How LinkedIn Plans to Boost Its Biggest Business
LinkedIn unveiled a new and improved "LinkedIn Recruiter" on Wednesday. The tool is at the core of its recruiting business, called "Talent Solutions," which is LinkedIn's biggest and most profitable business by far.
These changes are designed to make the tool easier and more effective, and to drive more use and higher revenue. In the fourth quarter, talent solutions revenue grew 90 percent and its latest changes explain how the company aims to keep up that growth.
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The business network has overhauled Recruiter's look—streamlining it and cleaning it up. It's taking a page from the success of its revamped profile pages, with easy access to a search bar, wherever users are on the page, as well as just one quick motion to see saved searches. Based on the results of the redesigned profile pages, the new emphasis on search is expected to drive user engagement.
LinkedIn's Senior Director of Product management, Parker Barrile, said the goal is to make the new software "simpler and cleaner than the old version, with powerful new features." The inbox is moved to the top of the page, allowing users to jump to messages from anywhere on the site.
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And perhaps most important for LinkedIn's push to add more recruiters and get them to spend more time on the site, the new service automates a lot more of the process. A suggestion engine recommends people you may want to hire, prompting recruiters to "dive right into profiles that you wouldn't find by searching," Barrile said.
The new system has been piloted by a handful of customers. Starting Wednesday, 10 percent of customers will have access. By the end of April, it will be rolled out to 100 percent of English speaking customers.
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—By CNBC's Julia Boorstin; Follow her on Twitter: @JBoorstin