Aiming to make the job search an interactive process
Peter DeRogatis was caught off guard when applying for a sales job at Johnson & Johnson turned into laboring over an album of achievements and reference letters to present to a hiring manager. But making a conscious effort to strengthen his massive portfolio along the way paid off whenever he saw a promotion opportunity — and seven years later, it served as part of his inspiration to transfer the concept onto a digital platform.
Launched in September, Bragbook Multimedia offers job seekers a way to stand out in an online sea of résumés and cover letters by allowing them to build and submit multimedia career profiles showcasing their skills and accomplishments to potential employers.
While Bragbook's offerings are currently aimed at job seekers, DeRogatis, the company's founder and president, said he is looking to add features, such as text and video chat between candidates and businesses, to "move the entire process of finding a job onto our digital platform."
"Most recruiters ask for face-to-face meetings because a simple black-and-white résumé cannot convey everything about a possible candidate," Bragbook Web developer Derek Hutchinson said. "We feel that Bragbook, in specific, can be a powerful tool for (recruiters) since it allows them to dynamically leverage a more whole picture of a possible candidate."
To expand the three-person company out of its current space in the business incubator at Burlington County College's Mount Laurel campus, DeRogatis said he has entered into partnerships with alumni relations and career services departments at New Jersey universities, like Rutgers and Seton Hall, to get more young job seekers onto the site — since only a few hundred have launched career profiles on the platform so far.
As DeRogatis pitches the concept to recruiters in the state, Hutchinson and Bragbook multimedia director David Lopez are developing a tool for companies to cut time and costs in the hiring process by managing candidates not only by their job skills, but also by how well they would fit into the firm's culture, based on the personality type they reveal in their introduction videos.
While job seekers can create and submit digital profiles at no cost, DeRogatis said the company offers the option to upgrade to a paid premium account, which provides services such as video production, résumé writing and career counseling to further strengthen portfolios.
"Bragbook isn't a place where you just upload your résumé and hope for the best," DeRogatis said. "It takes considerable thought and effort to create a Bragbook, and I think that's something employers will consider when they see candidates applying for jobs at their companies through us."