Aggregated CV search - Tips and Tricks

We understand the pressure you feel when searching for candidates for a particular vacancy, especially when you are up against a deadline or competitor. 

Our aggregated search feature saves you time and energy when searching your job boards. However, it's important to ensure that you're using all aspects of the tool correctly.

In this article we offer some tips and tricks for getting the most out of the aggregated search feature:

  1. Search against a vacancy
  2. Reduce the number of results returned
  3. Utilise Boolean searching effectively
  4. Review the unique job board criteria to run the most accurate search
  5. Ensure the appropriate location data is used for each board
  6. Use 'sort by' to organise your search results
  7. Use our search history tools
  8. In summary

Whether you are using idibu from inside your CRM or stand alone as shown below, we'd recommend searching from inside your vacancy. 

Doing so makes it easier to find your previous searches, and gives you a stronger record of your activity.


Having run one or more searches against your vacancy, whenever you open the search page from inside the vacancy again, we will always display the most recent search criteria you entered. 

Reduce the number of results returned

If your search terms are too broad, you may get a far higher number of results than you expected or can manage. 

For example, let's say you were looking for a Support Manager. Entering  'Support, manager' (in the format shown below) or "Support" AND "Manager" in the search keywords field will return results that contain both "Support" and "Manager" anywhere in the CV.

To get more refined results where someone has written that exact phrase in their CV, you need to use the correct Boolean phrasing - in this case “Support Manager”. This will return results where these two words are found together, and in the same order.


You can also choose from previous search strings used which will appear underneath this field when you start typing.

Postcode and radial searching:

Search using a postcode, and consider reducing the radius of your search. This is another way to quickly refine those results to a more accurate and manageable number. 

When it comes to radial searching, a good rule to follow is to start narrow, then broaden out if required. 

Utilise Boolean searching effectively

Narrowing the search:

  • Use AND to narrow and refine your search. i.e. (“Developer” AND “London” AND “Java”)
  • Use AND NOT to narrow and refine your search i.e. (“Project Manager AND NOT Construction”)
  • Use "quotation marks" to search for an exact phrase: i.e. "Java Developer"

Broadening the search:

  • Use OR to broaden your search. This searches for at least one of the terms in the statement and is best used to search for different terms that mean similar things. i.e. (“Customer Support” OR “Client Services” OR “Customer service executive”)
  • Use an asterisk* (or Stemming) to search for words with the same root: i.e. admin* will return admin, administrator, administration etc (where supported by the board being searched).
  • Use parentheses to enclose an 'OR' statement i.e. Project Manager AND (PMP OR PMI OR "Project Management Professional")
  • For Monster only: use NEAR to search for words and phrases that are mentioned within 10 words of each other in either direction. i.e. "JAVA Developer" NEAR (jboss OR Websphere)


A common reason some sites may provide slightly different results when running searches directly is that there are over 1000 boards in the UK alone - some search using boolean rules, others not. Some may require '+word +word', or include any phrase with gaps as a complete phrase as a whole, or take individual words.

Our Aggregated Search service unifies that query, to create the most suitable version for all the boards it's searching.

So there may well be a slight variation on results in comparison to searching directly on the job board, but this is balanced by the ease and convenience of searching all your boards with one query, run from one system. This is a small percentage trade-off allowing you to perform multiple, technically accurate searches in a fraction of the time that it would take to search multiple boards manually.

Idibu simply drops the criteria you enter into the corresponding fields on each job CV database. So, if you experience any issues in this sense, try modifying the Boolean terms and run another search

Review the unique job board criteria to run the most accurate search

When you select each board, a panel will appear detailing all the specific options available for that board. While we endeavour to populate the relevant fields with the information detailed on the main search page, each board works in its own unique way. We therefore strongly recommend:

  1. Checking that all data populated into the fields is the most appropriate for the specific board and the search you are running.
  2. Reviewing all fields that do not contain data, and complete those that will improve the search results.

Ensure the appropriate location data is used for each board

To elaborate on the point above regarding board specific details, it's important to note that each board has its own rules for handling location data.

In order to transfer the data from the main location field in idibu to all of the boards, we have to use a single methodology which is post/zip code. How we handle this is that if no post or zip code has been inserted in the main location field, we interpret the Town or City location by using the most central post or zip code. Therefore, we highly recommend checking the location field for each board that you select as you may need to amend this to better reflect the location you wish to search from. If you are searching a UK location, then please see the note below.

Important: Regarding UK Locations

If a full postcode has not been specified in the main idibu location field, the system will use the most central generic postcode it can find when populating the board specific location data. For example, Manchester will be translated as M1, and Leeds will be translated as LS1.

However, some job boards require a full UK postcode to be input. We therefore recommend checking the requirement for the boards you use, or if in doubt, inputting a full and valid postcode into the location field. Note that some boards will allow you to input a Town/City location, or select a location from a drop down list as an alternative.

Use the 'Sort by' tool to organise your search results

The 'Sort by' tool will default to 'Rank (desc)', which puts the strongest matches at the top. However, you might wish to sort your results using another option selected by clicking the 'Sort by' button.

For example, you may wish to sort your results by selecting 'Last updated (desc)'. This sorts the results based on when the candidate profile was last updated on the job board, and brings the most recently active candidates to the top of the list.

Use our search history tools

Another reason we suggest searching against a vacancy is so you can make the most of your search history. You can view your search history at the bottom of your search page. 

When you open your search from a vacancy, this naturally filters to the specific searches you ran against that vacancy.

Using the 'Action' button you can quickly access the results of your previous searches by clicking 'View'...

...or save time when running a new search by simply editing a previous search.

In summary

To get the most out of idibu’s aggregated search, always consider the following:

  1. Search against a vacancy
  2. Use correct Boolean terminology
  3. Utlise all the board specific filters
  4. For the most accurate location based results, search using an exact postcode and locations radius (not just 10 mile from ‘Manchester’ for example)
  5. Setting salary expectations *may* decrease the total number of results. If the candidate's CV doesn’t contain any actual salary information, it could be filtered out.
  6. Use our search history tools to save time with future searching
  7. Remember CV searching (just like searching Google) is not an exact science. Try different options and combination to maximise your results.

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