A Portrait of Online Job Searching as a Young PRtist

The overwhelming (okay, maybe it was merely whelming) response from my call for topic suggestions concerning job searching was to profile some online job listing services. While by no means an expert, I will humbly attempt to satisfy this request without assigning the now-ubiquitously arbitrary Stractical Points for merit.*

(*Fear not, Stractical Points will return shortly)

1) Charity Village

The 9-to-5 411:

If the corporate vs. agency dilemma is less interesting to you than advancing a great cause, check out Charity Village, the mecca for all things charity in Canada. C.V. is an excellent resource for volunteer opportunities and professional development tools but their job listings are where the site shines. With hundreds of listings posted daily in a variety of job categories including 61 current (as of this post) Marketing/Communications/PR jobs, you’re guaranteed to be piqued by at least a few. Listed organizations include registered charities, educational institutions and professional associations — all big users of PR talent.

Career Cheers:

  • Best layout and search function of any job site
  • Abundance of posts for PR jobs, including coordinator-level positions
  • The best way to find a great non or not-for-profit who shares your values

Career Jeers:

  • For profit companies often sneak on the job board

The Verdict: Employee of the Century.

2) Workopolis

The 9-to-5 411:

Trying to be all things to all job seekers, Workopolis is Canada’s premiere online job bank. A plethora of options for creating personal searches, e-mail updaters and storing resumes make Workopolis a job force to be reckoned with. There are ample postings for communications-related jobs of every level including entry — try looking under the “Marketing” category. Some companies who list with Workopolis use their online application process which is cumbersome and destroys resume formatting.

Career Cheers:

  • Wins for sheer volume of posts
  • Great customizable search functions
  • Best place for postings for big, big corporations
  • Did I mention there are a lot of posts?

Career Jeers:

  • Online application process a nightmare — look for postings that lead back to a website or have an e-mail address
  • Bleeding of categories means “communications” searches will lead to “telecommunications technician” posts
  • Too popular: If you’re applying to a job you saw on Workopolis, chances are so are ten thousand others

The Verdict: Employee of the Year

3) Monster.ca

The 9-to-5 411: Monster, another pan-career job site metropolis, offers little of value for budding PRtists. The postings in the “Advertising/Marketing/PR” categories are dominated by staffing services and commission-based promotion companies. Occasionally a diamond in the rough will appear, but usually the good listings will be posted on other, better job sites as well (see: Workopolis).

Career Cheers:

  • Pretty, easy to read layout that will display listings with or without details for quick reviewing

Career Jeers:

  • Not many real PR jobs listed here and there’s too much filler to sift through

The Verdict: Employee of the Day

5) Media Job Search Canada

The 9-to-5 411: Considered by many to be the beautiful secret of communication job sites, Media Job Search features a simple to search and browse interface and postings from the corporate, non-profit and even the agency worlds. Updates come daily, usually in the afternoon.

Career Cheers:

  • Maybe the only place on the web to find agency listings though usually for more senior positions
  • The only place many other organizations advertise (see: the CBC)
  • Decent number of “coordinator” level positions posted

Career Jeers:

  • PR jobs lumped in a category with advertising jobs, which tend to dominate

The Verdict: Employee of the Decade

6) Jeff Gaulin’s Job Board

The 9-to-5 411: Jeff Gaulin (the smiling gentleman on the homepage) posts Canadian media jobs, primarily for print and broadcast journalism but there is a section for PR/GR/IR jobs. Unfortunately, the listings are scarce, rarely updated and never unique. But thanks for trying, Jeff.

Career Cheers:

  • Pleasant enough site that’s easy to read
  • Nice of Mr. Gaulin to acknowledge government and investor relations although I’ve yet to see a job posting for either field

Career Jeers:

  • Little of value in terms of job posts — no need to check this site more than once every few months
  • Inexplicably you can only search by province: no broader or narrower

The Verdict: Employee of Those First Ten Minutes at Work in the Morning when Your Eyes are Still Crusty

7: CPRS / IABC

The 9-t0-5 411: I’ve lumped together the two major PR professional associations because they’re job listings are both available only to their respective members. The CPRS has a few listings that are rarely updated (is Jeff Gaulin running this job bank too?) The IABC does slightly better, with a bunch of listings for intermediate and senior level positions in corporate, government, non-profit and agency. There is a section for “Junior” positions which gets updated every couple of months or so. Senior PR advice-givers would point out that 90 – 110% of entry level PR jobs never get posted anywhere and that the next generation should be out networking somewhere, but both professional associations sell student memberships by promoting their career services so it’s reasonable to expect something better.

Career Cheers:

  • For IABC: A decent amount of intermediate postings that may consider junior PRtists in some cases
  • Member exclusivity ensures at least a few of the posts are not available to the general public
  • A good way to pump up your CPRS/IABC membership in your cover letter

Career Jeers:

  • Should do a better job of serving students/young practitioners if they hope to keep us as members

The Verdict: Employee of the Month

If, faithful readers, you believe I’ve missed an important site that demands a review, please leave a comment or e-mail at stractical(at)gmail.com. Also, I’m still interested in other topics we might want to see covered in the Jobbing Out category.

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2 Comments

  1. I found your site on technorati and read a few of your other posts. Keep up the good work. I just added your RSS feed to my Google News Reader. Looking forward to reading more from you.

    Chris Moran

  2. Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. 🙂 Cheers! Sandra. R.


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