Job Board Performance Stats

I have noticed that more and more people are asking for performance statistics for Job Boards and since I have been active on Twitter, the requests have increases significantly. So, to save me repeating myself, I am sharing my experience and stats here. Below is a response to a question on Linked-In by an individual who was asking about the efficiency of Job Boards and wondered if anyone had any real statistics.  Interestingly, several representatives from Job Boards responded but, rather worryingly, none produced any stats!  Our findings and results are below, hope you find them useful.  If you would like any further information, please don’t hesitate to make contact.

One thing that is interesting is that our own website outperforms all the jobsites.  I know that this is not the case for all companies, as recently evidenced by Aquent decision to remove jobs totally from their website, choosing instead to push the recruiters to the fore and step up the amount of face to face/verbal interaction.  I personally applaud this move and although our site delivers for us, I’m watching very closely how it will work for them as, in my view, relying on jobsites, even your own, does encourage a very lazy way to do recruitment.  Anyway, to the stats!

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All the job boards were putting pressure on us for price rises yet they would only state their success based on ‘applicants’ to our jobs. None were providing anything more relevant.

So we worked with out tech guys and after 3 months of tinkering were able to measure each job board on the following criteria:

  • Total applicants per vacancy
  • Number of relevant applicants (Determined by the number of those applicants that were actually considered relevant for the role or other roles by the consultants and attached to the job brief)
  • Number of those applicants that made it through to first, second and subsequent interviews
  • Number of applicants that were placed – the ultimate measure

This process allowed us to create a separate P&L for each job board. We applied this criteria to all the job boards we had relationships with and as a direct result we were able to reduce the number in the Marketing arena from 7 to 3.  Four of the boards that we were paying significant sums to were just not delivering. Applicants aplenty, yes. But interviews and placements, no.

The stats over the period we measured for this initial review (8 months) were as follows (Marketing Only):

  • Total Applications generated = 15,118
  • Total applications considered relevant = 3,308
  • Total applicants interviewed by client = 75
  • Total applicants placed = 16

Its not great is it?!  Especially when you look at in percentage terms.  Some performed better than others but in the main, it was very poor hence we stopped working with some of them. Of the three we kept, one is on probation and we continue to monitor their performance. The good news is that the stats for our own site were so much better and despite taking our own job board for granted it does actually perform – it produces the most placements.

Longer term i think that job boards will have to re invent themselves and suspect the standard model will not prevail, unless of course they can prove they drive placements.

I noted Richard Freeman’s response that the job boards are ’14 times more effective than social networking sites like linked-In, twitter or Facebook’!  Whilst I accept that Facebook might be questionable I think it’s dangerous to say that about Linked-In and even Twitter.

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2 thoughts on “Job Board Performance Stats

  1. Gareth, Great comment. Good to see data being used rather than rantings and unsubstantiated musings. We did the same from our sources, measuring long list or better on EVERY assignment. Result was dropping some job sites, reshaping print advertising, and clients happy that we can show evidence of adding value to the process.

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  2. Great post.

    I've been waiting for someone to come up with data on the efficacy of general job boards. It would be good to see other agencies corroborate this so that solid data can be published. Perhaps that will encourage the board operators to keep their sites clean and look at ways to deliver quality rather than focusing on quantity.

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