Friday, December 15, 2006

Recruitment Agency Website CMS

Recruitment agency web sites in Ireland are quite simple in general. Most of them are based on some simple content management systems (CMS) that enable non technical users to edit the content of the web site. There are two types of the content based on the frequency of the update. The content hat needs to be updated daily is jobs advertised. All the agents within the agency need to have the way to publish and update jobs on their recruitment agency web site. It cn be done in the way that each agent has a login and password, and can log in to the recruitment agency web site, and publish the jobs (manually) to the web site. A bit more advanced scenario is where an internal database that is used to store active jobs has a capability to publish to the web site directly, so a recruitment agent needs to publish only to the internal recruitment database. The third solution is that a multiple job posting software is capable of posting to the recruitment agencies web site as well as to all the job boards. In most cases this works out as the best solution, since you do not really want your ‘duplicate’ jobs in your internal database, since this will mess up your internal metrics, and cause a whole lot of other problems if not used carefully. Another type of the content is the text, of the web site. What recruiters tend to put on their web sites is a lot of informational text about how to write a good CV, how to travel to and within Ireland, all about local tax, whatever they think would be a useful info for job hunters. ON the other side they also put a lot of marketing text to attract their paying clients.

Altogether there is not that many pages on a Irish recruitment agency web site. There is the usual Home, Employers, Candidates, About, Contact, and in the most cases very little besides that. If the jobs are published on the agency web site, the search is usually on the Candidates page, and there is usually one Search Results page, and then each job can be previewed trough the Job Details page.

And here we go to where almost all the Irish recruitment agencies fail in the design of their recruitment web sites. The largest mistake is to fail to display their most valuable content – job details on a set pages as opposed to on one single page.

The URL in most cases looks like:


There the TITLE tag is:

- Job Search – Job Details

And the TITLE is the same for all the pages like:
jobdetails.asp?id=1019, jobdetails.asp?id=1020, jobdetails.asp?id=1021,…

As well as the TITLE being the same, the META is also being the same. So what a search engine does see on the Irish recruitment agency web sites is about 10 to 20 almost static web pages (Home, About, etc.) and ONE page jobdetails.asp that has a different content based on the ID parameter. And the Contend really does not differ much based on that parameter, but a blob of text in the BODY element actually is the only thing that changes, and most of the BODY content actually stays the same. What Google fails to understand is that this is the most important part of the Irish recruitment web site It just does not get that the most important content, and the most dynamic content is displayed via the single page jobdetails.asp and that there is some parameter like ID that controls what job gets published when.

The result is that Google (and no other search engine) will spider that page jobdetails.asp any more than the other ‘static’ pages are spidered really. The effect is that most of the jobs advertised on a recruitment agency web site will never actually end up in Google! The management of the recruitment agency most likely invested a lot in development of their fancy web site, and some technology to get their jobs updated on their web site, but hey – Google does not see it???

Why is it important fro Google to see find and index all your jobs, and keep on doing that often? Simply because Google will drive you a free applicants as opposed those you have to pay to job portals for.


If you want to get free applicants that find your jobs on your own web site via the search engines like Google, you have to publish your jobs properly on your Irish recruitment agency web site. jobdetails.asp with the same TITLE, META and most of the BODY content is certainly NOT the way to do it. You do need to display each job on a URL that Google will recognize as a separate page. Job boards have understood this long ago, and are just using this to publish all the jobs they contain to Google in the way that Google can understand it.
UPDATE on 14/04/2008

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