In college, no one ever bothers to tell students the tough truth that looking for a job is itself a full-time occupation. There are job boards to scour, resumes to type, cover letters to proofread, meetings to take, interviews to prepare for, and on and on. It can be daunting for anyone, especially recent grads just getting used to the pressure of the working world. There's no shortcut to making it easier to land a job — sorry — but there are plenty of ways you can streamline the job hunt and give yourself as many advantages as possible before, during, and after the all-important interview. These apps are a great place to start, whether you're looking for updated job listings or trying to brush up on what not to do when you meet with human resources. Most are free, and the rest are pretty inexpensive. (And really, if you're willing to pay several hundred dollars for a smartphone and contract, 99 cents isn't going to kill you.) Download away. And good luck.
- LinkedIn (free): LinkedIn is a social network that's a lot more limited than Facebook, but that's a good thing. It's not meant for cat pictures or pithy status updates; it's about connecting with colleagues, friends, and everyone else you've ever known in an attempt to learn about new jobs as soon as they become available. The free app lets you manage your profile, search jobs, send messages, and research companies on the go. Great for last-minute refreshers before an interview.
- Job Search by Indeed (free): Indeed.com is a wonderful job-search engine that combs multiple boards and displays all the results at once, so it's no surprise that its iPhone version is so popular. The app also saves recent job searches (e.g., "Manager" in "Los Angeles") for easy retrieval and updating.
- Jobs by CareerBuilder (free): CareerBuilder is one of the most popular job-search sites around — they launched in 1995, which makes them ancient in Internet years — and the app version is just as helpful as the full site. You can search for work by keyword or location, sync with your existing profile, mark job listings as favorites, and email results to yourself. A necessary tool for anyone.
- LinkUp (free): Some people question the worth of having multiple apps that cover multiple job boards and often provide overlapping results. Those people have a harder time finding work. The key to success in the job hunt is to cover as much ground as possible, and that means using as many tools as you can to bring in information about potential openings. LinkUp is another great aggregate that lists postings often found only on a company's specific website and not on general job boards, exposing you to more listings than other services.
- CraigsPro (99 cents): There are many versions of Craigslist available via the App Store, but CraigsPro is one of the better ones. It's only a buck, and it lets you simultaneously search multiple cities for specific keywords. It also detects phone numbers in postings and gives you the option of calling the poster directly. A good way to spot new job openings in different markets.
- Job Search Organizer: A must-have. Job Search Organizer is just what it sounds like: a way for you to keep track of every job you've applied for, manage your resume and info, and search for new listings.
- Resume Pro ($2.99): A simple but effective way to get your c.v. out there, this app takes your personal and professional information (and a photo, if you desire) and works up a professional resume that can then be emailed as a PDF to recruiters, managers, and the like.
- SnapDat (free): Making business cards can be expensive, so let this free app help you out. Create your own digital card that can be swapped with other app users via username searches or just emailed to new contacts. A helpful way to save some cash while looking for work.
- Internship Seeker (free): Whether you're a college student searching for that perfect internship or a seasoned worker in need of a change of direction, this app can get you where you need to go. You can search open listings, earmark your favorites, and more.
- iJobs (free): This simple, direct app does what it says it will: connect you with jobs in your area. The clean interface lets you search for jobs by ZIP code as well as limit those findings based on how far you're willing to travel.
- Job Compass (free): This one's all about location. Rather than searching by keywords or salary, you let the map show you what's available in your surrounding area. A great way to find work that won't have you struggling with a bad commute.
- AsapLocal (free): Although this app was originally designed to be a one-stop destination for people looking for local content, the job search function is great for anyone eager to discover the latest listings in their neighborhood.
- Interview Buzz Lite (free): The free version of this app includes more than 50 popular questions with answers as well as 80 practice questions that will get you thinking about how to present yourself in an interview. It's important to be able to think on your feet, and this app can help you get ready.
- JobServe Connect (free): Debuting online in 1993, JobServe Connect is an old-school job board that's still a favorite for those seeking employment. The iPhone app not only lets you search by various criteria but also get suggestions tailored to your experience and needs.
- Evernote (free): This is a great way to stay organized. Evernote lets you keep track of all the little pieces of info that come your way during the job hunt, from websites to contact information to maps and directions. A life-changer for many people.
- Job Search (free): One of the few apps to focus on videos, Job Search offers informative and funny clips designed to find the job that fits you best. Seeing interview tips played out in real time will give you a new perspective on the process.
- SnagAJob (free): If you're looking for hourly work instead of a salaried position, check out SnagAJob. The map and list views highlight available hourly positions near you. Fantastic for those seeking part-time work between bigger gigs.
- High Paying Jobs (free): A great app for those looking for work at a certain experience level. High Paying Jobs ranks offers by salary and benefits, and it pulls in offers from a variety of other aggregate sites.
- vTie (free): This one's for the guys, specifically those who've made it to adulthood without learning to tie a necktie. The app is free and offers step-by-step instructions on how to tie a variety of knots, so you can show up to interviews looking your best. Just be sure to zip your fly.
- Business Card Reader ($5.99): This is sick, and totally worth your $6. Job seekers are often inundated with business cards, whether they're picked up in interviews or collected at job fairs, and all that information can be hard to organize. This app takes a picture of a business card and then, through a process so magical it's probably really magic, uses that data to create a new contact in your address book. An indispensable tool.
All opinions expressed in this review are my own and not influenced in any way by the company. Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer or provider. Please refer to this site's Disclaimer for more information. I have been compensated or given a product free of charge, but that does not impact my views or opinions.
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