Old business models working against college students

All of the major job sites have career content on them... Monster, Careerbuilder, Hotjobs...

...but they're not really there to actually help you.  They're probably just on there to keep you on the site longer or act as linkbait.  At the end of the day, we all know that their cash is coming in from perpetuating the old business model of paying for job posts and selling resumes to recruiters--essentially playing both sides.  They're never really going to help you find a job the way every career expert says you should be looking--networking your way to opportunities and putting yourself out there.   When I work with college students, I always tell them that the goal is that, when they graduate, they never ever have to submit their resume to any traditional job post--that someone who knows them seeks them out for an opportunity.  When I ran the GM pension fund's internship program, we had 3000 resumes come in through Monster for 12 positions.  Half of those jobs got filled through networking.  That's a dirty little secret that Monster & Co. doesn't want college students to know.

Well, it seems the word is getting out.  Monster reported disappointing earnings and announced a restructuring recently.  In a 2.0 world where services like Indeed can aggregate jobs from company web sites, professional association boards, smaller niche boards, as well as the big sites, there's just not  a strong value proposition for being a big player who charges employers hundreds of dollars per post.  Of course, that doesn't even cover the fact that they then go and charge schools to be on the system.

That's not the only business model that works against student interests.  Some sites, like Vault.com, have premium subscription areas.  That's great for students who can afford it, but a lot of students are just barely scraping by as it is.  Holding back your best info for the students who can pay for it isn't just an old business model, I sort of think its morally questionable as well, but I digress.

If students themselves make up the shallowest pockets you ever want to build your business model on, then certainly the career offices aren't far behind.  Most of them are understaffed and underbudgeted and simply cannot afford to pay for expensive subscriptions.  To be honest, I highly doubt most of these subscriptions are worth it anyway.  Do you think the content could be better or more timely than what the best industry bloggers are writing about?

For the most part, if you're in the content business, and you don't think you can generate more money from advertising than you can from subscriptions, you're basically telling me that your content isn't useful enough that people would actually want to use it.  A lot of career counselors question whether or not they're getting their money's worth when it comes to all of these subscription services, or rather if the students are using it enough to find it useful, but they have little alternative.  The way I'm tapped into my career--through blogs, social networks, unconferences, listservs, etc...  all for free...  no one's really packaging that up for the college crowd.  Instead, a lot of people are gauging them with old business models and propriety content.