a growing family, we hope this new experience on Google will help make the job search simpler and more effective.”
Sounds nice doesn’t it? Kind of like the mobster who smiles while the knife twists in his victim’s back.