Every year, the pulse of HR and recruitment quickens as industry commenters forecast the death of one recruitment marketing platform in favor of the top contender poised to replace it.
First to fall under scrutiny were print ads when the internet emerged, and then job boards opened the opportunity for employers to advertise their vacancies in a place that was easily accessible to candidates and focused solely on their search. When professional networking websites such as LinkedIn came into the mix, and began offering various options for reaching candidates, it was talked about in the industry as the first stage of job boards’ decline.
Looking back at it now, over 20 years since the first job board was created, job sites are still alive and well. Instead of fading away into the shadows, job sites have continued to thrive and evolve. Now, employers have more recruitment advertising options to choose from, such as options such as niche job boards, job aggregators, and association job sites.
Job sites have survived the foreshadowing of their demise for decades because of one simple truth—the “best place” to market your jobs isn’t one-size-fits-all. There are a variety of other factors that will affect the performance of your job posts, such as who your target audience is, their online behavior, and insights gained from past recruitment data. A successful recruitment marketing campaign takes these factors into account.
To help you identify the strongest choices, Qandidate.com automatically gives a recommendation—based on benchmark data of more than 100,000 campaigns—for which job sites to use once you upload your vacancy in the system.
Let’s take a look at the different types of job sites are out there and how they work.
Generalist job boards, such as CareerBuilder, have been around the longest and therefore tend to be the most recognisable to active candidates who may not be familiar with newer aggregator sites or niche job boards. These websites host a wide variety of jobs in different industries and locations. These job sites sell postings to employers at a fixed cost and will list the job on their site for candidates to see for a set period of time (15-day, 30-day, and 60-day).
Job aggregators, such as Indeed, pull jobs in real time from a variety of sources and post them to their website as well as partnering job boards and sites. Whereas a traditional job board publishes posts that were created on the websites itself, a job aggregator also allows employers to automatically post their jobs to the website by submitting an XML feed to the job site that connects to the employer’s careers page or ATS.
These websites rank high in search engines and are optimised for mobile which makes them convenient for candidates who are actively looking for a new role. Since these sites are free to post to, the competition for visibility can be fierce.
Instead of charging recruiters to post their jobs on the website, the pricing is calculated with a pay-per-click (PPC) model. A PPC model allows employers to only pay for the clicks the ad received rather than the visibility or features of the posting itself.
Employers also have the option of sponsoring jobs that are posted from their ATS or company website. Sponsored jobs are given priority placement on the aggregator site and are prominently visible in search results when candidates type in relevant enquiries into a search engine such as Google.
Employers set their own budget which influences the effectiveness of their campaign. If you set a higher price than the marketplace demands, then you may spend more than you needed to. Set your price too low, and your posting may not get the attention you need.
Compared to generalist job boards, these sites focus on niche markets rather than all candidates. One example of this type of job site is Dice, which focuses on tech careers. There are also niche sites that target specific age groups, geographies, type of position offered (e.g. only part-time roles), industries, and even special interests.
This gives the employers targeting that niche the opportunity to build their employer brand amongst targeted audiences. The specificity of these job boards often attract passive candidates who may be curious to see what’s out there, but don’t want to dedicate a lot of time searching for their niche.
Association job sites are targeted to active members of professional associations, who have been pre-screened for the criteria set by the association itself in order to be a member. Whereas job aggregators aim to broadcast the job postings out to other sites, association job boards place a premium on the value of their member network and industry connections.
Many association job boards are exclusive to employers who are either members themselves or sponsors of the association, whilst others allow employers who are not connected to the association to post jobs to their network. The sites that allow external employers to post will usually have different pricing levels for members and non-members.
The job visibility to candidates varies, however, many require members to login to verify their membership to the association in order to view the jobs. Some allow job seekers to browse before logging in, but in most cases, they need to verify they are a member in order to apply.
Social media networks such as LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook offer job posting and advertising services that recruiters can leverage as well. LinkedIn, specifically, gives employers the ability to connect their job vacancies to the company page and give candidates a way to contact the recruiter for the position directly by showing the job poster's LinkedIn profile publicly. This is one of various optional features available, along with enabling the "Apply with LinkedIn" option that lets job seekers apply with the information in their profiles in lieu (or in addition to) their CV or resume. Candidates who have upgraded to the Job Seeker Premium plan can view additional information and analytics about the job, such as a breakdown of their competition's educational and experiential background. Partly due to these features and the convenience of job searching whilst using the site for professional networking, LinkedIn is a popular place for passive candidates to test the waters and see what opportunities are out there.
About the Author
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