The Great Recession has had many repercussions, but the biggest may have been unemployment. Luckily, Waltham-based ZoomInfo’s FreshContacts is the next big tool to help those looking for a job the best chance to not only find a job, but stick there.

The deficiency of many employment tools like Monster is that only about 20 percent of jobs are found through online postings. The other 80 percent of jobs are found through networking, personal introductions, and referrals. FreshContacts is the answer to this fundamental problem for the 15 million jobseekers who have currently been unemployed for over a year. The tool is not one for posting but rather a substitute for knowing the right people and getting lucky, allowing more qualified job candidates to be placed in open jobs.

FreshContacts is in essence the job market’s first effective social networking tool, especially for unemployed executives. A plug-in for Microsoft Outlook, it connects users with 45 million executives for 5 million companies, with in-depth reports on each company so potential employees can connect with the correct executive for the job, and bypass the HR gatekeepers for a company. Users can also target specific companies in their area of expertise, track past colleagues that have recently been hired (the referral process in a more automated, though solicitous form), and prepare for interviews, because the job hunt isn’t over when until you’ve aced the interview.

FreshContacts takes the quality of the information they present to both job hunters and those looking to hire, as well. The software immediately disregards any consumer email addresses like Yahoo and Gmail to ensure that any information in their database is pertinent to the job search. Though it sounds a little sketchy, anyone who contributes information about contacts remain anonymous, so you don’t have to worry about getting caught for writing about how your boss favors certain qualities in a candidate more than others. Anyone not willing to be included in FreshContact’s database can opt-out at any time, thanks to our handy CAN-Spam laws.

ZoomInfo uses web crawl technology to gather publicly available information on businesses so you don’t have to, and does so at a prolific rate, adding about 20,000 company profiles a month.

ZoomInfo says that FreshContacts is used by sales and marketing professionals to find leads. This may be a huge problem in the future, as it may cause businesses to opt-out of the service if it means being constantly contacted by salesmen who use FreshContacts to aggregate information about possible leads. Use of FreshContacts in this way could be a major problem in the future, and something to watch for new users.

However, FreshContacts will certainly make the job market a more efficient place to be, as it compiles information in a way that could drastically cut down on the research phase of the job hunt and place executive-level professionals in better jobs, faster.

About The Author

Matt Schnitt is a Blast intern

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