HOUSTON (KTRK) -- Looking for a new job can easily feel like another full-time career, and one that you probably don't want your current boss to find out about.
The latest mobile recruiting tools claim they can help keep your secret.
Recently, Erick McCloe decided to research career moves.
"Making sure that wasn't sabotaging my current career, at least before knowing what my next step was going to be was very important," McCloe said.
He used an app that he says helped him avoid being "found out" by his boss.
"It couldn't have been any more streamlined as far as I'm concerned," said McCloe.
The latest job hunting tech tools are aimed at passive candidates, people currently employed but open to new opportunities.
Similar to dating sites, the services use algorithms and assessment tools to match candidates to potential employers. They promise to get the job done privately and anonymously.
Recruitment specialist Tony Beshara says the platforms are a unique way to find a perfect fit in a highly competitive job market.
"The candidate doesn't run the risk of looking for a job, or go to the trouble of having to interview very often, or put his resume out on job boards, or things like that, so in other words, the jobs come to them," Besharas said.
To get started, users create a custom profile. Most tools allow you to import credentials from LinkedIn, which are then disguised and abbreviated. Some also let you privately list what it would take for an employer to poach you.
"A lot of the preliminary issues of whether or not you'd be a good fit are out of the way," said Beshara.
When a match is made and a company wants to chat, the job seeker decides whether or not to move forward and reveal his or her identity. Some mobile apps, like Switch, let you do that by swiping the screen Tinder style.
"Then the two sides can go into a direct chat-communication, and can start sending messages to one other. It's a very efficient and quick way to directly talk to companies," said Switch founder and CEO Yarden Tadmor.
Beshara says to keep in mind that these tech tools are still new and most are starting to offer more jobs in more places. The areas that are the most targeted so far are tech, digital media, and finance.
"The people that these kinds of sites are going to help are the people whose experience and background are in very high demand," Beshara said.
McCloe works in sales and says he feels lucky to have found his new employer with his very first match on Switch.
"My return on the investment of time couldn't have been greater," McCloe said.
While each site works a bit differently, all of them promise never to match you to your current employer.
For more on the apps and websites:
Switch (mobile app)
Poacht (mobile app)
Poachable (web site)
Whitetruffle (web site)