The Job Exchange

Tapping Into The Hidden Job Market

Are Recruiters Listening?

Job Boards Are Obsolete

To those who use job boards, whether as a recruiter or job seeker, the statement that job boards are obsolete should not come as a surprise.

To their credit, sites like Monster and CareerBuilder revolutionized the process of bringing candidates and employers together. Downstream, they spawned entire new industries and businesses. At their inception, the concept of Internet-based recruiting and job searching was, to say the least, earth-moving.

Some of us here grudgingly admit being around before these sites were hatched. Before the Internet was a reality and personal computers were mass-produced (and affordable), we vividly remember TYPING resumes (on an IBM Selectric or word processor), and bringing them to print shops for volume copying on heavy-weight, wheat-colored paper. And no, we didn’t forget the matching envelopes!

Each day, we would search the NEWSPAPERS (yes, dear readers, hard copy) for job listings and circle the ones for which we wished to apply. The last part of the “application” process was TYPING a cover letter for each application, getting it in the (snail) mail, and waiting for a call to come in. One important distinction, though, was that each resume was sent to a REAL PERSON. After a few days, a job seeker actually had the ability to CALL and SPEAK to that person to follow up on the resume.

What a concept.

Imagine a world today where you see a job, apply for it, and make contact with a real person. Back then, in the space of a few days, a job seeker knew the outcome of a job application. Today…well, they never really know, do they?

So why, compared with last year, is down 3.5% for unique site visitors compared to last year?

And why is down 23.8% for unique site visitors?    (Source:

Visits are down because job boards, as we know them, are bursting at the seams with job postings that, quite frankly, read like any other. Other than a glitzy posting or link to a company’s career site, there is no longer anything innovative or helpful for an employer. Lots of static, no signal. As a result, they have become highly ineffective–for both parties. Continue reading


04/09/2009 Posted by | job search, recruiting | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Recruiters: How Big Is Your Black Hole?

Readers here may recall our post, “Apply Now: The Black Hole.” In seaching cyberspace today (perhaps for those missing resumes!), I stumbled across this article at that was written back in the stone ages (2001) that discusses the very problem we are attempting to address here.

As you read this, keep in mind that the audience for this article was recruiters.


Is your organization suffering from “black hole” syndrome? So does having a lot of resumes in your database imply that you have a black hole in your recruiting process?  Let’s look at some symptoms of this syndrome:

Significant and consistent complaints from internal and/or external candidates stating that they submit a resume or on-line application and never hear from the company again.

When the same candidates phone up the company to follow up, it’s difficult or impossible for anyone to verify that their information actually made it into the system and when.

Continue reading

04/01/2009 Posted by | job search | , , | 3 Comments

An Open Letter to Human Resources Leadership

How Technology Has Destroyed the Recruiting Process


By relying on job boards and an Applicant Tracking System to select candidates, recruiters and hiring managers are missing out on the resumes of candidates best suited for an opening.


For the most part, job boards have remained essentially unchanged for the last 5-10 years. While their appearance and some functionality have been enhanced, the basic premise is the same: recruiters post a job, search for resumes, and candidates apply to job postings.


Years ago, when the early adopters were signing up for Monster in droves, they were helping to ensure that, in a relatively short amount of time, Monster and its competitors would run out of steam and, in the end, fail to adequately serve either party looking to take advantage of the recruiting technology and promised simplicity for speedy job and candidate searches.


Oh sure, back in their heyday, Monster, CareerBuilder, and Yahoo! Hotjobs were THE landing page for recruiters and job seekers alike. Then the aggregators arrived. Sites like FlipDog, Indeed, SimplyHired, and DirectEmployers showed great promise by simplifying the job search down to just a handful of sites, rather than the need for a job seeker to directly visit dozens of boards and/or company career sites. While it simplified the search itself, it did nothing to improve the end result for job seekers, as the URL at an aggregator’s site brings job seekers to the same dead end they now find themselves at: the dreaded Resume Black Hole.


Conversely, applicants have set up search agents that automatically submit their resumes for positions matching keywords that THEY have selected. Now we have software applications talking to each other–or past each other–without human intervention that will determine if, in fact, a potential match exists.


So, we have seen the future, and it is not about technology. At least in part, because the advantages of using this technology have all but disappeared.


Continue reading

03/31/2009 Posted by | hiring | , , , , | 13 Comments

This Week’s Top Posts

In case you missed any of these, here are the top posts our readers viewed this week:

Would You Work at AIG?

Apply Now: The Black Hole

Twitter Job Search

The Ten Companies That Will Lead The US Out of the Recession

13 companies hiring this year

03/22/2009 Posted by | jobs | , , | Leave a comment

Are Recruiters Becoming Irrelevant?

The Job Search Revolution Shifts to Company Career Sites


Liberally Borrowed From CareerAlley (big hat tip!)


One of the most dramatic changes in the job search process in the last few months has been the shift from recruiters to company career sites.


Recruiters still have jobs, but not as many as they have traditionally had, as some companies need to save recruiting dollars where they can.  Agency recruiters are usually easier and more productive to work with because they represent multiple employers and can send your resume to a wider selection. As well,they are in direct contact with the HR gatekeepers and typically are not constrained by an employer’s Applicant Tracking System (ATS). That said, because employers are cutting costs wherever they can, many no longer rely on agency recruiters to find candidates.


Conversely, applying at individual company sites is a bit more challenging, as you must individually apply at each site. And, of course, you are competing with all of the other resumes that have been submitted there. With an agency recruiter, you will receive feedback fairly quickly as to if you are under consideration for a position.  With a company’s ATS, you will receive an automated response thanking you for your application.


Continue reading

03/11/2009 Posted by | job search | , , , , | 2 Comments

Jobs Resources in the U.S. by State


There are dozens of job and career resources on these pages. Click on a state’s link and you will see an amazing list of sites — some known, some not — including a link I found for 101 Job Boards at Go and explore!

Select your state from the listing here to go to the page that lists Web sites that offer employment or networking opportunities in a state. Paste this into your browser if the link doesn’t work

03/03/2009 Posted by | General, job search | , , | 3 Comments

The Online Job Search Myth


The myth of online job searching is that the speed and ease of sending off a resume – or of posting an open position, for that matter – makes the overall online job-posting and job-hunting process painless. Would that it were so. Ten years ago, online job searching was all the rage. It still is – in terms of the hours job-seekers spend sending resumes to employers via Monster, CareerBuilder, HotJobs and the other mega career sites. But something significant has changed.

Job-seekers have figured out that in many cases, your chance of getting a job by zipping off a bunch of resumes online is about the same as your chance of being recruited for Major League Baseball. Recruiters have figured out that the time and expense of screening hundreds of resumes makes the big job websites far less appealing than they might be. Both job-seekers and recruiters are looking for alternatives, and they’re finding them. In fact, job-seekers can waste countless hours carefully composing cover letters to send in response to jobs posted online, only to finally deduce the truth: most resumes sent electronically via career sites never get read. How could they be read? Corporate recruiters can’t keep up with the volume of resumes they receive. The process of sending off a resume, so easy on the job-seeker side, makes the recruiter’s task all the more difficult. Thus job websites have the unintended effect of depressing job-seekers’ spirits by making them feel that even sending 100 resumes out into cyberspace won’t net them a single response. And often, it doesn’t


02/28/2009 Posted by | hiring, job search | , , , , , | 7 Comments

Did You Get My Resume?


Google the phrases ‘job hunt’ and ‘black hole’ and you’ll turn up 55,700 results. The reason for this confluence of terms, as any job hunter will tell you, is that applying for a position increasingly involves two phases.

Step one: Use the employer’s online application center to submit your carefully crafted résumé and cover letter. Step two: Sit and wait until the sun burns out and your bones turn to dust.

Behind the awesome silence, of course, is the miracle of automated screening.


Ed. Note: For those of you unfamiliar with Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS), they are the destination for many resumes submitted through job boards or company career websites. Many ATS products have built-in artificial intelligence that will allow recruiters to run reports that match resumes to job openings, thus saving them the time and effort of actually reading resumes.   So, statistically, there is a slim chance that your resume will ever be seen–unless it shows up in the recruiter’s resume/job matching report.

02/27/2009 Posted by | jobs | , , | Leave a comment

Even in this job market, you can still stand out

From the Boston Globe

Given 2009’s lingering economic gloom, there are two kinds of people today: those who are in the job market hunting for their next position and those who worry that they may be any day now. And the job market is suddenly a very crowded place.

At Boston Search Group, managing director Clark Waterfall says his firm saw a 30 percent drop in the number of executive searches it was asked to conduct in the fourth quarter of 2008, but it saw a 50 percent increase in the number of job seekers who asked to be put into BSG’s database of interested candidates.

“That’s what you’d call an imbalance of supply and demand,” Waterfall says. At Constant Contact, an e-mail marketing firm in Waltham, chief executive Gail Goodman says that a single open position can result in a cascade of more than 250 resumes.

To provide a bit of guidance, I spoke with CEOs, human resources managers, and recruiters, asking what advice they’d give people who are looking for a new job, or those who want to be well-positioned in the event they’re cut loose.


02/22/2009 Posted by | jobs | , , | 2 Comments

The Latest Recruiting Jobs



Sr. ERP Technical Recruiter

at M9Solutions, Atlanta, GA


Team Lead, Recruiting

at Amedisys Home Health, Baton Rouge, LA


Director of Recruiting

at VCA, Los Angeles, CA


Recruitment Account Manager

at ABB Inc., Westerville, OH


Manager, Employee Resource Center

at Takeda Pharmaceuticals North America, Deerfield, IL


Specialist, Recruiter

at Pew Charitable Trusts, Washington, DC


Human Resource Manager

at H-E-B Distribution Center, Houston, TX


Talent Scout – DaVita Rx – Coppell , TX

at DaVita, Coppell, TX


Sales Healthcare Consultant

at Career Management Source, Telecommuting – Anywhere from the US  


Recruiting Leader – Systems Administrator

at CVS Caremark, Multiple locations


Human Resources Manager

at Takeda San Francisco, San Francisco, CA

02/17/2009 Posted by | jobs | , , | Leave a comment