ARTICLES, BLOGS & VIDEOS

The latest news, trends and information to help you with your recruiting efforts.

Julie Ann Sowash of Disability Solutions

Posted March 21, 2020 by

Faith Rothberg of College Recruiter and Julie Ann Sowash of Disability Solutions Selected by NACE to Deliver Presentation on How Programmatic and CPC Impact-Diversity and Inclusion

Minneapolis, MN (March 20, 2020) — Job search site, College Recruiter, announced today that its chief executive officer, Faith Rothberg, will deliver a presentation at the 2020 National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) annual conference in Minneapolis with Julie Ann Sowash, Executive Director of Disability Solutions.

NACE is an American nonprofit professional association for college career services, recruiting practitioners, and others who wish to hire the college educated. It boasts a membership of more than 8,100 college career services professionals at nearly 2,000 colleges and universities nationwide, more than 3,100 university relations and recruiting professionals, and the business affiliates like College Recruiter that serve this community.

This year’s conference will be held at the Minneapolis Convention Center from June 2nd through 5th. Approximately 2,500 career service, recruiting, and others typically attend these annual conferences.

“I was thrilled to be notified by NACE that the proposal that we submitted was accepted by their annual conference selection committee,” said Rothberg of College Recruiter. “We felt that the proposal would likely be of interest to them and the attendees to the conference as inclusion is a core value for NACE. We admire their passion to foster and support individual and organizational diversity and inclusion to advance equity in all facets of the Association.”

According to Sowash of Diversity Solutions, “Our plan is for Faith to begin the presentation with an introduction to how programmatic and cost-per-click advertising work. Attendees will see how an employer might use one and not the other, but they typically work together. I’ll then discuss how they may undermine diversity and inclusion efforts by steering advertising budgets to the job search site or other media property that offers the lowest pricing, which is often very different from delivering the diverse – candidates employers are seeking.” Instead of just identifying the problem, Faith and Julie will – recommend a solution that is simple to implement and will, we hope, be adopted by employers seeking diverse candidates including recent graduates and talent with disabilities.

About College Recruiter

College Recruiter believes that every student and recent graduate deserves a great career. Our customers are primarily Fortune 1,000 companies, government agencies, and other organizations who want to hire dozens or even hundreds of students and recent graduates of all one-, two-, and four-year colleges and universities for part-time, seasonal, internship, and entry-level jobs. For more information, call 952.848.2211, email Sales@CollegeRecruiter.com, or visit www.CollegeRecruiter.com.

About Disability Solutions Disability Solutions works with employers to help strengthen their workforce through diversity and inclusion. We partner with top companies to deliver people and business-driven outcomes by developing recruiting and engagement strategies for the disability community – delivering custom solutions in outreach, recruiting, talent management, retention and compliance. For more information, call 203.203.6220., email Info@DisabilityTalent.org, or visit www.DisabilityTalent.org.

Faith Rothberg, CEO of College Recruiter

Posted February 11, 2020 by

What has changed in the job board industry since College Recruiter went live in 1996?

College Recruiter’s chief executive officer, Faith Rothberg, was recently interviewed by a learning and development company. One of the questions they asked was how the job board industry has changed since our site went live way back in 1996.

Two of the biggest things that have changed are how employers treat candidates and the technology used to bring the two together. 

Employers treat candidates with far more respect now than they did in the mid-90s. Some of that has to do with the economy because it is far harder to hire well-qualified people today than it was 25 years ago. But some of that has to do with efforts by groups like The Talent Board, which runs the Candidate Experience Awards. We were very active in helping that organization get off the ground and continue to advocate for it. It uses a carrot instead of stick approach by praising employers for treating candidates well instead shaming those who don’t. 

On the technology side, we can use College Recruiter as an example of how much and how fast it has changed. We have had seven versions of our website in 23 years. That might sound like a lot, but that’s an average of one roughly every three years.

When we launched in 1996, only 50 of the Fortune 500 had websites and none of those had a searchable database of jobs that allowed candidates to apply on-line. Instead, you could sometimes search but usually there would just be a generic page that described at a high level the kinds of candidates the employer was seeking and you’d be asked to mail, fax, or maybe email your resume instead of applying online to a specific posting. Today, virtually every company with more than a few hundred employees has an applicant tracking system and, therefore, searchable job postings that allow you to apply to specific postings. Many of those integrate assessments so you sometimes aren’t even able to apply if you’re unqualified. In short, as compared to 25 years ago, candidates and employers spend far less time today trying to find each other and candidates spend far less time applying to jobs. That allows them far more time to make sure that they are a good fit for each other.  Are there any trends you’re following for 2020? In terms of technology or otherwise?  

A trend we’re following for 2020 is something that we’ve invested a tremendous amount of time and money preparing for. College Recruiter is one of the only niche job boards in the world to have successfully migrated our employer customers from duration- to performance-based pricing. Duration-based pricing was like buying an ad in the newspaper: you paid $X to run your ad for Y days. We still offer $75 postings for 30-days because many employers prefer to buy that way, but most of our customers now pay for every candidate that we send to them, usually by click. If we run an ad and don’t send candidates to the employer then we don’t get paid. Our interests, therefore, are better aligned and the employer no longer has to post-and-pray.

At the same time as pay-for-performance is rolling over some of our out-of-date competitors like a tsunami, automated systems are determining where job ads run. This is called programmatic job ad distribution and the sites which get to run an ad, for how many days, and for how much money will be the ads which get the best results. In the mid-1990’s, the sites that got the ads were those which had the funniest Superbowl ads. If your job board delivers quality candidates in the quantity desired by the employer, then you’re going to continue to receive similar ads from that and other employers and the amount you get paid for the candidates you deliver to the employer will increase, so you’re making more money and your customers are happy about that.

In addition the changes taking place on the tech side, there’s also been a lot of changes on the candidate side. In the mid-1990’s, the candidates entering the workforce were the youngest members of Gen X and oldest Millennials. Now, the oldest Millennials are approaching 40 and the generation entering the workforce is Gen Z. With the rise of Gen Z has also come a lot of talk about the future of work. Will there be work or will AI displace all of us? If there is no work or not enough for the vast majority of people, will we all receive a universal basic income (UBI) and, if not, how will we survive?

There’s been a long term trend moving away from living to work toward working to living. What I mean by that is far more than Baby Boomers, Gen Z wants to make a positive impact on the world. They place greater value on their personal relationships and understand that they cannot count on an employer to be loyal to them during difficult times. They value working hard and seek financial security but, sadly, they don’t expect to find it. 

Regarding the future of work, look for more freelancing and gig work not because the people want it but because corporations are demanding it. Look for more flexible working relationships including project-based work and remote work. 

Employers should be prepared: the gig economy will make recruitment easier but retention harder. Employers will be able to staff up and down faster but their workforce will be less experienced and be less efficient. 

In our college recruiting niche, we’re seeing a rapidly increasing minority of employers becoming school- and even major-agnostic. Employers are starting to use productivity data to determine where their best hires come from and they are finding that its more about the person and less about the school or major. We’re excited about that, because we believe that every student and recent graduate deserves a great career, not just those from the elite schools. 

We’re sometimes asked if there is one thing that we would advise talent acquisition teams to do differently with these Gen Z candidates. The answer is no different than if we were to advise them as to what to do differently with a Boomer, Gen Xer, or Millennial because we all want the same thing from prospective employers: do a better job of communicating to the candidates about the positive impact they can have on the world around them by working for your organization. Gen Zers get the attention around this issue because it appears to matter more to them at the age they’re at than it did to previous generations, but who doesn’t want to make the world a better place, both while they’re at work and on their own time?

Some of the advise we give to candidates has changed over the years, because the underlying issues have changed. For example, we talk a lot more now about starting salary because that has become so critical. Employers tend to increase pay by percentages rather than the value you deliver, so if you start off being paid too little you’ll likely always be paid too little. If your boss doesn’t value your work as shown by underpaying you, try to find a different job within the same company where your work will be better valued as shown by your compensation. And if that doesn’t work, find a new employer. 

Hopefully, candidates understand that we are NOT telling them to quit their jobs to get paid better. That strategy can work, but it is far better to find a way to get paid better by your current employer. A key to making that happen is for the employee to understand that the vast majority of employers want to compensate their employees fairly. Unfortunately, some hiring managers don’t know what fair compensation is. The reality is that employees can find this information as easily as employers and employees should use that information to negotiate a fair starting salary. This has become even more crucial for Gen Z candidates than generations before because Gen Z employees are carrying so much more student debt when they finish school than previous generations.

The last couple of questions for Faith were about industry jargon. She was asked for her favorite and least favorite terms. Her favorite was CPC (cost-per-click) because our successful migration from duration- to performance-based pricing such as CPC is driving fantastic growth at College Recruiter.

On the flip side of that jargon coin, she said her least favorite was matching technology, simply because it doesn’t work. It would be great if it did work but the reality is that it needs massive amounts of great data to work well. The data partially comes from the resume which is a backward-looking document and Gen Z candidates are so early in their careers that their resumes simply don’t have much data on them.

The data also comes from job postings which are forward-looking documents and tend to be very poorly written. For example job postings almost always talk about the employers requirements, many of which are actually preferences, and typically talk little about job duties. So you’ve got this situation where the Gen Z candidate can’t show much yet but the employer will only be matched with them if they’ve accomplished a lot professionally. That might work well for an engineer with ten years of experience but it fails miserably for a young adult who has had a couple of part-time jobs and maybe one internship.

Faith Rothberg, CEO of College Recruiter

Posted February 04, 2020 by

What was the original idea for College Recruiter and what problems were we trying to solve?

College Recruiter’s chief executive officer, Faith Rothberg, was recently interviewed by a learning and development company. One of the questions they asked was about the history of our company, including what problems we were attempting to solve.

The company out of which College Recruiter grew was founded in November 1991. We were publishing maps and employment magazines for college campuses for the first few years.

In 1995, a couple of us were in a career service office at the University of Minnesota when the director said to us, “There’s this thing called the Internet”. She said that she didn’t know what it was but that some of her students were using it to research companies they were about to interview with. In those days, the best way to do that research was to go into the career service office and go through their collection of annual, corporate reports until you found the one for the company you were researching or, just as often, found that it was missing.

We paid a high school student who was working for us $3,000 to build the first version of our website. We launched in November 1996. Looking back, it was incredibly rudimentary but not at all uncommon for the era. Job seekers could either search by category or location, but not both. So you could run a search for engineering jobs or jobs in Illinois but not engineering jobs in Illinois.

The problem we were trying to solve was to try to find a way to help every student and recent graduate find a great career. It was — and remains — important to us that we didn’t just serve some students and hardly any recent graduates or just students from some schools. We wanted to be inclusive and not exclude students simply because they happened to attend the “wrong” school. Unfortunately, we still see that approach a lot amongst some of our indirect competitors.

We’re currently in the middle of launching the seventh version of our software. True to our desires way back in 1996, our site is built from the ground-up to be inclusive. About 2.5 million job seekers use our site a year and every one of them has full access to every part-time, seasonal, internship, and entry-level job advertised on our site as they search by their desired location and keywords. The keywords can be job title, major, military occupation code (MOC), and in just about any language.

So, if you grew up in Philadelphia, are attending a school in Los Angeles, and want to find a job in Houston, you’re going to able to do that on College Recruiter. It is very, very unlikely that your career service office website will have any jobs listed in Houston and, if it does, it will likely only be a very, very small number. At College Recruiter, we typically have about 750,000 jobs advertised on our site at any given time.

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Posted December 31, 2019 by

How do I robot-proof my career?

Throughout human history, automation has displaced people. The difference now is that automation is starting to displace those with the most rather than the least skills, and so the conventional answers about getting more education no longer apply.

The reality is that no one will be able to robot-proof their careers if they’re at the beginning of their working life as no one can predict which jobs will existing decades from now given the rapid advancement of artificial intelligence.

But some careers are less likely to be displaced by robots, artificial intelligence, and other automation than others. These include jobs where significant critical thinking skills are necessary, as artificial intelligence is far less advanced than self-serve kiosks where the critical thinking is actually performed by the customer. 

Posted December 10, 2019 by

What’s a common resume tip that is actually really bad advice?

One of the most common and most harmful recommendations is to send a video or otherwise graphically enhanced resume to any medium- or large-sized employer that does not explicitly ask for one.

Why? Because the vast majority of them use applicant tracking systems (ATS), and almost none of these are able to handle video or graphics. Candidates who rely upon video or graphics to communicate their qualifications or career interests put themselves at a significant disadvantage when applying to jobs advertised by these employers.

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Posted October 14, 2019 by

How mobile-friendly is your application process?

By Robin Porter

Tom, a 38-year-old long haul truck driver, spends most of his time on the road—often going weeks at a time without seeing his wife and two young children. He’s worked hard to earn his degree online, so he can find a job that lets him be at home with his family.

Now Tom’s in job-search mode. Given the nomadic nature of a trucking job, he has to submit applications when and where he can. That’s why he’s thankful for smartphones—even if it’s sometimes a pain to fill out applications on a small screen (so many questions, and why does he have to re-enter his job history when he’s already uploaded his resume?). However, with limited access to secure computers, it’s all he’s got.

A couple of job applications have been user-friendly. More often, though, the frustration of trying to get through the tedious and detailed online application process on a phone, combined with his tight schedule, forces Tom to abandon his applications to get back on the road. It’s not his choice, but he has schedules to meet. Sometimes, he wonders if he’ll ever be able to settle into a job that will allow him to watch his kids grow up…

Someone who’s as industrious and goal-oriented as Tom, our fictional truck driver, would be an asset to any company. If he applied to your company, would he be interviewing with you right now, or would he be lost in the system because he applied on a mobile device?

Before you wave away the idea that the devices applicants use make a difference in his or her employment prospects, consider that, according to the Pew Research Center, 81% of adults in the U.S. now own smartphones, with the breakdown in ownership by age as follows:

  • Age 18-29: 96%
  • Age 30-49: 92%
  • Age 50-64: 79%

And consider another recent study by Glassdoor, the employer and salary review site, which found that 58% of their users look for jobs on smartphones—and in fact prefer to apply that way.

That’s a lot of job seekers you could be missing out on, if your online application process isn’t mobile-friendly.

Who Applies via Mobile?

Most mobile applicants tend to be in the mid-phase of their careers, with 55% in the 35-44 age range. The largest group—52%—are women, and in general, mobile applicants tend come from industries and occupations where their work doesn’t keep them within range of a computer. Think restaurant, health care, retail, construction, manufacturing or transportation workers like our friend Tom.

Even if you don’t specifically hire in those industries, how many good candidates who have decided to transition to your industry might you be overlooking—without even realizing it?

The Effects of Mobile-Friendly Application

Glassdoor’s study found that mobile job seekers complete 53% fewer applications and take 80% longer to complete each application. The difficulty of completing applications—a CareerBuilder study found that 60% of jobseekers quit in the middle of an online application due to length, complexity or even formatting issues—is not only discouraging for the applicants, it could eventually become a negative for your company as jobseekers abandon your site for more user-friendly postings.

Now, if we’re being honest, in an employer’s market it might not be a significant issue. However, when the market favors job seekers and you have to compete for talent, your applicant pool could shrink considerably—especially as the capabilities of mobile devices continue to expand.

And if you think that a challenging online application process separates the serious applicant from the less-serious ones, think again. The top-notch candidates you’re searching for know what their time is worth, and their patience for an unnecessarily complicated process is as low as anyone else’s.

The Costs of Mobile-Unfriendly Application

Appcast, a developer of programmatic job advertising technology, did a benchmark study that examined the U.S. hiring market in 2018. Among their findings was a 24.5% increase in mobile device clicks from 2017 to 2018. Nearly half of all applies, 47.10%, came from a mobile device in 2018, up drastically from 30.05% in 2017—a 54.93% increase in mobile applications.

The Appcast study further found that recruiters who use more streamlined platforms that shorten the length of the application process cut their cost per applicant almost 250% by reducing the time to complete an application from 15 minutes to just five. Consider that in the cost-per-click pricing model, recruiters pay per click—whatever the candidate does beyond that initial click. When unwieldly application forms translate into abandoned applications, you’re still paying for those clicks even if they don’t result in a job candidate.

As Tom, our trucker friend, and other job seekers rely more and more on mobile devices to search and apply for jobs, it’s vital for employers to adapt their online application processes to reflect the latest technology and application practices. Glassdoor’s study showed that when a job was promoted as mobile-friendly, the number of job applicants increased as much as 11.6%. How many more promising applicants would you have to choose missing out on if you made your online application process mobile-friendly?

Today might be the best day to make that calculation. And the first day of a new era in your recruitment process.

Sources:

Being away from home for weeks on end can put truckers’ mental health at risk, and there’s no solution in sight,” by Rachel Premack, businessinsider.com, June 18, 2018.

Mobile Fact Sheet,” by Pew Research Center, pewinternet.org, June 12, 2019.

The Rise of Mobile Devices in Job Search: Challenges and Opportunities for Employers,” by Daniel Zhao, glassdoor.com, June 2, 2019.

Study: Most Job Seekers Abandon Online Job Applications,” by Dave Zielinski, shrm.org, March 8, 2016.

Is Poor UX Hurting Your Chances of Finding Good Employees?” by Samuel Harper, uxdesign.cc, July 14, 2019.

2019 Recruitment Media Benchmark Report,” by Appcast, info.appcase.io, 2019. (Note: link opens to a download form)

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Posted October 04, 2019 by

What’s changing in talent acquisition?

We launched our job board, CollegeRecruiter.com, 23 years ago in 1996 but have seen more embracement of technology and data to drive decisions by employers in the past two years than we did in the previous 21 years combined.

Our employer customers used to talk about how they were using data to make decisions, but what many (not all) were actually doing was using data to justify decisions. Now, many and perhaps most are actually using data to make their decisions. Two, tangible results of that:

  1. Very few data-driven employers prefer to buy job postings on a traditional, duration-basis because they can see that performance-based postings are more effective, efficient, or both. By effective, I mean that they generate enough, quality candidates to allow the employer to meet its hiring objectives, whether they’re trying to hire one, 10, or 100 people through the posting.
  2. Most data-driven employers are either using programmatic technology to distribute their jobs or their vendors are. Programmatic job ad distribution is largely killing the ability of media to sell postings based upon proxies like how many registered users they have, site traffic, and whether they purchased a Super Bowl ad. But it is also leading to problems with diversity and inclusion, as too many employers and vendors are looking at only the effective cost per application (eCPA) to determine where to run ads and not considering that certain audiences are just going to be more expensive to reach and that it is worthwhile spending that extra money in some but not all cases.

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Posted April 25, 2019 by

To hire students, you need to recruit on campus. Right? Wrong.

At College Recruiter job search site, one of the biggest changes that we’ve seen over the past few years is the rapidly increasing number of employers who use time-to-hire, cost-per-hire, and productivity data to measure their sourcing partners, including college career service offices. Their findings are shocking to many.

For decades, employers believed that they had to travel to and recruit students on-campus if they wanted to hire “the best” candidates. Those beliefs were typically grounded in false assumptions. You’ve probably heard that productivity data shows that the more diverse and inclusive a workforce, the more productive is that workforce. But that means that an employer who only hires at a small percentage of the 3,000 four-year colleges and universities or the 4,400 one- and two-year colleges is undermining their own diversity and inclusion efforts. So the more targeted your campus recruiting efforts, the less diverse, inclusive, and productive will be your workforce. Ouch.

Another example? Many of our employer customers who have looked at their productivity data have discovered that the more elite the school the employee went to, the less productive is that employee. How can that be true? Because they leave far sooner than those hired from second or even third tier schools. One of our long-time customers is an accounting and consulting company. They cut way back on their on-campus efforts in favor of hiring through what they call “virtual” sources like College Recruiter. Why? Diversity, inclusion, and productivity. They’re becoming school and even major agnostic, meaning they don’t really care what school you went to or even what your major was. They used to only consider accounting, economics, and finance majors. Now they embrace fine arts, Russian literature, and any other major. In their words, “we can teach an employee how to read a balance sheet but we can’t teach them how to think critically”.

College Recruiter believes that every student and recent graduate deserves a great career. Our customers are primarily Fortune 1,000 companies, federal government agencies, and other organizations who want to hire dozens or even hundreds of students and recent graduates of all one-, two-, and four-year colleges and universities for part-time, seasonal, internship, and entry-level jobs.

In this historically tight labor market, are you struggling to hire the dozens or even hundreds of well-targeted, well-qualified students and recent graduates for part-time, seasonal, internship, and entry-level jobs? Would it make sense to either schedule a 30-minute call so that I can better understand your hiring challenges or email those to me so that I can make specific recommendations for how College Recruiter can help?

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Posted April 24, 2019 by

Looking for a remote part-time, seasonal, internship, or entry-level job?

On March 19th, College Recruiter announced on The Chad and Cheese Podcast that our site, leveraging search technology from Google Cloud Talent Solutions, had rolled out major upgrades to how students, recent graduates, and other candidates can search for and find jobs. The announcement in March was two-fold:

  1. Candidates can search all of the job postings using any of 100+ languages, even if the job posting was written in English. Employers hiring retail sales associates, for example, could advertise those positions in English but may see an increase in applications from those whose primary language is Spanish but who are also proficient in English.
  2. Rather than searching for jobs by city or state/province, we became one of the first sites not just to enable commute search, but to put it front and center. If you’re searching for a part-time job in New York City, does it really matter that the job is in New York City? Wouldn’t it be more relevant if you could restrict or prioritize your search to jobs which are within a 15-minute walk, 30-minute cycle, 45-minutes on public transport, etc? Thanks to our friends at Google, the millions of candidates who use College Recruiter a year now search by how long it will take for them to get to a job rather than the less meaningful proxy of how far away that job is.

Today, in collaboration with Google Cloud, we are excited to share another huge step forward for candidates. Quite simply, candidates who are searching for remote work will no longer need to guess at whether the employer has included words in their job posting such as virtual, home-based, work-from-home, WFH, or telecommute. Until now, if the candidate included in her search the keyword “remote” and the employer included in his posting the keyword “virtual”, very, very few job boards would be able to match the two job postings. In other words, job postings rarely clearly described work opportunities as being available for remote work even when they were. Effective immediately, we’re able to do so and we’re able to do so exceptionally well.

According to Google, “job seekers have different lifestyle and geographic needs that require flexibility. Working from home can enable parents and caregivers to be more available to their families. It can help retain a high performing employee who regularly relocates as a military spouse. And it can help increase the loyalty of millennial and Generation Z employees who are much likelier to stay in a role for 5+ years if their company is flexible about where and when they work.”

In addition to helping the largely Millennial and Gen Z candidates who use College Recruiter to find great careers, we’re also excited about the promise this enhancement has for those with disabilities that make it difficult or even impossible to commute to work. There’s a tremendous amount of talent in these people. We’re proud to be a part of this solution.

Posted April 23, 2019 by

There isn’t a shortage of talent. There’s a shortage of well-qualified talent finding your jobs.

For many employers, this is an incredibly frustrating labor market. Technology has made it easier than ever for candidates to apply to jobs so employers typically say that quantity isn’t their issue but quality is. But why?

College Recruiter believes that every student and recent graduate deserves a great career. Our customers are primarily Fortune 1,000 companies, federal government agencies, and other organizations who want to hire dozens or even hundreds of students and recent graduates of all one-, two-, and four-year colleges and universities for part-time, seasonal, internship, and entry-level jobs.

How is College Recruiter able to help so many of the largest and well-known employers in the country hire so many great candidates? A lot of reasons, but a key one is that we license the world’s best search technology — Google’s — to match up candidates who know what kind of a job they’re looking for but might not guess at the job title or other keywords that your organization uses in its ads. Most job boards use dumb search technology, so if an employer posts a job using RN for the job title and the candidate searches for registered nurse positions, they’ll be like two ships passing in the night. But College Recruiter will match that employer with that candidate. 

We’ll also prioritize the search results based upon a bunch of factors, including how motivated that employer is to hire that candidate (those who want to hire more or faster rank higher so they get more well-qualified candidates faster) and even how long it will take the candidate to get to the job whether they want to commute by walking, bicycling, transit, or driving. Try telling a college career service office website that you only want to look at jobs within 15-minutes walking distance from campus. 

Oh, and we fully automate the process of adding, editing, and deactivating your postings without you having to lift a finger. Heck, you don’t even have to create an account on our site.

In short, College Recruiter is built from the ground-up with the needs of large employers in mind. You’re not trying to hire one, unique candidate. You don’t have all of the time in the world like some SMB’s do. We get that. Want some proof? Let’s set up a 30-minute call to talk through your hiring challenges or email those to me. Either way, I’ll make specific recommendations to you for how we can help.