Today, LinkedIn passed Myspace to become the second largest social network in the U.S. LinkedIn has seen a surge in traffic since it went public in May and reached an all-time high of 33.9 million unique visitors in June.
Taking advantage of the professional social network’s continuing growth, Roger Lee, the co-founder of PaperG, has built a cool little service called, aptly, Job Change Notifier. As you may have already guessed, Lee’s service enables you to track and receive notifications when one of your LinkedIn contacts changes jobs.
As such, the service allows users to keep tabs on “persons of interest”, be they startup founders, executives, to find out when they resign, get poached, or are acqui-hired. The service will also likely be useful to business-to-business startups and companies that sell their products to other businesses, as it allows them to discover when their allies are promoted or move into decision-making roles, for example. It’s also an easy way to stay up to date on your professional network and congratulate your friends and contacts for snatching up that job that you had your eyes on.
Lee used LinkedIn’s API to build the site, but is not affiliated with LinkedIn in any way, though he says that he has been contacted by LinkedIn employees, who have expressed interest in the site.
Of course, not everyone updates their LinkedIn profiles immediately following a job change, especially for those who have been let go, and there’s generally some lag time between a job change and its corresponding update on LinkedIn, but it’s still the fastest way to find out about your contacts’ career moves.
Using the site is easy, and set up is quick: Users simply enter their email addresses to receive alerts, choose which LinkedIn connections they want to track, and bada bing, bada boom, you’re ready to track.
Though Job Change Notifier only launched a few days ago, the site is already tracking over 300,000 profiles and continues to add swaths of profiles every day. Though Lee wasn’t able to give me a good breakdown of usage analytics quite yet, he did say that the site has already become popular among startups, sales and biz dev executives, recruiters, and, unsurprisingly, LinkedIn employees.
Lee said that he’s already been asked by LinkedIn if he would be interested in going to work for them, but he has no intention of leaving PaperG. (We covered PaperG back in August.) So far, notifications are only available via email, but depending on early user feedback and demand, Lee may add further notification channels as traffic increases.
It’s a great tool, and it gives TechCrunch writers another way to keep tabs on all you upwardly mobile professionals out there, so get back to work. Because we’ll be watching.
Update: It seems a similar service was also covered today on Boston.com that is like Job Change Notifier, but for recruiters. The company is called Bullhorn (as is the software they make), and the feature is called Radar, which “tries to identify talent before that talent is actively out looking for a new gig”. Interesting. Worth a look as well.