Technology has drastically changed the way the recruitment industry functions today. We have all seen job listing websites evolve from being a one-sided platform. Job boards, as we call these websites today, have intelligent and interactive platforms that allow an applicant and a company to connect seamlessly. But as job boards expanded their scope and reach, managing and handling all the data that came along became cumbersome, with numerous companies deciding to list their job posts on their website. Organizations too saw an expansion on the geographical front and began demanding higher employee engagement from across the world. Creating and curating job postings for multiple vacancies in a company, to list them on a job board, appeared challenging, considering the details that go into a typical job advertisement. It was against this backdrop that XML job feeds emerged as the one-stop solution for all recruitment problems faced by the modern-day job boards and expanding companies.
XML job feeds
XML is a data delivery language that stands for eXtensible Markup Language. The XML file format is used to create common information layouts and share them across the Internet on various platforms using the standard ASCII text. An XML file is similar to an HTML layout in the way it uses markup tags to describe the content on the page. For example, the word ‘company’ placed within markup tags in an XML text file represents that the content between the opening and the closing tags will be the name of a company. While HTML is used to format the layout of the content on a web page, XML files are used to document the content itself.
An XML job feed is an XML file used to advertise jobs. Because the language follows a code-based layout for formatting and understanding the contents of a page, XML job feeds are gaining popularity because of the clarity they offer in comprehending and designing the content. XML job feeds also are the best way to optimize your content for a better ranking on all major search engines. A typical XML job feed will be a text file with XML tags in it.
Advantages of XML job feeds
- Organized data structure
An XML job feed has a clearly defined structure to it. With various tags that segregate the content into different types, for comprehension and selection, XML job feeds ensure that all relevant information is included in the content to be created.
- Self-defining tags
The tags used in an XML feed completely describe the content within the markup. For instance, the tag ‘country’ implies that the text within the tag would be the name of a country. This tag-based segmentation, again, makes it easier to sift through the content and select only that which is essential to the context.
- Easy coding style
The coding rules for XML file are in a language that is easily understandable, making the files comprehensive for everyone.
- Extensible markup symbols
A big advantage of using XML files is that they are extensible, and the markup symbols are unlimited and can define themselves autonomously. Thus, designing content becomes versatile, with no rigid rules and limits to be maintained.
XML job feeds for employers
XML feeds are trending in the job market today. Digital marketers, publishers, and content creators are using XML feeds for structured content and improved visibility on search engines. Employers and recruiters have started realizing this potential of XML files and are incorporating them into their recruitment strategies. Some of the ways in which XML job feeds are helping employers include:
- A job posting consists of many minute-yet-important details. The location details, the category of the job with the complete job profile, the reference number to be cited during callbacks, the job title and the company details with precise contact information, and most importantly, the dates for the application deadlines. While framing a job listing in a regular text format, there might be a probability that some major details get left out. XML job feeds, on the other hand, have certain tags that are mandatory for a company to fill, while creating a job feed. This ensures that all the crucial information in a job listing goes into the final draft, accurately.
- The structure of an XML job feed is like that of HTML, where the entire code flows in a linear manner. The defining tags follow a sequential order, and any change in the order generates an error in the code. This means that every job listing framed on an XML file will have a consistent layout with all the information in the same place, no matter what the listing. This helps employers in maintaining a specific layout for every job feed, ensuring consistency.
- Another way in which XML feeds are making the life of job boards easier is via the ‘auto-update’ feature. Once set, the XML feeds update themselves after regular intervals of time, thus keeping the job details revised at all times. However, every job posting must have its own website to ensure that the feed gets updated. Usually, the updating happens at the job board’s end, where the website runs a check for any update in the XML feed, at regular intervals of time. This eliminates the employer’s need to constantly update the feed as opposed to the regular job listings.
- Finally, all the tags included in an XML job feed are self-defining. The setting up of the feed takes a little effort, but care must be taken that the tags used must be consistent with the job portal on which the job gets uploaded. For example, while Indeed requires the tag ‘URL’ for a job URL, most other job boards require a job number instead.
XML job feeds for job boards
Job boards deal with millions of job postings every day. There is a constant need to update the listings on the job board. Besides, job boards also have to interact with new companies, almost daily, to access their job listings. XML job feeds help in automating all these processes for a job board.
XML helps job boards update all the job listings on their site in one go. Based on the pre-defined rules that vary from job board to job board, a company has to create an XML job feed only once. Once the XML feed is created, job boards can keep them updated regularly via job feeds. Thus, a job board doesn’t have to go through the tedious process of updating every job opportunity on the site.
The updated job listings always help a job board in staying competitive. Candidates and companies both prefer job boards that offer either free or paid XML job feeds services. But, the results of opting for a paid service is always worth the money spent on it.
XML job feeds for candidates
Along with enabling companies and job portals to achieve better results and higher productivity, XML job feeds also help candidates with better job opportunities. XML job feeds’ consistent layout and seamless job board syndication ensure that a candidate is exposed to the most niche and ‘hot’ job postings with zero hassle.
In a nutshell, XML job feeds are making lives better for all – employers, job boards, and candidates. In this fast-paced recruitment industry where access to accurate information is of utmost importance to beat your peers down, XML job feeds allow its users to stay on top of their individual games.