What’s Wrong With Job Boards?
Are Job Boards the wrong way to seek employment?
For 10 months now there has been a running conversation in the Executive Suite Group on LinkedIn. The Group leader posted a simple question last July: “Responding to online job postings is one of the worst ways of looking for a new job. Do you agree?”
Of the nearly 2,000 comments this simple question has received thus far, the vast majority of respondents believe that job boards are still a very effective way of uncovering opportunities and securing employment – with one important caveat, namely
Job Boards Are But One Tool in Your Career Toolkit.
As you undoubtedly know by now, the days of applying to positions on job boards and then sitting back and waiting for the calls to start rolling in are gone. Yes, it is possible to get a new position through an online posting – and many, many people do. However, the sheer volume of applications necessitate that you maximize the effectiveness of your resume and cover letter, and that you directly connect with those inside the target company through your professional network.
CPGjobs can help you in both areas. First, we have a very large and popular Professional Group on LinkedIn called CPGPeople with thousands of members inside hundreds of the most desirable organizations. Joining this, as well as other online Professional Groups (and cultivating your face-to-face network) is a job search necessity. Second, we can make a direct introduction on your behalf to any employer who posts a position on CPGjobs. We have personal relationships with these people and they expect us to introduce the very best candidates to them in this way.
In a recent post in the Cachinko blog, Heather Huhman points out the statistics from a recent CareerXroads study, which reveal that while personal referrals remain the number one source for new hires at 27.5% (there’s where your professional network comes in handy), Job Boards still run a very close second at 24.9%. It’s significant that companies’ own career sites provided only 18.8% of new hires in comparison, according to the research.
So, despite all the talk about the “death of job boards,” the reality is that applicants through online boards are still filling a huge number of positions.
Nonetheless, all job boards are not created equal, and for candidates, navigating the boards can be incredibly frustrating. The most common job board “ailments” are:
Black Hole Syndrome – You submit your resume and you wait. And wait. And wait. Likely you never hear back from the company. This happens for one of several reasons. In the first place, many job boards allow open posting. No one checks to see if the job post is an active search or a fishing expedition. You may literally be applying to a job that is not currently being filled or has already been filled.
Alternatively, the position for which you have applied may have received so many applications that it’s hit or miss as to whether or not your resume was even seen by a decision maker. Either way, you never know.
At CPGjobs real people actually check every single position that is posted on our site. (Ever wonder why we don’t have a gazillion job listings like some of those mega-boards?) And as I said previously, we can make a personal introduction with your paperwork if you’re a perfect fit. But I have to be honest here. Even we can’t guarantee that you will receive a timely response, primarily because we are not internal to our clients’ organizations. But what we can guarantee is that we will try to get you an answer.
Interaction Deficiency Syndrome – You may have noticed that many job boards do not reveal the hiring company’s name or industry in their listings. How can you possibly do preparatory research on the company – or even know if you are interested – if you have no way of identifying the hiring company? While it is true that in rare cases a company may find it necessary to conceal its identity (for example, when hiring for a sensitive C-level position), this practice is patently unfair to interested candidates.
CPGjobs tries to avoid interaction deficiency syndrome whenever possible and it is indeed rare that you will see a “blind” job posting on our site.
Information Under-load Syndrome – Ever ask yourself, “Who the heck is writing these job board postings anyway?” It’s true. Many position listings on job boards read like the meeting notes from a game of Telephone gone terribly, terribly wrong. Worse, you may get nothing more than a laundry list of responsibilities, a job title and (if you’re lucky) one or two important facts about the job.
One of the comments we constantly get from candidates is how much they like the depth of CPGjobs’ position descriptions. I know the format’s not always great, but we’re working on that. The important thing is that most of our descriptions are pretty in-depth and include some important information about the posting company and its culture.
This is possible because we have a real person who reviews all our posted positions and takes the time to augment the information with a little research on the company. Yeah, we pay someone to do that because it’s important to you, the job seeker, when making your decision as to whether or not you want to spend your limited time crafting a perfect cover letter and resume’ for your application.
There are many more ways in which CPGjobs can improve our service to you – and we’re working on a number of them now. We know that job-search is a time-consuming and daunting task, and we truly want to be of service to you as you go through the process.
Our “personal touch” and the individual attention we provide can be of tremendous help, so please don’t hesitate to call on us when the need arises at 626-535-0143.