Host family references, for Au Pairs, from previous Au Pairs

We’ve just added a new question on the host family’s Post Job page, the question is Have you previously employed an au pair you could offer as a reference? – if a host family has previously employed an au pair, and they are willing to share that au pair’s contact details with the new au pair, they can indicate so here.

This information will appear on the job description page as a bullet point “This host family has previously employed an au pair they could offer as a reference”.

Sharing a previous au pair’s contact details with the new au pair allows the new au pair contact the old one, to get an idea of what to expect in their new job,  the working conditions, what the family are like, etc.

We would ask host families to share this information, if possible, as moving into a new home, in a new country, with a new family, would be a daunting  prospect for anyone, talking to someone who has experienced it before would be a massive assurance for the au pair, and their family.

We would suggest the host family only share the previous au pair’s contact details with the job seeker they are considering offering the position to.

Searching for an au pair by location

We had an enquiry today from a host family enquiring how to search for job seekers by location – say “Ireland > Dublin > Dublin 13” – that was an easy question to answer as the functionality was always there, however the answer didn’t make much sense. To search by location, prior to today, the host family had to use the advanced search ( http://www.aupairireland.ie/employers/search.php ) tick the box “Only show jobseekers located in Ireland”, then they would see options for the county, followed by area if Dublin was selected.

We’ve now made the search form a little simpler, and more intuitive, we have added an option “Jobseeker Location”, you can select any country, or, if you select Ireland, you will then see another option for county, followed by an option for area/postcode if you select Dublin.

I’m not sure why we had it the old way, in retrospect it doesn’t make much sense!

Next and Previous Jobs listings on Job detail pages

We’ve added yet another piece of new functionality! This time however it’s for the job seekers‘ benefit. We’ve included, at the bottom of job details pages, “Next Job“, and “Previous Job” links, including job titles and thumbnail of the host family photo, if they’ve added one.

By default this functionality works by the date the job was added, so if you click “Previous Job” you’ll see the last one added before the job you’re currently on, however this is a little bit more clever, it also remembers your search queries, so if you search for “Au Pair Jobs Galway” and click through to the first job on the results page, clicking the “Previous Job” link at the bottom of the page should bring you to the next most recent job added in Galway.

This new functionality should save au pairs a fair bit of time on their job searches, as it completely removes the need to return to the job search results page.

New Functionality added for Host Family accounts

Our last blog posting, prior to this one, was a call for suggestions for new functionality, thanks to Sandra McGarry we’ve implemented a load of new features for host family accounts, and fixed quite a few bugs. You can read Sandra’s suggestions here:  http://www.aupairireland.ie/blog/new-functionality-any-suggestions/450

  • My Private Notes – At the bottom of each jobseekers mini-cv there is a text box that allows you to add a private note on any of the jobseeker accounts, these notes could be anything really – “not in Ireland”, “will work with elderly” etc. it’s just a spot where you can save details of that jobseeker that are important to you. We’ve now added a My Private Notes page, this page displays all mini-cvs that have notes attached to them in one handy location
  • Jobseekers’ names linked to mini CV in Inbox and Outbox – we’ve linked the sender and recipient name in your Inbox and Outbox to that jobseeker’s mini-cv, this will give you a quick reminder of who it is you’re mailing, which can be quite handy when your job has had a lot of applicants
  • Shortlist sorted by time/date – The Shortlist page now lists shortlisted jobseekers by the time/date they were added – most recent listed first
  • Last Message functionality – When you are viewing jobseekers’ mini CVs, if you’ve messaged that jobseeker before, you will now see the date of the last message, and a link that takes you to an inbox of all emails sent to you by that jobseeker
  • Ajax functionality – this is probably the biggest change we’ve made this time around, and the one that will make the biggest difference to host families, we have change most of the CV-related  functionality to be Ajax-based. What this means is that when you click to download a CV, click to add a jobseeker to your shortlist, click to delete a CV etc. you no longer have to wait for the page to refresh, to move onto the next one. It’s done instantly.  This, we promise,will save you massive amounts of time.

There was a lot of other, smaller, things we have added or changed, but we won’t bore you with the details.

Remember, if you have any suggestions on how we can improve the site let us know, if it’s a pretty big bit of functionality, and we implement it, we’ll give you a free account upgrade next time you want it.

Thanks.

New Functionality – Any Suggestions?

It’s that time of year again, when we turn our attention to spring cleaning, and adding new functionality to the site. If you’ve any feedback on improvements we could make, or any new functionality we could add, we’d love to hear it. If you suggest any new functionality, and if we add it, we’ll give you a free Premium upgrade next time you need it. Please leave any suggestions below. Thanks.

Error fixed. Deleting empty CVs from your Downloaded CVs page

A quick note to say we’ve just noticed, and fixed, a small issue on the Downloaded CVs page. The issue was being caused when the employer would download an au pair’s CV, then the au pair would delete their own account – this would leave a blank CV on your Downloaded CVs page that couldn’t be deleted – this error has now been fixed, so if your Downloaded CVs page has any ‘ghost’ CVs, you can now delete them 🙂

If you notice any bugs on the site, or if you have any suggestions for improvements, please, please contact us about them! Thanks.

And, last but not least a very happy new year to everyone!

New functionality added. Host families, re-use your previous job descriptions

previousjob

If you are a returning host family, who previously posted a job, and you wish to post a new one, you’ll see an option on the top of the form to “Use Previous Job ” This menu lists all the previous jobs you posted by date. Selecting any of your previous jobs from this menu auto-fills the job form with the details of that previous job. You can then edit the job, before posting it, to add any changes in wage, conditions etc.

This will probably be the last piece of new functionality this year, but it’s fairly neat 🙂 

New Functionality Added

We’ve added two new pieces of minor functionality to the site for host families.

The first is we’ve added some code to prevent host families posting more than one job at a time. We need to add this for two reasons, the first is to avoid confusion among jobseekers who see what looks like the same job posted twice, and the second is to reduce the chance of any content duplication issues with Google. Google frowns upon duplicate content, so we want to minimise the chance of any loss of rankings in search results. If you’re a Premium account holder who already has a job posted but wish to post a new one, you should delete your old job in order to do so.

The second piece of functionality is we now list jobseekers on the search results page by time logged in, then date. Prior to this the results were listed by date, then alphabetically. The reason for this was because it was giving some jobseekers an unfair advantage on the search results, based solely on their first name. For example if Abbey logged in at 12am on Monday, she’d appear at the top of thesearch result page for the rest of the day, even though Zoe, who had logged in at 3pm was a more recent visitor.

New internal messaging system for au pairs and host families added

We’ve just added a new internal messaging system that allows host families contact jobseekers, directly through the site. We recommend using this mailing system until you are comfortable enough with the person you’re dealing with, to send them your real contact details. We’ve tried to keep the functionality as simple as possible, but here’s a brief outline of how it works:

  1. When a host family downloads a jobseeker’s CV that jobseeker is added to the recipient list on the host family’s new Compose Message page
  2. There is a new envelope icon on the Downloaded CVs, and Shortlisted CVs pages beside each jobseeker’s mini-cv, clicking that icon takes you to the Compose Message page, with the jobseeker pre-selected on the recipient list
  3. As soon as a host family sends a message to a jobseeker, that host family is added to the jobseeker’s recipient list
  4. Both jobseeekers and host families receive an email alert, with message summary, every time a message is sent to  them. These email notifications can be turned off in the user’s Update Details page
  5. Both jobseekers and host families can block senders if they don’t want to receive mail from them anymore
  6. The Compose Message, Inbox and Outbox pages all have standard messaging functionality (Subject, Message and Submit button, etc.) – nothing new to learn there

We’ll be adding to the functionality to this message system over the next few weeks but for now we want to keep it simple and see how it’s used. If you’ve any feedback on it, or would like to suggest enhancements, please post them below.