Job boards have been around for what seems like forever. If an internet year is the equivalent of a dog year (seven years to every one human year) then job boards are past their century mark and in some cases approaching dinosaur status.
Do people still use job boards?
Even just a quick online search reveals that yes, people do still use job boards. From brands like Monster, Jobsite and Totaljobs to aggregator sites such as Indeed or Broadbean, the job boards are alive and seemingly thriving.
The catch is that in today’s mainly stagnant or contracting job market, such sites are understandably swamped by candidates urgently seeking employment. For both job seekers and employers this may reduce their effectiveness.
So, how are job sites are used?
Job boards are still valuable assets in the recruiter’s toolbox despite the threat of being eclipsed by social media and online referral/networking sites such as LinkedIn.
Generalist job boards don’t normally yield high numbers of suitable candidates for specialist vacancies but may prove more effective for a broader campaign. What they do, however, is raise awareness of a brand. What’s more, all it takes is just one outstanding candidate for that ‘hard to fill’ vacancy to justify a recruiter’s investment in the site.
The downside for job boards is that online networking and word of mouth referrals normally produce a better success ratio. A trusted recommendation is preferable to hours spent sifting through CVs.
Employers have similar reasons as recruiters for using job boards. The key difference is that some use them in the hope of avoiding the cost of engaging a recruitment agency’s services and you can gain a large pool of candidates at comparatively shorter notice.
In a highly competitive market, some of the best candidates will still get lost amid the increasing volume of job seekers. For the most effective results, frustrated candidates should take a multi-pronged approach:-
- use relevant industry keywords in CVs uploaded onto jobsites to enable companies to find their CV.
- apply recruitment agency techniques to a job search by drawing up a list of target companies and approaching them directly, highlighting the benefits they will bring to a company.
- research the job sites relevant to their industry (see link below).
In response to the need for more streamlined job boards, there has been a growth in niche sites tailored to specific industry sectors. Niche job boards specialise in either a particular job function, (such as sales or engineering) or an actual industry sector, (such as retail, hospitality and so on). Other categories include vacancies over a certain level or within a specific geographical location. Yet more may create a subgroup of job specialisms.
For a complete guide to job sites, including the best rated and improved job boards, whatjobsite is an excellent online resource for candidates and employers.
Although sometimes perceived as antiquated, job boards still play an essential role in the recruitment process – you bypass them to your detriment in my opinion. The most successful ones however, are those that continue to respond and adapt to changes in the online world.