Considering that I am not willing to relocate.

Can you change careers to show how many employers would even consider hiring me.

So instead of:

57 Global Employers (beta)

Perhaps something like:

57 Global Employers (beta) - 3 hiring in your preferred locations.


In reply to

If you are wondering which employers are searching on the careers site, you're asking the wrong question. You need to be at the job listing site, not the CV listing site. And if you're in a smaller market where we don't have any job listings, you're going to have to go to the larger sites until we grow.

You set yourself up the bomb. You are telling me how many employers are searching for me. The next natural question to ask is "who are they?" followed by "where are they from?". Its human nature. I think it probably would be better if you did away with the stats, at the end of the day I don't care about no popularity contest, I'm looking for a kick ass job. The only measure that is of interest to me is the number of times cool offers pop up. If this number is 0 in 3 years, well, I will probably not renew.

As my heroine Mariah Carey says: "Love takes time". So yes, I understand that the fishing for interesting jobs in a tiny geographic segment of the market will take a while.

From a business perspective this has been marketed as a global service, when in reality it is a very north american centric service with infrastructure to go global. I think it should be made clear to people who sign up today, if say, they are from Alice Springs that it is not that likely anyone will be contacting them in the near future.

At the end of the day this is a simple usability issue, you are showing me information that is not at all relevant to me in 200% font size and I would like the information either made relevant or taken away.

I understand that currently there is no technical way to make the information relevant but technical problems can be solved, you can gather more information from employers. Having said that, the more serious problem is that it would seem that this information should be of no concern to me anyway (according to the careers philosophy), so why not simply take it away?

  • 3
    I asked for the same kind of thing (but for non-registered users, before they pay) quite some time ago : meta.stackexchange.com/questions/25055/… ;; had no "official" answer yet ;'( Commented Dec 1, 2009 at 17:14
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    I would like to show my support for this feature, but since my meta rep doesn't currently allow me to upvote, I'll just leave this comment here. :)
    – Jon Sagara
    Commented Dec 2, 2009 at 17:40
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    Still don't like the edit. Still think a MUCH stronger argument is, "give me general stats on locations employers are searching." Why ask people when they'll just lie? But measuring their actions never lies. Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 17:31
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    +1 for the edit. sound argument. Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 21:01
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    @ Jeff Atwood: Votes don't lie. Although, even the "give me general stats on locations being searched" would be better when what we currently have. You just can't advertise something as being global if it really isn't... Hiding the stats to show people if it is worth their money or not does not change this fact. Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 22:04
  • 1
    Is Mariah Carey really your heroin? (wsu.edu/~brians/errors/heroin.html) Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 23:45

5 Answers 5


This would be a great feature.

Being in Australia, 57 global employers means nothing for me. Even a count of employers in your own country would be a great start.


Joel makes some sound points, but to make them, he is ignoring the crux of the issue.

Let's say a site is set up to handle CV's from all industries and is advertises itself as such. Now, it tells you there are 1000 employers browsing those CV's. Sounds good right?

Now, you are a programmer and have your CV listed there, but then you realise 990 of those employers are for the Plumbing industry and the other 10 are for Landscapers.

Sure, I'm happy to throw my CV out there and see if a decent employer wants to hire me, but in the above scenario, it is kind of pointless, no? More so if you PAID for it. How could I be sure though? Well, they could simply provide a break down on their '1000 employers' spiel... Of course, that doesn't make much business sense now does it, because now those programmers, mechanics, etc may not want to fork out the cash to list their CV.

Something about these questions wasn't exactly making sense to me

You see, the problem is, you show us information that is obviously meant to have some relevance to us (surely it isn't just misleading marketing... Say it isn't so!), yet, even though it is labelled as 'global', it has next to zero relevance to anyone out side of the USA and maybe London.

One last time, I reiterate, I love the idea of throwing my CV into a pond of employers to see if any of them are lured by it. But, still, I'd love to know if the pond even has employers in it. I couldn't care less if the pond up north has plenty because that doesn't benefit me. Or justify my costs.

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    Same here, i'm in France and I have no way to know how many employers are relevant to me. Commented Dec 1, 2009 at 15:20
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    Agreed. Then again, CSO is still in beta. Even at 1000 (or even more) I'd like to see that number. Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 21:05

I'm seeing a lot of questions about this: who are the employers? where are they? how many employers will find me? etc.

Something about these questions wasn't exactly making sense to me, and I wasn't sure what, but I think I've figured it out.

You got your job seekers in column A. You got your employers in column B. Someone gets hired when there's a match between column A and column B. Bing.

There are two ways they can find each other.

  1. The employer can advertise that an opening is available. The job seeker can find that advertisement, and submit a resume to see if there's a fit.
  2. The job seeker can advertise their availability. The employer can find that advertisement, and contact the job seeker to see if there's a fit.

I know, so far it seems obvious. Bear with me here, there's a point buried in all this pony poop.

Both methods have their place.

The advantage of method #1 is that the job seeker gets immediate gratification. They look at a bunch of openings, pick the ones that look interesting, submit resumes, and hear back, hopefully quickly.

The advantage of method #2 is that the employer gets immediate gratification. Instead of running an ad and waiting a month for resumes to drift in, they can start browsing resumes right away and get someone hired much more quickly.

Some employers don't care about the immediate gratification. Microsoft spends millions on campus recruiting to recruit people that won't start working for two or three years.

Some employers really do. Here at Fog Creek we're up to our ears in work and, mythical man month be damned, I need people -- good people -- to interview right away.

Conversely, some job seekers don't care about the immediate gratification aspect. They might already have a decent job, and just be interested in hearing if there's an opportunity to move up.

Some job seekers do. Those job seekers are not just going to file their CV on StackOverflow and pray. They're going to file their CV, and they're going to scour every frigging job listing site known to humanity, and get a Sunday newspaper, and call all their friends, and all the companies they know in the area.

Depending on which you are, you're either going to use method #1 or method #2. Method #1 lives at jobs.stackoverflow.com and method #2 lives at careers.stackoverflow.com, but over time, those sites will tend to merge, I think, so that both methods are more obvious.

If you are wondering which employers are searching on the careers site, you're asking the wrong question. You need to be at the job listing site, not the CV listing site. And if you're in a smaller market where we don't have any job listings, you're going to have to go to the larger sites until we grow.

Why would any job seeker ever list their CV, then, if they can get immediate satisfaction by browsing job listings?

Well, the answer, I think, is the same reason anyone advertises anything. You want to advertise your skills so that when an employer in a rush comes searching, the type of employer who doesn't want to wait, your CV is in the mix. It's all a part of how you market your product. If you know where you want to work, apply there. Don't submit a CV and expect that they'll find you. But if you're interested in hearing offers first when interesting companies need to hire a programmer or two, keep your CV on file, too.

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    You say "pony poop" as if it's a bad thing. It comes from ponies, so it has to be good.
    – Jon Skeet
    Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 7:39
  • morning jon, congratulations on the fanatic badge Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 7:41
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    Joel, I do see your reasoning and I don't disagree. But the question is still legitimate, if only to gauge the overall distribution of the crowd and how many practical potential employers a listing has. You may not want to answer it due to business reasons, but don't try and bury the question with your "pony poop" :)
    – Shachar
    Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 11:32
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    I am most certainly not looking for instant gratification, but I think you miss the point here, its a simple web site usability issue, you are showing me information that has mystical relevance to me. Either make it concrete or do away with it. see my edit
    – waffles
    Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 13:10
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    Isn't there an argument that if you're considering using the service to promote your CV, you'd want to know how valuable it is to you, relative to the other places you could be spending your money and time? What Jeff suggests would probably meet the criteria.
    – deworde
    Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 13:28
  • This is how you should of explained your careers/job sites. It all makes sense now. ;-)
    – Donny V.
    Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 15:55
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    If it's what people want, give it to them. Features sell. Just because it's not the right way of doing something does not mean people won't want to do it that way. Why make anyone have to look in two places when they could just look in one. You could just put a link on careers that takes you to jobs filtered by your CV and call it "Who's hiring". Job done.
    – Robin Day
    Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 16:12
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    This answer is very lame. In fact, these number are not show simply because most of people won't find the service interesting because most employer wouldn't not be in their location. Now, you can continue to close your eyes Joel and be in your magic world. Anyways 28 peoples for the moment seem to like Waffles idea, and only 9 yours. I guess those number "doesn't make sense" too like Jeff is telling... Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 16:20
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    Being a paid resume posting service, the question that is important is: "Is the posting cost worth the benefits I get out of posting?". So naturally people will want to have stats to answer that question for future renewals. Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 18:42
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    There is no reason for them to be exclusive. Absolutely none. ESPECIALLY when the seekers are paying for it. That's just wrong. You will also get more payers on the job seeking side if they know who the employers are and that they are real. Right now you are just waving your hands and saying, "don't worry about it, everything is great".
    – tim
    Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 21:27
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    Ok, for the sake of completeness, I am not opposed to providing more statistics that would help you decide whether or not listing your resume on stackoverflow is worthwhile. And tim I'm not saying "everything is great": I'm saying, if we can't prove to you that it's worth paying to post a CV, I'm fine with that. Don't post a CV. Wait until we can prove it to you. Rome wasn't built in a day and we're not going to have 100,000 resumes and 100,000 employers on the third day that the full service is open to the public. Commented Dec 4, 2009 at 0:57
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    Why the secrecy about the employer names? Are they requiring anonymity? It is a simple request - show the locations and the names. If there is a reason you are not doing it then tell us the reason, no need to go on for paragraphs dancing around the issue. I think people are saying they will fork over the cash if they see real data that is useful to them. Those two items are the strongest argument that you will ever have. (conversely they also show weakness, but being transparent is likely a good thing)
    – tim
    Commented Dec 4, 2009 at 15:59
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    You are doing exactly what you seem to despise of the headhunters you mocked - you are refusing to divulge the company names to us. YOU get them that is great, but we don't see them until they contact us. It is reasonable to expect that we should have some sort of information BEFORE forking over the cash.
    – tim
    Commented Dec 4, 2009 at 16:01

The numbers wouldn't make sense -- I can't tell you which of those employers are hiring nationwide or even internationally versus locally. Furthermore, we don't actually track location of Employers in the way that we do for CVs. By that I mean there are no lat/long and location geodata XML fields in that table, just your standard AddressLine1, AddressLine2, City, State, Zip, sort of affair.

It would make way more sense to provide general data about search metrics and locations frequently used in searches, IMO, than this. Tempted to decline for that reason.


We now have public employer search statistics for CV holders, under the stats tab -- just click "show detail>>" to expand.

This list is queried dynamically about every hour, and reflects current live data.

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    You could have the employers select, legal to work in X, or if they are willing to obtain permission (H1) etc. Then if I see that there are 50 employers but all need people who can already work in the USA I know if that number is relevant. Commented Dec 9, 2009 at 19:32
  • The fact that you did not even include "Country" in that example enumeration already tells the whole problem... I'm considering taking you up on the 29$ offer even though I'm not actively looking for a job right now but can imagine looking for one during the next 3 years but before I shell out that money I totally need to know whether CSO is attracting employers in Germany at all. Commented Dec 15, 2009 at 15:56

The way I see it is careers is kind of like asynch job searching for developers. You throw your CV out and forget about it, and maybe sometime in the future an offer will come in.

The "game" is all about 'how can I market myself to prospective employers' rather than 'How can I find the employers looking for me?'

It's irrelevant really to be asking 'how many people are hiring in my area', because you can find that yourself by looking at all the other job boards out there and filtering by location.

Perhaps a more useful bit of information would be to display how many developers are in your "pool"... so you can look at ways to differentiate yourself from the crowd to make you more appealing to prospective employers.

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    I always thought my big fat waffles gravatar is my key differentiating factor.
    – waffles
    Commented Dec 3, 2009 at 13:13
  • The reason for not showing the data is pure marketing. If it turns out that all the recruiters are existing clients of FC, are all in NY and all looking for banking experience. Then 95% of SO users won't pay to have a CV listed. Then other potential recruiters will see that there are only 50CVs listed and all are for people working in banking in NY and they wont pay to use the site. It's a question of building a critical mass. Commented Dec 9, 2009 at 19:35

This strikes me as a fairly typical "bring me a rock" type of feature request. It's not a bad request necessarily. Seems to me Joel and Jeff are just disinclined to acquiesce because they feel that if they provide exactly what was requested, people won't like the result ("That's not the right rock I asked for. Bring me a different one.")

Jeff's response (trying to publish actual search data using valid metrics) seems like the best approach, at least initially. I vote for getting something out quickly along those lines and see where it leads. Deploy rapidly. Iterate often. Right, Jeff?

  • I love the "bring me a rock" metaphor, as this describes my current job perfectly with respect to how user requests/requirements usually go.
    – Ed Griebel
    Commented Dec 7, 2009 at 18:22
  • behold your rock! Commented Jan 8, 2010 at 12:09

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