Joustlist: a “Notification-first” Company

For us, customer success is a two-way street

Original photo by Yu-chuan Hsu on Unsplash

Joustlist helps organize your job search, and one of the ways we help is by acting as a virtual assistant to remind, prompt, and suggest. To do that at scale, we rely on artificial intelligence.

A lot of tech companies are trying to figure out the AI virtual assistant. Motives range from user growth to selling batteries, but they’re all trying to do the same thing: make interacting with a computer more natural, more relevant, and more human.

Alexa, Siri, Google Assistant, and Cortana are all betting heavily on voice. They use screens (and cameras), but voice dominates. Magic’s assistant works through text message. X.ai’s Amy and Andrew assist with scheduling through email.

One of the biggest questions in the space is around where these assistants should “live” and how they should be interacted with.

The reality is that humans interact in different ways at different times and depending on the task. In addition, different humans prefer different interactions for the same thing.

For Joustlist– since we’re not an existing tech platform and we have literally no market sway yet– we need to bet on the right type of interaction model and build it on someone else’s platform. The quality of interactions will dictate our assistant’s (and therefore our customers’) success.

So is Joustlist an app? A website? An Alexa skill? A calendar widget? A wearable? What’s the best way to make sure our customers are engaged with our product? That’s how we provide value. Our interactions could win (or cost) someone their dream job!

Notifications

We chose to focus on something a little more abstract than a specific platform: notifications.

Almost every platform has a notification layer. We typically think of apps and push notifications, but text messages are notifications, email is a notification, and there are notifications inside almost every peer-to-peer product (Facebook, Messenger, Slack, Basecamp).

By focusing on notifications in general, we’re not limited to an app and a push strategy. We can take notifications to another level by combining push, email and text into something that feels timely and helpful, not annoying.

The really exciting part, though, is that by allowing notifications to define our experience, we can dive into them and rethink notification interactions themselves. Notification-first means more than “send a lot of notifications.” It means focusing serious effort on notification usability and ways they can drive our entire product (and business).

Our prompts encourage action, update information, and ask questions. Wherever possible, they’re interactive. As tech evolves, we’ll be ready to take advantage of the notification layer that comes in every new platform, because we’re thinking about notifications as a vehicle not a feature.

Hopefully we can advance the industry and help solidify notification best practices, but we really just want our customers to find better jobs faster. We know how to help them do that, but it takes effort on the jobseeker’s part, too, so ultimately job hunt success depends on how well our AI virtual assistant can interact with the jobseeker. Put another way, our product’s success depends on our notifications.