The site, which Workforce Management publisher Todd Johnson estimates will have 1,000 listings initially, will let job seekers search by title, keyword and salary range, among other criteria. Visitors will be able to navigate to the job board from Workforce.com, which already has 416,000 unique users, or go directly to it at WorkforceHRjobs.com.
The job board comes in response to consumer demand, Johnson says. In the past year, the No. 1 search term used at Workforce.com has been "jobs," he notes, and the most frequently asked customer service questions have been about where users can post their résumés.
WorkforceHRjobs.com also reflects a trend that has emerged as the job-board market has matured. Recruiters increasingly rely on niche sites, whose listings target a specific audience. Ninety percent of the 40,000 job sites specialize in some way, estimates Peter Weddle, former CEO of Job Bank USA and publisher of a series of guides to job sites.
"Employers and hiring managers in particular are increasingly looking for specialization in individual skill sets, so job boards are becoming more niched and focusing on narrow cohorts of the workforce," Weddle says.
Online recruitment advertising almost tripled in 2005, growing to $3.5 billion from $1.3 billion, according to Borrell Associates, a Virginia-based firm that tracks Internet advertising. Borrell attributes much of that growth to niche job boards.
There’s Dice.com, for example. The tech-focused site had 92,226 jobs posted on September 1, up from 75,097 on September 1, 2005, and 27,914 on September 1, 2003.
In its annual report on online recruitment advertising, Borrell notes that media companies have the advantage of offering access to online and offline candidates. Workforce Management will publish some job listings, particularly those for senior-level executives that are posted on WorkforceHRjobs.com.
Niche boards seem to be pleasing cost-conscious companies, too. Employers listed niche job boards as one of the top four best returns on their investment for recruitment efforts, according to a survey of 73 leading employers conducted by consulting firm Booz Allen & Hamilton for DirectEmployers Association, a consortium of more than 200 employers.
Because of its news and discussion forums, Workforce Management’s online listings will attract job hunters and passive prospects, Johnson says. "They may not be in the market right now for a job, so they wouldn’t necessarily be headed to a specific job board, but they may find something that appeals to them," he says. "That’s really what companies are looking for: people who are happy where they are but are willing to move."
Focusing on the human resources market allows the site to offer tools that simplify the process, such as drop-down menus of relevant certifications, Johnson says. To aid screening, employers will be able to ask applicants five questions. The site also will offer templates of typical questions for HR candidates. "All of that targeting," Johnson says, "makes it pretty efficient in terms of information flow between the two parties."