Help Community Stakeholders by Marketing Your Job Board

Help Community Stakeholders by Marketing Your Job Board

 

Chambers of commerce or local governments running community-focused job boards have a lot to gain by thinking of this resource through the lens of marketing.

 

The biggest mistake that anyone can make in trying to reinvigorate or launch a job board project is to fail to market it to the people who stand to benefit from it the most. For community leaders who have taken on the challenge of tackling unemployment and economic development, it’s vital to get the word out.

 

As with all job boards, you’re marketing to more than one audience. You need to reach both the job seekers and the employers in your region, and make your pitch for other workers and businesses to relocate.

 

One of the reasons a regional job board can be so valuable is that it centralizes disparate information that is typically spread across a combination of big national job boards, help wanted signs and bulletin boards. If it’s easy to find out who’s hiring and what talent is available to hire, it simply becomes easier to do business.

 

But the localization of business and opportunity is about more than just job postings and resumes. It’s also important to provide other information about your town to shed more light on living and doing business there.

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Retaining Homegrown Talent with Community Job Boards

Retaining Homegrown Talent with Community Job Boards

Recently, we talked about the challenges that smaller towns and cities face, along with their chambers of commerce and local governments, when it comes to attracting and retaining a skilled workforce.

 

Many municipalities, their leaders, and businesses are working hard to make their communities great places to live and work, and are proud to see their youth achieve success in school and work. But they still struggle with being able to effectively connect those young people with the kinds of opportunities that will allow them to stay there and help grow the businesses that employ them.

 

So how can a community job board run by a chamber of commerce or municipal government help retain their young, homegrown talent?

 

To answer that question, we need to look at some key factors that make a community job board successful:

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Municipal and Regional Job Boards for Economic Development

Municipal Job Boards for Regional Economic Development

Cities both big and small find themselves focusing on economic development to improve the lives of their citizens, help local businesses, and their local economy. One challenge that cities and local employers face is both attracting new talent to their region and retaining their local workforce.

 

Katherine Risley, writing on the website of recruiting company Meridia, talks about the challenges employers face in hiring local talent and relocating new employees:

 

“Firstly, organizations struggle to capture the attention of potential candidates. Once an applicant does materialize the second challenge is assessing the applicant’s motivations. Employers often fear that a candidate may be considering the job because they are desperate for work or that the candidate hasn’t truly considered the lifestyle impact of a move to a rural area.”

 

Cities, counties, and other types of municipal regions can play a big role in helping local employers with these challenges through a regional job board, career portal, or recruiting platform. Whatever you want to call it, the following list outlines ways that a municipal job board can significantly help local economic development:

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Recruitment Marketing Platforms: Dead or Thriving?

A couple weeks ago ERE published two articles on the same day, with each article’s premise opposing the other:

  1. 10 Reasons Why Recruitment Marketing Platforms Are Dead By Tom Steele
  2. Recruitment Marketing Platforms Are Not Dead. Here’s Why By Chris Forman

 

Both articles raise interesting questions about what problems need solving in recruiting and how different technologies have tried to solve them. Below I’ll dig into both perspectives and sum up the broader questions that recruiters need to ask about not just recruitment marketing platforms, but about their whole process and all the tools involved.

 

Steele’s contention is that most solutions calling themselves “Recruitment Marketing Platforms” come with a series of inherent flaws which will determine their demise. In his experience, a recruitment marketing platform adds unnecessarily to a recruiter’s tech stack, and doesn’t solve the fundamental problems like candidate experience, which continue to plague recruiting:

“Yes, I’ve heard you all say your career site is mobile optimized. But after your 35-step application process on my mobile device, I have to disagree. Maybe the front of your career site is mobile optimized, but not certainly the application.”

It’s a fair point, considering how many job applicants still face the situation described above. Recruitment marketing in and of itself does not fix a problem caused by employers and recruiting agencies who still use tools and processes that are suited to their own bureaucracy instead of a positive candidate experience, which in turn positively impacts hiring. So if recruitment marketing platforms are simply a glossy veneer designed to lure candidates in without the infrastructure to capture and retain them, as the picture Steele clearly paints, it does sound like they’re a dead-end.

 

But that’s not the whole story.

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Attracting Millennials Memberships with Association Job Boards

Attracting Millennial Memberships with Association Job Boards

Many professional associations have found their membership growth stagnating when it comes to young professionals. The so-called “millennial” generation, who in 2017 are now roughly between ages 20-36*, may perceive membership-based organizations as “old school”, as well as being too expensive, having low value, and lacking in technology and curation.

 

Some context that may explain their views on associations is that most millennials have had a rough start to their lives as adults. Many began their careers during the Great Recession, facing periods of unemployment or underemployment, low wages and wage stagnation. Add to that the unprecedented weight of student loan debt most young professionals are carrying, and it’s not hard to see why millennials are reluctant to spend money to join organizations if they don’t see an obvious return on investment.

 

But millennial professionals are highly educated and accustomed to using digital technology, and while they earn less money than previous generations, they do want opportunities to network, to further develop their skills and training, and to discover new job opportunities. Due to the lack of economic stability during their adult lives thus far, most millennials can safely assume working in a great number of jobs over their lifetimes than did older generations. Put these facts together, and it seems millennials could really benefit from membership in professional associations – if you can convince them it’s worth their money.

 

So how can associations connect with millennials and be perceived as having value?

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Associations Add Non-Dues Revenue with Job Boards

Association Job Boards for Non-Dues Revenue Streams

Membership-based organizations tend to rely heavily on the dues or fees that members pay to join and access the benefits offered by such associations.

 

Membership fees can vary greatly, depending on their niche or industry, and on whether the association is a for-profit or non-profit organization. Non-Dues sources of revenue for associations also traditionally include events or conferences, sponsorship, selling or reselling education/training courses, fundraising or donations, and grants.

 

Online career centres or job boards also prove to be effective at generating revenue while adding value for both members and industry partners, and help associations stay true to their mission.

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Your Pre-Launch Job Board Plan

Your Pre-Launch Job Board Plan

You want to start a job board, but you’ve asked yourself some tough questions and realize you may need to do some legwork before you’re ready to go all in. Don’t lose heart – Careerleaf’s pre-launch plan for job boards should help you reach your goal.

If you decided you’re not ready to launch yet – look at the reasons why and turn them into milestones along the path to starting a profitable job board business. The criteria you’re using to judge whether or not you are ready likely involves four key areas: market research, candidates, employers, and branding.

 

Build a Candidate Following

To get employers to be your customers, you need to prove you can deliver the kind of candidates they want to hire. To do that, you need to establish a connection with the candidates you and your would-be customers want to attract. There are a lot of great, cheap ways you can start community-building before you launch your job board, including:

  • Social media: share content, resources, and advice with the candidates you want to target. Take advantage of the hashtags, groups, lists, and search functions that social media platforms provide to discover and engage with the online community in your target industry. Interact with people and start providing value now.
  • Blogging: plant your flag and start creating your own valuable content and resources. You can also contribute content to other industry blogs to expose your brand to wider audiences in your market.
  • Start a Group or Mailing List: you might already be in the habit of finding and sharing amazing jobs within your space – why not start a social media group or mailing list to share them with subscribers? This is especially valuable, because people who have opted in to this service are more likely to want to use the amazing job board you’re going to launch.
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Recruiting News and Insights

September Recruiting News & Insights Round-Up

There are lots of things happening in the recruiting industry right now, so check out a few gems of relevance to job boards.

 

CareerBuilder for Sale

The big news last week was that CareerBuilder, another older but big-name jobs aggregator would soon have a “For Sale” sign pitched on its front lawn.

In contrast to Monster and SimplyHired (who have been acquired by Randstad and Indeed’s parent company, respectively), CareerBuilder has been re-shaping itself into an end-to-end HR solution.

Jeff Dickey-Chasins of JobBoardDoctor.com points out that this likely isn’t a reflection on job boards as a whole:

What does this mean for the rest of the job board and online recruiting industry? Not a lot. Like the LinkedIn and Monster purchases, it is less reflective of industry trends and more reflective of big company priorities.

I tend to agree. Job boards come in all shapes and sizes, and they are a part of and impacted by the recruiting industry at large. However, niche and regional job boards are a different animal than those of companies like Monster, SimplyHired, and CareerBuilder. Smaller, focused job boards with good sales and marketing habits, a defined market and a clear value proposition are still finding success.

New HR Tech Hurts Hiring?

Over on PBS Newshour’s blog, Nick Corcodilos tackles the question of whether some technologies help or hinder the recruiting process in his Ask the HeadHunter column.

The question stems from reports that while job openings are abundant, not every job posting results in someone getting hired. As a way to explain this phenomenon, some point to the gap between the skills employers need and the skills that job candidates actually possess, and others speculate employer behaviour around hiring may also be a factor.

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Pieces of the Puzzle for Job Board Success

Whether you are about to launch a new job board venture or you’re an industry veteran, it’s common to feel like success is a puzzle and the pieces aren’t quite coming together the way they should. Here on the Careerleaf blog, we lay out the key pieces of the puzzle and give you some ideas for pulling it all together. Even if your particular business model is a little different or unique, there are common areas you can focus on to help create success for your job board.

 

Be aware: Everyone’s puzzle fits together a little differently

Notice I said help create success. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: there are no magic bullets, no one-size-fits-all solutions to your job board business problems in perpetuity. What works today may be stale, awkward, and inefficient in a few years. Your dedication to staying aware and your ability to adapt will remain your most important assets.1

There are common building blocks that shouldn’t be overlooked when building a job board business, or using a job board as an additional revenue stream for an existing business. Starting with the basics, let’s review the purpose of your job board:

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Why Recruiters Should Add a Job Board

Why Recruiters Should Consider Adding a Job Board

We’ve talked about the sometimes blurred lines that distinguish between job boards, aggregators, and recruitment companies, as well as how their technology and business needs match up or overlap.

The traditional idea of a job board is morphing, changing, and growing to adapt to new employment trends and recruiting needs, so the idea of extending one’s job board services into the realm of recruiting isn’t a stretch.

But what about recruitment companies? Staffing agencies and contingency recruiting companies can benefit from consolidating how they advertise jobs and collect candidate information. Let’s take a look at the top three benefits of in-house job listing and candidate profiles.

Job Advertising Efficiency:

As a recruiter, you need to reach candidates where they are and bring them into the fold. With a job board that takes advantage of outbound feeds and sets up distribution relationships with other niche boards, aggregators, and recruiting networks, a recruiter can be done-in-one as far as their advertising needs go. 

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