Build the community – then add in relevant jobs around it
I have been waiting for someone to ask me to define what I mean when I talk about Job Search 2.0. You might have noticed that I am developing a list of what I consider to be Job Search 2.0 sites. In this list you will find the CrunchBoards; paidContents; and GigaOM Jobs of the blogosphere – but not say… a Jobster. This is not a slam on Jobster – in that way that calling someone web 1.0 has become an insult. On the contrary, I think that Jobster has really been an evolutionary force in the Job Search world and, their recent addition of social networking to their job search arsenal is brilliant.
What about all of the other Web 2.0 plays? How about WetJello with their use of video instead of the same old 1 page 2D resume? Awesome.
And THEN – there is the increasing adoption of microformats with a standard markup language including hResume. hResume is a Microformat standard for displaying a semantic XHTML representation of resume or CV information on web pages. Or Niall Kennedy creating an atom and poscast version of his resume? I am still trying to work out how and where all of this fits in and will save it for a later post. But is any of this what I mean when I talk about Job Search 2.0? …not so much.
Here is what I am thinking…
All of these job sites have, well, jobs as their center point. In my view (which is still developing so please jump in and help me flesh this out) – what the blog boards are doing for Job Search 2.0 is flipping the current ‘job search’ model. The ‘search’ doesn’t happen on sites dedicated to finding jobs. The audience is no longer the community of job seekers that millions of marketing dollars are spent on to bring them to a ‘Monstrous’ conglomeration of available jobs in any and all areas and industries.
With Job Search 2.0 – the niche community is built first. The tech geeks; the designers; the new media marketers; the nurses gather together through social media like blogs… and then the job opportunities are added in to the community. Jobs become just another piece of relevant content to that audience.
JobSearch 2.0 will have the users creating their own job aggregators via their feedreaders. They will subscribe to job feeds of the online communities that they align themselves with. As corporations open up their brand to their users – they will increasingly add RSS feeds to their job sites. The job seekers will be the ones to drive their job search and subscribe to only the content that they want (again relevancy). Michael Arrington from CrunchBoard brought up the issue of making the job content more portable and easier to distribute by creating a sort of blog job board network with distribution through a widget. Many job focused sites have already opened up their API and are doing just this. Indeed is probably doing the BEST job of finding new ways to distribute job content. While Indeed is still focused on the ‘job’ as their vertical, they are dead on with regard to their ease of job content portability.
I am not saying that a job vertical focus is a bad thing; rather, I am just making a distinction between the current focus and direction of job sites and Job Search 2.0 sites that are focused on their niche community, their topics, their discussion – the addition of ‘jobs’ as additional relevant content that lives in the same house as all of the other content that their niche audience cares about. 37 signals said it best :
But if you want to hire the right person then you’ll need to do something different to reach that person. You need to hang out where they hang out. You need to like what they like. You need to aim accurately.
Remember, where you post your job says a lot about your company and the kind of people you want to attract. If you want to toss your job in front of anyone and everyone, post it at Monster.com. If you want to place your job carefully and in front of the right people who care what you care about, then post it on the job board that most accurately reflects your company’s attitude/approach.
Going forward, people will be able to find an online community or ‘online insider’s network’ for just about anything that they are interested it (professionally and otherwise). Does this mean that I think Job Search 2.0 will kill the Monsters or even the Jobsters? No. Different strokes for different job seekers, different interests, and different skill sets. All sites that stay around will continue to evolve and figure out ways to remain relevant. Job Search 2.0 is not different. It is just beginning and developing before our eyes.
The Job Search 2.0 job seekers will definitely have one thing in common – regardless of their industry – they will represent the web savvy candidate that consumes highly relevant online content and expect jobs to be an integral part of that mix.