Advantages and Disadvantages of Online Recruitment

man working on laptopOnline recruitment is now a standard part of the recruitment process for many companies and organisations. But why? And is it worth it? In other words, what are the advantages and disadvantages of online recruitment?


What is Online Recruitment?

Online recruitment, e-recruitment, or web based recruitment is the use of online technology or the internet to attract candidates and aid the recruitment process. For most recruiters this usually means using one’s own company website, a third-party job site or job board, a CV database, social media or search engine marketing as part of the recruitment process.

The Advantages of Online Recruitment

Online recruitment is cost effective

Putting a job vacancy on your own company website costs you nothing while putting one on a job board usually only costs a couple of hundred pounds or euros. When you consider that a recruitment consultant fee for a candidate could be anything up to 20% of the first year’s salary, and that advertising in a national newspaper can cost thousands, you can immediately see the cost savings possible with online recruitment.

Online recruitment is quick

A job vacancy can be put on a job site in the morning, the first applications arrive by lunchtime, and a candidate interviewed by the end of the day. Of course, it isn’t always like this. It isn’t even often like this. But the fact that such things do happen so quickly gives an indication of just how quick recruiting online can be.

Online recruitment gives you a better chance of success

Traditional print advertising — be it national, local or trade press — faces limitations: the success of a vacancy advertisement depends on people happening upon the ad on a particular page in a particular issue. Online recruitment is different. A job vacancy advertisement on a job board or website is there 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for as long as you desire. Candidates can come back to it again and again. And from office administrator to Financial Director: they are all online.

Online recruitment gives you a bigger audience

Many people new to online recruitment think it is only effective if you are looking for young net-savvy Facebook-type people. This simply isn’t the case. Research consistently shows that the average age of candidates using online recruitment channels is around 35 years old. And the trend is up. Online recruitment is now a standard part of most people’s job hunting no matter what level or age.

Online recruitment is easy

Posting a job on your own site is straightforward enough. Most job sites and CV databases are very user-friendly and you don’t need to have an in-depth knowledge of IT to post a vacancy advertisement. Usually, all you need is your job description, a bit of time and a credit card. And, if you have any problems the job board sales team is there to help you.  It’s even easter to post a job on Twitter, LinkedIn or Facebook — and they are free.

The disadvantages of online recruitment

Too many candidates

While you may wonder how too many candidates applying for your job could ever count as a disadvantage, it is a fact that dealing with inappropriate, irrelevant and bad candidates is the bugbear of many a HR manager. Candidate spam can waste a lot of time. However, with a bit of thought about what job site you use, how you write your job description and using candidate screening and filtering tools on job boards, it is possible to reduce the number irrelevant applicants.

It won’t always work

That’s right. Online recruitment won’t always work. Not every job vacancy you post can or will be filled online. There will always be difficult-to-fill jobs that can only be filled by recruitment consultants, headhunters or in other ways. However, most companies tend to hire for pretty standard job roles so this is seldom an issue. And with more and more job seekers choosing the web to look for jobs, and more and more job sites and job boards specialising in ever more diverse areas, those difficult-to-fill jobs are becoming fewer and fewer


To conclude

Online recruitment offers clear advantages over traditional recruitments methods. At the same time, however, one must be cognisant of the disadvantages inherent in online recruitment if only to avoid the pitfalls that they may produce.

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