New Study Highlights Importance of Company Web Site

Thinking about hiring that whipper-snapper you’ve had your eye on? Well, what does your Web site look like? A new study conducted by WetFeet.com, a leading career site providing online recruitment strategies and research for corporations, one in two employee prospects responded that a company’s Web site is an important factor and does influence their decision of where to work. The study shows that more than 90 percent of job applicants check out the company’s Web site before walking in the door.

With unemployment at an all time 40-year low, that’s grave news for some companies. However, money isn’t the solution to the problem. Some companies spend millions of dollars on their Web recruiting strategies, but despite their best efforts, their sites contain deadly recruiting mistakes. The study includes strategies that allow companies to steer clear of those mistakes.

The study surveyed 750 undergraduate and business school students from 25 major universities across the U.S. Some interesting statistics were noted:

-- Students spend an average of four hours on a corporate website during a job search

-- More than half of students (58 percent) seek or read career advice on the Internet during their job search

-- Only 44 percent of undergraduates and 33 percent of business school students on the Internet use job boards during their job search

-- More than half of students (60 percent) look for articles on the Internet about companies they're interested in

From the Executive Summary of the survey come the following key findings:

  1. The company website has become the single most important communication vehicle to reach the student candidate.
  2. Undergraduates and MBAs differ in the way they use the Internet to research employers.
  3. Students use company websites most heavily before they begin interviewing.
  4. Effective recruiting sites do not require high-tech tricks or images. That said, skillful and relevant use of
    technology can enhance the company's interaction with candidates.
  5. To reach student candidates, the three most important elements of effective website design are navigation,
    download time, and availability of desired information.
  6. The three most important topics for a company website to cover are: a clear business description, information
    about each office location, and specifics about job positions.
  7. The impact of a site on candidate behavior and impressions varies according to how well the company is
    known.

The report, Web Recruiting Study 2000, is available now at www.wetfeet.com. The full report is available as a PDF file for $1,495; however, highlights including the Executive Summary are free.

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