The Little Green Matchmaker

Android, Jobs, and You!

A couple of months ago, in another location, I posted 40 Android business models — ways you can make money in the Android ecosystem, beyond simply selling individual apps to individual users and making individual pennies at a time. Let's dive deeper into one of those ideas, because it's something that Android desperately needs built yesterday: the “go-to site” for Android jobs and talent.The quick uptake of the Motorola DROID, along with the raft of other Android devices and a bevy of positive press mentions, means that more and more firms are going to be looking seriously at Android for their applications. Some will be looking to build applications for sales to individuals, others will be looking to strike OEM deals, and others will be looking to create applications for more limited audiences, like employees of an enterprise. Yet others will be looking for people to help with their own Android devices, either at the firmware level or creating compelling applications and home screen widgets to incorporate in their device.Right now, finding Android talent is tough. Finding Android opportunities is no picnic, either. There just is no good place for these people to find each other. Yes, there are the traditional job sites (e.g., DICE), and umpteen regions on Craigslist, and postings in social media, all of which are good and necessary. Still, though, I would like to think that there is room for an Android-dedicated job board or similar venue to match up developers with opportunities.Moreover, a savvy entrepreneur can find ways to make money from this site, not by forcibly “soaking” one party, but through an overlapping set of optional services:

  • Listings aggregated from other sources are free, but premium listings on the site (for jobs or for available talent) has a fee.
  • Offer a “vetting” service, to measure the quality of a candidate based on demonstrated Android knowledge in discussion groups, StackOverflow, and open source projects. Talent could pay to have themselves vetted, or firms could pay to have specific candidates vetted.
  • Create an ad network of sorts, to promote specific job listings on Android development blogs and the like, charging firms a promotional fee.
  • Run TopCoder-style contests to help identify strong Android developers.
  • Create a “tiger team” that attacks and fixes Android bugs based on crowd-sourced funding from Fundable or Kickstarter, and use that to help gauge talent and promote awareness of your firm.
  • And so on

You can jump-start the site by manually aggregating information from existing sources and focus on building a name brand over a year or two, to the point where firms and talent will want to specifically work with you. If you want scalability, think of yourself less as building the “go-to site” for Android jobs and talent and more as building a template for creating such sites on a variety of new technologies over time.Just be sure, when you write your memoir on how you built this fantastic firm, you mention you got the idea here on NetworkWorld!

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