Last week, Google finished the rollout of its latest feature aimed at helping job searchers connect with employers who are seeking talent.
The new tool, called ‘Google for Jobs,’ automatically populates open job opportunities in search results pages and provides a specialized job search engine for users. Like most things Google does, this is an important developing feature that marketers, employers, and marketing job agencies should keep an eye on.
Google first announced the app at its annual I/O conference. It’s fueled by the company’s powerful machine learning capabilities, which enables it to connect users to jobs they might not have found through traditional job boards.
“46% of U.S. employers say they face talent shortages and have issues filling open job positions,” said Sundar Pichai, the company’s CEO. “While job seekers may be looking for openings right next door – there’s a big disconnect here… We want to better connect employers and job seekers through a new initiative, Google for Jobs.”
This could significantly impact you both as a career professional in general and a marketer in particular. Consider:
What it Means for Your Career
Any time a major player steps into the job hunting and career growth arena. Recently, social network giant Facebook joined the crowd with its own job search feature. Now Google, the King of Search, is taking an active role in the job search as well.
The most obvious effect here is that professionals will now have one more way to encounter new job opportunities listed by companies and marketing job agencies. That means more chances for you to find your dream job–or greater chances a qualified candidate will encounter your open position.
Currently, searches for keywords including terms like “jobs” or “careers” will feature a new applet on the front of the SERP:
Results are based on your location and the keyword you search for: “jobs near me,” “marketing executive jobs,” or “SEO recruitment,” for instance.
Clicking on the ‘more jobs’ link circled above takes you to a job search dashboard. Here you’ll have more direct ability to filter based on categories like employer name or location.
It also gives you the option to “Turn on job alerts for this search”, which functions similarly to Google Alerts. I recommend activating several alerts for a few different positions related to your career path. It never hurts to see what opportunities are opening up!
This obviously has the potential to improve the job search experience of active marketing candidates. Previously, job postings would be scattered among various job boards, aggregators, social networks, news publications, and corporate web sites. Having them all readily available in one place with a user-friendly browsing interface potentially makes looking for the right role or getting notified about new positions much smoother and less stressful.
And it’s not just for active marketing talent either; if you’re a ‘passive’ professional who’s not immediately in need of a new job, you can still make use of Google for Jobs. After all; the best time to look for a job is when you don’t really need it. Since it’s so easy to browse through options, it costs you little to check out your options. If something catches your eye, great; you can send in an application. If not, you can always hold off and wait for something better to come along.
How Google for Jobs Affects Marketing
Beyond just being an avenue for job hunting, Google for Jobs could well have a significant, immediate impact on the everyday work of many digital marketing professionals and marketing job agencies.
Taking over the SERPs
Take a look at the examples of Google for Jobs in action, or try a search yourself like “jobs near me” or “marketing jobs.”
When the applet is activated, it absolutely takes over the front page above the fold. In some cases you won’t even see the first organic search result “above the fold” if there are multiple paid ads.
That has major implications for SEO agencies or search marketing consultants who rely on keywords that have the potential to activate the feature. It will push search results even further down the page, and make securing a top ranking even more important. Companies in related verticals will do wise to shape their SEO recruitment around professionals who understand the impact Google for Jobs can have.
The Ugly Side of Your Online Brand
Hopefully by now you have an attractive website with a strong user experience to show off to visitors. However, many businesses neglect their job boards when considering UI and design updates.
In the past, that was something companies could get away with because those pages tended to be hidden away from the view of anyone except potential candidates.
Now, however, the jobs your company posts could be featured prominently on the front page of Google searches. That means any weak formatting, typos, poor UX and bad employment brand practices could be exposed visibly to the public.
Does your candidate experience reflect the brand image you want to share? If not, it might be time for a remodel.
Even More Competition for LinkedIn
When it comes to professional networking, career growth, and job search, one social network has traditionally reigned supreme: LinkedIn.
Though Google has indicated that it doesn’t intend to start competing with large job search and networking sites (in fact, it frequently links to jobs posted on LinkedIn, Monster, Indeed, and the like), it’s possible that this new entrant into the space could impact the overall user base of LinkedIn.
Marketers, social media managers, and marketing recruiters who are active on LinkedIn should keep a close eye on engagement and results over the following months. If it starts dipping, with no sign of LinkedIn taking action to retain users, it may be wise to start looking at other channels.