job boards

The Winning Value Proposition for Job Boards

By Peter Weddle,

The critics see job boards as sites that simply repurpose old fashioned classified advertising on the web. Oh sure, they charge, job postings “look” different than their print cousins, but basically, they’re the same – an ad for an open job described with information only an employer could love – requirements and responsibilities.

Now to be honest, that was the design of job boards circa 1998. But it wasn’t a misstep; it was a smart move. Job boards took on newspapers – society’s most powerful institution back then – and clobbered them in the marketplace with their own product. There was just one difference: the ads posted on job boards were more informative, more accessible and a lot less expensive than what the newspapers were offering.

Newspapers had the financial resources to respond to the challenge, but didn’t. Why? Because they couldn’t get past their own definition. They published their ads in newsprint, so they saw themselves as print publishers. Job boards revealed, they weren’t. They were information publishers. The medium was simply a delivery mechanism – important, to be sure, but not their defining purpose.

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