Online job boards as recruitment tools

Online job boards can be effective recruitment tools. They come in all shapes and sizes. Job boards are either free or fee-based, and target either a general or niche audience.

This article provides an overview of some popular online job boards.

Laying the foundation for posting to online job boards

Before you list a job opening, you need to produce a job posting. A job posting is similar to a job description, but not the same. The job posting is a trimmed-down, jazzed-up version of the job description. Your job posting should make both the job and your organization stand out.

To determine which job boards to use and how to use them most effectively as a recruitment tool, follow the tips below.

1. Make use of free resources

One of the best free job boards is Indeed.ca. It is a job search engine. It crawls, or spiders, the Web looking for jobs that are listed on organizations’ careers pages.

If you have a careers page, Indeed and other sites like eluta.ca and wowjobs.ca are likely picking up your jobs already. (To determine which sites are spidering your jobs, do a Google search on your job posting).

For maximum exposure, post directly on Indeed. It’s simple to use, generates a lot of traffic and is appropriate for any job. You can also search Indeed for resumes.

If you’re looking for new grads, summer students or interns, sign up for an employer account at local colleges and universities.

The federal government’s Job Bank is another good free resource and is appropriate for just about any job. To register for an employer account, you’ll need to submit a copy of your E-PD7A form from the Canada Revenue Agency.

Also consider community or regional classified advertising sites. For example, Kijiji and Craigslist are free and have a section for job postings. These sites are more appropriate for job categories such as trades, general labour, hospitality, clerical work and the service sector.

2. Consider fee-based job boards and sites as recruitment tools

Some of the most common general fee-based job sites include Workopolis, Monster and CareerBuilder. In 2014, the approximate cost for a 30-day posting was $400 to $700. These sites are well-known and attract many job-seekers. You may find them well be worth the cost.

Track results to monitor the value you receive in return. Did you spend $500 on a posting that generated 300 applications, of which only 15 were worthwhile? Contrast those results to a niche site that cost $250 and generated 30 applicants—20 of whom were well-qualified.

Fee-based sites may provide access to their existing resume database for a defined period. This service is generally more costly, but with it you may identify candidates who registered their resume with the site but did not see your posting. You can contact them directly to determine their interest in your position. This service can be particularly useful for harder-to-fill positions.

Niche job boards add depth to the online search method by targeting more specific talent. These job boards focus on one or more specific industries or professions (e.g., the high-tech or construction sectors, the media, accountants, programmers). These sites are often managed by industry associations, such as those run by the Canadian Technical Employment Network (CTEN) and the Supply Chain Management Association (SCMA).

3. Cater your job board postings to searches

Online job boards and sites often allow job seekers to search on keywords such as location, skills, job title or date posted. Every job site works differently, so ensure you comply with the requirements of the site.

It may be beneficial to associate your job posting with multiple industry categories to broaden the range of candidates who sees it.

It’s also a good idea to copy details such as the job title, location and start date into the body of the posting to ensure that all the possible information is captured for those who might be searching.

If you use acronyms, spell them out. For example, someone with quality assurance experience might search “quality assurance” or “QA.” Either way, you want your job posting show up in their search results.

Make sure that job seekers can apply to your jobs online. This method of managing the resume flow during recruitment is the least expensive and it makes it easy to manage the resume flow.

Fee-based sites will offer (at a cost) resume management features that include online pre-screening, sorting and candidate notification. An even less costly option is to set up an email folder and have applicants send resumes directly to that email account. You can arrange to have an automatic notification message sent to the applicant to confirm the resume has been received.

4. Find savings for ongoing recruitment

If you’re going to be purchasing job postings, consider your future staffing needs. You may find value in purchasing postings in bulk, or buying a subscription to a particular site.

Although most sites allow you register online without the help of the sales team, it’s worth getting to know your salesperson. They may be able to offer rates better than those advertised. Ask them for a promo code.

If you’re a new customer, ask for a free or discounted trial for your recruitment campaign. If you’ve paid a fee to Monster or another fee-based job board, make them work for it—have them help you with the formatting and branding of the posting.

5. Leverage social media as a recruitment tool

Social media tools such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter can also support recruitment and attract talent to your startup.

LinkedIn is the world’s largest online professional network. Establishing a presence on LinkedIn gives you access to millions of professionals and enables you to link your job postings to other social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook.