Hawaii TechnologyWritten by Janel Lubanski On 14 July 2011

A new iPhone-exclusive app, AirRun is a location-based job hub that boasts person-to-person commerce. Using advanced geo-technology, users can post and view nearby jobs – specifically small tasks and quick errands; providing job opportunities and increasing everyday productivity for users.

How it Works:

Need something done and short on time, and want someone else to do it? You are officially what AirRun calls a seeker – someone looking for someone else to perform a job or errand. First, download the free app from the iPhone App Store; launch and post an errand, e.g. “Pick up and deliver my take-out order at Chinn’s Chinese Restaurant;” state a few details: “deliver between 5 and 6 p.m. today” and provide the charge of how much the items will cost and a fee – what you are willing to pay someone to get the job done: “Cost: $30, Runner Pay: $20.”

Job hunters referred to as runners search for job posts in nearby areas, reply to jobs they can accomplish, perform the errand and get paid. Forms of payment are decided between seeker and runner; runners are strongly encouraged to provide purchase receipts.

Is it safe?

According to AirRun founder and CEO, Rob Matthews, job posts are constantly monitored by AirRun staff, so any illegal or otherwise inappropriate requests are deleted.

“I anticipated a lot of abuse with the app, but the users have generally been great so far,” Matthews says.

A rating system is incorporated so users can score each other based on a 1 to 5-point scale. Ratings and comments are available for public viewing so future users can decide whether or not to do business with each other.

Who’s using it?

Currently, there are 10 AirRun users in Hawaii, nine of which reside in Honolulu. Since April, this app has gained a global user base of 4,000 and adds approximately 60 new users a day and expects significant growth once they launch to the web and Android market.

Currently, AirRun does not profit from the app – they’re focused on establishing an active user base. In the future as the pool of users grows, AirRun may look into incorporating a payment mechanism, but the app is and will remain free to download.

The Experiment:

We tested this by posting a job on AirRun against a posted job on Craigslist to see which method was more effective. Both methods took about the same time to post online and the instructions and reward were the same for both.

We advertised delivering baked goods from Cake Couture in Davies Pacific Center. The task was to deliver a pre-ordered dozen cupcakes to our offices; the courier would receive $20.

Which was better, AirRun, or Craigslist?
We received no response from either ad.

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About Author

Janel Lubanski

Intern at Hawaii Business magazine. Attended HPU and graduated with a BA in Journalism; MBA in progress. Relocating to Portland, OR in July 2011.

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