Recruitment companies to offer jobs via rss finally?

I have written several times in the past about how recruitment companies should be allowing job hunters to get job offers delivered via rss.

Bernard Tyers, sysadmin of irishjobs.ie, has written today about how Irishjobs.ie are considering making a move in this direction and he is asking for feedback on how best this be rolled out.

There has been a good few comments about this on Bernard’s post – debating the merits of full or partial feeds for job offers and whether ads should be included in the job offers.

Damien Mulley argues ably in the comments for full feeds ad-free (the job offer is already an ad), while Bernard’s difficulty is that under the current model, irishjobs.ie charges job posters for job views and there is no way to count this through rss.

Bernard, well done for bringing this topic into the open for discussion – it is a much needed debate and will occur many times over for other industries in the weeks and months to come.

Damien is right in a lot of what he says – you need to have full ad free rss feeds for your jobs – there isn’t a big capital cost in setting this up and it will quickly become a significant differentiator for irishjobs.ie

You could always take a free, open-source feed reader, re-brand it with the irishjobs.ie branding, and give it for download for rss job search consumption. Call it the “Irishjobs Delivered”/”Irishjobs Direct” or similar (note no mention of rss). Again, no significant investment required and you distribute the means of consumption.

You can’t really count the number of views through rss (without potentially annoying the job seekers). If job views is the current monetisation model, that model will need to change to take rss job-offer distribution into account. If irishjobs don’t come up with a new model, one of your competitors will – to your detriment.

Good luck with it!

8 thoughts on “Recruitment companies to offer jobs via rss finally?”

  1. Hi Tom,

    thanks for the post and the comments.

    Just a few points:

    > Damien Mulley argues ably in the comments for full feeds ad-free (the job offer is already an > ad), while Bernard’s difficulty is that under the current model, irishjobs.ie charges job posters > for job views and there is no way to count this through rss.

    Chariging job posters is one of the models…not the only one 😉 But yes, this is one of the problems in releasing RSS feeds. The tracking back of the views of the job adverts is important.

    Most jobs sites use the same or similar model to us. Of course “web 2.0” sites (indeed/simplyhired etc) have some more features “up-their-sleeves “.

    > Damien is right in a lot of what he says – you need to have full ad free rss feeds for your
    > jobs – there isn’t a big capital cost in setting this up and it will quickly become a significant > differentiator for irishjobs.ie

    I have to say Damien is speaking to the converted when he says full feeds compared to partials.

    You know my view on these also (after listening to you for a while harpiing on about the benefits 😉 ). Again, speaking with guys in work, everyone sees the benefits from the jobseekers POV.

    With regards ads interspersed, again ditto.

    Looking around Monsters site, they give very broad general RSS feeds “technology” for example, but mainly for the US.

    Some of the ideas that Justin from Pukka could be runners.

    Anyway, there is more to be ironed out. But stay tuned.

    thanks
    b.

  2. Withouw wanting to appear negative, I have a few comments/questions.

    Has the irishjobs.ie website improved or changed in any significant sense in 5 years? The search tool is not intelligient enough to remember a users search and there is no results sorting mechanism (by salary, most recent, etc.). These are basic requirements for any half decent CRUD application.

    On a pedantic note (which, however, probably reflects on the general level of detail applied to the sites maintenance), the rather haphazard html (lots of commented-out js and html) doesn’t validate to any known html schema.

    As for the ‘monetisation model’ issue, I find it hard to believe that a company as successful as irishjobs.ie would lack the creative thinking required to adapt their model in an effort to improve users experience. A quick Google on ‘rss job feed’ would suggest that this challenge has been met by others already.

    Admittedly, it seems the employment website space lacks technical innovation. The recently launched loadzajobs.ie seems to be as near to direct rip-off of irishjobs.ie as you can get. Its as if someone said, “lets copy this successful business model and not bother even thinkin about attempting to implement any improvements”.

  3. Hi Michael,

    Thanks for the comments, even though critical(ish). To be honest I am not in a position to answer all of those questions, as a) I am but a lowly IT person, b) I am not involved in the strategic decisions of the websites.

    But the questions I can answer:

    >> The search tool is not intelligient enough to remember a users search

    by this i assume you mean ajax or something similar (i am not a web developer). Again to be honest, I don’t think any sites in our industry (except the more web 2.0 sites) use ajax.

    >> there is no results sorting mechanism (by salary, most recent, etc.)

    By salary – no there is no by salary search. I guess the answer is that not all companies give us the salary figure (alot are “Negotiable” or “not disclosed”. And as a jobseeker myself, that bugs me too.) This would be something that we would not be able to provide fully.

    By Most recent – yes this is available. Have you looked at the advanced search? You can search by “View new jobs added in the last xxx days”.

    About the HTML validation, I cannot say, as again, I am not involved in the web design. But I do know that the site is W3C compliant, as an audit has recently been carried out by W3C.
    http://www.irishjobs.ie/help.asp#dhelp

    Stuff like Ajax can cause problems with accessibility.

    >> I find it hard to believe that a company as successful as irishjobs.ie would lack the >> creative thinking required to adapt their model in an effort to improve users
    >> experience.

    Like I mentioned earlier in my previous comment, thats one part of the model. There are more obviously.

    >> Admittedly, it seems the employment website space lacks technical innovation.

    Well, your not half wrong there. The new, like I said, web 2.0 sites like simplyhired and indeed are streets ahead on things like that. But they can be. They have started up recently, whereas the more “established” sites are around, some, up to 10 years.

    Again I can not comment on the “outward” website as I am not really involved.

    >> The recently launched loadzajobs.ie seems to be as near to direct rip-off of
    >> irishjobs.ie as you can get.

    I couldn’t possible comment on that!

    thanks for teh comment Michael. Just out of interest whats your background? I know you’re involved in politics, but what did you do before you got bitten?

    thanks again,
    bernard.

  4. Hi All

    RSS for jobs is an obvious and popular method for both employers and prospective employees

    Obviously by RSS enabling your “job seach engine” has a double effect

    positive
    – additional service for employers and job seekers (esp in IT sector)
    — rss feed should be at all levels (categories, locations, keywords, and combinations of all)
    – usage choices – branded RSS reader, branded mobile rss reader, etc
    – marketing opportunity – extend reach of your job database through. see http://www.jobster.com/myjobster/manageFeeds.html

    negative
    – by RSS enabling content you enable potential mis-use (which can be guarded via policy, t&c, etc)

    for a pretty good implementation check out Jobster. (they acquired a company workzoo way back who had an excellent job search engine)

    in relation to tracking the feeds, i would recommend using unqiue feeds – this way you have the opportunity for enhanced measurement in terms of job seekers, job category interest, etc [just throwing out the feeds would be a nightmare in terms of measuring the business value of an rss implementation)

    regards
    fergus

  5. Hi Fergus,

    Thanks for the response. The branded RSS feed reader is an interesting idea. Tom suggested it to me also. Hmm, might be alot of messy work tho!

    I have responded to your comment, and asked you a few questions in the most recent post. (Mainly on your point about “marketing opportunity – extend reach of your job database”). I’d appreciate it if you could expand on that point.

    http://tinyurl.com/lguej

    thanks again,

    bernard

  6. Hi Guys,

    The IrishDev.com Jobs Portal has released a full feed, extremely personalisable RSS Job Alert system.

    You can get the latest jobs by RSS, similar to Monster but also complex customised feeds like, “Show me the latest Flash jobs in Dublin from Peter at SHR”.

    Do let me know what you think?

    Regards,

    Avril Forde,

    Assistant Manager,
    http://www.IrishDev.com
    The Irish ICT Network

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