Sym Roe

A brief history of schema.org jobposting standard in government

July 27, 2016

This post is here as something I can point to when talking about the work I was partly involved with around getting higher quality job adverts and labour market information.

In 2015 Citizens Advice laid out the case for better job adverts, saying:

[…] only 12% of job adverts contained the information recommended by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA).

We’re talking pretty basic details here. 40% weren’t clear if the jobs were full or part time, a third didn’t mention how much you could expect to be paid and another 40% didn’t tell you whether the job was permanent or temporary.
Citizens Advice

This shows that job publishers can improve the process of finding a job by adding basic information to the adverts. By making that improved information easier for computers to read we can also make that information easier to search using online job boards.

For example, if the location of a job is something that can be put on Google Maps then it’s easier to look for jobs that are close to you.

Machine readable job adverts make generating reports on the labour market easier as well, allowing government and business to cater for the changing supply and demand of skills and workers.

Charles RT wrote a nice post explaining this in full

When I was at DWP we came up with two ways of exploring this space.

We started by Create prototype tools that pretend high quality job data exists, in order to test their usefulness with jobseekers. We learnt a lot about how job advert and labour market data could be improved by doing this.

Then we suggested the UK Government adopt a well known standard for job adverts for all their jobs, in the hopes other will follow suit.

Outside of Government, Doteveryone have created a tool for checking the quality of job adverts, including the use of scheme.org jobPosting, gendered wording, hours, location and readability.

Anyone wanting to improve job adverts that they publish could start by running their adverts through this checker to see if there are common problems with them.

Richard has also written a list of ideas for getting wider adoption of jobPosting.

A brief history of schema.org jobPosting standard in Government - July 27, 2016 - Sym Roe