Most recruitment agencies and online job boards scrape job postings from multiple sources, aggregate the job data, and provide candidates with a broader list of opportunities to explore. The internal job postings include career pages of the company website. While the external job postings include any other source apart from the company — job boards, job listing sites, and more.
The Difference Between Internal and External Job Postings
Apart from the fundamental difference of the job source, there lie more differences between internal and external job postings.
- Many times, external job postings cater to niche sectors such as Aviation, Technology, and Startups these days
- Job board listings follow a specific format. For example, if you open two job posts, it is likely to have the same data fields or key-value pairs. Different data points may be missing for different posts but the total number of data points is likely to be the same
- External job postings usually give various sorting options, selections, and search filters, so that you do not need to go through hundreds of job listings before finding the ones relevant to you. However, not all websites provide the same filters and every website has different ways of making the search process easier
- External job posts usually have links to the actual job post on a company website, so you can use these links to get more information as well
Scrape Job Postings From Company Websites
As for company job posts, the variations should be far too less but that generally, is not the case. Some well-established companies have proper career pages with different sections like Technology, Product, Marketing, and Human Resources. Then, specific jobs are listed under these sections having the job role, description, location, good to have, salary, benefits, and more. If the company is a multinational entity and hires across different regions. Then you might need to select a specific country or city before being able to view the job listings. However, these are the best-case scenarios where the data is presented just like it is in job websites; the only difference being that all the job posts are from a single company.
On the other end of the spectrum are startups and other companies that do not hire regularly. These companies usually do not have a specific career page or even if they do. The page itself is not well maintained. They usually ask candidates to send their resumes to an HR email address to apply for possible open positions. Others have a generic job description and the type of work undertaken for every department. But do not have different job descriptions for specific job titles. This makes it difficult to gather information about job openings for these companies.
How to Scrape Internal and External Job Data?
When it comes to scraping job posts, external job listings are much easier to tackle. Let me explain why. When you train your scraping engine to scrape data points from a single job post from a job board. You can use the same code to scrape hundreds or even thousands of other job posts. All this on the same job board. What you will need to handle programmatically is how to parse through the webpages. You can automatically go from one job post to another. Scraping web pages in parallel to reduce the time taken for the process can be another challenge.
While tackling these common issues related to scraping job listings from external websites. You also need to make sure that the site does not block you due to multiple requests coming from the same IP together. This can be handled through IP rotation and VPNs. Another benefit of scraping from external job websites is that if you want to scrape jobs using a specific filter, or keywords, you can do that by using the filters present on the webpages.
As for different company websites. You will need to create a long list of companies (you can start with the Fortune 500). Listing the company careers pages and manually checking if they have a separate career or job listing page may be a laborious task. Scraping job postings from every single webpage may take even more time.
The reason behind this is that you will need to analyze the webpages in every single company — website that you need to scrape job postings before you can get job listings from each. Also, every website will probably end up giving you a few job posts only. The time spent analyzing each website will not seem to be very rewarding. But doing this is important since job applicants will want to view job posts from top companies.
How To Go About Scraping Job Data?
If you are planning to analyze and scrape job posting from both internal and external job data, you must have data analysts and software engineers with web-scraping experience. Starting from scratch will not be easy, but if you have an experienced team, you can still go for it. But if you need a quick solution and do not want to take up the hassle of building and maintaining the solution and taking care of the cloud infrastructure required. The best thing for you would be a DaaS (Data as a Service) solution specialist like PromptCloud.
Our team at PromptCloud has come up with an automated job discovery solution called JobsPikr that makes it much easier for job agencies to scrape job postings from multiple sources. You can enhance your hiring platform using data from JobsPikr to benefit both your clients and applicants, and generate a higher revenue stream.