Internet Recruiting in the Banking Industry

By Pearce, C. Glenn; Tuten, Tracy L. | Business Communication Quarterly, March 2001 | Go to article overview

Internet Recruiting in the Banking Industry

Pearce, C. Glenn, Tuten, Tracy L., Business Communication Quarterly

The Internet has brought about changes in the job search and application process. For this article, recruiters at several large commercial banks in the US were interviewed on the usage of Internet recruiting tools. The interviews identified a number of trends that are fairly uniform across these banks, including the following:

1. Recruiters are using the Internet at an increasing rate.

2. While job site services are popular, most recruiters we interviewed preferred using the corporate Website.

3. The percentage of Internet-recruited applicants actually hired varies widely and is still a small percentage of the whole.

4. Diversity programs are not hampered by Internet recruiting.

Keywords: Internet recruitment, banking industry, Internet job sites

INTERNET RECRUITING GAINED acceptance in the mid-1990s, particularly for recruiting information technology applicants, but was not widely used until recently. Along with benefits to retailing, marketing research, and advertising, the Internet also offers recruiters speed, low advertising costs, and access to a large pool of job applicants. Such benefits have made Internet recruiting popular among human resource professionals regardless of industry. Hays (1999) estimates that $1.7 billion will be spent yearly on Internet recruiting by 2003. When compared to the $205 million spent in 1998 (Hays, 1999), the tremendous growth is apparent.

Murphy (1999) estimates that there are at least 100,000 separate site on which to advertise available positions and post resumes. The major career job sites include,,,,, and While many sites do not monitor information such as the number of searches conducted using keywords ("marketing" or "finance," for example), those that do report the following as the most popular position categories: computer, engineering, accounting and finance, and marketing and sales. However, there are also multitudes of job- and industry-specific Websites.

As the job search process changes, those entering the job market should be aware of these changes. Job seekers can use the Internet to find and apply for scores of available positions. However, understanding how employers are using the Internet to recruit will be imperative in developing solid job-seeking strategies. Similarly, recruiters will need to determine the most effective techniques for generating applicant pools on the Web.

Benefits of Internet Recruiting

Internet recruiting has many benefits for both the recruiter and the job applicant. Some of these benefits--speed and cost, for example--offer clear advantages over other recruiting methods.

The Recruiter's Perspective

Internet recruiting is made up of two primary segments: corporate Websites and Web-based job sites. Rudich (2000) says that the greatest benefit for recruiters is the cost savings. He notes that a single position ad in a Sunday newspaper could run $1000 or more while posting an ad on a job site typically costs between $100 and $300 a month. When compared to professional headhunters (search firms), the cost savings are even greater. Bayne (1997) reports that the average executive search firm charged 30% of the first year's annual compensation package for each person hired.

In addition, recruiters may receive applications the same day a position is announced (Rudich, 2000; Weingarten, 1998). Furthermore, the number of applicants may be far higher than with other methods, providing the organization with more qualified candidates from which to choose (Caggiano, 1999; Weingarten, 1998).

The Job Seekers Perspective

Job seekers can now search available positions according to their personal selection criteria. Job sites provide users with the technology to search for jobs by location, position type, position requirements, and salary (Murphy, 1999). …

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