Concept of a businesswoman with a big ideaIn today’s recruiting landscape, businesses have more choices than ever when it comes to talent acquisition and recruitment solutions.  As employers and recruiters look to the most effective channels for sourcing the most qualified talent, it is important that they also assess their own internal hiring processes. To shed some light on this subject, and conducted a recent survey of their members to better understand the state of their current job search experiences.

Here are the top five takeaways from the survey:

1. Job Boards Reign. Contrary to the controversial opinions of some trade columnists, job boards are alive and thriving. The majority of job seekers are utilizing general career sites, CareerBuilder, and Monster, respectively. Of the 1,839 survey respondents, approximately one-third found these sites “helpful” and “easy to use,” placing them at the top of many employers’ recruitment solutions lists.

2. LinkedIn Remains Ambiguous. Despite the buzz surrounding the rising popularity of social media in recruitment, employers are still finding it difficult to attribute hires directly to this channel. More specifically, 34 percent of job seekers surveyed by and are flat out “unfamiliar with” LinkedIn as a company.

3. Getting the Interview – a Job Seeker’s Biggest Challenge. When asking job seekers what is the biggest challenge they face when applying to jobs on career sites, 38 percent said that getting the interview was the biggest challenge, followed by finding jobs that match their skills and qualifications. While a study recently released by a popular career site revealed that more than half of employers plan to invest in new hire training in 2014, the problems faced by the long-term unemployed are prominent among job seekers. In fact, The White House released a study back in January showing that candidates who had been out of work for eight months were called back for interviews only about half as often as candidates who had been out of work one month, even with an otherwise identical résumé. This leads us to our fourth finding.

4. The Resume Database is a Gold Mine for Untapped Talent. A staggering 85 percent of job seekers claim to post their resume when visiting career sites. That is why it is so surprising that a Spring 2013 survey conducted by the IAEWS revealed that 80 percent of job board owners feel that employers and recruiters view “older resumes/profiles” (i.e., those that have been stored in their database for more than six months) as a waste of storage space. Rather than blame the job board for not delivering the right amount of qualified talent for their positions, employers and recruiters should assess how they are sourcing candidates along with the criteria they use throughout the pre-screening process. Job board owners hear all too often that an employer relies on its recruitment software to screen applicants as opposed to searching candidates in a resume database. One of the many concerns with this process is that most ATS’s cannot identify certain skills that may not be a perfect match on paper, but will translate with the right onboarding and training.

5. Job Seekers Want More. The final survey question conducted by and asked job seekers, “What is the one feature missing from the career sites you use that would help you in your search?” in open-ended form. The majority of responses revolved around two common themes: needing more specific job ad information, and wanting to know if their application has been viewed and/or considered. While the candidate experience varies from employer-to-employer, it is fair to suggest that we all can do a much better job at generating a detailed job description. With the overwhelming amount of job seekers commenting on this subject, it seems like a solution that is not only cost-effective for employers, but one that will provide them with a better response to their postings. Nowadays, most job boards can provide the guidance and tools to writing a proper job description that is designed to improve the overall response to the posting. It is important to keep an open mind when investing the time and energy into a job board’s services by taking advantage of everything it has to offer.

This story was written by and is a part of’s 2014 Recruiting Technology Trends series.

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