When reviewing your recruitment advertising strategy, it’s important to assess all options – this includes LinkedIn, aggregators and, of course, job boards.


But the question that many companies find themselves asking is, is it important to cover a wider breadth of job boards, or pool all your efforts into just one or two?

Cost will no doubt be a major factor in your decision, however it’s important to weigh up the benefits of advertising on a number of boards against a few carefully selected sources.

So, how can you be sure what recruitment advertising sources work for you?

Recruitment software allows you to produce in-depth reports which show you exactly what source your applications are coming from. This will enable you to view not only the sources which are generating the most applications but where the most relevant applications are coming from.

But how can you use this data to make an informed decision in the quantity vs quality debate? We discuss:

The case for quantity

Your reports might show that you’re getting applications from a wide range of sources, which may lead you to believe that you should carry on using all of these job boards.

Although many (even all) of the applications from these job boards might be irrelevant to your vacancy, these candidates could possess skills that will be important to you in the future.

Once candidates have applied, they’ll be sitting in your talent pool and you’ll be able to nurture them for other potential vacancies – this is a great advantage of getting your job advert seen by as many people as possible.

Many argue that using a significant number of recruitment advertising sources will ensure that your vacancy receives a large response. Whilst this may seem likely, it’s important to remember that there are other factors that could determine the success of your vacancy and although you may receive an impressive response, the overall quality of candidates may not be great.

Using a variety of job boards, however, can prove to be very costly, especially when you’re only likely to advertise your roles occasionally. However, if you’re hiring a large volume of staff, there may well be room to negotiate bulk advertising credits at a reduced cost with your supplier.

The case for quality

Recruitment software can help you to drive down your cost per hire by analysing key metrics and identifying which sources are working for you.

This is vital for uncovering the results that certain job boards are really delivering and will allow you to make an informed decision whether to continue using them. You might also find that a specific job board might be great for one type of role but a different board will bring you more applicants for another type.

60% of candidates use between 1-5 job boards to search for a new role, we found in our 2015 Candidate Survey. This suggests that candidate behaviour is changing and jobseekers are focusing their attention on a smaller selection of advertising sources.

Although jobseekers are also likely to use other platforms (such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook), this figure indicates that candidates are remaining loyal to certain job boards, and recruiters and HR professionals should respond to this accordingly.

With more niche roles, such as IT or Engineering vacancies, you might find that advertising on a couple of specialist job boards will increase the quality of your applications. These sector specific boards are more likely to attract the high calibre of candidate you’re looking for than a standard board featuring all sectors.

Higher level jobs, such as Director or Head Of are also more likely to attract the right candidates by featuring on boards such as Execs on the Web.


When deciding on what sources to use to advertise your vacancy, it’s all about doing your research, asking the right questions (see our blog, Questions to Ask When Setting up a Recruitment Advertising Contract) and knowing what is right for your business.

The main thing to focus on is reaching the right candidates – after all, no one wants to spend extra money unnecessarily re-advertising vacancies whilst slowing down your time to hire. And to reach this level of candidate, you need to ensure that you’re armed with the data and reporting functionality to allow you to make an informed decision.

Finally, it’s important not to forget the basics – whether you’re using 2 or 10 different job boards, ensure that your job advert is web optimised with a commonly used title so candidates can actually find it.

Looking to learn more about what recruitment software can help your business to achieve? Find out more.