Special from RecruitCon Road Trip East: Is Your Recruiting Suffering Because of Your Company Website?

At BLR’s recent RecruitCon Road Trip conference in Boston, we heard from Chris Russell, known as the “mad scientist” of online recruiting. Russel started his first job board in 1999 and since has launched more job sites than anyone in history. Let’s look at what Russell says makes recruiting and career websites really effective.

Source: Lightcome / iStock / Getty

Russell is Managing Director of RecTech Media which operates web brands for recruiters and provides consulting for recruiting vendors. Our mission is to advise, empower, and inform the recruiting technology ecosystem.

Goals of Your Career Site

First, says Russell, establish the goals of your website. Most commonly, you want to accomplish three things. You want to allow visitors to:

  1. Browse your open jobs and apply.
  2. Learn more about your organization.
  3. Discover why they would want to work there.

Russell offers the following websites as examples of organizations that are doing this well:

Career Site Rules

Russell offers the following basics for making your careers site effective:

  • Move beyond 1 page. You need more in order to be attractive to job seekers.
  • Stop promoting your Applicant Tracking System (ATS). Don’t use a URL that features your ATS, e.g., It’s simple to set up your own site, Russell says.
  • Must be mobile friendly. If visitors can’t browse properly, they will leave, Russell says.
  • No stock photos. People spot them immediately. Use real photos.
  • Ban the PDF. Don’t use PDFs on job listings, Russell warns.
  • Define your EVP (Employee Value Proposition). And figure out how to express it. (“Cruise to work” for a cruise company, “Build something that matters” for another type of organization.
  • Promote social channels. Embed them on your pages.
  • Make it easy to apply. Break down barriers, Russell says.
  • Deeper dive. Provide in-depth information.
  • Think about visitors’ reactions. For example, one client posted for a “Patient Care Coordinator.” No response. They re-posted for a “Receptionist/Front Desk Admin Assistant” and were flooded with responses.

A Few More Items

Russell shares several other phrases that have been successful on websites:

  • Learn about our application process
  • Work in Stamford
  • Find out what we’re all about
  • Here’s our Glassdoor rating
  • Here’s our Twitter profile
  • Here’s a graph of our growth
  • We’re hiring

One More Thing

Put your career link on your corporate website on the top navigation! Russell insists.

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