I've been using the joint PhilJobs/JFP website for a few weeks now. It seems to me that it works very well. They seem to have retained the entire PhilJobs user interface, which was better and more intuitive than any version of the online JFP. It also seems to me that the various search functions work better than the ones from the most recent online JFP did. I tested it on jobs in my AOS, and the search did not exclude any jobs. There were some false positives, but (a) in each case it was clear why the search picked it up, and (b) I'd rather have false positives than false negatives. I also like the "save job" function, which seems like it works better than the "star" function from last year's JFP. And I like that they just aren't running ads that violate the APA's nondiscrimination policy.
It's still very early in the job-market season, and so it's hard to say what the ultimate impact of the merger will be. And I haven't used PhilJobs very much before this--my usual procedure up until now was to consult the JFP first and foremost, and then to spot-check the other sources for jobs that didn't show up there. It was generally a pretty small number. So I don't really have a sense for how this is affecting PhilJobs. Maybe some Smokers who are more PhilJobs-savvy could weigh in: does there seem to be an appreciably larger or smaller number of ads up for this time of year? Does there seem to be an appreciably smaller number of ads for community college positions? For positions outside the English-speaking world?
My initial impression, when the merger was announced, was that it was all-things-considered awesome. That is still my impression. I think that the PhilJobs interface is superior in every important way to that of the JFP, and the fact that the JFP is now free to candidates is decisively awesome. Some comments left on that post convinced me that there were reasons to worry that PhilJobs will decline in quality as a result of the merger, because it will now adopt the JFP's practice of charging advertisers. But subsequent commentary convinced me that there were also reasons to worry that without the merger PhilJobs would have ceased to exist due to lack of funds. So I guess I'd rather have a somewhat worse PhilJobs that still exists as a PJ/JFP fusion than the same old JFP and a non-existent PhilJobs.
Though I guess I could be wrong. Am I wrong?
Anyways, it seems to me that this is another in a recent streak of good moves by the APA. And although I thought that last year's redesign of the JFP was a substantial improvement over the previous version, I am particularly impressed that they were willing to abandon it after only one year when this clearly better opportunity arose. A lot of people/organizations wouldn't have wanted to do that.