Applying for a Job through the Company Website vs. Job Board Portals

By Linda M. Van Valkenburgh, MS, CCMC, CJSS
This past Monday, April 4, 2011, the Wall Street Journal published an article in the Managing & Careers Section entitled “For Job Seekers, Company Sites Beat Online Job Boards, Social Media.” A friend contacted me and asked me for my opinion on the article.  To understand my answer, you need to know more about the article.

The article in question discusses how many job applicants a recruiter has to go through before finding the right person.  Basically, it is said that:

recruiters go through “six times as many applications from job boards than they do from their own websites.”  However, they go through many fewer applications from jobhunters who go directly to the company website

or get to them from search engine queries.  In addition, the article espouses that if someone is searching directly on a company’s website or through a search engine, it is more likely that the person has experience that is more relevant to the position than someone who merely “bumps into the position”  on a job board thinking that they may have a “shot” as opposed to clear qualifications for the job. 

What does this translate to?  Part of it is the law of averages.  You have a  better shot when there are less applicants. A company may look through hundreds of applications from a job board as opposed to 10-50 on direct application to their company site. Also, there is a supposition that people are more qualified because they searched the company and job criteria out, in particular, as part of their job research.    Applying through the website of the company is another way of showing your keen  interest and the fact that you “walked all over their website” to learn about the company. Also, with fewer applications, the job of the recruiter is made easier. In addition, your information and application may well be taken care of sooner and by humans as opposed to computer filters from the Monster portal!

The last part of the article reiterates something that goes back to the mantra that I have stated over and over again.  It quoted Gerry Crispin, co-founder of CareerXroads Inc. and says

“…recruiters made one hire for about every 10 referrals they received. It increases your chances of getting a job tenfold. If an employee makes a referral, they at least have some feeling that the individual will be a better employee.”

This is where your skills of networking come in very handy.  For help with networking, please refer back to my prior postings Networking Your Way to Success.: Part 1, Networking Your Way to Success: Part 2, and Networking Your Way to Success: Part 3.

Please leave me a comment and let me know if this posting helped you.  As always, I wish you every success.

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