An interactive Asia B2B marketing and growth strategy blog from www.solidiance.com to discuss ideas, thoughts and spread the "Growth & Innovation Gospel" across Asia
Asia online jobs posting industry – Emerging business models streaking towards “Convergence”
With the looming negative outlook of global economy, Asia stands at a unique place – between growing polarities of an increasing number of year-over-year “employable graduates” versus dwindling job opportunities. Especially the leading economies of Asia – both, China and India are witnessing increasing adoption of internet, eventually online job seekers as well.
Needless to mention, there is an impending need for newer, disruptive, integrated business models for online jobs that will deliver more than …just jobs!
2008 – Anything new about “new online job sites”?
In Asia, 2008, unofficial figures cite nearly 36 job site business plans were stacked up for potential venture capital funding. However, sources do indicate the absence of “compelling value proposition differentiation” across jobsites. Overall, there are a couple of news pointers of interest:
In early 2008, Chinese online jobs site Zhaopin.com received a $110 million round of mezzanine funding. Zhaopin is one of the top tier players in China online jobs market (expecting to float its IPO by 2010-11). Interestingly, SEEK a successful Australian job sites has acquired nearly 42.9% stake in this venture.
In India, early to mid 2008 was a period of dominance by the home grown naukri.com that seems to be on an aggressive business expansion strategy. Entry of a new online job site shine.com, by Hindustan Times, a leading newspaper of the region confirmed the surging shift of newsprint player’s entry into online ventures.
In the U.S, 2008 was a period of acquisitions driven by Jobing.com, ontargetjobs.com, including Jupiter media – they were the major players mopping up a host of job sites –all in vertical specializations:
There was no major venture funding in the online jobs space except for visualcv.com, (value proposition banking on look, feel, appeal and embedded videos in resume) funded by Hedrick & Struggles, Valhalla Partners and seed investors and itzbig.com ( value proposition is about a scoring mechanism for candidate profiles – to help recruiters job the most right fit for a job) funded by Rho Ventures and Sevin Rosen Funds.
Old School models of online jobs
While the basic concept of job search hasn’t changed much, the concept of what “online job seekers” want has drastically shifted beyond the standards of a mere user friendly website and of course.. jobs…
Old but not yet outdated….
Uni-theme-focused job sites: With the advent of professional networks – linkedin, xing, & social networking space – orkut/facebook, the concept of independent focused/specialized job sites – vertical, job function, experience, geography, company/college alum, are precariously placed and are “inches of years” away from being snapped up in the grand emerging convergence of themes.
Enhanced value added services – resume writing, premium placing of resumes, resume forwards to placement consultants, premium access to databases
Convergence….The next wave?
Weak economy resulting in dwindling job postings essentially means “lack of new content” from a job seekers perspective. Lack of content usually results in “disengagement from the brand/website” in the long run.
The need of the hour is constant user engagement and a push towards a more robust and “involved” job site. Convergence of “critical” themes from across professional networking, social media space does promise to “invent the future” of job sites.
While sites such as Linkedin are not an absolute spoiler for online job sites, they could be one in the long run. With an emphasis on individual profiles and “connections” – professional networks have bought out the “passive job seeker” – an interesting trend that has vastly changed the game of recruiting.
Further, with subtle innovations – such as professional groups/alum groups or mutual interest groups created “by” the network – most of the uni-theme focused job sites stands to lose in the long run on two counts – 1) user generated content through discussion, topics, news keeps the community engaged; 2) allows head hunters/recruiters to “spot” or “mark” potential hires and overtly suppresses “job listing cost to a company”.
Theme specific blog portals/groups in social media are reservoirs of user generated content. One of the recruiters in the tech space once quipped – her chances of attracting the right talent was more possible from tech crunch website than any online jobsite, coz she could keep track of blogs, discussion forums and single out a particular “tech topic” expert.
Online employees “cry boards” such as vault.com or the Indian version JobeeHive.com –offer immense internal knowledge about companies, salaries, work – culture and is more or less a quasi professional network with “user generated content – pretty confidential stuff” – engaging enough for users to flock and be a part.
Job counseling & advisory:
Career planning and counseling sites – will be one area of interest, especially with the growing number of unemployed executives, there is an innate need for alternate career options, re-skilling and counseling
Training & learning:
Training, learning websites – more oriented towards module based education and career enhancing skill sets advisory sites will give a holistic perspective to a user – who could have come for a job search.
Is there any online job site in the world which is taking a step in the “convergence direction” to optimize and cross pollinate opportunities?
Is there any online job site in the world which is taking a step in the “convergence direction” to optimize and cross pollinate opportunities? Some job sites in Asia seem to have taken the necessary innovative steps to meet the challenges of current times.
Managing Director Asia Pacific