Advice for Employers and Recruiters

What candidates are thinking and saying about your job board or recruitment marketplace with Alicia Ramsdell of Mindful Career Path.

Shelby Konkel AvatarShelby Konkel
November 10, 2022


Create, manage, and work with Job Boards and Recruitment Marketplaces.

Each week, Steven Rothberg, Founder and Chief Visionary Officer of College Recruiter, and Peter M. Zollman, Founder of the AIM Group, along with guests from the world’s leading job sites, analyze news about general, niche, and aggregator job board and recruitment marketplace sites.

In today’s episode, our hosts are joined by Alicia Ramsdell, the Founder and CEO of Mindful Career Path, a coaching service that provides career development and mindfulness opportunities powered by institutions, professionals, and students’ passion and energy.

Peter kicks off the episode by sharing some industry insight regarding the worldwide teacher shortage and the large number of teachers transitioning into new career paths. Steven and Peter discuss what job boards and recruitment marketplaces can do to help employers fill the growing number of vacancies and to help place those transitioning teachers into new roles.

Alicia joins this episode of Inside Job Boards and Recruitment Marketplaces to share advice on what job boards can do to improve the job seeker experience of their website. She brings up some of the common complaints she hears from candidates about their job board experience and how best to fix these mistakes. Finally, Alicia shares some client success stories and the unconventional ways she encourages candidates to utilize job boards.

Listen to the full episode here:

Subscribe here to follow the Job Boards and Recruitment Marketplaces podcast and stay up to date with new episodes.

TRANSCRIPT

Steven (00:09):

Welcome to the Inside Job Boards and Recruitment Marketplaces podcast. I’m Stephen 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 (00:23):

And I’m Peter Oman, founding Principle of the AIM Group, the leading global business intelligence service for marketplaces and classified advertising companies. We consult with recruitment marketplaces, companies and publish AIM group, recruitment intelligence, and a free weekly digest. We also host the annual Global Rec Buzz conference.

Steven (00:44):

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, good day, Peter. It’s be good to be with you again.

Peter (00:59):

Good morning, afternoon, evening. Depending on where the listeners are listening we’ve got people all around the world, so when we start our meetings or our editorial chats, we always have to say good morning, afternoon, evening. I got people who are at 9:00 PM at 11:00 PM and 6:00 AM all at the same time,

Steven (01:20):

And I’m often accused of being all over the place. So I think it fits in very nicely.

Peter (01:26):

Well, you are all over the place and not so much since Covid, but I used to be literally all over the place one week in Asia, one week in Europe, all that stuff.

Steven (01:37):

Yeah, Well, and it’s getting back that way. I’ve got a lot of traveling coming up this fall and winter, which I’m very excited about. Speaking of traveling and seeing things from all over the world AIM group reports. What are you guys looking at this week?

Peter (01:55):

I have worked on a two part series about teachers, two things, the shortages of teachers all around the world. We got about 10 of our people in Southeast Asia and in Latin America and in Europe and in Africa to contribute. There is a tremendous shortage of teachers and what job boards, recruitment marketplaces can do about that to help them. And the second half is teachers transitioning out of teaching. They may stay in education, but they don’t want to be in the classroom. And I did a little search on transitioning teachers, and they’re about seven or eight sites for transitioning teachers in the US alone. There are some in Europe, some in various other places. What are they qualified for? Where are the jobs for them? Almost all of those jobs pay more than teaching does, which is a shame and a tragedy. And there’s the demographic issue of teachers who are getting older who don’t want to deal with the I’ll use the polite term baloney anymore the bureaucracy and the misbehaving kids, and even worse, the misbehaving parents. So what are the resources for transitioning teachers, and what can recruitment sites and job boards do to help districts find teachers and schools, find teachers, and what can they do to help teachers who are transitioning out of what has typically been a lifelong career but isn’t necessarily any longer?

Steven (03:46):

My wife’s family, a bunch of them are in public education, and one of our closest friends is a fifth grade teacher. And just the horror stories of what’s happened over the last couple of years, not just with Covid and people getting sick and the pressure to have the classrooms open, but just all of the political pressures to for overseas listeners or listeners outside of the us. In the us, the education is very much local. Each state has its own education departments and each county, city, et cetera. I live in a suburb of near Minneapolis, and so our little suburb has its own school district. And within that school district, you’ve got a bunch of different schools and the, it’s very convoluted, not at all corporate, how they hire promote teachers, how they compensate teachers. And the pressures that come in from the outside are just completely different than what you see in the corporate world.

Peter (04:58):

Well, my wife taught for more than 40 years, and she said, first of all, it’s become very politicized education in general, especially in Florida where I am. And she said, the kids have changed, the parents have changed, the whole system has changed. And she was very, very happy to retire. It’s sad. And so what do schools around the world do to find, retain and educate teachers and keep them? And what can your job board or recruitment marketplace do to help them?

Steven (05:38):

Yeah, I can only imagine how hard that must have been for her to both be in education and married to you all at the same time. That’s more than any one person should have to bear.

Peter (05:49):

She definitely believes that the bigger challenge was not teaching

Steven (05:54):

<laugh>. There you go. <laugh>. Well before we get further a field I think we should learn a little bit from today’s guest. I’m excited. We’ve got Alicia Ramsdale, the founder and CEO of Mindful Career Path. She started her private career coaching practice a couple years ago in 2020, and likes to say that she’s inspired to make career fulfillment, a career reality for everyone. And she’s gonna bring the voice of the job seeker to the inside job boards and recruitment marketplaces podcast. Alicia, welcome

Alicia (06:33):

Steven and Peter. Thank you for having me today.

Peter (06:36):

Well, thank you for joining us. One of the things we wanted you to bring was what can and should job boards and recruitment marketplaces be doing to improve the experience for their job seekers? How they find jobs, how they find job boards or recruitment marketplaces, and then what goes right, and more importantly, what goes wrong when they find the right job board or the right job on that job board?

Alicia (07:10):

And that’s a loaded question right there. And I probably maybe more questions in one <laugh>, but today I’m gonna bring my perspective as a career coach, as a adjunct professor in higher education. I’ll also bring the perspective of my network that actually works within job board, the industry or within the companies. And then most importantly, the perspective from my clients that are out there going through their own job search strategy. So I really would like to say it’s threefold. Most importantly through the perspective of my clients,

Peter (07:40):

How do they find the job board

Alicia (07:42):

Typically, at least from a student or a younger worker, most popular, what’s advertised, what’s spoken about in the classroom or at networking events. So really that’s the job boards that hold the most market space, right? LinkedIn indeed. Or even just a good old fashioned Google search. So when they search for an opportunity, what comes up? What links are they hitting? And then those are the job boards they might use because that’s what came up at the top of the Google search. Most professionals or students, especially in the business space, they’re required at some point to create a LinkedIn profile and revert back to that. And this allows a sense of being comfortable with that particular job board. And as you know, job search strategy or job searching can be uncomfortable. So if there’s a sense of comfortableness with LinkedIn, for instance, and that conversation, that’s part of the reasons why clients will seek that out because it’s right in front of them and they’re comfortable with

Peter (08:41):

It. What do they hate about job boards and the job board experience?

Alicia (08:45):

There’s a couple of specifics. So as an example, one specific is the limitations on characters or other requirements when filling out a job application on the job board, as an example, salary before the conversation happens before understanding the full scope of the job. When you are required to put salary in an application, but it’s limited to dollar amounts, there’s no available space for a comment explanation or the response of negotiable. Clients would rather see, okay, here’s the base range and the final package can be negotiated. The speed of the application process, How long is this taking me? Everyone wants instant gratification. The other issue that I see a lot is they complain if they have to upload a resume and then ask to fill out lengthy forms to duplicate that same information through the online forms. Also, job boards, if you, you’re able to opt in and sign up for an email for job matches. Clients don’t appreciate it if jobs that are sent to them are out of scope. And I, I’m not sure how that happens, but sometimes that happens. Oh no, it never happens. Yeah, <laugh>

Steven (09:51):

Some, you mean sometimes that happens or sometimes it doesn’t happen. <laugh>,

Alicia (09:56):

I’m gonna go 80 20, but I’m not gonna say which one that is 80 20.

Steven (09:59):

There you go, <laugh>.

Alicia (10:02):

Another thing is lack of organization on a job board. So things like duplicate job postings or postings that are there that have already been filled. So, and also the lack of clarity nowadays. Is it a remote opportunity? Is it hybrid? Is it in person? There’s a number of others that we could talk about, but I’d like to try to keep my answers as quick as possible. <laugh>,

Steven (10:26):

<laugh>. Well, we were thinking about doing a four hour podcast for this episode, and we thought, You know what? We don’t have enough time, even in four hours to talk about all the goods and bads. So we’ll just limit it to the typical 20 to 25 minutes and let people come back. If you know like something, it’s better to ask for more. So interesting what you’re identified in terms of how people find job boards, Google, word of mouth brand, et cetera. That’s very much like a law would’ve heard when you talked about some of the things they disliked. Actually, some of those are not much discussed between job board owners at conferences, like a group hosts rbu. I don’t recall job boards or recruitment marketplaces talking about the number of characters or having to put in salary information. So that’s really good. When you hear from one of the job seekers who uses you as a career coach, if they come and say, Hey, I had this great experience, or I went to that site that you recommended, whether it’s a LinkedIn or an Indeed or a zip recruiter, whatever job board you might have recommended to them and they say, Hey, Alicia, that was great.

(11:50):

Why? What are they telling you? What is it that’s great about a job board experience?

Alicia (11:58):

That’s a great question. And most job seekers are gonna choose, again, what’s right in front of them and what is easy. So like we mentioned before, a LinkedIn or Indeed something that they’re comfortable with. Just two examples. Most job seekers when they come to me and they said it was successful or they were happy with it, obviously if they got a job from it, but initially they choose a job board that’s easy to filter searches or has an easy to easy apply option. Also, clients are not looking for, like I said before, not where they have to upload a resume and then when they apply, upload that same information in some sort of lengthy form. So that’s part of it. Another item that we already talked about, but I’ll say it again, is taking into consideration the option to sign up for job alerts. But again, they regret that choice.

(12:49):

If they send, they get sent jobs that are out of scope. I think those are the two big things. They want something that’s going to be easy, so the easy apply option, they want something that makes sense. If I already uploaded my resume, why am I typing in more things? And then obviously the biggest piece is did they actually get a job from there? I think the last piece that I wanted touch upon is if there is an opportunity for a job board to post a recruiter contact information, that’s something that clients I worked with really enjoy, somebody to actually talk to at that organization. Not just an info@company.com, somebody that they can actually talk to, look up on LinkedIn, something of that nature so that they can get a real feel for what this rule is all about. Because as we know, sometimes job descriptions don’t house all of the information of that particular opportunity. So having the conversation with the human being can get you to a place of, Okay, now I understand the full scope of the job. Is it worth my time? Is it worth their time to pursue it further?

Steven (13:59):

We’ll be back right after this break. Welcome back to the inside job boards and recruitment marketplaces podcasts.

Peter (14:19):

Do you recommend that your clients use niche or niche depending on who’s listening and where they are? Niche job boards. I once did some research and found there were five job boards specifically for phlebotomists, and there were at least four or five for HVAC heating, ventilation and air conditioned tech, air conditioning technicians. And I thought, does it make sense for somebody who’s a phlebotomist to go on LinkedIn or Indeed, or should they go to, I don’t know what they were called, but phlebotomy jobs.com or.org to find those jobs? Are you a big fan of niche job boards, niche job boards? We’re in the states niches overseas, <laugh>? Yeah,

Alicia (15:09):

I think they’re an excellent opportunity to take a look into it, but I also think the beauty is you don’t have to choose one job board over another. So you can take a look at that site because it makes sense, right? It’s all related to the job that you actually want, but there might be other sites out there that surprise you that sometimes I’ll have students in the higher education industry that might be going into the medical field and they don’t see the link between using or their future and using something that’s more business professional related, which they think of LinkedIn as being more business professional related. But you never know who you’re gonna meet through using these job boards. Again, I’m using LinkedIn as an example, but you never know who you’re gonna meet through these conversations. And going back to that medical student looking at LinkedIn, somebody might be on the board of a hospital that’s local to where you live.

(16:07):

They might be a good person to talk to, not specifically specifically about a job, but about the organization. So again, the beauty is you don’t have to choose from one board to a job board to another board. You can use several job boards throughout your job search. And it’s really, it’s not a detriment to the candidate where they find the opportunity or where they apply. More importantly through the application process, it’s about can you be in touch with an employee, can an employee or a recruiter at your target organization and make that connection to have a conversation?

Peter (16:37):

Tell us about one of your clients and his or her success. That’s an interesting story that you go, Wow, that worked. And if you don’t have any, don’t admit it.

Alicia (16:53):

<laugh>, <laugh>.

(16:55):

Something that I use actually with the majority of my clients is I like to use the job boards to help build their core messaging. So if they’re interested in becoming whatever specific role that they’re interested in becoming, right? You can use financial analysts as an example. I like them to use job boards to search for those ideal titles so they can search for financial analyst roles and then look through those job descriptions and start to pull out that industry language, that industry jargon and align, whatever. When you’re looking through those responsibilities, align whatever those ideal responsibilities are with some of their past career achievements and figuring out, okay, what are the typical qualifications for this ideal rule? And they can also gain a picture of what companies are actually hiring. And the success that comes from that is that they’re more confident and then me in the message that they put out into the universe about, Hey, not only do I wanna be a financial analyst and I live in Boston, what I want every day to wake up and do are these. And then they can start talking about the specific responsibilities that they’re excited to do. And by the way, I also know that company X, Y, and Z are hiring. They’ve been listed all over job boards. Let me connect with someone, maybe an alumni connection that I can connect with that works within these organizations. So don’t, for me personally, when my clients have success with job boards, it’s using them in a holistic approach rather than just narrowing in on one specific job that they’re hoping to attain from this.

Steven (18:28):

And that’s awesome. And it’s the value of having a good career coach or somebody else, spouse, partner, partner, whatever, that can give you that kind of advice to look at the job postings, look at the language they’re using, look at the organizations, and then make sure that in your communications as a job seeker with those employers that you’re using the same language. That greatly increases the likelihood that employer’s gonna see you. You’re gonna get interviewed that you’re gonna get hired, and I think a lot of job seekers don’t appreciate how important that is. So I’m really glad, but not surprised to hear that you’re providing that advice to them. I think that we’ve got time for maybe one more question, and that would be for me, if you could talk to a job board in recruitment marketplace and you kind of are here and tell them this is the one thing that you don’t see nearly enough of maybe at all, and that you think would make a big positive difference for job seekers, including those that are clients of yours, what would that one thing be?

Alicia (19:38):

Something that I hear often, and I don’t know how feasible it is, but if it were possible, people want feedback, so they might get an automatic canned response or rejection. They might get a no month later, two months later. If there was a way for companies that obviously are going to market on these job boards to have the requirement to provide feedback, even if it’s one line, right? Your resume did not have meet the keyword, keyword requirements that we were hoping for, or you don’t have the education level we need, or there were 1000 applicants, and unfortunately we are only looking at 50 of those applicants and you weren’t one of the top 50. Even if it’s as short as that and format, at least the client walks away with some sort of closure because when it’s just quick, no, or a month later they get a no, there’s for an already vulnerable situation, it’s just the little dagger turned enough to make them even more stressed out about the job search strategy. And it really, when it has nothing to do sometimes about them as a human being as a person, it’s more just as a candidate and how their resume was set up. It just didn’t match whether it was technology based or from a human perspective, it just didn’t line up on that given day in that given moment.

Steven (21:24):

Awesome. Transparency, transparency, transparency. It’s not a four letter word.

Peter (21:30):

It’s not easy either for an employer, by the way I’ve gone through as an employer, although we don’t employ people, we bring them on as contractors, and you get 220 applications for one position and only seven of those 220 people follow the instructions in the ad. So do you spend the time sending all 213 of them a note saying, if only you had read the ad and followed the instructions, you might have been considered. It’s, it’s very easy to press the send application button without paying any attention to what you’re applying for. So it works both ways, but I think your point is very, very well taken

Alicia (22:19):

And to your point, I think that that would be beneficial for the candidate on the other end to see you didn’t take five minutes to read the instructions and that’s why you’re not a part of the interview pool. I think that would help them in the long run so that they do take the time in their next application process. So as much as it was,

Peter (22:41):

You’d be shocked. I don’t want go there, but let’s just say some of the responses. Are

Alicia (22:47):

You a lot of credit <laugh>?

Steven (22:49):

Well, Alicia, thank you so much for joining us today. I hope that the job board and recruitment marketplace leaders who are listening will take to heart some of the things that you’ve shared. I think that those of us who operate sites like that, we tend to be more focused on the employer, the advertiser side of the marketplace, because those are the folks that we tend to have more contact with and they’re also the ones that are sending us money and we need to remember we’re in a double sided marketplace, which means that we need to take care of both of those groups. For the listeners who wanna learn more about you or how to reach you how would you like for them to do that?

Alicia (23:32):

Sure. If they go to mindful career path.com they can see all of my social media links and my email address is on there, alicia ramel mindful career path.com. And I also have a page there that shows a number of resources, right? Career coaching resources as well as job boards college recruiter being on there, of course, but mindful career path.com/resources for anybody that’s looking for additional opportunities to explore.

Steven (24:03):

Awesome. Thank you so much.

Alicia (24:05):

You’re welcome. Thank you again for having me.

Peter (24:12):

Inside job boards and recruitment marketplaces is a co-production of Evergreen Podcasts College Recruiter and the AIM group.

Steven (24:21):

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

Peter (24:33):

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 group.com/reports.

Steven (24:58):

I’m your host Steven Rothberg of job search site college recruiter. Each year we help more than 12 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 stephen@collegerecruiter.com.

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