06/01/11 LinkedIn to Launch Job Application Tool

LinkedIn is preparing to launch a plug-in for employers’ websites called “Apply With LinkedIn” that will allow job candidates to apply for available positions using their LinkedIn profiles as resumes. The feature indicates LinkedIn’s increasing focus on making money by facilitating employee recruitment and hiring.

LinkedIn is currently in talks with a number of companies that will incorporate the “Apply With LinkedIn” plug-in on their jobs pages for the feature’s launch, which is slated for later this month, according to a source briefed on the feature.

“Apply With LinkedIn” is being touted by the company as a way to remove friction from the job application process by enabling people to use their LinkedIn profiles as resumes. The plug-in also bundles applicants’ data to simplify the sorting process on the employer side.

From the job-seeker’s side, the “Apply With LinkedIn” feature appears as a button placed alongside a job description on a company’s jobs webpage. When a user clicks on the “Apply With LinkedIn” button, a pop-up lightbox appears over the page with a prompt to sign into LinkedIn. The user is then given the option to edit parts of his or her LinkedIn profile and contact information and may be asked to answer additional questions. The user finalizes the application by clicking a “Submit Application” button. Finally, the lightbox displays an application confirmation, and displays either additional job openings at that company or a list of the user’s LinkedIn contacts who are affiliated with the company to which he or she has just applied.

On the employer side, companies can add as many as five additional check-box questions from a template, such as whether a candidate is willing to relocate, is eligible to work in the United States, or would like to add a cover letter. Employers can also add several customized questions. Employers can have the job submissions sent to an email address, a URL, or a JavaScript callback.

With LinkedIn’s blockbuster IPO now in the past, the pressure is on for the company to deliver solid growth on a quarterly basis and assure its stockholders that the money they’ve invested is well spent. According to LinkedIn’s IPO filings, the company currently gets 43 percent of its revenue from hiring solutions such as its job board, 33 percent of its revenue from marketing solutions such as display ads and company pages, and 25 percent of its revenue from selling premium subscriptions with extra profile features. By more firmly ingratiating itself with the job application process, LinkedIn could boost its subscriptions as well as its hiring solutions income. Job recruitment is a lucrative but decentralized industry, so it makes sense that LinkedIn is working to become a more deeply ingrained player on both the employer and applicant sides of the space.

By Colleen Taylor, GigaOM
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