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CareerBuilder adds HR SaaS tools for talent acquisition

Beyond and Snagajob also are expanding into HR SaaS to boost sales, but Indeed has no similar plans.

HR leader Sarah Truchard is using for more than just posting job openings.

Truchard, safety and HR manager for Rockwater Energy Solutions, says CareerBuilder's new HR software as a service (SaaS) platform provides the company with analytics, applicant tracking, recruiting, reporting and one invoice for simultaneously posting to major job sites. She said she no longer needs to log in and out of different systems and can choose to post openings to as many places as she wants.

"Now, we post one job and it goes to multiple sources," Truchard said. "As the applicants come in, they funnel in through one place and it allows us to know the source of the application. We know what boards are getting more traction than the others. Previously, we could not track that."

CareerBuilder has developed its HR SaaS offering over several years. A key part is Broadbean, a vendor of job distribution, candidate sourcing and big data analytics software that CareerBuilder bought in 2014. Broadbean makes the cloud software that allows users like Rockwater to distribute job openings automatically to different sites. Broadbean integrates with more than 7,000 channels such as job boards and social sites across 183 countries, said Jennifer Grasz, a spokeswoman for CareerBuilder.

CareerBuilder also bought a cloud-based applicant tracking system (ATS) that became the foundation of its SaaS platform.

In June, the company officially unveiled CareerBuilder1, its "pre-hire platform" that brings all of its enhanced HR SaaS products together in one place. Users can purchase the whole platform or individual tools.

Competing job boards including, Snagajob and are also providing HR SaaS. Executives at vendors said HR SaaS is as a way to raise recurring revenues in addition to revenue from advertising and job postings, spark long-term growth and provide a wider range of services to users.

HR SaaS could be job board savior

Job boards only offer "one-way communication" and need to expand into other services to stay viable, said Claire Schooley, principal analyst for talent management at Forrester Research.

Schooley said she does not know of other employment websites that are providing talent acquisition software as extensive as CareerBuilder's.

"Job boards have been around for a long time and they need to reinvent themselves," she said. "CareerBuilder is doing that very well. They are going beyond just being a job board and looking at what the HR department needs."

CareerBuilder is positioned well because of its data and analytics, Schooley said. "Data and analytics are very important to customers today. The more data that you can have, the better you can actually find those sources of good candidates."

Truchard, for example, uses a tool in the CareerBuilder platform called Recruitment Edge, cloud search technology that aggregates candidate resumes and data from more than 100 social and professional sources worldwide.

Rockwater, which has 2,100 employees in the U.S. and Canada, mostly hires truck drivers and front-line laborers to service hydraulic fracturing companies, she said.

Because CareerBuilder screens candidates, identifies the source of candidates and tracks compliance, it is also providing her with more candidates and higher-quality ones. The software allows her to hire more quickly and is reducing turnover, she said.

The analytics also provide Houston-based Rockwater with critical information about the number of people hired from a single job posting, Truchard said. The company also tracks applications per job, per month to determine which employment site is providing the most volume.

There are no negatives to the system, she said. "It has actually made us a lot more efficient and a lot better at what we do."

Executives of two other sites -- Beyond and Snagajob -- said they also offer HR SaaS.

Peter Harrison, CEO of Snagajob, which specializes in hourly employment for the restaurant, retail and hospitality industries, said job boards need to quickly evolve into SaaS for employers and mobile for job seekers.

SaaS will be the lion's share of the business moving forward, certainly the fastest growing and most strategic, he said.

Snagajob bought a company called Emerald Solutions and rewrote its technology into the company's SaaS offering called Hiring Manager, he said. The tool can set up a website, provide assessment tests and rankings, immigration verification, screening for eligibility for federal tax credits, background checks and onboarding, for example, he said.

Rich Milgram, CEO of Beyond, said the company offers SaaS-based ATS, analytics and other services. As Beyond built out the software, the vendor has leveraged patents from a company it acquired, he said.

"It makes total sense for us and CareerBuilder to either partner with or build the software so we are providing more of a holistic solution for our clients," he said.

To satisfy clients, he said companies like Beyond and CareerBuilder need to offer both online advertising and software platforms.

But at least one employment site, Indeed, says it is committed to its business model and has no plans to move into software as a service. Indeed is a search engine, not a job board, said spokeswoman Faith Yando. It serves as a central repository for jobs by pulling jobs from global websites and then listing them on, she said.

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Do you agree online job boards must add other recruitment features to remain useful?
Considering the very low success rate of "job boards" in my career searches over the past twenty some odd years, I struggle to see how viable they actually are. Granted, that is just one person's humble opinion, but if we want to use my anecdotal experience as points, in twenty four years of  IT work life, I got hired through a temp agency, was suggested by a friend, was suggested by a friend, answered a posting on Craigslist, answered another posting on Craigslist, was suggested by a friend, and was suggested by a friend. It seems to me the best talent acquisition is to mostly disregard carer sites and ask your friends if they are hiring, or have them as you if you'd like to work with them.

Now, having said that, I do think that job boards could do a lot better, and one way that they could improve was mentioned in the article, and that's make the platform less of a one way street. How can people interact with these postings, get to understand the requirements better, perhaps even enter discussions with the organizations and/or others to help see who might really be good fits. 
Thanks for the comments, Michael. All good points for getting hired in technology and many other areas.

It can be frustrating to use general employment sites, or to apply for any jobs posted online anywhere including company or trade sites. For many job seekers, these sites can often feel like black holes for resumes and applications.

However, the HR leader at Rockwater Energy said she is having success in hiring people with the new CareerBuilder application.

Fracking might be slowing down with the price of oil dropping, but work still might be available for those willing to drive a truck or lay some pipes.