Windy: what I saw and heard at the JobG8 job board summit

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Wind, lightning, rain, and tens of thousands of soccer fans ‘sheltering in place’ at Soldier field. Just another lazy Wednesday in Chicago!

The next day, me and over a hundred other folks jammed into the downtown Chicago Hilton for the annual JobG8 North American Summit. I always enjoy this conference because of the great technical content – and I was not disappointed. Here are some highlights:

  • Dan Finnegan of Jobvite made the astute point that we’re going through the longest period of employment growth in history. And these things never last forever.
  • The client user panel said that job boards should really be doubling down on content. No surprise.
  • Stacy Chapman of SwoopTalent said that job boards could – and should – be making use of aggregated data to provide additional services to clients and improving their own candidate files.
  • There was some back and forth about better candidate data via matching vs. swipe right/swipe left for an apply. More versus less. This discussion will never go away. But it was fascinating!
  • Not surprisingly, some sad (British) faces on Friday when the Brexit results became known. Hard to say the real impact of this for our industry – too early to tell. But additional economic turmoil could make things interesting.
  • Randle Reece of Avondale Partners provided a massive amount of market data and analysis. A few tidbits: Paid online ads are going down because there is more competition from unpaid job ads. We’re experiencing the slowest rate of job loss ever – and the labor supply is contracting. Bottom line: things are pointing more down than up (although he’s predicting a 7% growth rate for job boards). So get ready.
  • A continuing thread throughout the discussions was the real role of job boards: sitting on the outside as ‘job ad provider’? Or going a bit deeper into the acquisition process (candidate short lists, screening, ATSs, etc.)? I think it’s a judgement call for each business – but I’d err on the side of going deeper, myself.
  • If only judging by the proliferation of vendors (Appcast, OnRecruit, Recruitics, Ripple, etc.), programmatic and analytics are continuing to make inroads.
  • David Bernstein pointed out that a big problem for job boards is attribution – for example, Indeed grabbing job apply attribution that should really belong to job boards. And we’re letting this happen.

And that’s just a few high points. Now the conference scene dies down for a while – which is good, because my lawn is calling.

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  1. Pingback: The North American Summit – The Jobg8 Take | Jobg8

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