How to Improve Talent Attraction as an Economic Development Organization

One of the major jobs you have as an Economic Development Organization (EDO) is talent attraction. The ability of local companies to attract job seekers that will move or travel to your area to work is critical to your success. One way EDOs are attempting to solve this problem is by providing a job board on their website.

With this in mind, below we will outline a list of common pitfalls in choosing a job board as an Economic Development Organization, and a game plan for helping your market attract talent.

Common Pitfalls in Choosing a Job Board

Using Indeed and Monster instead of having a job board

It is critical to note that popular job sites such as Monster and Indeed do not offer the required capabilities you need for your EDO.  Not only do these sites offer no metrics, but they do not offer job curation to match the focus of the EDO, there is no private labeling, there are no training and support capabilities for the individual companies in the EDO’s sphere of influence, and there are no or limited applicant tracking capabilities which are essential to the smaller companies in the EDO’s region.

Building a job board from scratch, or using a plugin

If an EDO tries to build their own job board solution, they'll be recreating the wheel from scratch, and many critical job board features will be missing. The EDO will also need to be concerned about the user experience for the job seeker, which is especially critical if the EDO is trying to promote technology jobs. The applicants need to have proper job filtering and more advanced capabilities like liking or not liking postings so the job board can learn the applicant’s preferences and provide suggestions (a Pandora-music like capability).

And, most importantly, the site must have a clean user experience for both the companies served and the applicants.  A clunky site will turn off both constituents and make the experience a negative, rather than a positive one.

Any solution that does not do the above, is not simple to administer, does not have built-in training and support materials, or cannot allow the EDO to curate the precise jobs and companies that it is trying to promote within its region should be eliminated.

Not choosing a job board that shows them metrics and analytics to demonstrate their success

It is no longer acceptable for any EDO not to support the needs of companies and job seekers in their region.  It is a requirement.  When looking for solutions to this problem and evaluating job board alternatives, an EDO must list the key features required to make the initiative successful and the key metrics that it needs to track to show effectiveness. Any solution that can not automatically provide these key metrics should be eliminated.

For a list of example metrics that your Economic Development Organization should be tracking, check out our blog post: "Key Talent Metrics for Economic Development Organizations".

Economic Development Organization Gameplan to Help Attract Talent in Your Region

EDOs need to fully understand their needs before selecting a job board or when considering if their current job board is meeting their needs.  A job board that is specifically built for the needs of the EDO and can address the seven critical metrics mentioned in our last blog post can be the difference between a great job board and great service to the community, and a bad job board that provides poor service to the community.

Here is a game plan for helping your market attract talent:

  • Recognize that talent support is a must-have capability for your EDO
  • Make a list of requirements that you need your job board to have
  • Evaluate your current personnel and financial resources to understand the administrative capabilities that you can apply on a day to day, weekly, and monthly basis
  • Make a list of metric and analytic reporting requirements required for your job board
  • Use the decision criteria to select the proper job board
  • Talk to references (other EDOs) who have implemented the solution you've chosen
  • Understand the benefits of having an effective job board
  • Spend your funds carefully on things that apply to EDOs in general and your specific needs
  • Assign the right people to the administration and reporting of your job board and measure your success
  • Proudly publicize your results to funders and companies that you support

Proper talent management and acquisition can improve the image and value that you offer as an EDO.  It should not require additional personnel and should be cost-effective.  Knowing your goals and choosing a solution that will match those goals is essential to success.

An EDO can and must include talent management in its charter. This can be done easily and cost-effectively if proper thought is put into the process and the right partner is chosen to help with the implementation.

To learn more about how TrueJob can help you, contact us at or request a demo.