A Sourcer Weighs In On The Monster Madness

Kelly Dingee Job Boards, Kelly Dingee, Recruiting, Recruitment Marketing

Ah Monster.  The vendor with whom everyone has had a love/hate relationship.  Have we been inundated with assessments on its acquisition? I think yes.  This one is my favorite.

I appreciate all the assessments of the industry, but let me offer you the user point of view.  Eons ago…circa 1999….I posted my resume on Monster.  I had been in the sourcing profession for a couple of years, taken a few AIRS courses and was thinking I was all that and then some as a sourcer with some demonstrated hires from my efforts.  I knew how fast I was moving on candidates and found myself on a wild ride, having posted my resume, and within 24 hours was interviewing with a huge San Jose based company, then within a week flying out for an in-person interview and on the plane ride home being extended a job offer.  It was pretty sweet.

I loved Monster for that, what it could do for me and for my candidates.  The super fast return on investment was amazing.  It was so far beyond its competitors.

And then…Monster got greedy.  Everything became a point of sale.  Postings became ridiculously expensive  and the user experience cumbersome.  As pricing escalated, alternatives were entertained.  We sourced more and spent less, and tried other job boards for our necessary postings.

I found myself at a sourcing training company in the late 2000’s and in my very first solo training class bore witness to attendees high-fiving each other because their respective companies had just cut the Monster cord.  Within a few years, Monster went from being this online entity that could change your life to an incredible burden on everyone’s recruiting budget, and it’s ROI began to diminish. Corporate, Contract, Contingent and Retained recruiters were all looking for more, for less.  They had to – they had less manpower and less money to work with to make the hiring magic happen.

The fatal flaw? Forgetting the customer comes first.  In the world of the job boards, there are two customers of equal importance, the jobseeker and the recruiter.  Providing quality user experience to both at an affordable price is key.   When you pivot away from user experience to the strict concept of monetization, you lose people. You lost quality.  You lose.