4 Stats that Prove the Importance of Career Sites

4 Stats that Prove the Importance of Career Sites

Mike Roberts

You don’t have to look far to find a career site that hasn’t been updated in the past five to 10 years. A site that doesn’t accept applications from mobile devices. One that has stock photos bought online, and copy filled with boring, run-of-the-mill corporate jargon. In a matter of seconds you could pull up a career site with an outdated job search experience. Or a site that is just a click away from that unbranded, legacy applicant tracking system (ATS) experience every job seeker loathes.

How easy it is to find any of those examples listed above is more than concerning as we move closer to 2017. And not just because we think so–because research has proven it. Let’s take a look at four different data points that will (hopefully) give you an idea of how important career sites have become.

64% of Candidates Listed Career Sites as a Top Resource Channel for Researching New Opportunities

Around the turn of the millennium, job boards transformed the way employers connected with candidates. For most job seekers, there were few resources available for discovering new opportunities, so the typical candidate journey was very direct–from job board to application. That’s changed significantly.

Now, people in the digital and mobile era are so used to conducting extensive research on every decision they make (and having the resources available to do so) that they’re less willing to blindly apply to jobs. The modern candidate journey is a windy road filled with research, corroboration and informed decision-making.

A stat from The Talent Board’s 2015 Candidate Experience Research study highlights one of the main stops on that journey–the career site. More than any other channel, 64% of candidates reported using career sites as a resource for researching new opportunities.

candidate research channelsSource: The Talent Board’s 2015 Candidate Experience Research

61% of Talent Acquisition Leaders Think Career Sites are the Best Channel for Employer Brand Building

The recent surge of investment in and focus on employer branding is no coincidence.

Competition for talent continues to rise and employers are actively working to ease pressure on recruiters via employer branding initiatives. Taking into account the first point above about career sites as a top research channel, it makes sense that organizations (as shown below) would also peg career sites as their best medium for employer brand building–that’s where candidates are going for information.

career site employer brandingSource: LinkedIn’s 2017 Global Recruiting Trends Survey

This data (above) from LinkedIn is intriguing, but let’s look at another point that supports it. This past summer, we launched our inaugural 2016 State of Employer Branding survey. We found that 58% of HR professionals think career sites are more important to employer branding than they were in 2015.

career sites for storytelling
Source: Jibe’s 2016 State of Employer Branding Report

19% of All Hires Come from Career Sites, More Than Any Other Source

We’ve written about this stat extensively. It’s from Bersin by Deloitte’s 2015 Talent Acquisition Facebook. The analyst firm conducted research on source of hire and found that career sites drive more hires than any other source (followed by job boards and then internal candidates). In 2011, this was not the case. Career sites perhaps played a different role then–the candidate journey (and everything that goes with it) has evolved considerably since 2011.

So, What Does This Mean?

If you’ve already taken the time to revamp and modernize your career site, then these data points should be good news. Now you can continue calibrating and optimizing your employer branding messaging, candidate experience and recruitment marketing to get more out of it.

If you’ve had the same career site for years, then consider this a wake-up call and a mammoth opportunity to impact your long-term recruiting performance.

Simply having a career site is not enough,” or so it said in The Talent Board’s 2015 Candidate Experience Research report. They made it a point to highlight the importance of career sites, and that moving well beyond the status quo is required to capitalize on the new candidate journey.

The report continued: “Companies must invest in the career site with relevant content, information about the job, employee experience and company culture. Top ranked 2015 CandE Benchmark Companies (CandE Award Winners) offer career path examples more frequently than all other participating companies. Also, giving candidates a way to engage with organizations without having to apply immediately via talent networks and communities is important.”

If you’re interested in learning more about modern career sites and what it takes to transform yours into something exceptional, read through our new eBook, Career Site Transformation Planning. The eBook shares the pillars of effective career sites based on our analysis of more than a quarter billion career site visitors.

career site planning

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