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Job Board Statistics - January 2010

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 1:53pm Tuesday 02 February 2010    Print Article

Australian Job Board Statistics measuring the total unique browsers during January 2010. Data source - Nielsen NetRatings. SEEK 3.872m, CareerOne 1.747m, MyCareer 1.448m

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Article Tags: nielsen netratings job board statistics job board january 2010 seek careerone mycareer job board report

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Creating a custom Apple iPhone icon for your website

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 11:14am Monday 01 February 2010    Print Article

We are all used to creating a fancy favicon for our websites. But have you got around to creating a custom iPhone or iTouch icon yet?

To configure this icon, iPhone and iPod touch allow a user to save a WebClip bookmark to your site on their Home Screen. To specify a bookmark icon for all pages of a web site, place a PNG image named "apple-touch-icon.png" at the root directory of your web server.

To override the site bookmark icon on a specific web page, insert a <link rel="apple-touch-icon" href="[ICON-URL]" />within the element of the page.

The bookmark icon dimensions should be 57px by 57px. If the icon is a different size it will be scaled and cropped to fit.

Safari will automatically composite the icon with the standard "glassy" overlay so it looks like a built-in iPhone or iTouch application.

If you are having trouble creating the icon, you could always use an automatic generator.

So why do you need create a custom icon? As Apple pointed out it's attractive - so users want to keep it on their Home screens; and distinctive - so users can easily find it among all other icons.

Article URL:

Article Tags: favicon iphone itouch webclip apple icon apple-touch-icon job board recruitment website

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Tips for sending valid emails from your Recruitment Website

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 1:24am Monday 01 February 2010    Print Article

Most recruitment websites have some sort of online form capabilities - contact form, online timesheet, job order, newsletter signup form, email to friend form, online application form, etc. But could these emails be going directly to the users junk/spam folder or just never reaching the inbox in the first place?

Although it is not always possible to detect the reasons for this, there are several things you can do to minimise the risk. Here is an adaption of an interesting blog post I tweeted last week Tips For Sending Valid E-mails From Websites.

Send emails through a valid email server with authentication

It is a good idea to choose website software that sends your emails through your email server (this will require authentication rather than the web server's SMTP server). Servers that are specifically set to send emails generally have Reverse DNS & SPF records, support greylisting, etc.

There should be no excuse why you are not able to implement this on your recruitment website, as every scripting language offers different methods to send emails with authentication.

On the other hand, sometimes just using email servers is not good enough. You may need to send lots of emails but the hosting provider may be applying limits. This is often the case when you use cheap or shared hosting providers.

Reverse DNS (rDNS)

As every domain resolves to an IP address. Optionally, IPs can resolve to domain names which are called reverse DNS. Many spammers use non-existing or dynamic emails without reverse DNS records. Email servers generally check if the sender IP has a reverse DNS record or not.

How do you add reverse DNS records? Reverse resolving uses the pointer DNS record type (PTR record) which you should be asking your hosting provider to create it or check if it exists.

SPF Records

Sender Policy Framework is being used by more & more email providers everyday (Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo, etc) as a criteria to detect if a message is spam or not. It simply allows the owner of a domain to specify their mail sending policy (like which mail servers they use to send mail from their domain).

SPF records are DNS TXT records which an online setup wizard can help you creating it (you'll need to create new DNS records).
  • Sender transmits email
  • Receiver's mail server receives email.
  • Server checks which domain claims to have sent the message
  • Server checks DNS record; verifies SPF record of sending domain
  • Does sending server's IP address match IP addresses in published SPF record?
  • If the IP addresses match, email is delivered
  • If addresses do not match, email fails

Using a SMTP server that supports greylisting

A very powerful spam prevention method used by mail servers is called greylisting. When you send an email, the server receiving it can say to your SMTP server "send it to me again in x minutes" which is mostly not supported by the methods spammers use.

So, you need a smart SMTP server who can understand this command that will re-send the e-mails when requested.

No bulk mailing

Both the SMTP server you'll be sending emails and the servers that will receive them generally have rules to define an IP/email as spammer who sends x number of mails in Y seconds. So, if you have a large database to send emails - it will be a good idea to send them in intervals.

Do not send emails in alphabetical order

If you are sending emails to a large database, don't send them in alphabetical order as mail servers can mark them as a dictionary attack.

Check if the server IP is blacklisted

Blacklists are systems that are used by most of the email service providers. It has bot and human email accounts which analyze the common email traffic and can blacklist IPs according to emails sent from them.

The server you're using to send e-mails can be shared by many other users. If spam is sent by anyone on that server can lead to a "blocking" by email blacklists which will damage the communication of every account on it.

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Article Tags: email management recruitment websites email route job board reverse dns bulk email newsletters online application form email tips greylisting blacklisting smtp spf records sender policy framework

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Job ads of the year

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 6:41pm Sunday 24 January 2010    Print Article

Forget the bland and boring job ads. 2010 has started with a bang! This week we bring you 3 contenders for job ad of the year. These 3 job ads have gone viral across the globe and continue to give us a laugh.

The first job ad caused a public relations nightmare for Albury truck company Border Express.

A disgruntled former employee of the company was able to modify a job ad for an IT Developer.

He added a number of extra requirements for the job including "DD Cup breasts, slim waist, tight twat" and "applicants must be prepared to undergo a pre-employment strip search to ensure they meet the requirements of the position".

Border Express first tried to blame SEEK for an apparent hack, and then the company later found out it was a former employee who used to work in the HR department.

So who knows your passwords?

The second job ad was posted by marketing agency Razor on behalf of one of their clients Electronic Arts (EA) Australia for the upcoming release of the Xbox game Mass Effect 2.

The job ad titled "Biotic-Powered Super-Solider" attracted over 12,000 views in 2 hours before it was pulled down by SEEK for violation of their terms and conditions (the ad was obviously a fake).

The viral ad also attracted over 100 applications for the fake role. Some of the applications can be found here.

The third was posted by Jobadder who are looking for a new c# / .NET Developer. "Chris was a cardigan-wearing up and coming .Net Developer working in a large Local Government organisation"

A very clever and well written job ad. Well done Brett.

So what do your job ads say about your company?

How can you stand out in the crowd?

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Article Tags: job ads funny job ads job board border express passwords jobadder mass effect 2 razor electronic arts fake job ads dd cup breasts biotic-powered super-solider

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Cut the fat. CAPTCHA

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 11:32pm Monday 18 January 2010    Print Article

CAPTCHA is a program that protects websites against bots and spam by generating and grading tests that humans can pass but computer programs cannot. Nobody wants to use CAPTCHAs. They're a necessary evil. So why do we use them on application forms?

The term CAPTCHA is an acronym for “Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Human Apart”

If your application form needs protection from abuse, CAPTCHA will not solve your problem. Instead of adding CAPTCHA, look at the reasons why bots are processing queries on your website. 3rd party programs like Bad Behavior or Akismet may solve your problems.

Have a read of 10 things to check before using a CAPTCHA and The End is Nigh for CAPTCHAs

No one likes CAPTCHAs. They are not fun. They can not be used by everyone, such as those with impaired vision or without graphics enabled. They slow down the sign-up process and, ultimately, they will lead to fewer real registrations.

The worst problem with CAPTCHAs is that they put the onus on the user. Users do not care if you are receiving thousands of spam messages or bogus accounts: that’s your problem. CAPTCHAs should be the last barrier of defense – not the first.

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Article Tags: captcha cut the fat application form job board application form spam spam bad behavior akismet user experience vvc visual verification code

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Geolocation based sourcing or stalking?

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 4:58pm Thursday 14 January 2010    Print Article

If you have been reading all the technology predictions for 2010, you may have noticed that location based services feature predominately. Online websites such as Foursquare, Gowalla and Twitter all have the ability to publically share and promote your current location.

Geolocation is the practice of determining the physical, real world location of a person, device, and address using digital information processed through the internet or other electronic means of communication.

Foursquare is like Twitter, but for locations. It is more of a game, and some people use it to obtain a high score and get badges (for checking in certain places). Just like every other social network, you build a friends list and when you decide to check-in (or publicly announce your location), it uses your phone's GPS to get your coordinates.

New mashup websites like Demand Spot plot geotagged tweets using the Google Maps API.

Geotagging will open up a plethora of privacy and security implications for the recruitment industry. We can now easily find, follow, track or stalk with the click of a button.

Article URL:

Article Tags: geocodes geolocation geotagging location based sourcing location based recruitment proximity job search online recruitment foursquare using foursquare for recruitment demand spot mobile recruitment ip address stalking google maps api data manipulation privacy issues gowalla twitter

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SMS referral programs

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 3:38pm Tuesday 12 January 2010    Print Article

Over the past few weeks I have been integrating SMS functionality into a number of recruitment agency websites. We are all used to having the ability to email a job to a friend, but these days you are more likely to remember your friends mobile number compared to their email address.

Like any technology, SMS has its limitations. My biggest concerns have always been around the message and the process. You can read my previous articles on using SMS in recruitment and SMS job alerts.

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Article Tags: sms using sms in recruitment mobile recruitment job boards online recruitment refer a friend sms job alerts sms job to a friend sms referral program

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iPhone Application Updates - Korn/Ferry, Radar Recruitment & LinkedIn

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 4:00pm Thursday 07 January 2010    Print Article

Over the past month, there has been a number of new and updated iPhone applications released by Korn/Ferry International, Radical Recruitment and LinkedIn. I have always been a firm big believer that you should optimise your website for mobile recruitment instead of building a native application. But is mobile going to become the recruitment platform of choice?

You may also be interested in looking at mobile enabled job sites, how to create a mobile enabled job site or enquire about our white label iPhone job search applications.

Korn/Ferry International have released an application called Korn/Ferry Connect which gives users unprecedented access to their executive recruitment services, including the ability to view job opportunities, contact consultants, review thought leadership and more.

Besides the standard job listings, the application allows you to search for Korn/Ferry's office locations worldwide by integrating with Google maps. You can also search for a consultant by name, office, specialty or practice. There is also functionality to add a consultant to your personal address book with a single click.

Radar Recruitment is an Australian based recruitment/talent agency that specializes in connection the best people to the best creative positions within the greater Advertising, Digital and Design industry.

Job seekers can search available "gigs" from the iPhone application. The search function is quite limited - it would be more accurate to say the application lists/categories the latest jobs.

You can also choose to receive alerts for specific types of gigs. It looks like the application is set up for "push notifications" which allows you to instantly receive notifications when new gigs are added.

Each gig has the option to be forwarded to a friend via email. If you wish to enquire about the gig, you can instantly call or email Radar.

Overall the application is quite simple and easy to use.

LinkedIn has released up updated iPhone application (version 3.0) which has had a makeover and added a number of new features.

In Person allows you to find and connect with other people running the LinkedIn application in real time via Bluetooth.

Just think of the connection opportunities when you attend a meeting/conference or if you forget your business cards.

You can now choose to download your connections into your iPhone contacts. The application will alert you when you have a new connection that has not yet been downloaded.

The details downloaded from LinkedIn to your address book may include the users photo, current company, job title, email address and website addresses.

Article URL:

Article Tags: iphone applications iphone mobile recruitment iphone job search korn ferry korn ferry conect radar recruit linkedin iphone application recruitment directory mobile job search mobile enabled job site mobile recruiting job search application people search google maps bluetooth download contacts linkedin address book address book mobile recruiting mobile recruitment

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2010 - The year of the lemon

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 12:52am Monday 04 January 2010    Print Article

With 2009 finally behind us, we can now look forward to a new year. A year of possibilities. A year of continued success. I would like to thank all our clients, blog subscribers, twitter follower, industry commentators and the wider Recruitment/Human Resources community for your support throughout the year and for your return in 2010.

Our blog has become a very valuable source of advice and industry news to recruiters across the globe. The blog attracts a very impressive readership and your feedback, tip-offs and suggested topics has contributed to its success. Our recruitment webinars proved to be a run away success. There was a combined 6,500 attendees/downloads throughout the year.

Unfortunately the year was not all smooth sailing. We had to remove a number of blog posts and think twice before publishing (exposing) a number of industry related activities during the year - you know you are onto something big when you become the target!

I feel very privileged to be part of a small group of industry experts who I respect and can't thank enough for the continued advice and support (at what ever time of the night). 2010 is going to be a massive year for both myself and Recruitment Directory. We have a number of announcements and partnerships to reveal in the next few weeks. 

It amazes me how many recruiters have no idea about online recruitment or technology products. There are so many crap products and tools in the marketplace right now that recruiters will continue to buy lemons. As recruiters increase their workload, they will not have the time to properly evaluate technology products. Instead they will try and pretend they know what they want. Savvy vendors will be able to sell these lemons to uninformed recruiters. "It can connect with Facebook"

This year, recruiters will continue to face many challenges to regain the client or candidates trust and respect. Recruiters will continue to struggle navigating their way through the social media/social recruiting maze. They will continue to dip their toes using social media, but struggle at measuring their impact and reach.

Recruiters will become more productive using technology. But on the other hand, these tools will overload the user with too much raw data and information making it hard for them to make decisions.

Job boards will have to strengthen the relationships with their clients and continue to show the value for money against "free" social media. It shouldn't be too hard for job boards to continue to dominate the landscape.

Candidates will lose all privacy during the recruitment process and open social background checking will become the norm.

Overall it is going to be a very interesting and action packed year. I can't wait to work with you all on this amazing ride. In 2010, don't get sucked into buying a lemon.

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Article Tags: 2010 new year recruitment predictions new year predictions recruitment lemons social media social recruiting productivity recruitment technology

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Cut the fat. 1 job per job advert

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 9:28pm Sunday 03 January 2010    Print Article

Why do Recruiters continue to post more than 1 job per job advert? I can understand if the jobs are closely related, and I mean "closely related". But is posting a "latest jobs" or "hot jobs" list really that effective?

It also pays to check the job boards advertiser terms and conditions "advertisers acknowledge and agree that they must only advertise one job role per job advertisement..." they will charge you!

Recruiters need to act smarter, and think about how candidates are searching for jobs. There is no need to create another job board within a job board.

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Article Tags: job advert job board online recruitment online job ads job advertising

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