There were some pretty big headlines this past week. LinkedIn dropped almost half its share price, but they also acquired Connectifier, which didn’t go down so well with everyone, although we’re only too happy to step in :)
LinkedIn shares have drastically lost their value and people are starting to talk about it like it’s terminal. It’s getting a hard rap, but the reality is that there is nothing out there like it. LinkedIn owns the professional network in the same way that Facebook owns social, and that won’t disappear any time soon.
A professional network is valuable because those connections are a source of validity. Anyone can write anything they want on a CV, but if you’re connected to all of your previous bosses it’s harder to get away with. A candidate with no connections is considered as trustworthy as that Brazilian supermodel who just added you on Facebook.
When sourcing candidate info with Context Scout, half the battle is in verifying it. What makes it work so effectively is that that our starting point, the LinkedIn profile itself, is already a pretty good source. Not complete or fully verified by the way, but good. Luckily for you there’s a useful Chrome extension that can finish the job of filling in those extra details (*hint it’s called Context Scout).
As for Connectifier, it seems us and everyone else are wondering what they’ll do next. It looks like LinkedIn have retained only their R&D team, so my bet is that they’ll be used to flesh out their existing poor search service. I’m wondering if that team will continue to do the same kind of aggregation and information linking as Connectifier, but that doesn’t seem to fit with LinkedIn’s ethos of candidate-sourced info.
Nevertheless, while all this is going on Context Scout continues to go from strength to strength. It’s a mistake to think that we’re merely chasing Connectifier, although we’re happy to fill any Connectifier-shaped void if they do go the way of Rapportive. It’s never been just about data aggregation with us (even though that’s super useful) and we’ve got big plans for the rest of this year. We want to be the #1 social recruiting tool, so watch this space.
Because it’s never been just about finding emails or links to social profiles and dumping them in an annoying sidebar. Context Scout is about finding information from all over the web, linking it together, verifying it, picking out the bits that are relevant to you and putting them on the page where they’re needed the most. Perfectly illustrated by the recent addition of StackOverflow skills, which now get added to profiles alongside GitHub. The extension is publicly available so now there’s no excuse to give it a try, go on, install it.