One of the most daunting and time-consuming tasks that students face both during college and after is finding their dream job. But as one of the pilot schools for Briefcase, Park University is making the job search as easy as responding to a text message.
Growing out of the college experiences of co-founders (and Kansas City natives) Caleb Phillippi and Nick Mallare, Briefcase is a student-centered platform that helps cut through much of the red tape of the job search process. Students can set up a profile that contains all of the basics – personal information, educational history, work history and relevant skills – and then use that profile to apply to jobs throughout the country and around the world with as little as one click.
“Looking at what we were offered as students, there were some really amazing tools and services that we could have taken advantage of but didn’t,” said Phillippi. “When I looked at the website and looked at the software that was provided for jobs and applications, I thought, ‘This is awful…’ and I had a very bad first impression before I ever went into the office.”
Briefcase, on the other hand, is designed to be the best possible experience for the student. After a student’s Park University connection is verified, the platform walks step-by-step through the process of creating a job-seeker’s profile. Through a series of questions, a student can build their resume, including education, work history, other experience and relevant skills. If a student has a LinkedIn profile, it’s even easier – Briefcase can just import and adapt it.
Once a student has a profile, the search process is pretty straightforward.
“If you want a marketing job and want to work in TV, it would be ‘TV Marketing,’ ‘Broadcast Marketing,’ etc.,” said Mallare. “After you’ve done a few searches and found jobs that you like, you can click on apply. It will ask you to verify your personal information and then choose which resume you’d like to send based on some templates that we provide, and a cover letter if you choose. Then you click submit and it’s done. In the background, we do all of the necessary work to get the application into the applicant tracking system.”
Briefcase’s application process is great in terms of efficiency, allowing students to use one profile to apply for jobs across a number of different companies instead of entering the same data multiple times.
“One of the things we noticed up front was that there were great processes for tracking applications on the employer side,” said Mallare. “Why can’t we duplicate that on the employee side and allow students to set up their profile once and then apply to any job that they wanted to?”
But where the system truly shines is in the access promised to students.
The original kernel of the Briefcase platform was to create an applicant tracking system that worked for applicants instead of for the employers. Through discussions with entrepreneurs and business mentors in the Kansas City area, and impacted by their time with the Spark Lab KC accelerator, the idea grew. As an aggregator, Briefcase has access to jobs – both listed and unlisted – across the country and throughout the world.
“There are jobs that a student could theoretically find on a job board, and there are jobs that a student couldn’t find unless they had an existing relationship with a company’s recruiter,” said Phillippi. “The applicant tracking systems we partner with post jobs all over the country, and even a few international opportunities.”
Not only will students have access to a very deep pool of opportunities, each of those opportunities will be a real lead. Before publishing an opportunity for students to look at, Briefcase verifies each listing to ensure that it is a legitimate and active opportunity.
Possibly the biggest benefit to students, however, is the Briefcase matching algorithm. From the student profile – resume, major, experience, etc. – and the searches that a student executes, Briefcase will be able to recommend jobs that are a strong fit for each particular student. The algorithm is even designed to learn from the search results that students aren’t interested in to tailor the fit.
And not content to just make the jobs easy to find, Briefcase’s soon-to-be-released apps will bring the jobs to students in real time.
“Once the opportunity makes it through our filters, a student will receive a notification on their phone or through email,” said Phillippi. “Sitting in the back of class, they’ll be able to scroll down, click on the notification, select the resume they want to use to apply and send it off, then get back to taking diligent notes and paying attention.”
Visit park.briefca.se to set up your profile today!