Last month, Google announced their entrance into the recruitment market with AI-powered search engine feature Google for Jobs. Their aim is simple: to make it easier for job seekers to find opportunities most suited to them.
— Google (@Google) June 20, 2017
In the 2017 I/O developer conference, CEO Sundar Pichai explained further. He suggests the reason job seekers are often unaware of opportunities right next door is because of the difficulty that job search engines have classifying postings, coupled with low-quality listings. Google for Jobs wants to solve that problem.
How does it work?
Google for Jobs isn’t a freestanding app – the feature is built into the search engine and will be available on desktop and mobile, so all job seekers need to do is type their query and hit enter.
Google’s own blog post explains that where searches have a “clear intent”, Google will pull job results that can be expanded to display more information.
When a job seeker enters a search term, Google will display aggregated results sourced from partners including LinkedIn, Glassdoor and Monster. Job adverts listed on careers pages on company websites are pulled in, too.
Results will include the usual information like job title and description, but where possible, it’ll show more specific information including company ratings and commute times. Users will be able to refine listings by industry, location, employer and contract type, among other filters. They can also turn on search alerts to be notified via email when matching jobs are posted.
Once they’ve found a job, Google won’t handle any of the job seeker’s application process. Instead, Google directs them to the site the listing originally featured on. If the listing appears on multiple sites, users are directed to the one with the most complete posting. [Source]
How can recruiters prepare themselves?
It’s a new feature, which makes its long-term impact on talent acquisition difficult to predict. Still, it’s certainly something recruiters need to keep on top of to make sure they aren’t missing out on candidates. In the meantime, there are a few best practices you can follow to stay ahead.
1. Follow a schema
For the algorithm to work effectively, and to ensure Google can understand what your job vacancies are about, any job adverts you post on your site need to follow a schema. Schemas are protocols for standardising data online by tagging components. In this case, developers should tag each part of an advert so Google’s robots can get a better picture of what your advert is about.
2. Write comprehensive adverts
Much like other original content on the web, for Google to pull your job adverts, they will need to be relevant, well-written and as detailed as possible.
To help job seekers’ searches be more successful and efficient, Google will display only the most relevant and comprehensive adverts. If you haven’t already, I’d recommend reading Zerin’s guide to writing effective job adverts and keeping her tips in mind when you’re structuring your ads.
3. Have a mobile-friendly application process
Google’s search algorithms favour sites that are mobile friendly, so it’s safe to assume the same will happen here. To make sure you’re not overlooked, create a seamless mobile application experience. If you’re stuck for ideas, WePow have a useful guide to improve your mobile recruiting strategy.
4. Improve candidate screening and assessment
The entire premise of Google for Jobs is to make it easier for job seekers to find vacancies that are right for them, which should mean employers see higher application rates with high-quality candidates. With that in mind, employers need to ensure their candidate assessment and screening processes are as efficient as possible.
Candidate assessments improve your quality of hire. In fact, Aberdeen Group reported that 72% of top performing companies use skills and knowledge tests at the start of their hiring process [source]. Whilst it might be impossible to eliminate bad hires altogether, there are lots of ways to minimise the risk. Think video interviews and social media checks alongside traditional references and knowledge tests.
They might not be reinventing the job search wheel, but Google is most people’s go-to search engine, so the new initiative makes sense. With continual improvements, Google for Jobs might quickly become job seekers’ starting point.
What are your thoughts on Google for Jobs? Do you think it will have a drastic impact on the recruitment landscape? Let us know in the comments section below or on Twitter @Xpo_Online