Although national reports still show unemployment rates are up, many small businesses are hiring. In fact, they are struggling to find qualified candidates. Therefore, they are augmenting traditional recruiting techniques with networking sites and online recruiting tools, like LinkedIn, Indeed, Glassdoor and Simply Hired – just to name a few.

Opower, a small Virginia-based software company who works with consumers to lower their energy bills, recently began using LinkedIn and Indeed to post open positions in response to competition from other technology companies in finding qualified engineers. The company is growing by leaps and bounds and plans to add 150 more employees by the end of 2013.

This is undoubtedly keeping Opower’s 10-person recruiting division on their toes. “I just found out today I have another five to fill,” Jennifer Boulanger, Opower’s head recruiter, said recently. “I was, like, oh gosh. It’s never ending.”

As a result, Boulanger’s small staff relies heavily on online recruitment tools. Plus, they get the whole company involved by hosting “Talent Tuesday”. Employees bring their laptops and search through their personal LinkedIn networks while feasting on free pizza and listening to music in hopes of finding qualified candidates. As an added bonus, if an employee refers a candidate who gets hired, they receive $1,000.

Steven Uster, chief executive of Eldridge Capital, an asset-backed lender in Toronto, recently began utilizing today’s online hiring technologies to find a chief appraiser for Zillidy, a spinoff of his company that provides lending for small businesses. After weeks of trying to find a suitable candidate through local advertisements, he turned to LinkedIn and after searching profiles for just an hour, he found four really strong candidates from whom he hired the most qualified a week later.  “I don’t know why it didn’t occur to me sooner,” he said. “It should have been obvious.”

In a recent white paper by CareerXroads, an HR consulting firm, it was revealed that one in every six external hires is attributed to a job board including aggregators Indeed and Simply Hired. They also mentioned that the popularity of job boards are trending downward slightly due to the evolution of social networking sites that are beginning to offer job posting capabilities. With statistics like these, it’s safe to say online recruitment tools are here to stay and will continue to increase in popularity among job seekers and hiring companies alike.


Cohen, Mark. “Online Hiring Tools Are Changing Recruiting”. 5/15/13.

Crispin, Gerry and Mehler, Mark. “Sources of Hire 2013: Perception is Reality”. March 2013.