The Loop – Pip Jamieson Interview

The Loop is a new Australian website advertising creative jobs only. It has been started by Matt Fayle & Pip Jamieson.
Pip takes us inside The Loop with the words to follow.

There are 3 people listed on the website as staff for the Loop, how many people are actually working at the Loop?

Too funny, you’ve just prompted me to update that section. The Loop family now consists of four permanent staff. Matt & I, our right hand woman Marie, and our genius web developer, Asanka. Two incredible designers, Robbie and Sam, and our intern Jess make up the rest of the team.

How did you convince all the companies that advertise jobs on your website to sign up with you?

In the early days building a base of partners and clients wasn’t easy. Matt and I used to work at MTV and we’d been spoilt leveraging a high profile brand. I used to pick up the phone and say “Hi, I’m Pip from MTV”, which provided instant attention and credibility. “Hi, I’m Pip from The Loop” went down like a lead balloon. However, as time has gone by and more people hear about the site, and brands have rallied round us. I guess they just got sick of using sites like Seek; they seem to love using us because it works.

You’ve just done a major overhaul on the Loop, how is that coming along?

Yeah about two months ago we launched News Feeds, which allow people and companies to follow profiles that inspire them from across the site. It’s a great way to keep in the loop, (he he sorry couldn’t resist) on all the great work and jobs being uploaded to the site. People can also comment on and like peoples work.

Since launch our site stats have gone off and it’s been magic watching the micro communities form across the site.

Saying that, we’re already onto the next phase of development – no rest for the wicked I guess. You’ll start noticing some big improvements rolling out over the coming month including improving our job section so it’s easier for companies to post freelance jobs, project based work and internships. Also, people (as well as companies) will be able to post opportunities to the site. For example if someone needs a photographer to shoot their production, or a producer needs a cameraman for a day, they’ll be able to post it on the site.

What would you advise a person who has just made an account on the Loop to do, so that they can make the most of it?

I think it’s important to only upload those pieces of work that you’re most proud of. Sometimes I see some incredible pieces of work, surrounded by sea of profile filling content. I think in some cases less is more.

It’s also a good idea to choose your profile image wisely. Low resolution or social photos of partying won’t land you that dream job. Choosing an image that is professional but approachable or even using a piece of work as the profile image is a great way to go!

Most importantly people will get the most of out the site by being active in the community, making contacts, following people/companies and setting up job alerts. That’s the magic bit about the site – in many cases that dream opportunity is only a click away!

Is there something that the Loop users could do, that they are not doing, that could improve the Loop?

I’m sure some people are doing this already but including a link to your loop profile their CV when applying for jobs would not only help employers quickly and easily check out their work, but would also help companies discover The Loop. Win, win!

Will the Loop ever develop into a social network side, as opposed to strictly being a job site?

Yeah absolutely! For us the vision for the site is to help our community tap into a myriad of opportunities – not just jobs – including fostering more collaborations, networking opportunities, helping people discover events, courses, workshops, and discuss work related issues etc.

However, we will always focus on being a professional creative network, not a social one. More like a sexy, industry-relevant LinkedIn than a Facebook.

Is there going to be a section on the Loop where members can advertise jobs between themselves, straight from their profile; like somebody is making a film, or somebody has dropped out of a project and they need somebody quick, just like a noticeboard in a school or in a backpackers.?

Great minds think alike. Yes this functionality is currently in development and will be launching in the coming month. Yay!

I noticed a lack of production jobs, not only on the Loop, but in Sydney and the whole of Australia in general, nobody is looking for directors, cameramen, sound engineers, photographers, what would be your explanation be in regards to this?, because I can’t imagine that fresh images and sounds are not needed…

Yeah I agree there’s always demand for fresh amazing content and talent. It’s just been incredibly hard for companies to quickly and easily find that perfect person. Putting an Ad on a site like Seek is a total headache for companies, as they get inundated with irrelevant applications. Also, the time and energy involved with collating and short-listing showreels has meant it’s been far easier for companies to fill positions through word of mouth. Approximately 95% of creative jobs never get advertised, which means if you didn’t go to the right uni or have a friend working at a great company, it’s hard to get your foot in the door. Which is sad.

However, The Loop is starting to change this, as the site gives employers an affordable and time efficient platform that they can use to search for and identify perfect candidates. At the moment something like 30% of the jobs on The Loop don’t get advertised anywhere else, opening up more opportunities to ALL talented creatives.

What is one thing that you can’t go through your day without? (you can’t answer phone, computer, internet, cigarettes or coffee)

Checking the “recently updated” section on The Loop, sad but true, I just can’t help myself. I even checked it on Christmas day, as did 2000 other people. Which kinda blew me away!

On the website’s contact page Pip is described as a cackler. Is that a skill or a fault? How do you use that?

Hmm skill or fault! Now that is a good questions. I think it totally depends who you’re talking to. My laugh is pretty distinctive. My husband says it’s like marmite, you either love it or hate it. Luckily he and Matt love it, phew!

Where is the Loop heading?

For us it’s all about improving the site so it’s even easier for creative professionals to land that dream job, client, collaborator or opportunity. We want the site to become a hub of all creative opportunities, not just jobs. And with a huge amount of new functionality already in the pipeline, it’s going to be one hell of exciting year. I can hardly wait!

To visit the loop, click below.

www.theloop.com.au

© 33madspirals 2011. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to 33madspirals with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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