This was our fourth North American Summit and the windy city lived up to it’s reputation with a huge storm and tornado’s on the Wednesday night. Flights were delayed but by noon Thursday all our speakers, panellists and delegates had arrived safely.
You may have already read some write up of the event but if not we’d suggest you take a look at The Job Board Doctor’s article and also a few of our own pre event blogs – particularly Randle Reece’s one on “What Next”.
Dan Finnigan talked about the candidate of the future and YES they are different, they will move jobs multiple times (up to 20) so how you “help them” when they come to you the first time could dictate the relationship you will have with them + he actively wants to work with Job Boards (the API issue) and build data sets.
The client debate was passionate with push back both ways – Kyle Power wants relevant candidates + better data/metrics, Mike, from Shaker sees better opportunities for Job Boards in the Branding area (as does Crytal Miller), Mike also the opportunity to monitise data, which came up throughout the summit. Steve Levy as a recruiter knows that the Job Board Resume database is a great source of candidates but commented “ how easy is it to search?” plus “how many of you get/understand what sourcing is, how we do it and build that thinking into your business model” – The opportunity might be to integrated with a sourcing tool.
Stacy Chapman continued the sourcing theme and showed just how much data she is aggregating and where from (mostly NOT Job Boards) e.g. trade associations, open web etc BUT can Job Boards share their data and monetise it PLUS Job Board are great “sales channels” and can they add this service?
The Job Board of the Future debate saw an international panel talk about content and this was a theme that this session saw debated fiercely with the panel pushing back – but many delegates are less convinced about “content” and its value than those on the panel. But one model that is getting serious traction is if the content is user generated i.e. Stackoverflow’s community model, which they then added the “Job Board” element to monetise it. The Job Board Doctor and Steve Playford from the FT.com both added that many job boards sites sit on a legacy platform and therefore change/development is tough PLUS and this seems to be a real issue for Job Boards who are part of “traditional print based media groups” that despite being successful revenue generators these Job Board business have become “cash cow’s” and getting funding for change or they are willing to evolve/change is questionable. Steve Carter from Elevated Careers focused on better matching (a huge industry issue) and culture matching which is becoming a “recruiters” issue.
Day Two kicked off with Randle Reece, he shared some amazing data and insights, he sees convergence and that the range of services being offered by Job Boards “can/must” evolve. Job Boards can/should go up the value chain, he mentioned that a leading global staffing business was planning to enter the Job Board market – please if you know let us know as well!!, finally read his blog here on his key recommendations
Crystal Miller delivered a powerful presentation on Brand BUT the simple message was you are defined by what you deliver i.e. the UIexperience, service, jobs etc. She observed that a new generation may well want a “new experience beyond just jobs”.
The event wrapped up with “What Business are we in – media/publishing, RecTech, Recruiting or All”? – The answer is potentially all, but based on your market, your position and what you want to achieve strategically. Lee Biggins from CV/Resume Library said he’s a classified jobs business BUT with the biggest CV database in the UK, he adopts a “if lots of customer want it, we’ll build it or offer it” mentality. Dave Baran from Workopolies understands that in Canada they fill a unique “market leading” position, they offer jobs, branding, job redistribution plus very Lite RPO service for SME’s, BUT are very much part of the Canadian “market’ and are involved with projects in the CSR, Labour Market/Training space as well. Kathleen Turner from a niche Job Boards said all, “we are trusted source of information and connections”, to sum it up Randle said “focus on what you’re good at, your core competencies are a valuable asset”
So one final comment from us – the words “connecting, connector, trusted connections etc” came up a lot – BUT in the future…can a Job Board be the connection i.e. integrated IM?
So much to do and so few resources to do it with BUT at least at our summits we can inspire ideas and thinking – see you in London in November.