Q2 Update from Gavin Mochan, Head of Sales

Gavin_picIn previous market updates I have largely focused on how the market is behaving but also changing, referencing both s1 statistics and the wider online market.  Since I firmly believe that the market is developing I thought it only fitting to update you on some of the changes s1 has been making to optimise the connection of jobseekers with the best employers in Scotland.

During the course of 2014 s1 has been moving towards relevance, and for good reason.  The number of users on site have been increasing (See June Insights) coupled with the number of jobs on site being at their highest levels since February 2009, and rising.  All this increased activity could make the task of finding your ideal job or company harder.

Some argue that candidates want all the jobs, but they don’t.  They want a decent number of jobs so long as they’re relevant jobs.  We know this because they tell us, survey after survey and conversation after conversation.  Too much choice from the employer’s point of view can also be a negative.  Anyone familiar with psychology will tell you that too much choice will lead to inertia and a lack of urgency around making a choice.  Less is sometimes more, as long as it’s accurate.  Seekers want to find the ideal job whether that is by their implicit command or recommended based on an intelligent understanding of their skills, needs and desires.

At s1 we have launched three new site features which we believe will help them find the ideal job, your job:

Faceted Search – this technology allows the seeker to do a deeper and more detailed search from the jobs results page.  This allows the seeker to apply additional keywords, skills, salary etc to their existing search.  In short, it refines the results to achieve a smaller but more accurate list of suitable employers and jobs.  This has been launched in July after testing.  In testing we measured users of faceted search against our control group who saw no change to the s1 jobs site.  The results showed:

  • Over a third of people presented with faceted search instinctively knew how to use it and……
  • Those using the new search bar did more searches than those without the functionality
  • Candidates viewed less jobs but made more applies – indicating they found not only their ideal job quicker but more of them.

Job Detail Layout – at the time of this market update we will have launched a new “apply now” layout.  Historically the apply now button has been at the foot of the page or on the top left or even a few creative adaptations could be found.  This led to a confusing experience for the seeker and could have resulted in a frustrated user or worse, a lost application.  The changes create consistent navigation to the apply now button which is fixed in one location.  In addition to this, candidates can flick to the next relevant job without going back and to the main results page.  “Apply now” appears on the right hand side, enlarged and will float alongside the eye line as the user scrolls up and down making it unmissable for the user.

Recommended Job – the three most relevant jobs are displayed to the returning s1 user.  At s1 we have a loyal following with 95% of s1 seekers likely to use the site again.  This means that we know a lot about the individuals and will now recommend the most relevant jobs on site to the returning seeker.  This intuitive technology will present the result before the question is asked – something that Google will tell you is important for the future.  It is also dynamic, for example if the previous “sales manager” started to look for “marketing” jobs the s1 algorithm will weigh the recommended jobs accordingly.  Once it’s apparent that the seeker is exclusively pushing this career path, only relevant “marketing” jobs would be displayed.

We believe these types of technology enhancements to be fundamental in connecting the Scottish employer with the most suitable of employees.  Technology like ‘recommended jobs’ and ‘people who applied for this also applied to these jobs’ allows our generalist site to become more niche than the niche.  An s1 site which is user centric looking at the occupational desire as opposed to generalist or sector information.  This, I believe, will make our site more engaging for the seeker and provide more value for our customer in the form of larger volumes of relevant and better quality applies.

Right I better go before the team accuse me of fitting into everything but my working jaiket.  But feel free to ask us about what these changes mean to you – are your jobs SEO optimised to take advantage of these recommended jobs?  It’s the difference between appearing on the s1 homepage or not!