Nick Corcodilos, aka Ask the Headhunter, wrote a post titled Job Boards: Still Sucking Wind
You can guess from the title where this is going 🙂
Basically, Nick says that old data showed that job boards were the “source of hire” for less than 10% of all jobs found.
And today, the numbers seem to be the same, based on some analytics he’s done… including taking some statistics and digging deeper into what they really mean.
I think the stats most career people talk about … network accounts for 65ish % of jobs found, and job boards and want ads account for 14%, etc are from a study from the 1960s. I could be wrong, but these are numbers that are really old.
So Nick took new numbers, which seemed to be misleading, and broke them down, and show that the effectiveness of job boards for job seekers has not really improved. It’s less than 10%, according to his analysis.
What does this mean?
For companies, it doesn’t much matter. It’s an easy place to put money to “find” people. In fact, it’s a multi-billion dollar industry.
For job seekers, it means you need to spend less time on job boards. OR, it means you need to use them differently.
Spend less time on job boards. What a concept. I heard about this 6 years ago at a job search workshop. The presenter said “if job boards account for 14% of jobs found, why are you spending 90+% of your time on them? You should spend 14% of your time on job boards, and the rest of your time on things that are more effective. For example, if network accounts for 65% of jobs found, spend 65% of your time networking!”
Use job boards differently. Instead of looking for opportunities to apply online, use them as resources to learn about industry and company information, find names and contact information, etc. Use the boards to gather “competitive intelligence” and then act on that intelligence (store the information in JibberJobber, and use LinkedIn to figure out how to network into the companies or people).
I know job boards work, can work, and people get jobs from them. But these numbers will hopefully encourage you to adjust how (and how often) you use job boards in a job search.