The role of smartphones in electronic and online recruitment is likely to develop into creating an “emotional” attachment to employer brands, according to the head of recruitment of a leading international software developer.

Matthew Jeffery, the EMEA head of talent acquisition for Autodesk, made his comments during his keynote address at the recent ERE Global Recruiting Conference in San Diego, US. He said that smartphones and mobile app technology were becoming an integral part of a recruiter’s “arsenal”, thanks to their ability to capture the attention of candidates in any place and at any time.

He said that the US was far ahead of Europe in the sector, but that Europe – and the UK in particular – were making exceptionally fast progress in their own set ups.

“The UK is still very much in the early stages in using mobile apps for recruitment but is on a EuroStar or Eurofighter plane speeding to catch up in this area,” he said. “A lot of companies are still looking at the best way to talk to candidates and get into social media but are not completely on the ball with taking social media and putting it into an app and combining it with a job search engine in new apps.”

He predicted that the next year would see a rush of companies developing mobile recruitment apps and that social networking sites would start seeing more meaningful and concisely detailed content appear, rather than just listed hyperlinks.

Geoff Newman, chief executive of online recruitment agency Recruitment Genius agrees that job seekers are using mobile phones more to search for jobs however has a warning for those developing applications.

“Some companies are simply creating vanity apps. Bland, functionless and essentially useless applications which are as quick to delete as they are to load on. At the moment real focus should be spent on ensuring mobile phones render traditional websites properly, rather than try to reengineer the Internet to work on mobiles.”

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