First it was electonic CVs replacing paper, now, according to a study, online CVs are being replaced by web-based candidate profiles in one of the biggest changes to online recruitment in years.
Two-thirds of UK FTSE-100 companies using websites to recruit new staff now ask potential applicants to register and create profiles, the study by specialist journal IRS Employment Review has suggested.
This, it argued, is the biggest change in online recruitment in the past three years.
In 2002, when the journal last looked at online recruitment, the issue of registration and profile creation did not even feature.
But FTSE-100 companies, which have led the way in online recruitment, have increasingly developed systems that enable them to find the most suitable potential employees, it argued.
The journal looked at how FTSE-100 firms are using their corporate websites for recruitment, and found they either develop a dedicated recruitment site or use their existing corporate website to provide additional information to help potential job applicants.
Just seven did not appear to use their websites either to recruit online or to advertise positions.
Organisations offering online recruitment used three main methods: a mix of application forms and CVs (the most popular method); CV submission, often with additional information; or an online application form or process only.
At least one in 10 of the 66 that had recruitment websites used job boards or other online recruitment specialists to manage their online process, it found.
Six out of 10 of the organisations polled offered a job search facility, usually by location and job type.
Most of the FTSE 100 websites carrying recruitment information referred to graduates and 6 per cent had dedicated graduate recruitment information sites. But graduates are no longer the sole target of online recruitment.
Some 13 per cent of the organisations polled that used their websites for recruitment included screening questions within the online application process.
These could cover GCSE Maths and English qualifications or eligibility for UK residency and employment, said IRS Employment Review.
One in four of the websites now included the facility to email job details to a friend.
IRS Employment Review managing editor Mark Crail said: "Online recruitment is now the third most popular recruitment method in the UK – and it is becoming far more practical a proposition for big companies.
"Companies are increasingly asking candidates to register and develop an online profile on their website, and this can enable them to start screening out inappropriate candidates. But the CV remains the most popular method of gathering information about job applicants," he added.
While online recruitment was initially used as to attract graduates, it is now increasingly used more widely, he suggested.
"Dedicated recruitment websites are also growing in popularity. Employers need to take account of these online developments in job advertising and recruitment. If they don't they could find they are losing out in the battle to attract the best applicants," he said.