Enters Crowded Internet Job Market

by Gwen Moritz  on Monday, Apr. 8, 2002 12:00 am  

Arkansas Business Publishing Group launched last week an Internet "help wanted" clearinghouse that is free for both employers and potential employees., the second major Internet initiative by the publisher of Arkansas Business and almost 20 other publications, joins a long list of other Arkansas-based or Arkansas-oriented Web sites designed to assist in job searches and employee recruitment., however, is unique in that it was designed in cooperation with the Arkansas Association of Colleges and Employers and will be the default jobs board accessible through the Web sites of most colleges and universities in the state.

Previously, few colleges in the state could afford to provide Internet job sites, and those that did had limited success because corporate recruiters wouldn't take the time to post their openings on multiple sites.

"The future of recruiting for jobs is the Internet," said ABPG President Jeff Hankins. "We're filling a need that they have because it doesn't cost the colleges and universities anything."

When the site is accessed through a link on the Web site of a participating college, a banner ad at the top of the home page will advertise that particular college. The result is a job site that looks customized but contains all the jobs posted from across the state.

Job seeking is reportedly the second most popular Internet activity. A study released last week by researchers at Pennsylvania State University indicated that the Web's perennial No. 1 — sexually oriented material — was losing ground to business-related information searches, including employment information.

Hankins said he expects to be profitable despite the fact that no revenue will be derived from its primary services: posting job openings for employers and résumés for job seekers.

"We will sell sponsorships for the site ... and then we will also use the site to build traffic to arkansasbusiness .com, where we also sell sponsorships," he explained., launched in December 2000, was ABPG's first major Internet product. It provides daily news as well as current stories from Arkansas Business and the biweekly Northwest Arkansas Business Journal. (Click here for more on the profitability of

"The bigger picture for our company is we have employment-related print publications," he said, citing Arkansas Next, a post-graduation guide for high school students, Arkansas Quest, a similar publication for college graduates, and newcomers guides for both northwest and central Arkansas.

"Between those publications and our business publications and, we already had relationships with companies and human resources directors — and colleges, for that matter. is a natural extension of that," he said.

Hankins said he hopes the free jobs site will persuade advertisers to spend more on other ABPG products.

"A recruiting budget is one big pie. As far as we're concerned, for just everyday job listings, [advertisers] can use a free product like and use the dollars saved for some more specialized marketing — in Arkansas Next or Arkansas Quest," he said.

Hankins said most of the design and implementation work on the site was done in-house by Hankins and ABPG's information technology director, Brent Birch, and most of its content is recycled from other ABPG publications. Those kind of cost savings improve the site's chances of profitability.

Hankins said ABPG tried to adopt the "best practices" of other Internet job sites and bring them to a specific audience of employers and potential employees in Arkansas. Among the features are:

• Free job searches, statewide or by region, with no registration requirement. However, job seekers who want to post their résumés on the site are required to register.

• Free e-mail notification of new listings.

• Employment news, career planning resources and relocation information.

• Information on education and training opportunities.

• A job fair calendar and information on internships.

Get Your Clicking Finger Ready is the newest entry in the field of Arkansas-based or Arkansas-related employment Web sites, but it was already a crowded field. Here are some of the sites:

Job Site URL — Operator — Arkansas Department of Economic Development — Arkansas Department of Economic Development — Arkansas Employment Security Department — Arkansas' Job Bank (also run by ESD) — Arkansas Democrat-Gazette — Arkansas Employment Register — The Morning News at Springdale (Stephens Media Group) —, a national registry —, a national registry —, a national registry — Arkansas Career Resource Center —, a national registry — Megajobs — Arkansas State University at Jonesboro — Hendrix College at Conway —, a national registry —, a national registry — Dallas Bowman Group — Greater Jonesboro Chamber of Commerce



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