Rumblings in the hiring ecosystem: what we can learn from the Source of Hire data

Gerry Crispin and Mark Mehler have been conducting the landmark CareerXRoads Source of Hire survey for over a decade. In my mind, that’s useful data. They’ve just come out with the 2012 edition, and it’s absolutely worth a look. The top four sources of hire include referrals (28%), job boards (20.1%), career sites(9.8%), and recruiters (9.1%). (Where’s the data coming from, you may ask? They surveyed 36 companies who filled 213,375 openings; the companies employed from 1,500 to 10,000+ employees. In other words, mid-to-large sized companies).

Crispin/Mehler also tried to dig into the interrelationships between the various recruiting channels – for example, we all know that job seekers visit our sites to research companies and industry sectors, but we also know that many of those ‘tire-kickers’ become actual applicants, albeit at a company’s career site.

So what does the survey data mean for job boards? (and again, I encourage you to look at the data for yourself):

  • Job boards account for 1 in 5 hires – but most likely have a much larger influence overall by providing visibility, distribution, and branding for their employers
  • Of the largest job boards, CareerBuilder, Dice, Indeed, and Monster aregenerating the lion’s share of hires – but smaller sites appear to be providing significant hires as well, particularly for those companies with 25% or less of their hires originating from job boards
  • Many sources of hire have been remarkably unchanged for years, including print, temp-to-hire, career fairs, and rehires
  • After several years of use, social media comprises just 3.5% of hires – but Crispin/Mehler suspect it has a larger influence than that number indicates
  • An interesting statistic: 10.4 referrals are needed to make 1 hire, on average
  • LinkedIn appears to be most useful to companies as a place to search resumes and post jobs – in other words, as a job board
  • 45.7% of respondents are using job boards for job ads – not resume search
  • How are employers (and remember, these are fairly large companies) tracking their sources of hire? Umm….66.7% are relying on candidates ‘self-reporting’ – which can be an unreliable metric
  • Another important response to note: when asked what they plan to change for 2012, many responded ‘decrease dependency on job boards
  • 50% of respondents did not have a candidate relationship management (CRM) system

Very interesting stuff. As always, I think the job board industry has done a poor job of making the case to employers for how important their services are – in a recruiting ecosystem, job boards drive the key variable: candidate activity.  

(Thanks again to Gerry and Mark for this incredible report!)

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Tags: CareerBuilder, Dice, Facebook, Indeed, LinkedIn, Monster, boards, experience, job, media, More…social, surveys, user

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