Job search sites have been on the internet for years. Millions of users visit these pages on a daily basis with the hope of finding an occupation. At the start of the recession, sites like Monster.com and Careerbuilder.com witnessed dramatic swells in traffic. In recent months, however, these job search sites have seen noticeable drops in traffic as unemployment discouragement sets into the job market.

This begs the question: Do job search sites work? Do they really help users get the jobs they need?

To help our readers, we have graded some of the web’s top job search sites, courtesy of ClassesandCareers.com, a free college information service:

1. Monster, Careerbuilder, HotJobs – Because they are nearly identical, we grouped these three mega-sites together. In functionality, reach, and helpfulness, there is little differentiation between the three. Mostly, the user experience is fouled up by an excess of scam job postings and lack of transparency. Ultimately, you have no idea who is getting your resume. Our grade: C-

2. Craigslist – Because it’s free to post, Craigslist offers a window to jobs that would normally not be found on Monster or Careerbuilder. These jobs tend to be in small companies, start-ups, etc. Craigslist gives the user direct access to the recruiter on the other end via email. This does not, however, guarantee that they will actually look at your resume but it does increase your odds. And Craigslist suffers from an excess of scam postings. Our grade: B-

3. LinkedIn – LinkedIn offers job search through people who already know and care about you. It takes a lot of effort to set up a network and requires as much maintenance as Facebook account. Ultimately, however, it gives jobseekers the edge of networking. When you send off your resume, you know exactly who is getting it. Our grade: A-

Do you need help improving your chances in the job market? Visit our form to learn more about your education options. Getting a higher degree can be a great way to get your resume noticed.

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