HOW EMPLOYERS CAN RECRUIT CANDIDTES ON THE INTERNET
a. Who ya gonna call?
facing an alarming labor shortage and for many it is a labor crisis. Almost every employer
across the country has felt the labor squeeze from colleges reporting fewer student
enrollments, to the aging workforce that is retiring at unprecedented rates. Unlike any
time in recent history, Human Resource (HR) departments are facing considerable pressure
to meet recruitment and staffing demands.
b. One answer may
be the Internet
The Internet (or
Net) is quickly changing the way employers and job seekers find each other. Job seekers
now have easier access to help-wanted advertising and more information about employers
than ever before. Recruiters can now reach more people faster and at a fraction of the
cost of traditional recruitment methods. Net recruiting, cyberrecruiting or e-recruiting
as it is sometimes called, is becoming a popular solution to the labor shortage and an
invaluable addition to any HR recruitment strategy.
The Net's massive
reach already extends into talent pools never before available, and offers favorable
demographics. The federal government currently estimates that there are over 100 million
people in 190 countries using the Net. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.)
surveyed 4,566 Net users and found 72.5 percent were men, 27.5 were women, and the average
age was 37.7. The average age of commercial online service subscribers is 39 according to
Jupiter Communications. The Georgia Institute of Technology surveyed 4,777 WWW users and
found that 56 percent were between 23 and 38 years old, and 74 percent were male.
candidate reach, faster hiring turnaround, minimal recruiting cost and favorable candidate
demographics may make the Net a potential solution to the labor shortage.
c. Does Internet
The Net is
utilized by all types of job seekers who surf the Web as a tool to help find friends
online, research and book flight reservations, check the time or weather, find current
news or view the latest stock quotes, transfer text documents, photos or data files, place
a classified ad, chat with other Net surfers, buy books, CDs, computers or to just have
fun with entertainment resources.
indicate Net recruiting can produce results.
- The Employment Marketplace stated in
its Winter 98 issue that experienced recruiters who have honed their direct email
strategies and message scripts are experiencing a return rate ranging from 15% to 40%; far
beyond the traditional direct mail rate. JWT Specialized Communications in Los Angeles
surveyed 410 HR professionals and nearly 800 job seekers and concluded that the number of
people tapping into the Net to post or find jobs is expected to double in the coming year.
- The 1997 Austin Knight Internet
Recruitment Survey states "75% of the companies that advertised on the Net filled at least one position
last year, and many averaged one per month." The survey also stated "not only
are companies hiring more people from the Web, but they also receive an average of 7 more
responses per posting, and rate the quality of these responses considerably higher."
- In the October 1998 Fordyce Letter
Bill Vick, president of the Recruiters Online Network, stated "some member
recruitment firms are claiming over 30% of their business from online recruiting."
- In a recent article titled
"Outside the Box" by Amy Naples with Bluestone Consulting, stated "Market
research has shown that 80% of applicants from colleges and universities now use the Net
as a job resource."
d. Benefits to Internet recruiting
As a minimum,
recruiters can utilize the Net for placement of online job ads, and for resume research.
But for the experienced online recruiter, the Net can offer unlimited possibilities.
Some of the more
common benefits to Net recruiting are listed below:
e. Tips to
- Flexible ad medium. Net advertising
of job postings are as testable as direct mail, as targeted as radio, as immediate as a
telemarketing call, and as informative as a TV infomercial.
- Greater recruitment reach.
Recruitment and resume sourcing on the Net can be localized or worldwide in its reach
extending into over 174 countries, and can access more job seekers and a broader selection
of job seekers than other medium.
- Greater advertising reach. Net
advertising offers greater exposure to a larger audience than any other form of media. It
is estimated that 20% of the job sites on the web have monthly traffic of 500,000 unique
visitors and an astonishing 9% actually attracted 1 million or more unique visitors each
- Unlimited supply of resumes. The Net
provides recruiters access to thousands of resume and job databases, and even more
newspapers and industry magazines, which offer job classified advertising.
- Inexpensive access. Many libraries,
schools and public service providers allow online access for free, and recruiters that
want preferred service can usually find unlimited access from their home for under $16 a
- No courier costs. There is no postage
or added cost to forward mail, data files, graphics, photos, sound, video clips or other
data transfer. In addition the Net can transfer information to hundreds or thousands of
- Low communication costs. With prices
for advanced communication solutions such as telephony and video conferencing continuing
to drop, employers and job seekers are able to perform qualifying interviews on the Net at
substantial cost savings to traditional methods.
- Link to success. Utilizing Web links
from and to the company job opportunity page is a cost-efficient method of distributing
information across a wide area.
- Low printing costs. The Net is a
cost-effective way to save money on printed materials by publishing online brochures,
annual reports, project portfolios, press releases, executive biographies, training and
- Convenient accessibility. Company and
job information posted on the Net is easily accessible to job seekers 24 hours a day, 365
days a year. Job seekers also can access their email or send email from any location
worldwide with Net access.
- Interactive advertising. The most
effective advertising is interactive advertising where the advertisement provides
interactive participation with the audience. Classifieds and other online job
advertisements allow job seekers to be involved with the communication and content of the
advertisement by controlling what is seen. With conventional advertising, a message is
delivered to jobseekers regardless of their desire to see it. With Net advertising job
seekers must actively seek out the information, which means they come to the ad as a
pre-qualified buyer. Interactive ads can include extensive descriptive text, color or
animated graphics, photos, video or sound, and include links to corporate Web pages, email
or message boards. They run longer than most media, usually from 30 days to 90 days.
Advertising results can also be tracked and monitored unlike conventional advertising to
provide immediate ad optimization and greater ad success.
- Marketing dream. Web pages can serve
as the sales person and marketing department that never sleeps. Ads can include extended
descriptive text, color or animated graphics, photos, video or sound, and include links to
corporate Web pages, email or message boards. Advertising results can also be tracked and
monitored unlike conventional advertising to provide immediate ad optimization and greater
- No time restrictions. Recruiting
different time zones or working late at night is not a problem with the Net.
- Immediate feedback. Through email,
chat, or online messaging, job seekers can send requests or receive information quickly
without waiting for regular mail or playing phone tag. The end result is a faster hiring
cycle at a significantly lower cost per hire.
- User-friendly platform. Posting job
opportunities and doing resume research is easy to perform due to the graphical
"point-and-click" features of the World Wide Web.
- Expands company sales. The Net allows
companies to reach new sales audiences by providing online purchasing of services or
products, and by selling ad space on their company site to third parties.
- Competitive advantage. Net technology
allows recruiters to stay ahead of their competition.
- Demographic advantage. Net users are
growing exponentially, and offer favorable demographics for recruiters.
f. Top employment
resources on the Internet
- Don't be afraid of technology. As
technology advances, the Net is becoming easier to use and more "idiot proof."
On a basic level the Net is used as a library of online documents that are keyword
searchable and interactive. If one can work a word processing program one can surf the Net
- Act quickly. Like any candidate
recruitment campaign, it's important to act quickly when a prize candidate is found.
Attractive job seekers get many calls once they post their resume on the Net. Delaying a
contact could easily result in finding the candidate in the final stages of interviews
with other potential employers.
- Get free help. Visit the local
library, college, computer store, community service center or Internet cafe to locate
helpful administrators willing to offer free Net advice and assistance. Join a local
computer or Internet club to find relevant training classes, education materials and
technical support at no or low cost.
- Post complete job information.
Because of the limitless nature of the Net, most job postings allow for extended text
descriptions. The rule for posting jobs is to make job descriptions as detailed as
possible. Like with any advertising medium, try to make the top selling points in the job
title name and in the first few sentences of the description to capture the attention of
job seekers. Use as many keywords as possible when posting a job to help job seekers find
the job when they keyword search the database. This also helps market the job more
effectively to the search engine robots that crawl the job database looking for keywords
to index. Post each unique job opportunity with individual identification numbers, and
require job seekers to submit resumes referencing the appropriate identification number to
make resume management easier. Also include in the job information if relocation
assistance is available, and if US citizenship is required.
- Utilize an email form. Use an online
form (application) for job seekers to complete that gets entered into a database, which
complies with the company resume management program. An inexpensive alternative is to
provide an email form for job seekers to submit resumes into, which will protect the
company's private email address from robots that crawl that Net searching out email
addresses for junk mailings.
- Hire assistance. Save valuable time
by hiring a junior assistant to perform initial screenings of the company's employment
email, and to source select resume databases and classified ad resources.
- Schedule regular online hours.
Regular scheduling for online recruitment will form effective habits and result in
consistent performance. It shouldn't take an experienced Net surfer more than 30 minutes a
day to obtain results. Pick a favorite time of day or night that will allow for a regular
- Computer processor size does not
matter. However modem speed and Internet access does. A 56K BPS modem is almost twice as
fast as a 28.8K BPS and almost three times as fast as a 14.4K BPS. High-speed modems can
be purchased under $100, are easily installed and are a requirement for any serious Net
surfer. Most Internet Service Providers utilizes that latest and fastest speeds available,
but check to see that they provide Net access at 56K BPS.
- Post all jobs on the company Web
site. Make sure company job opportunities have their own unique Web page, and that this
page is linked FROM the company home page. This will assure the maximum amount of traffic
from visitors to the company Web site, and will assure indexing with the major search
engines that usually only index information one link deep from the homepage.
- Offer free gifts. A good traffic
builder to the job opportunity Web page is to offer job seekers that submit their resumes
the opportunity to participate in a drawing for a free book, article, tool or other gift.
Offer monthly prizes to be announced in the company employment chat or message board to
keep them coming back.
- Select a favorite resume database,
but be willing to change. There are as many different types of resume databases, as there
are personalities. Each individual should try many before selecting a favorite. Web sites
are also constantly changing so make sure to re-evaluate alternative databases every six
- Automate email responses. Create an
automated email response letter that will respond to each resume delivered to the company
mailbox. This will provide job seekers immediate feedback to their submission, indicating
their email has been received and will be reviewed. Consider also mentioning a few key
selling points in the response letter as a reminder why the company is exceptional or
- Keep all job opportunities in
electronic form. By keeping job opportunities on a removable disk, recruiters can easily
transport and cut-and-paste job openings easily into favorite, online job databases.
- Pay for preferred service. There are
many free job-posting databases, but often the pay services achieve better results for
employers since job seekers can easily find quality job opportunities that do not require
sorting through hundreds of free, unqualified opportunities.
- Don't put all the eggs in one basket.
Spread out the job postings among many select job databases and classified ad resources.
- Get professional help. There are many
Net-recruitment training resources offline and online that are available at little to no
cost. Visit the major search engines and keyword search the words "Internet
- Provide added value. Job postings on
the company Web site should be enhanced by offering links to candidate job resources such
as salary and relocation adjusters, local city information and other appropriate resources
that will make the job seekers experience at the company Web site more enjoyable and
The company Web site
is a good marketing tool to promote the company and a great way to advertise job
opportunities. By adding an additional Web page of job openings to the company Web site,
HR recruiters can significantly increase incoming resume traffic, especially if the job
opportunity page is linked from the company homepage. The company Webmaster can set up an
easy-to-use administrative template for adding new jobs, or changing and deleting old ones
so HR can manage this page without assistance from the webmaster.
When posting job
opportunities on the Net, remember to include as much detail as possible about the
position, its benefits, and other key reasons why a candidate should apply. If there are
many positions available, consider categorizing the job postings and adding a search
engine. Create an online application form for job seekers to complete that is formatted to
integrate into the company's internal resume management program. However it is important
to provide a means of alternative contact both online (such as email, message board, etc.)
and offline (fax and phone numbers) since many job seekers prefer to fax in their resume
or call in. Consider also offering special incentives to job seekers who submit their
resume such as access to training materials, contest drawings and other inexpensive
- Top general search engines
The major search engines are popular for locating
resumes since they often contain the largest databases of online documents. Robots from
the major search engines crawl the Net continually, seeking out new job and resume
postings. Top general search engines include hotbot.com,altavista.com, infoseek.com, northernlight.com and lycos.com.
How do you determine
which job databases on the Internet are the biggest? It's hard, because
"biggest" can be measured in so many ways, including number of unique job
listings, number of "hits," number of participating employers/recruiters, number
of page views, and number of links to the site. One Internet measurement company called
MediaMetrix at www.mediametrix.com/, has posted what it calls the most unique visitors
among their list of the Top 7 job databases for December month 1998: www.careermosaic.com
Gonyea Guide to Online Career and Employment Sites, www.onlinecareerguide.com
Board claims to have the largest online database of resumes and allows direct postings
from corporate resume management programs such as NetStart Inc., Restrac, Resumix and
employment databases include www.hotjobs.com
(college resumes) and Yahoo Classifieds at
Recruit-Net at www.recruit-net.com is a job posting resource,
which allows recruiters to post one job simultaneously to up to 300 sites at a click of a
Net Recruiter, part of the Job
Locator at www.joblocator.com automates postings
to many Web sites.
All in One Submit at www.allinonesubmit.com
Resume Zapper at www.resumezapper.com
CareerXpress at www.careerxpress.com
Go Jobs at www.gojobs.com
- Top multiple job posting resources
There are also multiple job-posting resources such as Career Path, at www.careerpath.com and the Classified Advertising Network at www.texoma.com/donrey/classified/newspaper/advertising - where one can place classified ads in 57 newspapers.
The Internet Recruiting Edge,
by Barbara Ling, presents vital information for those recruiters who desire to make their
mark on the Net, buy a Web site from a qualified Web designer, and locate skilled job
seekers for their business before their competition does. It includes a comprehensive
bookmark's file that contains over 600 links to recruiting sites.
- Top books on Internet recruiting
Recruiter's Internet Survival
Guide, by John Sumser with Internet Business Network at www.interbiznet.com. John
manages Electronic Recruiting News, a complete online resource for recruiters.
CareerXroads, by Gerry Crispin
and Mark Mehler. The book lists and compares the top 500 jobs, resumes and career
management sites on the World Wide Web.
Internet Guide for Recruiters,
promoted by Michael's & Associates of Coal Valley, IL, contains 946 Web sites of
resumes, job postings, salary surveys, cost-of-living & relocation information, trade
journals, newsgroup directories, employment law, professional associations, HR
information, resource and sourcing leads, computer resources, and much, much more.
Locate and connect
with college placement centers through The National Association of Colleges and Employers
(NACE) at www.jobWeb.org/NACE/ or JobTrak at www.jobtrak.com with over 600 new jobs
posted each day for college students and recent graduates. Also www.collegegrad.com , and careercampus.com .
Recruiter Robot at www.prorecruiter.com is an automated agent that finds resumes as they
hit the Web and can deliver pre-planned messages from recruiting professionals. There are
also meta-tools such as Web Compass at arachnid.qdeck.com/qdeck/products/wc20,
which link to primary search engines and drive queries out over the Web.
- Top college placement centers
Basic information to Web surfing can
be found at Yahoo's Surf School www3.zdnet.com/yil/filters/surfjump.html, Microsoft's
Internet Tutorial at www.microsoft.com/magazine/guides/internet, or Internet 101 at
- Top Net training and consulting for
Monsterboard at www.monster.com
provides free seminars around the country for recruiters to develop Net recruitment
WebSearch Consulting, located at
www.gis.net/~Weblogic, specializes in Net training for recruiters.
The Virtual Coach, located at www.virtual-coach.com, is available to help
recruiters learn more about online recruiting and create a strategy suited to unique
Intel Search at www.intell-search.com provides training and a
complete directory of online tools for recruiters. Internet 101 at
www.learntheinternet.com is a fee-based course to lead people through the basic functions
of the Net.
Internet Business Network at www.interbiznet.com is a company focused
exclusively on Electronic Recruiting offering seminars and training.
Recommended online publications
include HR Magazine at www.shrm.org/hrmagazine, and Workforce Online at
- Other top Net resources for human
One of the leaders in online HR
resources is the Society for Human Resource Management, located at www.shrm.org. SHRM is the leading voice of the human
resource profession, representing the interests of more than 100,000 professional and
student members from around the world.
The Human Resource Professional's
Gateway to the Net at www.hrisolutions.com, contains helpful links to hundreds of
resources for the online HR professional.
HR Management Resources on the
Internet, from the Business School at Nottingham Trent University at www.nbs.ntu.ac.uk/staff/lyerj/hrm_link.htm,
provides comprehensive and international links to HR resources.
HR World, at www.hrworld.com offers
links, articles, and information for the HR professional.
HR Online located at www.hr2000.com
is a link to several HR-related sites and companies.
Webhire, by Restrac at www.restrac.com, is an online recruiting and resume
management system for growing employers that helps post jobs, store, search, and track
resumes (paper or electronic) through the hiring process.
The Salary and Moving Calculator at www2.homefair.com/calc/salcalc.html,
is powered by statistics provided and updated quarterly by the Center for Mobility
Resources. Users can compare cost-of-living expenses for hundreds of cities across the
Weddle's Online News, online newsletter for online recruitment tips www.weddles.com
"The article above was written by construction recruiter Frederick Hornberger, CPC, president of Hornberger Management Company in Wilmington, Delaware (www.hmc.com), a construction recruiter specializing in senior level, executive search."
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