Despite the rise of social media over the last few years, online job boards still form a vital part of any candidate acquisition strategy as they offer a cost effective way of engaging with a larger numbers of candidates.

Here are our five top tips to consider when choosing a job board to use:

Specialist or not

With so many job boards to choose from, a good way to narrow down your options is to decide if you need a specialist site or a more flexible board covering more industry sectors.

If you know you’re only ever going to be recruiting for a niche skill set it might be best to look for a more specialist job board purely focused on this market.  Normally popular industry blogs and forums will have partner job boards it may be worth checking out. For example, popular web design and development site Smashing Magazine run a job board specialising in web design, UI & programming roles.

However if you cover a variety of roles then you will need a job board that covers a wider range of candidates.  These job boards work hard and spend a lot of money to attract quality candidates across a range of sectors.


From TV adverts staring Max Beesley to football sponsorship, job boards employ a range of marketing strategies to attract candidates.  Ask the job board where they advertise and cross-reference this by asking a couple of candidates for their opinion.

Find out if the job board advertises on any other boards on your behalf, for example there are a whole host of job board aggregators that are gaining traction in the market i.e. indeed. These are becoming increasingly popular as they offer candidates a ‘one-stop shop’ when job hunting.

CV Database

Almost all job boards run a CV database alongside the main job board.  This offers a great way of searching hundreds of candidates and viewing CVs instantly.

Check if the job board you want to work with offers a CV database and secondly check to see if a subscription is included with any job advert packages. Also find out how many CVs can be download in a day/week/month so you can pace yourself.  Finally enquire if you’ll receive any other extras, for example alerts when a candidate matching your criteria enters the database, or the ability to ‘mailshot’ a limited number of candidates directly from the CV database.


If you’re planning on using a multi-post or multi CV search tool such as the excellent Broadbean, find out if the job board is integrated.  Using a tool such as this makes posting adverts quick and easy as the responses are all in collected in one place and there is less chance of you missing the perfect candidate. Also you’ll be able to easily generate reports showing where your candidates are coming from, so when renewal time comes round you’re prepared.

Current Users
When doing your due diligence on a job board, take a look at the recruiters currently using it to advertise.  To put simply, they would not use it if was not providing a return on investment.  If it’s working for them it can work for you.