The best job boards from an employer's point of view are the ones that attract the best job candidates. From the job candidate's point of view, the best job boards are the ones with listings that speak to them in a different way than ''traditional'' listings. So, what should you do to ensure that your job board meets the needs of both employers and job candidates?
Peter Weddle is the Executive Director of the International Association of Employment Websites (IAEWS) and CEO of Weddle's Research & Publishing. He is widely published in the field of career and employment, and recently hosted a RealMatch webinar titled ''The New Golden Rules of Job Board Success,'' which is also the title of one of Weddle's books. He's done the research and has tremendous insight into how the best job boards get that way, and how you can make your website's job board successful. Here are a few highlights.
Attracting the Best Talent
Weddle says that what you do to attract the best talent will still attract mediocre talent, but the reverse is not true. In other words, a job board that appeals to mediocre job seekers won't appeal to top talent. Why? Because top talent won't even bother clicking on a job listing that doesn't immediately seduce them. Furthermore, top talent doesn't usually visit employment websites because they're usually already employed satisfactorily. But if you run a news or trade publication website, this is to your benefit. If your website engages with passive job seekers (who often possess the exact mix of skill, background, and competency employers want) and has a custom job board, your job board can reach them when traditional job boards on employment sites won't.
The Importance of Job Listing Titles
Passive job seekers have to be immediately engaged by the title of a job listing if they're going to click on it. Magnetic job titles tend to have a few things in common: Geographic location, a description of skill rather than job title, and a reason for checking out the employer. In other words, rather than a job listing title including ''Programmer III,'' it should include the actual skill, like ''C++ Programmer.'' To give passive job seekers reason to click, employers should ask their current top talent what the tipping point was for them in terms of taking the job. It might be a great salary, on-site child care, telecommuting options or flex-time. The best job boards are the ones that quickly let candidates know what's in it for them.
Writing Job Listings for the Candidate's Benefit
Job candidates, passive or active, want to know what they would be doing day to day. What will they learn working with a particular employer? What will they accomplish? Who will they be working with? How will their hard work be rewarded? If a potential employee knows she will be working on a team that developed a popular app, or that she's eligible for certain year-end bonuses based on performance, she's far more likely to apply than if you listed a standard, dry list of job requirements and responsibilities.
The Importance of Brevity
Great job candidates usually won't have time to dig into a job description to find out if an opening is worthwhile. If the good stuff is buried three paragraphs down, it probably won't get read. Headlines and bullet lists help time-pressed job candidates scan listings quickly and gain an accurate idea of what the position involves. Knowing that their job title would be ''Senior Development Specialist'' doesn't help them nearly as much as knowing they would be performing hands-on research toward the development of a specific product.
Peter Weddle's webinar goes into much more detail on how the best job boards succeed, and is well worth your time. If you're an employer, you'll learn how to write job listings that capture the attention of the best candidates, and if you run a website that features a job board, you'll learn how to position it so that it serves both employers and passive job seekers. Anyone can put a job board up on their website, but the best ones know how to capture the interest of the highest quality candidates. The latest job board software from RealMatch helps to address this with Real-Time Job Matching™. Rather than keyword searching, this technology utilizes taxonomy from thousands of categories, job titles, and skills, precisely matching employers and job seekers. Employers are provided with the most qualified candidates using much less effort, while keeping job seekers engaged and returning to your job board.