So a biiiig break from Jobstractor. If I was sneakier I’d probably say something about working hard and not having time to update the blog, but that’s not true.
Jobstractor started off as an idea to create a curated jobs board advertising jobs on blogs. That didn’t work out due to some failed assumptions. Next it was going to be a collection of local curated jobs boards but getting those started required a serious local focus in each area, gradually expanding out. I didn’t have the time or resources for that and tbh it’s not that different from a load of other solutions out there. Diluting the market with another solution which was no different from many others in any significant way wasn’t going to really help anyone.
But I’ve still go the domain name, and I like building things. So I’ve spent a little time recently tinkerring with node.js, mongodb, the twitter api and google geocoding. The result? Jobs Tractor 3.0 0r ‘Job Tractor’ as none of the kids are calling it. I’m searching twitter for people looking for developers, working out where those people are located and using that to display results to people visiting the site based on their location.
What problem am I solving?
Hopefully this will be a useful tool for people looking for work. Obviously the usual places to search for jobs still count (agencies, jobs boards etc) but I’m hoping to get a few people recruiting developers which would normally be off the radar unless you were following them.
I think freelancers/contractors are going to be the best people to target immediately, assuming those sort of jobs are coming up. This is just that these people have a higher frequency of looking for work so can get more value from such a tool. Also, possibly? They are more likely to be looking to build up contacts and want to talk direcly to the person hiring for the position as opposed to an intermediary.
The other problem I’m solving is my own problem. I may be wrong but I assume one problem with the previous effort to bootstrap Jobs Tractor was a lack of data on the site. When I managed to get some traffic for my local curated jobs boards idea I did get some sign ups. One in Paris, one in Toronto, one in Demoine, one in Leeds, etc. This wasn’t going to work as people had no reason to come back until there was a bulk of activity relevant to them. I was trying to build a job site, to build a job site you need jobs, but to get jobs you need candidates, but to get candidates you need jobs etc. Hopefully by filling the site with jobs from twitter I’m jump starting that side of things and can now attract the people interested in those jobs and therefore the people interested in advertising to those people.
I’ll be collecting a lot of data on people hiring developers, this should lend itself to some interesting posts looking at that data.
… Step 3. Profit!
Hmmm. Obviously it’s free to get your job advertised as you just need to tweet about it. Maybe I can charge for ‘Featured jobs’, or maybe something else will present itself. For now I don’t see this costing a lot to run so just building some traffic is going to be a hard enough problem without worrying about making money.