I'm a fan of the old adage but can assure you that the ROI of job boards is not the right metric. I'll try to answer both of the questions you pose.
At the leadership level of a firm, talent acquisition may be the right thing to measure. But in doing it, measuring which combination of speed, quality and cost offer the best alignment to your company’s stated needs is the only key to success.
For example: if your business needs to expand its retail outlets in two years by 10 percent, and plans to hire 100 assistant store managers and groom them to be store managers within 18 months via on-the-job training, no one will care about the cost if job boards are not a viable source and another more expensive source is viable.
Keep this in mind when you are examining the ROI of job boards – as you should be, along with the ROI of any and all sources. Always measure things in context of your stated business outcomes.
First, consider what job family are we talking about here? Sources are not necessarily equal or appropriate for every position, level, specialty, locations, and so on.
Consider what volume is expected. What sources will scale to the volumes you anticipate? Are there a cost savings if you think longer term?
Consider the importance of speed. If the cost of an open sales territory reduces the sales from that territory month over month by $100,000, then reducing time to fill by 30 days offers significant opportunity to drive revenue and profit to the bottom line. Cost thus is secondary in the short run. (In the long run having a bench may be worth investing money.)
Then, calculate 'yield.' For each X dollars invested, determine the expected number of click-troughs, completed applications and historical hires (assuming past quality is acceptable and you aren't having retention and performance problems).
Now you should be in a position to determine the investment of meeting a business goal and, hopefully its value to the performance of the company.
Source: Gerry Crispin, CareerXroads, Kendall Park, New JerseyASK A QUESTION
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