The marketplace of online recruiting platforms has become increasingly competitive over the past few years, as both big tech companies and startups alike have sought to establish themselves as the platform of choice for both candidates and employers. This week brought news that three of the most-watched competitors in this field are growing, adding new features, or expanding their geographical reach.
LinkedIn announced on Tuesday that it was moving all of its core talent solutions — Jobs, Recruiter, and Pipeline Builder — onto one platform, which it calls the intelligent hiring experience. This consolidation will enable recruiters to “to see all their candidates … in one unified pipeline,” no matter which of these three tools they came from, John Jersin, VP of Product Management at LinkedIn Talent Solutions, explained in a blog post on Tuesday. The company is also “releasing more than 15 new product enhancements for LinkedIn Recruiter and Jobs over the next few quarters,” Jersin added.
In addition to the single pipeline, LinkedIn’s new features include new AI capabilities, which will enable its tools “to talk to one another and leverage machine learning to simplify the hiring process”:
The more you interact with candidates within a project, the more our tools learn about what you like — and don’t like — and then we can surface better candidates for your open role. Based on the applicants, leads, and search results you interact with, the intelligent hiring experience automatically builds a list of recommended candidates for you to consider reaching out to.
The platform is also adding a shared messaging system that will show all candidate communications in one place, a slide-in profile view to more easily look at candidate profiles in the middle of a search, and a feature called “Closing the Loop,” which makes it easier for employers to send rejection messages to applicants, either individually or in bulk. This functionality is meant to address the lack of communication that adversely affects candidate experience and can discourage rejected candidates from applying to other jobs at the same organization for which they might be more qualified. LinkedIn’s mobile app is also getting a call-to-action feature that will enable anyone at an organization to quickly let their LinkedIn network know about a job opening there.
The job search website CareerBuilder has rolled out a new mobile app that uses artificial intelligence and augmented reality to help job seekers apply and employers find candidates more quickly and easily, VentureBeat reported last week:
The mobile app has some attention-grabbing features. It can build your resume, apply to jobs on your behalf, and show augmented reality views of job openings at the businesses you walk by. It also helps you develop the skills needed for a better-paying job.
And for [employers], the mobile app shows the real-time supply and demand trends for talent you need. It instantly builds your job descriptions, automatically matches your job openings to candidates who are more likely to respond, and runs campaigns to engage them.
CareerBuilder’s mobile app is the latest in a series of new technological innovations search engines and job boards have unveiled in the past year to simplify and streamline the job search process and to provide prospective applicants with additional information about organizations and roles. Google’s built-in job search function was launched in the US last year and has since expanded to India, Canada, and the UK. The search giant has also developed new tools for recruiters, including an AI-powered candidate discovery feature and its Cloud Talent Solution product, which it made publicly available last month. Facebook has also added a dedicated job search functionality, which it has rolled out in 40 countries. The Japanese HR conglomerate Recruit Holdings, which owns Indeed, made a deal to acquire Glassdoor earlier this year.
Google has launched its built-in job search function to the UK, the company announced in a blog post on Monday:
In the U.K., we’re working with organizations from across the job-matching industry to bring you the most comprehensive listing of jobs, like The Guardian Jobs, Reed.co.uk, Haymarket, Gumtree, The Telegraph, Reach plc’s totallylegal, CV-Library and totaljobs.com. This means anyone searching for jobs on Google will see postings from these sites and many others from across the web as soon as they’re posted. To ensure even more jobs are listed over time, we’re publishing open documentation for all jobs providers detailing how to make their job openings discoverable in this new feature.
This launch also builds on the commitment we made last year to help 100,000 people in the U.K. find a job or grow in their career by 2020. We’re doing that through our Google Digital Garage program, which gives anyone free training in digital skills and products to help grow their career, business or confidence. So far we’ve helped tens of thousands of people find their next job through free training at four city-center hubs and with partners across the U.K.
The search giant launched the job search feature in the US a little over a year ago. Google does not host job listings itself, but rather partners with job listing sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Monster, as well as country-level partners like the organizations mentioned above (The leading job search site, Indeed, has declined to participate). The feature was introduced to India and Canada this May.
LinkedIn’s latest round of updates to its job posting tool includes features designed to help smaller organizations without dedicated recruiting functions to more easily source and track qualified candidates, Monica Lewis, Head of Product at Linkedin Jobs, announced on the professional networking platform’s Talent Blog last week:
Now, when you post a job on LinkedIn, these new features will work to deliver a pool of relevant candidates who you can’t find anywhere else. … Once you’ve posted a job on LinkedIn, Recommended Matches will scour our network to find candidates who have the experience and skills you’re looking for. And, most of these candidates are exclusively on LinkedIn: 57% of our users in the US did not visit the top three job boards last month.
We put these potential candidates right in front of you, giving you access to their full profiles. In one click, you can indicate if you’re interested in a candidate and start a conversation with them about the job opportunity. Based on how you rate candidates, our algorithm learns your preferences and delivers increasingly relevant candidates.
LinkedIn, which is owned by Microsoft, has also reconfigured its matching algorithm and given organizations the ability to add their own targeting preferences, giving them more control over who sees a job post. The update also makes it easier for users to keep track of candidates they are considering or wish to contact.
The new features are deliberately designed to encourage smaller and medium-sized enterprises to use LinkedIn as a job board. ERE’s Joel Cheesman calls this “a smart move at the right time”:
Google has released a series of updates to improve its Google for Jobs search offering in the US, the most notable of which is the addition of estimated salary range information using data from sites such as Glassdoor, Payscale, Paysa, and LinkedIn, based on job titles, location, and employer. Google for Jobs is also now available on tablets, after launching on desktop and mobile only, and job searchers are able to filter opportunities based on distance within 200 miles of a location, as well as apply for any jobs they find using the platform of their choice, when the listing appears on more than one. In addition, Google says users will soon be able to save job listings to view later and/or sync across their devices.
Google for Jobs launched for in late June, getting the search giant into the business of matching employers with prospective employees. The company said that it did not intend to compete with existing job boards, but rather serve as an aggregator of listings and establish itself as the first place someone would go to look for a job. To that end, according to Google, job listings from almost two-thirds of US employers have now appeared in search results since the service launched, and with this week’s improvements, their piece of the job-search pie is likely to grow, and Google for Jobs is still only available in the US.
The company has had a busy year in the job search space. Google launched the recruitment app Hire in July, and has also begun beta testing a cloud-based, AI-powered job discovery platform that supports over 100 languages. That product, called Cloud Job Discovery, is designed to help staffing agencies, job boards, career sites, and applicant-tracking systems link together to fill positions. Google says that the candidate-experience platform Jibe was able to use the service to increase high-quality job applicants for roles at Johnson & Johnson by 41 percent, as well as increase career-site clickthroughs by 45 percent.
In its latest move in the online recruiting space, Facebook announced last week that it was integrating with the job advertisement aggregator ZipRecruiter to increase the number of job listings available on its platform, TechCrunch’s Ingrid Lunden reported
Before now, companies that wanted to use Facebook for recruiting, adding job ads to their Pages, would have had to do this directly through Facebook itself. By partnering with ZipRecruiter and others like it, organizations will now be able to tick a box to broadcast the job add to Facebook among a wider mix of job boards that can be accessed through a one-stop shop — ZipRecruiter, as one example, covers hundreds of these boards. …
The move is interesting because it’s a sign not just of how Facebook is looking for more volume and usage of its jobs feature, but also the realization that it may not be able to achieve this on its own steam, leading to a more friction-free, user-friendly approach.
This is an interesting move for Facebook, as integrating a job listing aggregator allows them to edge further into LinkedIn’s territory and having users seamlessly interact with job opportunities seems like a natural next step to expand the platform. However, I think Facebook’s success as a recruiting platform will depend less on the volume of ads it hosts and more on how much it improves the recruiting experience for candidates.
The new search feature, first revealed at the I/O developer conference last month, promises to leverage Google’s advanced machine learning technology to match job seekers more accurately with relevant job opportunities in their area. Frederic Lardinois at TechCrunch offers a refresher on how the job search function works, noting that Google has expressed no interest in competing with existing job board sites by hosting listings itself:
Once you find a job, Google will direct you to the job site to start the actual application process. For jobs that appeared on multiple sites, Google will link you to the one with the most complete job posting. “We hope this will act as an incentive for sites to share all the pertinent details in their listings for job seekers,” a Google spokesperson told me. As for the actual application process itself, Google doesn’t want to get in the way here and it’s not handling any of the process after you have found a job on its service.
It’s worth noting that Google doesn’t try to filter jobs based on what it already knows. As [product manager Nick] Zakrasek quipped, the fact that you like to go fishing doesn’t mean you are looking for a job on a fishing boat, after all.
Google is very clear about the fact that it doesn’t want to directly compete with Monster, CareerBuilder and similar sites. It currently has no plans to let employers posts jobs directly to its jobs search engine for example (though that would surely be lucrative). “We want to do what we do best: search,” Zakrasek said. “We want the players in the ecosystem to be more successful.” Anything beyond that is not in Google’s wheelhouse, he added.
Make no mistake, however: This is surely a competitive move by Google. “Job search is the next step in Google’s march toward gaining marketshare in what’s becoming a very competitive landscape of very large tech companies,” Joel Cheesman asserts at ERE, pointing to the still-mysterious Google Hire applicant tracking system he caught wind of in April. And while Google is partnering with job listing sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Monster, the leading job search site Indeed is conspicuously absent from the list of partners: