These days, it seems to me that everyone’s job hunting at the moment. To be proactive, I’m always looking for new ways to find out about employment opportunities. A lot of us are familiar with LinkedIn, the social networking site for professionals. Today, I’m taking a look at a similar site known as Climber.com.
What Is Climber.com?
Although LinkedIn tends to focus on letting professionals connect with each other, Climber.com focuses on matching you up with employers and jobs that are ideal for your skill set. Here’s the basic gist of the site: it works to try to automatically match you up with jobs that may be a fit to your profile and skills. Unlike standard job search sites, where you manually look for the jobs, Climber.com behaves like an “automated recruiter” who tries to tell you which jobs available in your area may be of interest.
Finding Jobs To Match Your Skills Using Web 3.0
This sounds an awful lot like the next generation software out there, called Web 3.0 predictive technology (or the semantic web), which is based on artificial intelligence.
Once you complete a Work Values Assessment, Climber.com produces a profile for you that may look like this. In addition, they also produce a “Career Fingerprint”, that gives you further insight into the kind of job you’d be interested in and which companies match your values and goals.
Theoretically, I can see this helping us understand ourselves as employees and what our work/job goals are. I can also see it helping us screen job opportunities in a more passive manner.
Sounds intriguing enough, so let’s check out my actual user experience.
Trying Out Climber.com: My User Experience
Signing up for Climber.com’s free service can take up to half an hour (they need your information to set up your profile), so I set aside some time to work through the site. First, I am told that for ideal results, I should enter a desired salary field that’s at least 10% higher than what I enter in the current salary field.
After the initial sign up, I encountered a screen that invited me to sign up for Climber.com’s paid service called Climber Premier. Some of the extras it offers:
- instant resume distribution;
- job-seeker letters;
- resume creation in 15 minutes;
- and top search results on Climber.com & major search engines
Building My Profile Via The Free Service
Instead, I continued with a free account. Then I got to work on my profile where I added my profile title, ideal companies, my job level, years of experience, and if I wanted to relocate. I was able to indicate whether I wanted to interact with recruiters or remain anonymous. After this, I was able to input keywords relating to my career and skills.
I ran into a stumbling block when the service demanded that I list the companies I’d love to work for. Off the top of my head, I listed one company. To my surprise, the screen also reset my privacy preferences to share my info with recruiters (frankly, I thought it was far too early to share a darn thing). Plus, the site balked when I only added one ideal company, so I was forced to add more that I made up out of the blue. I was almost irritated enough to close the screen forever at that point, but I persevered because I needed to see what the service offered beyond the sign up.
Checking Out Alerts
Then I went to a screen with an Alerts section. Most prominent was the message urging me to upgrade to the premier level. Finally, I got some results: I received two recommended jobs, powered by Indeed.com. The jobs leads we get are therefore currently limited to what’s in Indeed.com’s database. I also saw a joblog section that I could use to blog updates about my job searches, as well as a section for “My Network”.
Hmmmm…. it seems to me that for all the work I did, I didn’t receive the kind of results I expected. I’m able to turn up more promising leads by hunting down the jobs myself at places like Executive Search Online, Job.com or Snag A Job. But Climber.com’s value added feature is that you could get automatic notifications of job leads matched to you, on a regular basis. This would be a time-saver.
More On Climber.com’s Premier Account
Curious, I finally clicked the Upgrade button to check out what the Premier account could do for me. Soon, I learned that the Premier account costs $19.99 a month, and I’d be free to cancel at any time. There’s even a 30 day, 100% money back guarantee. In return, my resume would float past 70,000 recruiters, I’d have access to cover letters and videos, and “Ideal Job Matches” would be mailed to me daily.
Setting Up My Career Network
If I want to increase my network, I can import my contacts from Hotmail, AOL, Yahoo, or Gmail, or I can have the site send out individual e-mails to my friends (hello from Outlook, I guess) inviting them to be in my network (ala LinkedIn). But unfortunately, the site tells me that I’m not allowed to email myself. That’s kind of irritating, because I wanted to read the message being sent out in my name before hitting the send button.
Because I was limited to sending out a form letter, I’ll bypass Climber.com’s invitation system for now. And unlike LinkedIn, I couldn’t figure out how to say hello to fellow job seekers who aren’t in my network, since quite often, the friends you don’t know yet are the best source of good information in a tight job market.
Like LinkedIn, Climber.com wants to know what you read — there’s a “Medias” section where you can list what books, blogs, magazines, and websites you enjoy.
What if your resume needs a facelift? Then Climber.com can hook you up with a resume service at a discount. Checking the Career Development section, I came across some useful articles and ways to browse careers by state or industry.
My Verdict: Overall, I think Climber.com could use a tad more polish, but if you’re looking for a new job, more work, or more ways to connect with potential employers, you might enjoy putting Climber.com to work for you.
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