LinkedIn is preparing a major redesign of its mobile app, a move that buckets content into tabs as a way to make the app easier to navigate.
LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner demoed the new app, which isn’t actually rolling out for a few weeks, at the company’s annual Talent Connect conference in Anaheim, Calif., on Wednesday. The redesign includes five tabs along the bottom to better separate the different parts of the product, like a tab for what’s happening with your connections and a new messaging tab. As LinkedIn’s VP of Product Joff Redfern told reporters Wednesday morning, the tabs are about “simplifying and bringing focus to this app.”
The messaging tab is overdue but could make LinkedIn significantly more useful given the rise in popularity of mobile messaging. LinkedIn finally announced chat-like messaging in late August, years after other companies like Twitter and Facebook built their own features.
Weiner was quick to acknowledge the lag. “Welcome, LinkedIn, to the 21st century of communications,” he joked onstage Wednesday. “A little long in the making but we got there.”
A number of LinkedIn’s recent changes seem to revolve around search, both for users and for recruiters who pay to use an enhanced version of the product. The thinking from LinkedIn is that it has the best professional data out there, things like job skills and education info that people upload to their profiles. The problem is that it isn’t always easy to navigate. LinkedIn offers a lot of filters for sifting through these people or job postings, but it can be daunting, especially on mobile.
So LinkedIn is trying to do some of that filtering for users instead.
It’s also launching a new standalone product called Referrals in early November, a tool that encourages employees of a company to recommend their connections for job openings at their current employer. LinkedIn does most of the hard work in the background — it scans your connections to recommend people that may be qualified for a specific opening — and then all you have to do is send along the job opening.
It’s a new way for LinkedIn to utilize its data troves, but it’s also a potential revenue stream. Referrals will cost between $10 and $12 per employee per year. The thinking is that increasing the number of in-house referrals will make it easier for recruiters to make the right hire, a convenience LinkedIn is hoping companies will pay for.
It also automated some parts of its recruiter product. Now, recruiters can pick a current employee at their company and find other people on LinkedIn who most closely resemble them professionally. It’s a lookalike product for hiring in which, once again, LinkedIn is doing much of the hunting for you.
This article originally appeared on Recode.net.