Job hunting via textmessages.

Author:Sutter, Mary
Position::THE SCENE

Through his world travels, Assured Labor CEO David Reich had met smart people who could not find jobs. In his former profession as an equity analyst, he encountered executives complaining about finding workers.

His solution was to integrate mobile technology within an online job-search platform at Assured Labor, the U.S. company Reich co-founded in 2008 with a fellow MBA student at MIT Media Lab and other partners. They focused on non-executive positions, particularly those in the mid- to Lower-pay ranges, in Latin America. "Those candidates were not on the traditional job-posting websites," Reich says.

ALthough initial market research took the team to Rio de Janeiro, where they studied how job-hunting Eariocas used technology, Assured Labor went live in 2009 as a pilot project--in Nicaragua. The budding entrepreneurs had Local. contacts in Managua and had partnered with wireless operator America Movil.

Given tow rates of computer ownership and Limited Internet access, the Assured Labor system minimized online time for jobseekers. They need only register once, at no cost to them, uploading their experience and other details. Proprietary software matches up seekers with existing openings and alerts the hiring company, which contacts prospects via text messages to their mobile devices.

Operating as Empleo Listo, the service made a big splash. Assured Labor next headed north, Launching in Mexico in October 2010.

"In Mexico, there were more known job services," Reich says. "We had to do a Lot of educating in the market ... differentiating ourselves."

SaLes, administrative (such as entry-Level office) and operations constitute the biggest proportion of Listings. "SaLes is a huge segment for us," Reich says, noting that postings range from cashier at a Subway restaurant to insurance agent for Grupo Nacional Provincial


The system was designed to be user-friendly for both sides. "We have a florist shop that has posted a couple of jobs," Reich says. Companies pay to post, although a free option to post one job per month recently was introduced.

So far, about 100,000 job-seekers have registered and more than 800 companies have posted jobs in Mexico. Meanwhile, Assured Labor has teamed with media group Prisa Digital, which will give the service greater exposure, Reich...

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