Après Is Professional Networking with a Twist
by Sarah Warlick, content director
Après Networking Site for Women
Taking a break from the professional world may be the right choice for your personal life, but as many who have done so will attest, it often leads to big problems when it’s time to resume your career. Women who have left the workforce to raise children (or for other reasons) face serious hurdles when they are ready to return. Maintaining a strong professional network during the career hiatus helps to mitigate the difficulty, but it’s a daunting task at best and most women don’t do so successfully – if they try at all.
Après is a brand new networking platform designed to make it easier for professional women to nurture their networks while they’re not focused on their careers and find a rich source of job referrals when they decide it’s time to restart their careers.
Created by Jennifer Gefsky and Niccole Kroll, two women who have first-hand experience with the struggle to return to the working world after taking a break, Après exists to help professional women get back on the career track. The site launched in May with job listings of many types – full-time, part-time, project-based, fill-in and pro-bono – that represent a wide swath of industries.
In addition to connecting companies with qualified candidates, Après offers users information from experts and career coaching to ease the path back into the office. Topics include updating your resume, handling interviews, dressing for success, strengthening professional networks and brushing up on skills. You can also read about how other women successfully made the transition back to work – welcome inspiration for the legions of highly educated women who have discovered how hard it is.
Companies who want to advertise open positions on the site pay a fee determined by their size. Individual users can search job listings for free, or can choose to pay by the year ($250) or month ($25) for a premium membership that lets the user’s profile show up in searches by companies looking to hire.
Après is definitely targeting a niche with vast unmet needs. Will the platform fill the gap and provide the answers that returning professionals and talent-thirsty employers need? It’s too soon to tell, but we can hope for the best. What do you think? Have you or your company given Après a try yet? We’d love to hear reports from actual users, whether job-seekers or would-be employers. Please share your experiences!