Online Now Most Popular Medium for Job Seekers
Although youth unemployment in Jamaica stands at a high of 34.3 per cent, a fact which has politicians worried, trends indicate that jobseekers are migrating to online platforms to secure jobs.
A survey conducted by the Network, a global group of online job boards, in collaboration with the Boston Consulting Group found that 82 per cent of Jamaicans search for jobs using websites.
The survey also investigated the propensity and willingness of skilled workers to migrate, and indicates that 96 per cent of Jamaicans are willing to move abroad for work and are actively seeking these opportunities online through job search websites.
Data from Caribbeanjobs.com indicate that 2,218 jobs were filled through its website last year. The website reports an average of some 56,000 users from Jamaica on a monthly basis and an average of 110 applications per job.
The website has seen an overall average of 22,400 applications per month since the start of the year.
Akil Edwards, marketing manager at Caribbeanjobs.com said the increase in online job search is in keeping with global trends.
"Across the world, that has been the trend. The Caribbean still has a huge print readership, but in most instances, it will be a duplication with online. The move to online is mostly due to the fact that the application process is easier for jobseekers," he said.
According to Edwards, the largest percentage of users on Caribbeanjobs.com, when broken down by city is concentrated in Kingston, this he attributes to the fact that Jamaica adopts technology faster than other Caribbean islands.
Commenting on the shift in job search and application trends, human resource consultant and founder of the Job Bank, Dr Leahcim Semaj, pointed out that, historically and traditionally people looked for jobs in the newspapers.
Semaj said the online job search market has significantly reduced the cost of hiring and is of great benefit to human resource managers.
Despite the increased access to information about available jobs through the online job search market, young people continue to have challenges obtaining gainful employment. This, Semaj attributes to the fact that many young people do not have a skill.
He also argued that young people are unable to gain employment because they lack proper job application skills.