Over the past few months, I noticed the occasional message in my inbox: “One of your LinkedIn connections has invited you to join Opportunity!”
I decided to check it out and thought I’d share my first impressions. If you’ve been receiving these emails also and wondering about Opportunity, read on.
What is Opportunity?
Opportunity is a networking platform. It seeks to match people with opportunities. It uses an algorithm, to match the right person to the right opportunity. On their website, they liken their algorithm to that of an online dating app.
It appears to primarily service two fields: sales and staffing, matching sales people with customers and recruiters with candidates. As a secondary function, it helps to connect people who share a common interest and provide networking opportunities.
The platform’s homepage is a dashboard where you can see potential leads, message them and keep everything organized. From this dashboard you can access your lead’s profile overview then categorize them as “hot”, “warm” or “cold”.
Although Opportunity isn’t affiliated with LinkedIn, you can use Opportunity in conjunction with LinkedIn. If you were to link both accounts, Opportunity’s algorithm will sort through your connections and target potential matches. It also flags people with whom you are not connected but should be based on what you’re looking for.
Opportunity created a short video to give an overview of their offering.
Creating a profile
It’s quick and easy to create a profile. As you’re creating your profile, you’re prompted to enter what field you’re in and the fields you’re targeting.
The basic account is free, and you can upgrade to Pro or Pro+. At first glance, the free account appears to be somewhat limited. You can access a handful of profile matches, but you need to upgrade to access more people and get full use from the platform.
Once you’ve created your profile you can import your LinkedIn contacts. The advantage with this is that you’ll have an icon next to the leads with whom you’re already connected through LinkedIn.
Opportunity created a short video which is a new user demo.
Opportunity is a new platform. It was created in 2014 and claims to have reach in over 190 countries. As with every new social platform, it needs to be out there a while before getting traction and optimizing the algorithm, so it’s hard to say right now if it can truly deliver on its promise.
I think the idea seems interesting and promising. My question, however, is who will gain significant value from this platform. I do see the benefits for certain types of sales and high volume recruiting, but I’m still unclear on the true benefit for the customer or the candidate.
LinkedIn already offers advanced searching and messaging capabilities so the value of Opportunity would lie the reliability of its algorithm. This puts Opportunity in a Catch-22 space whereby to know if you would get any value from it, you would need to pay for an upgraded membership but as the algorithm is not yet proven, it’s hard to say if it’s worth the upgrading to a paid membership.
If you’re actively looking for a job now, I would say sign up, just to get yourself in the network, but don’t spend too much time on it. The dashboard is really user-friendly so there is almost no learning curve, which frees you to spend your time focused on LinkedIn and more traditional job search methods.
Unless you work in sales or recruiting, I don’t really see the value at this point in time. I think the average professional can derive similar benefits from LinkedIn. Because LinkedIn has been around for longer, it’s more developed and has more subscribers, therefore more potential.
I distinctly remember the excitement I felt as a recruiter when I first heard about LinkedIn. Unfortunately, I don’t feel this way about Opportunity at this time. With that said, social media has surprised us all in many unanticipated ways and I think it’s fair to give Opportunity more time to find its home in that space.