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Are job boards dinosaurs before their time?

Job boards have been around, well, since the Internet started taking off. The question beckons, are they still relevant when looking for a job, online?
Are job boards dinosaurs before their time?

So, you may be thinking that social media and specifically LinkedIn are replacing job boards - are you? Some of you are thinking this, I bet, and some of you are using LinkedIn today - I'm sure you are. And job boards are fee based and LinkedIn is free - right? Wrong!

And you're saying - Kris is bound to say that because he manages a business that is a job board. You are right to some extent - however, there is overwhelming evidence worldwide that job boards deliver 10 times more candidates to advertised jobs than LinkedIn or any other social media platform.

Twitter has disappointed many, Facebook is really about family and friends and LinkedIn is the best business person's network in the world - but it's not a job board and it is not designed to be one. LinkedIn is exactly what it set out to be - a business or professional person's network channel with career profiles rather than full résumés. Besides, if you want to get significant benefit quickly from LinkedIn you have to pay for their service: it is much more expensive than job boards and returns are questionable - that is true for many recruiters (not all I must add).

I attended a recruitment conference in Las Vegas a short while ago, where 70% of the audience had used LinkedIn (this was the USA, I must emphasise) with limited success and much hard work and time-consuming 'networking' within LinkedIn. But 100% of the audience (about 400 recruiters) insisted they wanted a CV/résumé. This is what job boards worldwide do for a living - and they do a very good job at it too. Contact details are readily available on job boards but frequently not on LinkedIn, making communication with individuals slow and clunky.

Speed is of the essence in the game of recruiting and people who register on job boards do it for a reason - they are there for a new job or career and not necessarily to network!

Several competitors to CareerJunction in SA will tell you that job boards are superfluous - after all you can post on job board aggregators for FREE! But the main suppliers of job ad content to aggregators are job boards. So candidates follow the links to job boards anyway and once there, they set alerts, post their résumés, make themselves searchable and so on. Many job boards have specifically designed features for career seekers to manage their careers and their next move.

We know this about the online behaviour: many would-be candidates go to their trusted brands - that is rule #1, or they 'Google it' - that is rule #2 - nothing else, folks; that's it! Trusted brands are those that have serviced them before. CareerJunction, for example has seekers that have been visiting the site for over 15 years and get placed time and time again - and there are other job boards locally and internationally that find exactly the same behaviour.

Google is also very powerful - and if a job has great search engine optimisation (SEO) then results are very good and job aggregators do a sterling job if every job showcased has excellent SEO. But candidates invariably end up at a job board and some job boards do better SEO than job aggregators so are ranked higher on Google.

It's a bit like the roads that were built by the Romans - all roads led to Rome. Today, job boards are 'Rome'. That is why job boards worldwide do a much better job of getting you candidates. Don't be fooled by naysayers. Job boards are alive and well and with new technology coming down the line, just watch this space - it's about to get very exciting!

Nah - job boards aren't dinosaurs; they are alive and growing!

12 Feb 2014 11:42


About the author

Kris Jarzebowski is CEO of CareerJunction.