Job boards will be gone in 10 years or sooner. We have encountered no one in the last year who believes job boards are here to stay. Most experts predict they will be gone within 10 years, while some foresee their demise as soon as three years from now. Blogger Jason Buss noted on The Talent Buzz that “job board traffic has been on a continuous decline for years.”
Job boards revolutionalized both job-seeking and recruiting some 15 years ago, but today users find more shortcomings than advantages. Job-seekers lament the lack of relevant jobs that turn up in searches, vague job descriptions that don’t identify the employer, a user-unfriendly process, and the black-hole experience of posting a resume or applying to a job board’s job posting. (Recruiting guru Lou Adler exhorts recruiters that if they are still posting “boring job descriptions on the major job boards,” they will soon be considered “Web 1.0 stone-agers.”)
Some job boards have become a major turnoff for job-seekers, who claim that every time they click on a page, attempts are made to trick them into agreeing to services such a loan consolidations. Others note a massive increase in spam after posting resumes on major job boards. They also worry about the security of sensitive information they submit — with good reason. The venerable Monster has faced more than one security breach in which users’ contact information was accessed. More fundamentally, job-seekers question the effectiveness of job boards. A fall 2008 webinar by Kenexa reported a 500 to 1 chance for a job-seeker to find a job through the big three job boards, Monster, CareerBuilder, and YahooHotJobs.
Meanwhile, hiring decision-makers fume over bombardment with vast numbers of resumes from unqualified candidates. A commenter posting on a blog entry about problems with the big job boards made the amusing observation, “You can say that as part of their IT jobs, they must drink toilet water. You will still get a flood of resumes.” Employers are not blameless, however, as Davis Advertising notes in a report that indicates that less than 4 percent of Internet job postings provide users with a detailed job title, and 67 percent are poorly written or formatted.
One of the job-board features that initially made them so attractive — ease of applying for jobs — has made them a significant nightmare for employers.