Google is one of the most powerful companies in the world. We interact with it daily on our phones and desktop PCs. Whether it’s research, finding the location of your next business meeting or using Gmail, it’s hard to escape the reach of Google; the word has even become a verb. If you work in recruitment you’ll know that 80% of job searches start on Google and that number is probably set to go up with their most recent project. At the Google I/O conference in Silicon Valley last week, the company’s CEO, Sundar Pichai, revealed the company’s plans for the next year, and one of its new initiatives, Google For Jobs, has huge repercussions for the recruitment industry.

What is Google For Jobs?

It’s basically an add-on to Google’s search engine. Job hunters who want to find a job simply have to search for jobs they want - for instance, ‘publishing jobs’- in Google’s search bar, and the search engine will find jobs nearby that meet the brief. The new initiative will let customers browse all levels of jobs, from entry level to c-suite, and will also have a number of filters that will let you find the right job by location, date posted, title, category and even, we have been promised, commute time. 

Though the job market has become increasingly crowded over the past few years, there’s every reason to expect that Google For Jobs will shake up the recruitment industry as a result. For starters, this platform will be one of the first to use Google’s increasingly sophisticated AI system to classify job titles depending on what a jobhunter types into the search bar: for instance, a search for ‘retail jobs’ will not only bring up jobs with ‘retail’ in the title but ones like ‘store manager’ and ‘shop cleaner’. This will likely make it a good deal more sophisticated, and easier to use, than any of the current job boards and job aggregators that people use today, such as Indeed, Monster or Facebook Jobs. 

Is Google going to compete with job boards?

Despite this, Google remains adamant that it is not going to compete against these sites: yet. Instead, it is planning on going into partnership with them, collecting the data for its job searches from LinkedIn, Glassdoor and Facebook: when job hunters select the listing from Google they’ll be taken to the site that hosts them, boosting traffic to those sites. Nevertheless, there is every reason to be wary: after all, what Google is doing - getting the data for its jobs from job boards and recruitment agencies - makes it a job aggregator in much as the same way as Indeed, the current industry leader. This means that Indeed will soon be up against some very stiff competition.

Google seems optimistic about its chances with this new initiative, with its CEO saying that “it addresses an important need and taps our core capabilities as a company from searching and organising information to A.I. and machine learning.” Time will tell whether Google For Jobs will be able to go toe to toe with current giants like Indeed and LinkedIn, but one thing is for sure: with its increasingly sophisticated AI system, smart way of collating data, and massive existing customer base, it certainly poses a new and innovative way of searching for jobs.