Every so often, I read an article mentioning the quantity of job boards operating on the web. Every time I see the (what I feel is a highly inflated number), I always say to myself "really, that many"?

Within this latest Money article entitled 30 Best Web Sites for Job Hunters, the number represented is 40,000 in the U.S. alone.

Where do these numbers come from? Who is the job board authority that has actually counted each and every job board in order to lay claim to such a high number? Where would I find a physical list of the 40,000+?

Teena Rose

Views: 18

Comment by Thomas Shaw on November 20, 2008 at 11:18pm
Comment by Teena Rose on November 21, 2008 at 7:27am
Yeah, I thought about them too. I revisited the AIRS 2008 Job Board & Recruiting Technology Directory ... and although I didn't meticulously count each and every one, my calculations show --- on the high-end --- just over 5,500 (estimated, at most, 63 job boards per page, and the resource is 90 pages).

Where's the other ~35,000 claimed? The above article specifically mentions "in the U.S." so including those outside the States isn't part of the equation ... unless that's an error.
Comment by Eric Shannon on November 21, 2008 at 8:20am
I wrote extensively about that bogus number here - I think the real number of real job boards (my own definition, which means if there is no dedicated entrepreneur, no job board status) is somewhere in the low hundreds to a little over one thousand.

the AIRS directory is a moneymaking product whose existence depends upon a much more liberal and generous definition of what a job board is
Comment by Sam Morse on November 21, 2008 at 9:03am
Well, if you think of a job board as a place that posts jobs, 40,000 is not so unrealistic. It seems to me just about every organization has a "job section". It's a big world out there and job boards are sprinkled throughout.

It takes maybe a day to put up a job board if you have basic technical knowledge.

In our regional market, I can't even begin to count the number of job boards targeting Minnesota, Minneapolis etc.. However, 99% are not generating any significant income.

A lot of job boards just hang around because it is very cheap to have them sit there. So - they pop up fast and go away slowly.

If you add in the domain squatter listing Google adwords, there's probably 100,000's of them.
Comment by Ethan Bloomfield on November 21, 2008 at 9:06am
Peter Weddle is the authoritative figure in counting job boards -
Comment by Teena Rose on November 21, 2008 at 9:53am
Peter Weddle, I believe, is the mastermind behind the International Association of Employment Web Sites, too, which I also visited in search for answers. I know his firm also maintains a slew of other paid resources, which a handful I have on my shelf.

But with all my research at this point, I have yet to discover how such a number as 40,000 is determined. No resource, including the IAEWS represents anywhere near that number. Taking Sam Morse's comments into consideration, I wonder how a website that's been thrown up and sits (maybe limited or no marketing) could even end up being counted.

Why do I even care?

Well, I've seen that claim referred to countless times ... even in legitimate, well-known resources such as Money. Curiosity is just getting the better of me now, and the large number seems like false information --- unless "they" (whomever that might be =] ) have a varying definition of what makes up a job board.

Simply, equivalent to an urban legend that is kept alive without no one ever really checking the facts to verify its legitimacy? Maybe there is no answer, or true authority who can point to each and every one of the 40,000 sites, which is why the number is still floating out on the Internet ... unchecked and unverified. Your thoughts?
Comment by Brendan Delaney on November 21, 2008 at 4:34pm
Beyond.com powers over 15,000 job boards, and JobTarget powers over 1,000. SimplyHired powers thousands, I'm sure, though I don't know exactly.

My job boards, (MediaJobs.net, BigJobNet.com, WestchesterJobs.com, and FairfieldJobs.net) are powered by Beyond.com. Some people wouldn't consider them unique job boards, and would consider Beyond.com to be just 1 job board. But I think counting them separately is accurate, as long as each site is its own unique brand. The general public doesn't understand the complexity of the job board space, and would consider each site as it's own.
Comment by Jim - medXcentral on December 2, 2008 at 12:52pm
Speaking of the "general public"; Does the average web surfer clearly understand the difference between a Job Board and a company career site? Often, when the average person finds "search" and "apply now" functions.. they think "Job Board".

Just thinking out loud. I'm confident career sites are not counted as Job Boards by any authority on the subject. I'm also confident that Job Seekers are perplexed by the space.


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