‘Google for Jobs’ is an expansion of the existing search engine. It aims to make job searching easier and finding the right candidates less time-consuming. Already live in the USA, it will be rolled out in the UK soon.
Google for Jobs is not a new website or an extra tab on your browser. It simply recognises that you are searching for a job and attempts to deliver the most relevant vacancies – within the familiar search results.
Clearly, Google has some pedigree in this area. Obviously, they have learned much from the search patterns people use to find other products/services, and also from intelligence gleaned after the release of their API ‘Cloud Job Discovery’.
The new job search feature has been developed in partnership initially with LinkedIn, Facebook, CareerBuilder, Monster, Glassdoor and other leading domains (but notably not Indeed.com).
Nobody knows yet when Google for Jobs will arrive in the UK, but it’s had an impact in the USA so its wise to prepare. We asked over 200 executives who they believe will benefit most from Google for Jobs, the results are in the chart below.
The spread of answers seem fairly even, but I disagree with the results (which are simply subjective opinion rather than objective facts).
Who are the winners and losers?
I believe the big winners will be candidates. Candidates are already using Google every day for a variety of searches, so searching for jobs using the familiar tool is easy. No need to log into LinkedIn or move from one job board to another (only to find duplicate listings of the same vacancy). Google searches the internet and delivers the results.
“So what?” I hear you say, “Google already does that”.
The difference is in the quality of the search results. Using machine learning and AI they claim to now deliver far superior job search results. It also learns about your job search preferences and provides additional result filters. Candidates will find more relevant jobs and can sign up for equally relevant job alerts by email.
If you are based in the UK, you can test it for yourself – but you will have to remove your location and go to Google.com (not Google.co.uk). Alternatively, check out the demo of Google’s Cloud Job Discovery API, it gives a clearer example of the improved searching.
The losers, I believe, will be smaller recruitment agencies and small/medium employers. Google for Jobs requires a certain level of marketing and technical expertise to gain a high ranking on the results page, and small firms do not always have that expertise – nor can they afford to buy it in.
It’s also true that any search engine will always reward those sites that have regularly updated content, so large job boards, corporate giants and the larger/generalist recruitment agencies will normally rank higher.
Will Google for Jobs dominate UK recruitment?
I believe things will start to get really interesting when Bing decides to unveil its move into the jobs market. Both Google and Bing are bound to realise that becoming the default ‘people’ search engine is good for traffic (and good for business).
Microsoft’s acquisition of LinkedIn must eventually play a part in the rejuvenation of Bing – it has access to some of the most valuable data for both passive and active job seekers. While it has announced improvements for lead generation it has been very quiet on the subject of recruitment.
Finally, no search engine can determine if a candidate truly matches the employer’s values, goals or company culture. There will always be a role for recruiters because they add human interaction into the process and make candidates feel valued (so they are more likely to say Yes to a job offer).
Relying on technology to solve your recruitment problems can result in candidates believing they are just a piece of data in your Applicant Tracking System. Not a great way to attract talent.
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