Suggestions for the APA’s JfP

When the APA hires its new webmaster (ahem), it should consider rethinking how it publishes the Jobs for Philosophers. Since there is an electronic copy of the job listings already, the site should be redesigned to allow searches of the ads. There is a fair amount of standardization to a typical JFP ad already: nearly all ads list rank, AOS, AOC, an application deadline, a geographic region, and a teaching load. (And if an ad doesn’t, then it should.) So why not design the form for advertisers to fill out (online, of course) with an eye to standardizing the order in which this information appears in an ad? This would help the humans reading through them and, from these standardized terms, you’ll have the key terms for searching the listings.

What’s more, a little thought to the design and a paypal / credit card link for advertisers to pay their fees, and the whole thing could be online and automated. Moreover, since the job advertisers are paying you, get rid of the paper copy and put the whole thing online, free, out from behind the subscriptions wall. Worried about lost revenue? Sell ad links to publishers, (say), or automate that, too.

What do you say, APA?


Suggestions for the APA’s JfP — 3 Comments

  1. I second the search suggestion. It really shouldn’t take much work to get it implemented if you ask for the info in a structured way from the advertisers from the start. The real question is how we can get the powers that be convinced this would be a good move.

  2. I know I’m jumping in late on this, but … These are great suggestions! Anything to simplify the job search process is very welcome.I wanted to expand on the points about standardization since I haven’t seen it done yet.

    Job seekers spend a lot of time and money making photocopies of their dossiers, and then almost as much mailing them. It’s expensive and uses a lot paper. Couldn’t this part of the process be streamlined and put online?

    What I’d like to see is all the jobs be put in a database that job seekers could access. Seekers would search through the ads by AOS, AOC, keywords, etc. When they found a job they wanted to apply to, they could click something like “Apply to the Job” at which point their dossiers, which they had already uploaded to the APA site, would be available for review by that department in whatever fashion they see fit (online or after being printed).

    Now, this wouldn’t be cheap for the APA to maintain. But given how much job seekers already spend photocopying and mailing their dossiers (a figure that exceeded $400 for me already this Fall) I’d be happy to pay the APA for the service, perhaps as one large sum or by number of positions applied to.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *