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Jobster Gets a Facebook Lift

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We’ve followed the layoffs, rumored Facebook deal, and venture funding of Seattle’s well-funded (some would say over-funded) online job search startup Jobster. Now Jobster CEO Jason Goldberg says the 3-year-old company is launching a new site on Thursday, which will start offering free, unlimited job postings. At the same time Jobster is officially announcing its deal with Facebook.

The free posting offer is significant as the company made much of its revenue off of selling premium web-based tools to companies to help them manage the process of finding workers. Now the company will depend on getting its free users to upgrade to its premium services, and will focus on building up the audience for the site — Goldberg says the site brought in 1 million unique visitors in January.

Goldberg says the free posting plan makes Craigslist a near-term competitive target and places CareerBuilder and Monster as longer term targets. Good luck with those competitors.

Earlier this year the company cut its staff down to 85 employees from a staff of 145. Goldberg says those jobs were part of the divisions that the company is no longer concentrating on, like recruitment consulting and phone sales support.

The plan all sounds a little too easy – make it free and you’ll make more money? Though Facebook for one, seems to believe in the direction. Goldberg says Jobster will be the exclusive job site to work with Facebook, and the service is tentatively being called ‘Career Center.’ While most of the Jobster/Facebook deal will happen in the Spring, Jobster is adding a ‘share on Facebook’ button on Thursday that will pull in aspects of the Jobster profile onto your Facebook page.

12 Responses to “Jobster Gets a Facebook Lift”

  1. Folks, you need to take a reality check on this supposed Jobster/Facebook “partnership.” Please, let’s turn up the BS detector. The lack of basic legwork calls into question what Gigaom is trying to do as a news source.

    Who is calling it a partnership? Jobster. To my knowledge, Facebook has issued no press release on this supposed “partnership” ( Facebook seems to be very happy doing what they’re doing, thank you. Jobster is just a flea on a big dog.

    Here’s all it is:

    Facebook has an API that anyone can use FOR FREE. Once you’ve written your app, it appears on their list ( It doesn’t even look to me as though Facebook polices the apps very much; I would hope they know a lot about Jobster, but who knows? You can also define yourself as a Facebook group. It’s not like you’re a module in Facebook; you’re just another service plugged into it. To get a feel for which of these plugins interest Facebook, the one they are calling their “Featured Product” is MoochSpot, which is for tracking expenses.

    There’s really nothing there. Good luck to Jobster. Maybe someday they’ll be the featured product.

  2. Your post brings up many interesting questions about the direction Facebook is taking and how this will affect undergraduates currently utilizing the service. As “Jobster is adding a ’share on Facebook’ button on Thursday that will pull in aspects of the Jobster profile onto your Facebook page,” profiles on the site will now transform from a personal to a professional networking service. I wonder if this will create as much of an outcry from enraged Facebook users as the new “News Feed” option did, which gave the site much less of a private feel. In a way, linking Facebook to job searching takes the fun out of Facebook, which was originally created as a way to let college students network and share with their friends. College students have already been warned about having to try and hide their profiles from potential and current employers by raising privacy settings and taking off content that would seem inappropriate to such parties. Are they taking the fun out of Facebook, or was Facebook only a business venture in the first place?

  3. Brad White

    I still contend that no past or present employee will post honest information about their employer, unless they truly are a happy-go-lucky individual who just loves everything. To get a honest perspective on what a company and its culture are really like, people need the ability to have some anonymity to protect their own interests. Everybody has qualms about their company, even if they really like working there. Those things will never come out in a social networking atmosphere, because employees want to protect how their employer perceives them.

    Nonetheless, the conference call this morning still impressed me. It needs more traction in the market before I’m on board though. Their current numbers aren’t incredibly impressive, despite how colorful Jason Goldberg makes it out to be.

  4. well, i think they’ve got some reasonably solid leadership…personally, if it were me, i’d skip the take-on-craigs/monster route and instead focus on core and active users of existing services…specifically, jobster fills a huge hole/gap for, they should be talking…no need to bother with the elgoog’s of the world because they’ll build their own or reach these channels through partners (myspace jobs et al)…but salesforce, now there’s an opportunity to perhaps keep charging real money for real services and socialize the salesforce user base…just a thought.

  5. Ugh – sounds like a tough slog to make the upgrade model work. This whole space needs more innovative business models. How about providing better matching tools, and charging more, not less. eHarmony for jobs. The free model makes the whole thing a volume game and doesn’t serve either the recruiter or job seeker with useful prioritization rules.