StepStone adds value to job listings with chat tool (with update)

19 Oct 2016

Germany’s StepStone had two pieces of good news to share yesterday at Zukunft Personal, Europe’s largest trade show for human resources management, which runs through Wednesday in Cologne.

First, it was crowned Germany’s best general job site by the Institute for Competitive Recruiting (ICR) and Profilo Rating Agency, organizers of the annual Deutschlands Beste Job Portalen (Germany’s Best Job Portals) award.

Second, StepStone announced Job Messenger, a free IOS and Android app that allows job applicants and hiring managers or recruiters to chat. The feature is platform-independent, meaning an employer can integrate the Job Messenger button into its company web pages, or into job listings posted on StepstoStepstone_logone, or on any other job site.

Using the app, recruiters may create templates to answer commonly-asked questions (or related to specific job listings), organize group chats and send application documents to candidates.

From now until the end of the year, the chat tool will be used only by selected companies. A full rollout will happen in January, StepStone said in a news release.

StepStone’s CEO Sebastian Dettmers explained the tool enables recruiters and potential job applicants to have personal contact at the very beginning of the hiring process, rather than at a later stage, which is typically the case.

In an interview with us, Inga Rottländer, StepStone’s public relations manager, and Florian Krüger, its director of corporate communications, said the app was designed with recruiters in mind who have to source hard-to-fill jobs.

Inga Rottländer, PR manager of StepStone Deutschland (photo from her Xing profile page with thanks)

Inga Rottländer, PR manager of StepStone Deutschland (photo from her Xing profile page with thanks)

StepStone has long catered to employers and candidates in niche job markets – it operates specialty sites for IT, engineering, healthcare and science jobs, among others – where demand is high and the number of qualified professionals is low. Job Messenger will enable recruiters to grab candidates’ attention more efficiently, and quicker, and so speed up the screening/hiring process.

Rottländer added the company is always trying to balance the site’s volume of qualified candidates and jobs in order to keep both sides happy. For hard-to-fill positions, it “pushes” job announcements on social media and on the sites of its 450-odd cooperation partners in Germany and beyond. The app is another strategy to this end.

(We assume the chat tool is free to use for employers listing on StepStone. If we are wrong, we’ll update quickly – editor.) 

Update October 20: StepStone’s Florian Krüger responded to the above “assumption”. He confirmed that “the Job Messenger is free for all recruiters and job seekers to use on all platforms”. 

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Kate Rodriguez

Kate Rodriguez covers the German market for AIM Group. She is a freelance business writer with an extensive background in public policy, business consulting and marketing. Originally from the U.S., Kate is now based in Munich.