Thursday, February 19, 2009

Online job search

The WSJ has two articles about congestion on online job search sites. The first reports that, not only is it hard for employers to sort through applicants, a growing number of advertised positions may be deceptive, duplicate, already-filled, or fraudulent: It Isn't Always a Job Behind an Online Job Posting: Employment Ads on the Web Can Lead You to Marketing Pitches, or Worse.
Online job seekers may be particularly susceptible to fraud, because they are willing to give out various kinds of personal information, etc.

An accompanying article asks various recruiting professionals for advice:
Experts Weigh In on Job Boards . Some quick quotes:

Re Monster, CareerBuilder and HotJobs "They do a nice job for very young, entry-level job hunters," says Michael Mellone, a senior consultant at ClearRock, a Boston-based outplacement firm. But for more experienced professionals, he says, industry-specific job sites such as and are more effective."

"For Mr. Crispin, wins high marks. The site specializes in advertising local employment for job hunters in 41 metro areas across the country. "They have people who physically go out and meet with professional associations that are trying to get their members hired," he says.
Mr. Crispin also favors the site for the DirectEmployers Association, Job hunters interested in positions advertised on the site can click on a link to be taken directly to the employer's Web site. "You apply to the company firsthand," he says."

"Rich Gee, an executive coach in Stamford, Conn., recommends "It's a serious job site," he says. "You cut right through the noise and get to the actual job."
Q: Execunet charges a fee to respond to its help-wanted ads. So do TheLadders and some other job boards. Are they worth paying for?
A: "It's not a lot of money for what you get in return, which is a great filter to get to serious jobs," says Mr. Gee.
Ms. Hightower Hill says many job hunters she's worked with complain that too many employment ads on TheLadders are anonymous, making research and due diligence difficult. "It's pretty hard to follow up because you don't always know the identity of the company," she explains."

"Q: What advice do you have for job hunters searching employment boards?
A: Don't put too much time into them, advises Mr. Cohen. He recommends investing heavily in networking in person and online."

"Networking" isn't just a buzzword. In 1973, the eminent economic sociologist Mark Granovetter first documented the strength of weak ties, and the fact that many jobs are found through friends of friends. The idea is that your close friends have more or less the same information you do, so they may not know of any job openings that you don't already know of. But as you reach out to people to whom you are only more distantly connected, you gain access to new information.

In the years to come it will be interesting to learn whether online job search and other market-making activities change how most jobs are found.


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Site recommendation:

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