Like it or not, job boards are still one of the main places that candidates go when looking for a new role, so it’s no secret that choosing the right one can make or break the number of jobs you fill. It might feel like it’s enough to pick a few of the most popular job boards, post a couple of ads, and cross your fingers in hopes that good candidates will apply. But are the boards you use actually in line with your niche? And do they make sense for your business?
Having been a busy recruiter myself, I know how valuable your time is. But trying to cherry-pick candidates from a massive pool of all-industries job seekers is costing you both time and money.
So, we’re coming to the rescue with a fool-proof guide on choosing the best job board for your niche. And after you pick the right tool for you, download our eBook at the end of this blog post to know when exactly candidates are most likely to apply for jobs based on solid industry statistics. This way, you'll be armed with the knowledge of both where and when to go hunting for candidates!
Choose a job board used by candidates from your niche
This one is really just common sense as there is no point in spending money advertising somewhere you won’t be able to find your candidates of interest. There is a wide variety of general job boards but if you want to make the best placements, you need to niche down. Trying to find the right candidate on job boards like Monster, Indeed, or LinkedIn can sometimes feel like looking for a needle in a haystack! Some of those boards will advertise very impressive figures around traffic and applicants per day, but if it’s not the right candidates applying, you will likely just waste time sifting through irrelevant applications. When you find a job board that is only used by candidates within your recruitment niche, you get the chance to pin down the best of the best.
Industry-specific job boards can be a great place to engage quality candidates, especially if the board has a good reputation amongst candidates in your market. You will find that the top candidates will avoid mainstream job boards as they want to work with a specialist recruiter, and they know they won’t find him on a board that offers every single role under the sun.
Think about the location
In the era of remote jobs, it’s crucial to look at the bigger picture. A job board might have a great reputation in your country but if you are recruiting for an overseas role, it will not be the best choice. It’s a good idea to look at country-specific traffic for each option to avoid wasting resources.
You might also consider simply speaking to your active candidates about the locations they’re interested in – it’s the most direct way of finding out where you should keep your focus.
Consider integrations with your CRM
Making the most out of your job board doesn’t just mean checking which candidates use it. Job boards are meant to make your life easier, so it’s crucial that they’re integrated with your CRM. This way you will have all the information in one place and can manage your advertising from within your software. Make sure you utilize all the functionalities your CRM has, such as pre-screening questions, advert branding, and tools to make the application process easier for candidates.
Not only will a good CRM integration make the job of posting your adverts and getting responses easier, but it will also let you know if you have managed to get a return on the money you have invested in advertising. Reporting is a crucial part of a recruiter’s job – so a CRM that shows you exactly where the successful candidates came from is definitely a great shout!
Make sure it’s not oversaturated
This one is a real dilemma for recruiters - on one hand, if a job board is used by all of your competitors, you might want to look at other, less saturated options that will allow you to secure different candidates. On the other hand, you must weigh up if not being on a job board makes you look less relevant to candidates in your market and will hurt the way your agency is perceived. Tough one, isn’t it?
Asking for a free trial before signing up can be a great way to judge if you are actually able to get candidates from a job board who will match the roles that you are recruiting for. And if you are finding lots of candidates are already being put forward to the same roles by competitors… you might want to think twice.
Watch out for dodgy clients
I once had a meeting with an internal recruiter in one of the world’s largest companies to discuss sourcing roles that their team was struggling with. One of the first things their manager mentioned was that if we sourced candidates from certain job boards, they wouldn’t recognise them as ours. Why? Because they ran searches for all candidates submitted by agencies through those job boards to see if they could get the candidate’s details themselves. Unethical? Absolutely. But this is the world we live in, so it’s important you realise whom you’re doing business with.
To avoid this (and to find the job boards those businesses are not looking at) make sure you are asking your clients where they are advertising the role themselves. If all of your clients are using a certain job board it might be a good idea to look at advertising elsewhere.
Sounds good, right? Now it's time to find out when the candidates are most active on those boards!
David is a Senior Growth Outreach Specialist at Firefish. After working as a 360 recruiter, he loves innovating recruitment with Firefish Software.