Creating Traffic Jams

It's hard to imagine why anyone would pick up a newspaper to find a job any more. With a seemingly endless array of career sites, mailing lists, corporate sites and newsgroups, job seekers have more options online than ever before. And the credit goes to the growth and advances in Information Technology (IT).

Traditionally job seekers most preferred channel was Newspapers & Personal Referrals. As for online recruitment, the medium has come a long way in the last 3 years, but it remains a tool that has only been put to the test in a candidate-rich environment. Along with the IT revolution in the recruitment channel the current market has four clear segments - Corporate Sites, Personal Referrals, Newspapers, Recruitment Agencies & Job Sites.

Online recruitment has an edge over other traditional media for four clear reasons:





According to The 2004 Recruitment Channel Survey result Corporate Sites have been slowly increasing their share of applications over the last 3 years ? up from 8 % to 13% of all application. Executive Recruitment Agencies generate 21% of direct applications, which was initially 50% of all applications. Job sites have significantly increased its share by generating more CV applications than any other recruitment channel. Newspaper advertising appears to be the channel that has declined as a result ? now generating less the 19% of management consultancy applications, or a fraction of what was being generated in the late 1990s. Personal Referrals generates 9 % - 10% of all applications proving it to be a secured channel for a new job or career shift.

But this raises a question which recruitment to adopt. Currently the majority of companies are yet to make full use of the web as a recruitment tool.

The key trends in these market depicts that Recruitment Consultancies & Job Sites are able to generate large volumes of applicants. Personal Referrals potentially is able to reach a wider pool of candidates, but only it succeeds only in generating a small number of applications. Newspapers: It is clear that candidates now use this channel less than in the past. Corporate websites is still unexplored tool.


It has the large potential to significantly increase the volumes of applicants in the next 1- 2 years. The share of applicants can be doubled & become one of the major recruitment channels. But they are the least-used channels in today's market, despite heavy investment made by companies in developing this technology. Inadequate marketing and a poor user experience are to be blamed. Its high time corporate understand that developing their career pages is equal to heavy investment made on ones own infrastructure or purchasing a costly software which will enable smooth functioning. Corporate websites have the considerable recruitment savings potential that is yet to be realized. They are the most attractive pool of jobs of any recruitment channel. Most jobs never get advertised on Internet job boards or in newspapers. But the fact is that they generate less than a third as many applicants as internet job boards is a reflection of how poorly this tool is utilized and poorly marketed. Corporate should design & develop their career pages in such a manner that attract more applications from the best candidates in other words a career site should be capable of maximizing the conversion rate of no. of people visiting the career pages. The hindrances can be overcome by the adopting following strategies:


Good site navigation and structure not just in company profile section but also within the careers section that will encourage the candidates to explore & learn more about your company. Candidates are judgmental and bugs, errors or poor site design will make them question the caliber of the whole organization. Make your careers section visible. It should be tempt a candidate to visit your careers page if not for applying but at least to know what kind of career your company offers. Apart from this a candidate while leaving your site should have the images of your company vision, mission, recent achievement, future development, press releases etc.


Many sites fail to provide clear job description about the opening. A vacancy posted should allow a candidate to self-select himself for the same and not waste his time applying for which he would be rejected. It should clearly define about the role, skills required ? technical skill & soft skill, education qualification, experience, and other details like work environment ? what your company/department is like, no. of openings, date specific posting, other benefits, bench marked industries, sales pitch questions etc can be included which will act as added role in convincing the candidate that the openings are real time opportunities.


Content of your career section also play a vital role. Candidates appreciate when apart from applying for job posting they are guided on their career advancement. Tips for case studies, interviews, securing job, presentations, handling office politics, communication skills, team work etc can be few topics that can form part of your career site.


Candidates prefer sites where they are allowed to submit their existing CV rather than recreating a CV online. A long application form seems to be very tedious as most of candidates take the decision to apply sitting at their work place. And its logically not possible making a person to fill the lengthy application form sitting few yards away from his boss or from dial-up connection at home. CV submission not only comforts candidates but also attracts quality candidates by not forcing them to re-enter information that is already in his CV.


Allowing online tracking of how the candidate application proceeds will make a candidate believe in the recruitment process. Transparency is what a candidate looks for. Giving a user id to the candidate, sending your Newsletter, career tips, current openings, etc will help you to retain the best candidates interest in joining your organisation. The recruitment process should be automated but it does not hold good of sending an automated rejection emails on submission of his CV.


According to The 2004 Recruitment Channel Survey candidates like to provide information and then see that what is presented to them in turn has been tailored to their needs or circumstances. Candidates resent firms that do not keep them in the progress of their application this left candidates with a less favourable impression of the firm. Feedback form, site page rating, email to a friend can be a few content of your site which will save you from getting a feedback candidates as " sending my CV into a black hole". Incorporate a "refer this job to a friend" link on your careers pages, that allows readers to send a recommendation for a particular job on to their friend and colleagues.


Whenever you post job adverts to job sites, be sure to include a link within your advert to your own careers website. Most job boards will not charge for this inclusion in your advert, but it is a great branding exercise for you as it ensures that candidate awareness of your corporate careers pages is magnified. Over time, more and more candidates will come direct to your site as a result.

Putting theses strategies in to action will surely help you to attract lots of good traffic to your site.

Poonam A Ashara, is a 23 yrs of age from India, having one year of experience in "Human Resource Development". By qualification, she is Bachelor of Commerce and Masters in Business Administration.

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