Is the job board industry missing the fundamentals to delivering quality candidates? Before, we begin to address this challenging question, let’s cover why this topic is of such importance. The job board industry is routinely challenged by employers to deliver quality candidates as according to the 2016 Job Board Survey Results, over two-thirds of the respondents reported that quality of job applicants is the single most important criterion for employers. With the continual pressures by aggregators, LinkedIn, niche job boards and established brands; Monster and CareerBuilder, job boards are constantly facing the challenge to differentiate themselves and as noted before, quality is the top criterion.
Upon reviewing blog articles, Jobboarders.com, ERE.net, the common trend on the importance of quality of candidate is quite apparent and the articles make valid points. However, I would challenge we haven’t evaluated the spectrum of factors required to solve the issue we face as an industry. From our years of experience, the quality of applicants is a by-product of the foundation the job board has laid out since the initial visit by the user on the job board site. And, as I was once told by a coach, “winning is no surprise” and quality applications is no different.
Therefore, this 3 part series article will target each user; Jobseeker, Employer and the Job board with ideas and opportunities for job boards to establish the foundation to place your board in the optimal position to deliver quality candidates to your employers.
Part #1 (Jobseeker) – User experience, user experience and more user experience
1). Clean, user friendly homepage and site design
A clean, modern and responsive design puts your job board site is a tremendous position to portray professionalism and credibility to jobseekers. As stated in the 2015 Candidate Behavior U.S Job-Seeker Data Report, jobseekers use 17.7 different resources during a job search. Unfortunately, as a job board, you have one opportunity to make a strong impression on the jobseeker to capture their attention and information before they moving on to another source.
2). Provide information the jobseeker is seeking
Another step to delivering quality applicants is to provide the jobseeker with the information they desire to make the determination if they are interested and qualified for the position. An opportunity for the job boards is to build in fields during the job posting process to inquire about duties/responsibilities, salary range and benefits. According to 2015 Candidate Behavior U.S Job-Seeker Data Report, the following items included in a job posting are most likely to positively impact the jobseekers decision to apply for a position;
- The job duties/responsibilities are clearly defined – 85%
- The salary range is defined – 77%
- The benefits package is described – 60%
3). Relevant content to both passive and active jobseekers
Upon running job boards, we understand active jobseekers is the minority compared to the passive jobseekers, who are currently employed, but open to new opportunities. As stated in U.S Job-Seeker Data Report, 61% of jobseekers are employed but open to new opportunities. With that statistic in mind, establish unique content designed to become the market leader within your industry. Therefore, paving the way for any industry participant to visit the job board. SEO is a secondary benefit to creating unique content for your site.
4). Quality job postings
Oh boy, here comes the aggregators! The value of aggregators can certainly be helpful for your business to drive candidates to the job board, however, what is the quality of those candidates? And, are we missing opportunities to establish relationship directly with employers to advertise on your job board? Understanding each industry varies, but what is more important to your candidates, quality or quantity of jobs? From our experience, the approach of a direct feed (XML, scrapping/spidering) from an employer and establishing your brand provides better value for everyone; employers, jobseekers and the job board. Longer play, we get that!
5). Mobile responsive & easy application
Not surprising, the numbers for mobile traffic is continuing to climb and reduce the amount of traffic from desktop computers. As evidenced in the Job Board Survey Results, mobile traffic increased from 20-30% in 2015 to 2016. Mobile responsiveness has nearly become mainstream when reviewing job boards, yet, have we optimized the user experience to allow the user to easy apply on their mobile phone? The respondents from the 2015 U.S Job-Seeker Data Report, indicate strong insights into their experiences
- 30% of respondents did not apply for a job on a mobile device because no resume is available on their mobile phone
- 19% of respondents claimed too hard to apply online
Solution to number one (1) – With the boom of cloud storage solutions, like Drop-box, more and more users are adapting to the option of storing their information in the cloud. As such, inquire with your vendor or IT team on integrating the top cloud based solutions on your job board to assist the first problem.
Solution to number two (2) – Firstly, the solution to number one (1) will greatly assist you for number two (2), however, take the opportunity to test applying for a job posting on a mobile phone. You may be surprised responsive design hasn’t addressed all your concerns! If you are looking to implement new design components in your website to optimize the mobile application process, a little hint; design on the smallest screen possible (much easier, we promise you)!
6). Re-engagement strategy for jobseekers
Major tip – building and executing a re-engagement strategy for your jobseekers will provide a competitive advantage over your competitors. Upon our 7+ years in the industry, we have rarely come across a job board with a strong strategy for engaging their jobseekers. And, to be honest, it is quite shocking. If you have any examples, we would be excited to hear them. Ok, let’s get back on track.
Job alerts is a longstanding method for job boards to keep jobseekers engaged in the job postings on the job board, and, traditionally are quite effective. We want to challenge the various number of opportunities for your job board to re-engage jobseekers, including;
- Provide profile completeness percentage – when the jobseeker is registering on your job board provide them with a percentage of their profile complete and even better, with recommendations to reach 100%
- Set up personalized and automated email messages to target jobseekers with their profile less than 100%
- Distribute a monthly newsletter to jobseekers with relevant analytics on the board – top 5 locations, salary range, benefits, categories, etc on the job board. Side note – alternative revenue method for your job board
- Send targeted email and/or SMS campaigns to the jobseekers based on their profile information – Highly recommend segmenting your list of candidates to target the audience based on location, preferences, prior experience, etc and delivering the content in a effective and efficient manner
- Test the effectiveness of SMS job alerts – As noted before, job alerts have been a effective tactic for job boards, but why not try a method in which, 90% of candidates respond within 3 minutes; SMS? – What Value Does SMS Offer Job Boards?
We hope the tactics discussed provide your job board will options to evaluate in your site offerings and help address the key challenge in our industry; quality applicants!
Next week, we will publish Part 2 – Employers.
Until then, good luck!
- On July 6, 2016
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