Thanks to Chris Russell of JobBoarders for organizing a really entertaining discussion yesterday on a variety of topics relating to the job board industry. Also participating were Joel Cheesman, Eric Shannon, and Joe Stubblebine.
During the conversation, I went off on a slight rant (not quite meds-worthy in my mind, but that might be up for debate) against TheLadders and the scam they are running that rips off unsuspecting job seekers and tarnishes the entire industry. TheLadders is doing nothing more than scraping jobs from other job boards, aggregating as many jobs as they can get in their database (flawed as that may be given all the legacy issues such as scam jobs, old,old,old jobs, work-at-home scams, and identity theft phishing jobs, etc. that jobs from sites like Monster and Careerbuilder and Hotjobs bring to the database), applying a shoddy filter against the listings to try to identify only $100,000 and up salaries, and then selling job seekers access to the resulting listings. It’s as bad as any scam I’ve seen or written about in the industry, equal in many ways to the criminal behavior of the Employment Guide and the postal ads they run in their thinning publications every week. Like others (here and here), I’d put them all in the same bucket and add serial spammer Hound.com as well.
The question from yesterday’s job boarders podcast that spurred the discussion was whether or not job sites should consider trying to generate new revenue streams from job seekers. We’ve never done this at either JobDig or LinkUp for a variety of reasons, but most fundamentally because that’s not our business. We’re in the advertising business, and we offer employers unique and valuable advertising vehicles to reach quality candidates for their open positions. I’m not sure what you’d call the business model of charging a subscription fee for recycled listings from other job boards, but it’s not a business I’d want to be in.