Webinar Series: Job Board Optimization

The next stop in our webinar series adventure is Job Board Optimization. I’m sure the majority of you are familiar with the term “Job Board,” but just so we leave no stone unturned, I’ll clarify. Job Boards are essentially virtual environments that list available jobs. Some of the more popular boards are: Careerbuilder.com, Indeed.com, LinkedIn.com, Monster.com, and SimlyHired.com. Chances are that you as an HR Professional (or as a job seeker) have used these websites for recruiting (or job searching), but what if I told you that there’s a “right” way and a “wrong” way to use them for posting open positions? Of course, when use the term “right” what I’m really saying is that there are ways to be efficient since these mediums are all web-based and that’s where the term “optimization” comes in. Officially, optimization means the act of rendering optimal; and in our case, it means using the tools in this post and my webinar next Thursday to improve the success of your job posts so that they’re seen by the largest pool of applicants possible. Here are my top three suggestions for making that happen.

Build a Career Site

I can only assume that I’ve beaten this “dead horse” so far beyond what most of you would deem sane, but it’s so important that I won’t stop until every company has an online career site [insert evil laugh here]. In all seriousness though, you can’t expect to target as many potential applicants as you want without making your jobs available wherever you have an online presence. Job boards are great for targeting the job seekers who go directly to that board’s site, but what about those applicants who are looking to apply to your company specifically because someone internally referred them? You want to make the process as smooth and easy as you can by having a careers page and posting your open positions. Plus, it saves HR the hassle of personally responding to each of the interested parties wanting to know how they can apply.

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Keyword Research

This is another common theme in my posts because it’s fundamental to your online recruiting success. When embedding your post with keywords, make sure that the keywords you use speaks the language of your job seeker. For instance, don’t list the official internal classification for your job in your job ad, but rather choose a designation that resonates with your potential applicants. For example, you’ll want to say Accountant, or Accounting versus Sr. Level Accountant II; see the distinction? Job boards function like search engines and in order to reach the right audience, you have to design your content to mirror the words most likely to be typed into the search field.

Location, location, location

Few people know that listing your job location in your ad is one of the most important pieces in the search engine process for job aggregators. I suggest detailing the location in your job post title. Also, the same rules apply here as they do relative to keywords. If you’re a smaller suburb of a bigger city (within 15-20 miles) list the bigger city in the job title and the actual city in which you’re located because you’re likely to target a bigger pool, but you won’t be misleading your applicants since you mention the actual jobsite in your description.

I’ll admit that this can be a tedious and time-consuming process without the aid of applicant tracking software like ApplicantPro to automate it for you, but it can be done.

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