Job board fundamentals: Measuring success

Over the years, I’ve worked with a number of job boards of varying shapes and sizes. One of the many frequent questions I’m asked is regarding how best to measure success.

With so many different tools to hand from content management systems, Google analytics, third party marketing software and external campaigns; it’s easy to lose focus. We need to find a centre with which to orientate ourselves.

Whilst there are endless statistics you can track to assess your job board, in my opinion there are 3 core metrics that are essential to improve performance:

  • Applications per Job
  • Views per job
  • Hires/Conversions

Below, I’ll look at each of these in more detail.

Average number of applications

The average number of applications per job is a great bench mark to work against.

Divide the total number of applications during a particular time period by the number of jobs posted and you will have the average applications per job. For instance:

10,000 applications per month / 1000 Jobs posted per month = 10 applications

This is a useful starting point in understanding whether an employer is likely to be receiving high enough conversions to continue to pay to post jobs.

What’s more, if you feel that the results are lower than you would like, it enables you to apply the same process specifically to your important employers and, if necessary, give them new upsells to improve performance and help renew contracts later on.

You can extend the benefit of average applications further by applying this figure to your rate card. For example, using your average application rate, you can break down the cost of an advert to your employers -

£300 Standard job listing / 10 applications = £30 per application

Another useful metric in comparing your value with that of competitors.

Views per job

Applications per job should also be reviewed in relation to the number of views per job. By taking the total job views over a set period and dividing against the total jobs posted, you start to get a reasonable view of what your average recruiter / employer is experiencing in terms of volume. For instance -

1st – 31st May 2014: 10,000 Views / 100 Jobs

= 100 views per job

With this, you are then able to work out the average number of job views to application -

1st – 31st May 2014: 100 Views / 10 Applications

= 10:1 Views to App

This information can be used in a multitude of ways – if good, then it’s a great statistic to have on hand as part of a sale. If not, it’s a sure fire way to compare performance month on month to ensure you are genuinely improving your job board offering. If an advert is receiving particularly low conversion rates you may also be able to offer employers advice for best practices or offer upsells for an underperforming advert.


Measuring the number of hires made through your job board helps you to assess the true value you provide to your clients and is a valuable figure to have – very powerful in convincing clients to post to your jobboard instead of a competitor. The process of measuring the number of applications that actually result in a hire can be difficult at times, due to external hiring processes, but is key to your job board’s effectiveness.

One Madgex client implementing this technique at the moment, are Timewise Jobs. After many months of research, they recorded that 7 out of every 10 jobs adverts on their website resulted in a hire. That’s an incredibly strong sales message.

Another client, CareersInAudit, spent a year collecting data from direct employers. Their research found that employers upgrading their posting to a ‘Featured Job’ were extremely likely to hire an applicant from the site. In fact, the results were so impressive,CareersInAudit recently introduced their new Hire Guarantee. This offers employers their money back should their featured advert be unsuccessful.

Using this information

Maintaining an accurate view on the statistics behind your job board helps you to identify both strengths and weaknesses. This can also help you to monitor the performance of individual employers, and to bench mark their performance against other clients on the site. For example, if an employer is experiencing a lower than average success rate, you can offer tips, advice and additional services in order to improve their results.

These statistics can also be used to demonstrate the uplift and value of additional sales products. For example, how many more views and applications an advert can receive depending on additional advertising options. A Madgex client who utilise this well are Redactive, who include these statistics on their rate card, demonstrating the type of results employers can expect to receive with various products.

With an increasing number of jobs on the market, advertisers will need more options to make their campaigns stand out against the increased competition. As job board owners, it is essential that you are able to prove that the inventory delivers the ROI to justify any additional spend.

A whole host of tools and metrics are available that will help you understand how your job board is performing, these are just the basics. The more layers you are able to add to the analysis of your job board, the more insight you will gain, allowing you to make more informed and smarter selling decisions for your business.

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