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'Tinder for jobs' app targets Swedish students

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'Tinder for jobs' app targets Swedish students
Selfiejobs has launched in Stockholm. Photo: Selfiejobs
12:03 CET+01:00
A smartphone app designed to match young job seekers with potential employers has gained more than ten thousand likes since it launched in Stockholm a week ago. The company is already planning to target other capitals, despite criticism that it promotes discrimination.
Called Selfiejobs, the new start-up says it is aiming to target 16 to 25-year-olds who are used to snapping photos and videos of themselves, at a time when almost a quarter of young people are unemployed in Sweden.
 
The app gives users the opportunity to upload pictures and core details about their education and experience, alongside a promotional video of themselves.
 
Job seekers can then swipe through a range of possible openings in their neighbourhood and view photos of their prospective employers. Businesses then use the app to select which candidates they would like to hear more from.
 
The start-up hopes to make money from advertising revenues from companies who post openings on the app. It has already been given a million kronor investment ($134,825) from former Microsoft Nordic Director Jan Eric Ramstedt.
 
Selfiejobs CEO and founder Martin Tall has unashamedly cited controversial dating app Tinder as his core inspiration for the new product. 
 
“We love the swipe and like regime by Tinder," he said in a statement.
 
"We want to add speed and simplicity to matching. We want to make it fun and relevant for young people used to Instagram, video and Facebook. Companies tell us that calling to an interview is time consuming and expensive, and that most information can be held in a short video-pitch".
 

Tinder is the world's fastest-growing dating app. Photo: Tinder
 
Since its launch a week ago, SelfieJobs has already gained more than ten thousand likes from potential users who have downloaded the product, according to Marketing Manager Jens Gustavsson.
 
"Every day we have five or ten more companies becoming users and up to thirty to forty new jobseekers actively using it," he told The Local on Thursday.
 
Although it is already commonplace for Swedes to attach photos to their CVs, critics argue that the new app encourages employers to further focus on looks and personality when recruiting new staff, rather than core skills.
 

Moa Franzén says she won't be using the app. Photo: The Local
 
“I’d feel uncomfortable using it," said 17-year-old Stockholm-based student Moa Franzén.
 
"It’s a weird concept. If I’m looking for a job, I want to be able to meet my employer in person and check the place out.” 
 
Gustavsson has defended the company's strategy, arguing that the app simply provides "another platform for all young people looking for employment".
 
"The app is for easier jobs like working in restaurants and shops and in these jobs personality does count. And this means that you can apply for a job in two seconds instead of at least half an hour," he said.
 
 
The app's launch comes as Sweden's thriving start-up scene continues to gain momentum. 
 
Following in the footsteps of well known names such as Skype, Spotify and Mojang (the games company behind Minecraft), the country currently boasts around 42, 000 tech start-ups, half of them in Stockholm.
 

Video game Mojang is one of Sweden's best-known start-ups. Photo: TT
 
Marwan Ayache, Communications and External relations co-ordinator from The Stockholm School of Entrepreneurship (SSES) told The Local:
 
"I think this app - very broadly - is emblematic of the innovation and ingenuity that you find in Stockholm. Here people look for unconventional ways of looking at problems such as housing or jobs and an app following the likes of Tinder is very appealing to younger people who don't have the experience of writing formal CVs".
 
Asked about the possibility that the app could lead to greater discrimination he said:
 
"Whether or not that could be the case, what is key here is that this is about Sweden again being an early adopter of something new and at this stage the app can experiment in which field it might thrive in. It could be wonderful for the modelling or fashion industry for example".
 
The company says it already has plans to expand into more Swedish cities in 2015, as well as foreign capitals, although it has declined to reveal which countries it intends to target.
 
In Stockholm, it is clear that growing numbers of young people are warming to the idea.
 
"It sounds like a fun, creative, innovative start-up," says Bruno Wisniewski, 18.
 
"I would try it but I wouldn't rely on it enough to find a job. But I wouldn't lose anything from giving it a go.”
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