We're launching a new, experimental feature tomorrow on Careers, and wanted to get people's opinion on it.
As always, our goal is to help awesome programmers find great jobs. However, we've found that:
- People don't always want to signal that they're looking for a job
- A lot of candidates don't even realize that there are better opportunities out there
- Creating a complete CV is a lot of work
So, what we want is a way for people to be "passively" looking for a job -- they're willing to get an occasional offer from a company, even if they're not actively looking for a job right now. And we want it to be frictionless, because if somebody is passively looking for a job then by definition they're not going to do anything to seek it out.
Enter "Passive Candidate Search"
Passive candidate search is basically just a glorified version of the Data Explorer, but for employers. It lets employers search people's public profiles based on tags and location. For example, they could search "Python" and "San Francisco" and find a few dozen SO users who have "San Francisco" as their location and have answered questions in the Python tag. They can view their public profile information, including their top answers.
If they find a candidate they really like, they can request to contact them. Say I want to contact Mr. Punyon -- he'll get a message in his global inbox that says "David Fullerton wants to contact you on Stack Overflow Careers". If he wants, he can block all future searches and messages and be done with it forever -- or he can view the message, and decide if he's interested or not.
We'll be closely monitoring how employers use this to make sure they don't just spam tons of people. To start with, we're limiting them to 20 open messages at a time.
What They See
Starting tomorrow, you can see exactly what employers will see by going to http://careers.stackoverflow.com/cv/employerview. You'll also be able to test-drive the search interface at http://careers.stackoverflow.com/employer/candidate-search to get an idea of how they'll be searching. To summarize it here, they'll see:
- Your user name, location, and gravatar from your public profile
- Your reputation across all our sites
- Your top answers by score
In other words, what they'd see on your profile page on any of our sites.
You'll only rank for a tag search if you have at least 5 upvotes in answers in that tag, and won't show up at all if there are no tags you have 5 upvotes in.
We never reveal anything that's not already publicly available. The only thing that couldn't already be done is sending someone a message, and we'll tightly control that.
Messages will only show up in your global inbox -- you'll never get an email (or a phone call).
Starting tomorrow, you can pre-emptively block all searches and messages by going to http://careers.stackoverflow.com/cv/employerview.
Viewing a message from an employer won't change how you appear in their searches -- you'll still show up as a "passive candidate" who probably isn't looking for a job right now.
We geocode your location, so if you don't have a location or it's gibberish, you won't show up.
Initially, we'll only include SO, but eventually we want to include other sites that make sense (SF, SU, gamedev, etc).
Once again, this is experimental. If it's not working, we'll get rid of it. Our goal is that if there happens to be an employer looking for someone awesome in your area, you'll get an occasional message asking if you're interested.