In our business, we hear constant commentary about the value and quality of job boards from both job seekers and employers. I thought it would make for a good discussion topic to ask people what are the top 5 worst attributes of bad job boards- any thoughts? That is, if you think of a job board you've used (or decided NOT to use), what are the top 5 reasons why it was so bad?

Here's mine:

1. Too many irrelevant jobs appearing in job searches
2. Not enough information about the employer (or none!)
3. Requirement of job seekers to register in order to apply
4. Too much non-job search related content
5. Not enough UNIQUE postings (such as aggregator sites that scrape jobs that are posted elsewhere, or, more importantly, ONLY have the postings that are already posted somewhere else.)

Okay, there's my 5... and here's my "6th man":
6. Inability to sort resumes adequately.

jb

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As a hiring person, salary is less important than experience, fit, skill, talent. I will pay more for the perfect candidate--that is often more than my budget. By posting the budget, those A level players may not respond--and yet I would pay them what they are worth after we have a discussion. Recruiters have the same frustration when asking for salary history/desired salary range of applicants and they do not provide. It is the 'chicken/egg' dilemma.

Jason C. Blais said:
I have to agree with this one, for sure. I can't tell you how much oxygen I've wasted trying to explain to businesses how important it is to post this info! If company's really don't care about the quality, there's no issue. But when you're trying to attract those A level candidates that are already employed, you'd better post a salary!!!

Thanks Kaphieel!

Kaphieel said:
7. Not all the jobs have the rate/salary info.
Let's face it, job boards are not what the used to be in the late 90's and early '00. Most postings these day require you to sift through a lot of garbage in hope of finding some quality. Their databases can still provide some good results, but they are increasingly losing my attention to professional networking and specific association sites. Three come to mind, I'll have to get back with two more at a latter time.
1) Too many inappropriate applicants. ( The process making it too easy to apply without understanding the job)
2) Too many irrelevant jobs.
3) Search Engines that deliver irrelevant resumes.
As a direct hire recruiting professional and search firm owner, I once embraced the value of the "boards". In the course of the last year, I see the output versus time investment becoming so diminished that I rarely use them in a direct sourcing manner.

From my perspective and experience, most of the viable candidates my clients seek are just not hanging around them any more. We have little in any difficulty cultivating talent from direct sourcing and skilled recruiting of those employed folks who now seem to see little benefit in maintaining any interaction there.
I understand your stance Paula. My inkling is that people who are working right now are far less willing to apply to and take time off to interview for a job if they aren't sure that the salary range at least hits their needs. No one, it's my assertion, is going to take a job that doesn't cover their expenses. Posting a salary range equates to reducing the risk associated with searching for a job while you're already employed. I've always felt that posting the range opens the floor to discussing long term career goals and needs, thereby engaging candidates to view our job opportunity as a long term career, rather than just a step to their next place to make a few bucks more...

Paula said:
As a hiring person, salary is less important than experience, fit, skill, talent. I will pay more for the perfect candidate--that is often more than my budget. By posting the budget, those A level players may not respond--and yet I would pay them what they are worth after we have a discussion. Recruiters have the same frustration when asking for salary history/desired salary range of applicants and they do not provide. It is the 'chicken/egg' dilemma.

Jason C. Blais said:
I have to agree with this one, for sure. I can't tell you how much oxygen I've wasted trying to explain to businesses how important it is to post this info! If company's really don't care about the quality, there's no issue. But when you're trying to attract those A level candidates that are already employed, you'd better post a salary!!!

Thanks Kaphieel!

Kaphieel said:
7. Not all the jobs have the rate/salary info.
1. Too much focus on agencies as opposed to corporate jobs (probably due to the paid posting model) so the applicant is basically guessing about the company.
2. Not good as a career management tool for the candidate leading to a poor quality profile. The alerts are usually of little use from a candidate perspective due to poor matching and point 1 above.
3. Quantity over quality (jobs and candidates) so one needs to look at more to get less.
Rubbish in means rubbish out - job boards must be the biggest non regulated database in the world - and the calibre of candidates quite frankly aren't much better than average at best.

My advice - if you are a corporate or 3rd party recruiter, learn to use search/headhunting techniques, if you are HR, find a recruiter that takes time to understand your business, is a specialist in your sector and is a search/headhunting specialist

Gavin
Want to be a Big Biller?
Mine is from a different perspective: To many people applying for jobs because the salary is good even though they have no experience and it states experience in the job description...
Price of Job Boards
Paula said:
As a hiring person, salary is less important than experience, fit, skill, talent. I will pay more for the perfect candidate--that is often more than my budget. By posting the budget, those A level players may not respond--and yet I would pay them what they are worth after we have a discussion. Recruiters have the same frustration when asking for salary history/desired salary range of applicants and they do not provide. It is the 'chicken/egg' dilemma.

Jason C. Blais said:
I have to agree with this one, for sure. I can't tell you how much oxygen I've wasted trying to explain to businesses how important it is to post this info! If company's really don't care about the quality, there's no issue. But when you're trying to attract those A level candidates that are already employed, you'd better post a salary!!!

Thanks Kaphieel!

Kaphieel said:
7. Not all the jobs have the rate/salary info.
Like most things, job boards have up side and down side. It is simply another tool for all concerned. How you utilize that tool has to fit with the environment you have created in your practice.
It is a two way street-applicants need to be forthcoming in their salary expecations so that employers can decide from the get go if they can afford them but applicants also want the salary up front to decide if they can afford to take the job.

There is some truth to the addage that the first one to state a $ figure loses--I just don't think it is appropriate to discuss that before any discussions happen re: fit and suitability. I WILL pay for talent--and fight for an increase in our salary range for a top performer. But I won't know that until i meet with someone.

You don't buy a car by price, right? No, it is features, performance and then if it fits your needs. Who wants to buy a SmartCar for a family of 5? May be the most cost effective but if you ahve to make 10 trips to take your familiy out to dinner--it doesn't fit your needs.

another reason salaries are not posted is that can be used by competitors to one-up us.
Interesting points Paula, thanks for the input!

As for the car analogy, though, I see it differently. I won't buy a car based just on price, you're absolutely spot on with that. However, I'm also not going to the ferrari or bentley dealership to look for a car, because I KNOW they won't fit into the price I'm looking to pay. I definitely narrow down my options based on a price range. From my experience, which admittedly is limited to only about 5 years in this industry, job seekers do the same. If the pay range is within my desired range, I'll follow up. If not, it's not worth my time.

Thanks again Paula, I really do appreciate differing view points very much. I was told recently that if you don't do any research, you're stuck making decisions on your own experience. While that doesn't sound so bad to most, it must be true that there is more to be learned from researching lots of people's experiences than simply relying on one perspective.

Thanks for helping me grow!

Paula said:
It is a two way street-applicants need to be forthcoming in their salary expecations so that employers can decide from the get go if they can afford them but applicants also want the salary up front to decide if they can afford to take the job.

There is some truth to the addage that the first one to state a $ figure loses--I just don't think it is appropriate to discuss that before any discussions happen re: fit and suitability. I WILL pay for talent--and fight for an increase in our salary range for a top performer. But I won't know that until i meet with someone.

You don't buy a car by price, right? No, it is features, performance and then if it fits your needs. Who wants to buy a SmartCar for a family of 5? May be the most cost effective but if you ahve to make 10 trips to take your familiy out to dinner--it doesn't fit your needs.

another reason salaries are not posted is that can be used by competitors to one-up us.
From my experience, posting salary requirements isn't a one size fits all approach. While I agree that this information may weed out unqualified candidates, posting this information does not reflect the other perks a candidate will receive. Additionally, an organizations brand name should attract those A+ candidates. When you have the image, posting salary information may not be as important.

Kristin Bolinske
Bolinske Consulting & Recruiting.

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