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Gig Harbor-based website to help cut commute times
[November 21, 2012]

Gig Harbor-based website to help cut commute times

Nov 21, 2012 (The Peninsula Gateway (Gig Harbor - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- If you're looking for a job closer to home, then perhaps Skipthetrip.com is for you. The Gig Harbor-based website, conceived to change how people select their job location, is the brainchild of Mavi Macfarlane and her daughter, Elizabeth Ashe.

Here's how it works: Skip the Trip seeks to connect jobs for potential exchange through a database organized per a radius area and within a desired ZIP code for each profile. People will register their profiles -- up to three previous jobs -- and select their home area and desired new distance from home. The database will only align parties if their commute distance will be made shorter through an exchange.

The site is meant to bring a level of sophistication to protecting current employment. A conversation between parties confirms if the job exchange will work for all parties prior to the next step of interviewing with employers.


As things stand, it's practically impossible for any such job exchange to take place, as such potential exchanges are not listed on job-search websites, and occupied jobs are unsearchable.

If last Wednesday's pre-site launch is any indication, the chances of the new venture being successful are good. During the first few days, several thousand new members joined the site.

"We need to build our database huge to work it at optimum when we launch the main site," Macfarlane said. "If you go to our website, you will be able to see some of the links we are going to have to help different special sectors: veterans, graduating students, etc., along with all folks, of course." The version is being used to form support for Skip the Trip by generating interest, donations and membership for the time being. The main site is currently developing and is set to launch in March.

Employers, too, will be able to use the site to prevent down time and reduce efforts to fill positions.

As envisioned by its founders, employers would see cost savings in terms of finding and hiring a new and qualified candidate or candidates for a given position. Plans also call for a list of unpublished jobs to connect with the job searcher.

"Job exchanges will create better transitions into jobs, due to one-on-one information," Macfarlane said. "We can leave behind the waiting game after CV/resumes, applications and interviews. Skip the Trip's program will find jobs for you based on your member profile, consisting of information such as job description, current and preferred ZIP codes, work environment details and years of experience." Macfarlane said benefits go beyond employment-related considerations.

"This job exchange will boost the quality of life through participation and public support," she said. "When commute time is reduced across the nation, foreign oil dependency will go down, which will help our environment and boost our economy." Macfarlane said she estimates reducing a one-way commute time by 15 minutes will save $160 or more per month.

"Imagine having that much extra money at the end of the month," she said. "What would you do with an extra three hours a week Would you have more energy to care about your coworkers and your neighbors Put more effort into learning a hobby Have more time for your family and get more rest " Time -- one of the things for which the site aims to give people more -- will tell if Skip the Trip is successful.

For more information, visit www.skipthetrip.com.

Reporter Brett Davis can be reached at 253-358-4151 or by email at brett.davis@gateline.com. Follow him on Twitter, @gateway_brett.

___ (c)2012 The Peninsula Gateway (Gig Harbor, Wash.) Visit The Peninsula Gateway (Gig Harbor, Wash.) at www.thenewstribune.com/gigharbor Distributed by MCT Information Services

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