Remember being in high school or college and on the job search grind? You just needed a job fast. The struggle of lugging that manila envelope full of resumes (even if it was the coolest resume ever) around to each store in the mall, putting on a cheerful face and hoping to catch the manager before they went on their lunch break was REAL. And we’re not talking about an awesome Apple or Google retail store, either. Imagine if there had been an app for that. Well, now there is! The kids today are so lucky.
Wirkn is a new app that connects job-seekers with retail employers, helping wannabe retail workers land great jobs from the comfort of their couches. But make no mistake, CMO and co-founder Todd Dean tells us that Wirkn definitely isn’t the easy way out. The app includes an option (and about 80 percent of users opt for it) to create a 30-second video cover letter, letting employers know more about you and your strengths, and giving you automatic valuable face time with hiring managers. “That’s one of the ways we’re driving quality candidates to these retailers,” Todd says. “You’re not just clicking on a link and uploading your CV. There’s a certain amount of effort required, which drives our user base to be more qualified.”
Wirkn also recently partnered with the chat app Kik (super popular with teens), in a push to “remove all the friction between finding a job and connecting with a hiring manager,” Todd points out. Plus, just to add a little icing on the cake, Wirkn allows users to earn rewards in the form of discounts at popular stores.
Todd said that Wirkn’s philosophy is that retail jobs can be much more than just part-time money makers for teens. Before founding the company, he ran marketing for Aldo Shoes — but he didn’t start there. “I literally started selling shoes part-time when I was in university, and I worked my way up to be an executive vice president at a retailer. And I got so much experience and such great experience in retail, and it was such a big part of my career, that I wanted to find a way to make that meaningful and not just treat it as an entry-level job,” Todd tells us. “Retail’s not just a transient career, but could be something where you grow and develop.”
That’s why Wirkn puts a lot of emphasis on painting a picture of the brands that job seekers are applying to work for — pulling in their Instagram feeds, for example, so they can get a better feel for the culture than they might get by walking into a store.
So, if you’re trying to find the perfect retail or service job for you, Todd is offering these three tips to make sure your search goes smoothly:
1. Find brands you’re passionate about. “Find brands that you love, because when you’re really connected to a brand, you’re more likely to have insight into the consumer base and the product, and it ends up being a better fit.”
2. Branch out in order to learn about yourself. “Apply a lot to a lot of different brands, because at the same time, there’s a certain percentage of this cohort [of job seekers] that doesn’t know what they want yet. So we encourage people to try different jobs.”
3. Get your elevator pitch down. “Your elevator pitch is the most important piece in these jobs, where how you present yourself, both to the hiring manager and the customers, is going to make the difference.”
Raise your hand if you’re wishing Wirkn was around when you were searching for retail jobs.
Would YOU use Wirkn to find a job? Tweet us your thoughts @BritandCo!
(Photos via Wirkn, Getty)