After my post the other day, a friend who does HR for a big financial shot me a note to say that they don’t want more junk applications, so they make the process deliberately painful. Which makes sense: strong inhibiting pressure against a weak promoting pressure will certainly prevent a behavior.
The problem with that is that good employees are in high demand and therefore have a weak promoting pressure unless they are both good AND particularly want to work for your company. And the more desperate people are for a job, the higher their promoting pressure.
So fair point: how you tune your site should depend on the problem you have. As I noted in my previous post, I have yet to hear a company say “I’m just getting too many resumes from talented folks” but if you have that problem, by all means, make your site really hard to use and you’ll only get the highly motivated. For everyone else, think about proactive HR.