Advice for Employers and Recruiters

Are job boards and recruitment marketplaces six of one and a half dozen of another? With Jeff Dickey-Chasins and hosts Steven Rothberg and Peter M. Zollman 

Shelby Konkel AvatarShelby Konkel
September 29, 2022

In this first, full episode of the Inside Job Boards and Recruitment Marketplaces Podcast, Jeff Dickey-Chasins of The Job Board Doctor LLC joins hosts Steven Rothberg, Founder and Chief Visionary Officer of College Recruiter, and Peter M. Zollman of AIM Group. Jeff Dickey-Chasins is a perfect guest for the podcast’s first episode, not only for his plethora of knowledge on job board related topics but also because he and Steven were the co-hosts of The Job Board Geek Podcast.

Inside Job Boards and Recruitment Marketplaces

In this episode, Steven, Peter, and Jeff discuss some of the changes that have occurred over the years in the job board space, along with some of the significant players in recruitment marketing. Jeff finishes the episode by highlighting innovations he would like to see reflected in the industry over the next five years.

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You can find the previous episode of Inside Job Boards and Recruitment Marketplaces here.

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Looking for more recruitment marketing content? Check out Steven Rothberg’s High Volume Hiring Podcast, the podcast that features news tips, case studies, and interviews with the world’s leading experts about the good, the bad, and the ugly when it comes to high-volume hiring. 


Steven Rothberg: Welcome to the Inside Job Boards and Recruitment Marketplaces podcast. I’m Steven Rothberg, the founder of College Recruiter, Job search site at College Recruiter. We believe that every student in recent grad deserves a great career.

Peter Zollman: And I’m Peter Zollman, founding Principle of the AIM Group. We are the leading global business intelligence service for marketplaces and classified advertising companies. We consult with recruitment marketplace companies and we publish AIM Group weekly, Recruitment Intelligence, and a free weekly digest. We also host the annual Rec Buzz conference.

Steven Rothberg: This is the podcast for you to learn more about how to create, manage and work with general niche and aggregator job boards and recruitment marketplaces. Well, Peter, welcome to the best time of the year. It’s, uh, it’s the fall. And the fall can only mean one thing, and that is the resumption of ice hockey. And I know for those of you in Florida, that’s what, uh, what Florida’s all about. When, when, when people think of Florida, they definitely think of ice hockey.

Peter Zollman: Ice hockey is the only sport I care about. I don’t care about football. That would be hairy in Florida. That is hairy in Florida. I don’t care about baseball, which I think is boring as sin. Uh, but I love hockey. I love hockey. I, uh, used to cover the Buffalo Sabers many, many years ago when they had what may have been the best line ever in the nhl. Rennie Ro, Rick Perro and Jill Bear Martin, uh, the French connection line. And, uh, I just, I love hockey. We have a minor league team in, um, Orlando called the Solar Bears, a play on the bears you have in your backyard, the polar bears. Uh, but the solar bears are pretty awful. Hockey, but great fun. And for me, that’s, that’s what counts.

Steven Rothberg: Well, speaking of great fun.

Peter Zollman: Oh, that was a bad transition.

Steven Rothberg: Oh, I’m, I’m, I’m going there. I am totally going there. Speaking of great fun, what can be more fun than current news and happenings from the job board and recruitment marketplace space? Oh,

Peter Zollman: I thought you were gonna transition to Jeff Dickey-Chasins with great fun. I was thinking, Oh, no, that’s a terrible transition.

Steven Rothberg: No, today’s guest can wait. Uh, he gets paid by the hour as a consultant, so he can just sit there and twiddle his thumbs and then go to the bank later. But, uh, AIM Group is following some stories right now in the job board space. Why don’t you highlight one of them for us?

Peter Zollman: Well, as we’ve discussed, we’re looking at how recruitment sites, marketplaces, job boards are evolving and how they’re adding things like ATSs and transaction capability and the way they need to prepare for the future. And I know we’ll talk to Jeff about that in a minute. Um, we are beefing up our staff. Uh, we’ve just added as, you know, somebody, you know, well and rather not mention his name yet, but somebody you know well, who is a longtime recruitment, uh, marketplace writer. Uh, and we’re looking to add a second recruitment marketplace writer. Uh, cause happily, uh, our recruitment intelligence report is, um, keeps growing. The client list keeps growing, and, uh, the clients keep renewing and are very happy. So we’re adding staff to, uh, fulfill the need and soon I won’t have to be writing for it any longer.

Steven Rothberg: . Well, and as one of your, uh, subscribers rate, I think from day one, um, I can definitely say that. It, it is just fantastic reading. So, uh, people who, uh, listening to the podcasts that are not subscribers to the AIM Group publication, um, definitely check that out.

Peter Zollman: You were not only a subscriber from day one, but you were the first, the first to sign up and spend money with us on this report, so thank you.

Steven Rothberg: Well, it’s, it’s awesome. And usually when people say that I’m number one, they’re usually using a middle finger directed in my, uh, at, at me. And so I take that as a compliment. I’m not sure if all of them do or not, but speaking of people who have told me that I’m number one, we have a great guest here today. He, he’s not actually my physician, but he is the physician for the job board industry. He’s the job board doctor Jeff Dickey Chasins. Jeff and I co-hosted the job Board Geek podcast from late 2021 until September, 2022 when he claims that he didn’t have enough hours in the day to run his own consulting company and be doing a podcast. But I think it had something to do with me being number one, um, or at least how he was telling me that, that I was number one . So the doors closed in the Job Board Geek podcast, which also opened the door for this podcast, The inside job boards and recruitment marketplaces, podcasts. All that aside, just welcome. It is great to be with you.

Jeff Dickey-Chasins: Well, thanks for having me on. I’m looking forward to chatting with you guys.

Peter Zollman: Well, we’re glad to have you. We’re glad you’re in good health. We’re glad your wife is in good health because we know that’s been an issue in the past and it’s great. And, and just not having to work with Steven Rothberg probably helped out your mental health, even if not your physical health. Oh, yeah. So, so, um, . Yeah. This is,

Steven Rothberg: This is where you’re supposed to argue. This is where you’re supposed to go. Oh, no.

Peter Zollman: Oh, took diplomacy. Diplomacy. Yeah.

Jeff Dickey-Chasins: There was nothing more wonderful in the world than working with Steven on a week to week basis, you know, just to be, be in the virtual studio with him and listen to the MOUs trailing of his voice as he came on, telling bad jokes and talking about things that I don’t care about at all, like hockey, um, Right. You know, it just, it kind of made my week every week. So

Peter Zollman: In the upper Midwest, you should lo you should care about hockey. Uh,

Steven Rothberg: He’s, he’s from, he’s from Texas.

Jeff Dickey-Chasins: I’m originally from Texas, so if I followed any sport at all, it would be football. But I lost that a long time ago. And in fact, although I will say there is a connection with where I live, which is Granell, Iowa and hockey, That’s pretty interesting. I he ever heard of this guy named Wayne Greski?

Peter Zollman: Um, Wayne, yeah, I might have heard of him. I think he’s the say,

Steven Rothberg: Isn’t he the older brother of Keith Gretzky.

Peter Zollman: ? He did not say, as has been alleged many bazillions of times that I go where the puck is going, not where it has been. That was actually his father who said, Wayne, go where the puck is going. Not where it is. Um, so, but it’s been attributed to Wayne many millions of times when it was actually his father. And he’s from Grinnell.

Jeff Dickey-Chasins: No, but he had a nephew that grew up in Grinnell and his nephew was a standout, Get this, he was a standout basketball player. And Grinnell is a well known town for having originated, uh, what’s called the system in basketball. It’s totally crazy. Relies on three point baskets and whatnot. And so Uncle Wayne would come down to watch his nephew play basketball here and, you know, and it was just kind of a funny thing, even for those of us who don’t know anything about hockey, to know that there’s a famous guy that would come to this little town and watch his nephew play basketball.

Peter Zollman: Well, he should have gotten up there and, uh, shown a few hockey moves as well. Um, let’s turn to the real subject at hand, which is job boards and recruitment marketplaces. How have things changed in the decades, or maybe its centuries at this point? It is centuries because you started in the late 1990s. So, um, how have they changed in the centuries that you’ve been, uh, working with job boards and, and what’s better?

Jeff Dickey-Chasins: Well, first of all, let me thank you, Peter, for making me feel even older than I am. Um, . Yes. Uh, things have changed in some ways, although it’s funny, I have this conversation a lot with clients. There’s a number of clients that I work with that essentially they’re sort of strategic partners for. I’m helping them sort of realign their business for the next decade in terms of what they’re doing. And one of the things that, that we discover is that a lot of the things that were brand new in the nineties seem to come back and get repackaged and become new again in the 2000 tens, 2000 twenties. So a really good example of this, uh, is a success story called Zip Recruiter. Mm. ZipRecruiter was sort of in, in some ways sort of, is a sort of a Frankenstein monster of number ideas and, uh, tools that have been used in the job board industry.

Jeff Dickey-Chasins: So one, one of ’em was job alerts, which are email messages that people sign up for and they get sent to a person when a job matches up. They’re incredibly effective, even to this day. Uh, most job boards will see 40 or 50% of their traffic generated by job alerts, but they were around in the mid nineties, so Zip Recruiter had job alerts. Then they also had this concept called job posting distribution, which again, has been around for a long time. Uh, number of companies like, uh, Equest were out there, uh, where that’s all they did. And, you know, someone could use this, a small business could use this to post jobs in multiple places. Uh, so it was easy to do. And then the final piece was aggregation, like aggregated jobs from a lot of different places. Well, they put all this stuff together in one package and have been, were very successful and executing on it. And, you know, to a certain degree, they’ve taken the spot that indeed used to own in the job board world in North America when indeed was an aggregator. Indeed is now just, uh, job board, big job board. So that’s, so that’s one thing where you’ve got a bunch of old ideas that have been repackaged as new ideas

Peter Zollman: That helps us.

Jeff Dickey-Chasins: Yeah. Yeah. Uh, and so another thing that’s, that is truly new to the job board industry, old to the rest of the world, is programmatic advertising. It’s been around for a while in consumer advertising. It was brought to the job board world, you know, in the mid like 2014 or so by, uh, app, uh, which is still one of the largest programmatic vendors out there. And, um, in a way it’s kind of an old idea that’s been updated. The old idea is that you would go to an aggregator and pay them money to promote your jobs across a whole lot of sites. Well, you know, programmatic is the same thing that they use computer code. And so you have a more efficient, theoretically distribution of your job, add money across all these different sites. And you know, as Steven will tell you, programmatic’s really good for high volume hiring. So those are a couple of things that have changed the last 15 years. But again, is there anything out there that’s truly new that no one has ever seen before? Yeah, you know, there’s a few things that I’d sort of throw in that area, like AI driven matching, but, uh, a lot of the dominant things that drive the industry now are the dominant things driving the industry back in 1997.

Steven Rothberg: Well, cool. That, that’s a great summary. Jeff, is sort of like where the industry has come from over the last 15 years. Brings us up to today and let’s look a little bit to the future. Uh, pull up your crystal ball. What, what would you like to see changed about our industry?

Jeff Dickey-Chasins: So one of the things I would like to see is better use of technology to satisfy what the candidate wants as opposed to what the employer wants. So the candidate goes in and looks for a job and because this is something they do on, on a regular basis, even if you’re a millennial, uh, you’re only looking for a job maybe once a year and, you know, a more traditional job super might be looking every four or five years. They should not have to learn search language, you know, bullying, search language. They should not have to fill out multiple pages of a profile when all that information is already contained on their resume or their LinkedIn profile. They should not have to learn whatever the, the particular tool that the site is using, whether it’s, you know, we’re gonna ask you three questions or we’re gonna have you search, or we’re gonna ask you to take a skill assessment, or whatever it is.

Jeff Dickey-Chasins: I firmly believe that for most people that have any kind of resume or profile, that AI and, and just simple, good matching technology should be able to go parse that information and present the job seeker with jobs that they would wanna look at. And then it should be an it iterative process where you could look at ’em and you say, This was a perfect match, this was exactly what I was looking for. And the next time they come back and they bring you jobs that are even more targeted than once before, that’s something that different sites have worked on. But honestly, most of the money gets spent on the other side of the fence, which is making employers happy. And employers typically, um, regardless of what they say, want a whole lot of applications so that they can sort of make up their own line at their own speed.

Jeff Dickey-Chasins: Um, they’ll tell you they want quality. And I’ve been surveying employers for years and they always say, Oh, I want quality application. I have quality over quantity. But reality is, is anyone that runs a job board or a sourcing company or a recruitment site or a marketplace is if you don’t have a certain level of volume that customers can be unhappy. Even if, if you send them five people and they’re all hired and indeed sends ’em a thousand people and they hire one person, they’re gonna like indeed better because Indeed gave me more. You know, so it’s, it’s unfortunate, and I’m not saying all companies work that way, but I’d say the vast majority that I’ve seen work that way. So I would really like to see more of an effort on technology that benefits the candidate because ultimately it’s also gonna benefit the employer. The employer’s gonna see a higher quality application come through because these are people that are seeing exactly what they want that matches their skills, and that’s theoretically what any employer would

Peter Zollman: Want. So here’s a question for you that isn’t an easy one. What does a job board do beyond providing listings and matching, especially five years from now?

Jeff Dickey-Chasins: So I think the, the divide between what I call the generalist job boards, uh, the Indeeds of the world as the recruiters of the world and the niche boards will continue. So niche boards, what they do essentially is they congregate audiences. They essentially put together types of candidates for the employers. You know, so they might be nuclear scientists, they might be, uh, plumbers, they could be all sorts of different things, but each sites in different ways will congregate these groups of people. And for employers that are really looking to find a very targeted hire, usually at a medium to low volume level, they work really, really well. So I could, I would say that those sites are gonna continue to do what they do and they’re gonna continue to evolve to what I call a hub model or a, a community model where they are basically providing a lot of value add to candidates, which is why the candidates come there and stay.

Jeff Dickey-Chasins: Um, marketplaces sometimes can be good additions to these kind of communities, and sometimes more traditional job boards can be the big boards. The, the journalist boards I think are in a fight with and alongside of what I would call sourcing, you know, basically sourcing tools that go out there and take da data in a classic data analysis way and find people for the employers that are hiring in volume and hiring globally. So my guess is that the generalist sites are going to be in the process of acquiring these sourcing companies just as we’ve seen indeed acquire a programmatic vendor, StepStone acquired app task and so on. We’ll see more and more of that, uh, as these companies go forward. Um, but we’re gonna continue to see that divide between the smaller sites that focus on communities and the larger sites that focus on just volume and data.

Steven Rothberg: Interesting. And, you know, as a, as an owner of a job board, the ability to get people to come back over and over and over again is kind of the holy grail. Mm-hmm. . And there are definitely some job boards that do that exceptionally well. Right. And others like ours where it is a continual struggle that job seekers are, in my mind, not all that interested in the job board. They’re interested in the job mm-hmm. . But the sites that have had real success, like high, like mutual friend of ours, Andy Hile, that is one of the owners of higher ed jobs, they have since day one created a community where people come, come back not just to search for jobs, but for career advice. Right. And it is sort of like that go to, uh, and that that is aspirational and attainable. So for the, the job boards in recruitment marketplaces out there, Jeff might be able to help you figure out , how, how to help, uh, make things happen. So, yeah. So Jeff, so thank you very much for sharing. Peter, any closing words?

Peter Zollman: No, I’ve known Jeff for a very long time, as have you, when we started, all three of us had black hair. Uh, now I have very light black hair. Jeff has gray hair and you have uhoh, almost no hair. Damn. Um, uh, but, uh, you know, we’re, we’re the dinosaurs of the, uh, recruitment marketplace industry or the job board industry. And Jeff is not only the dinosaur but the doctor. Um, Jeff, obviously, uh, if people want to get in touch with you, you want to give him your email address or you want to, uh, point them to your website or any, or all of the above.

Jeff Dickey-Chasins: Yeah. So, uh, you’re gonna need a fire and a blanket and you have to sort of heat it up and then you get the smoke going. But if you’re not in, if you’re not into that, then probably the best way to do do this, uh, to reach me is to go to job board There’s a contact me button there where there’s my email on there. My email is the doctor job board, and you can find me on LinkedIn, I’m and Chase,

Steven Rothberg: Or in Grinnell, Iowa sitting next to Wayne Gretsky. Yes, Jeff, it has been a pleasure. Thank you so much. Well,

Jeff Dickey-Chasins: Thank you guys.

Peter Zollman: Inside job boards and recruitment marketplaces is a co-production of Evergreen Podcasts College Recruiter and the AIM Group.

Steven Rothberg: Please subscribe for free on your favorite app, review it five stars are always nice, and recommend it to a couple of people you know who wanna learn more about job boards and recruitment marketplaces.

Peter Zollman: Special thanks to our producer and engineer, Ian Douglas. I’m your host, Peter Oman of the AIM Group, the leading global consultancy in the field of marketplaces and classified advertising. Find out more about our reports on recruitment marketplaces, job boards and classifieds, including our new recruitment marketplaces annual at aim

Steven Rothberg: And I’m your other host, Stephen Rothberg of job Search Site College recruiter. Each year we help more than 7 million candidates find great new jobs. Our customers are primarily Fortune 1000 companies, government agencies, and other employers who hire at scale and advertise their jobs with us. You can reach me at Cheers.

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