Recruiting In 3D

Personal Branding – More than just “vanilla”

I had the opportunity to co-write a post with Susan Strayer on her site about personal branding. I think it’s about time we put what that is into perspective. I think we’ve covered a great deal of bases and I hope you have some time to take a look.  You can find the post here.

If you don’t know Susan, and/or have not had the pleasure of working with or talking to her personally, I can tell you that there are few people in the business that have as deep a scope of knowledge as she does. I’m honored to have had a chance to collaborate with her.  Be sure to follow her on Twitter  – she has two handles: @SusanDStrayer  and @DailyCareerTips


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Too many tools?

Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Doostang, Plaxo Digg, I could go on and on. Is it possible that we’ve acquired too many tools in our “Recruiter’s Toolbox/Arsenal”?

Pick your poison.

In all reality, how many sites can you really keep as current and still be effective at your job? I’m a fan of the “master a few, but be aware of as many as possible”, school of thought. I mean, you never know what tools are going to start to emerge as a premier source for finding talent.

I once thought that I should get on as many of these sites as possible, network ad nauseam, connect, connect, connect and make sure everyone can find me. I learned a few things there.

  • 1. Everyone WILL find you, even if you don’t want them to. I Learned the benefit of a “qualified network” from that.

    2. If you get on too many of these sites, your quality on each will diminish, and you’ll spend more time finding your passwords than you do networking. Unless of course your job is Chief Networking Officer. (In which case, e-mail me for my resume)
  • 🙂

    I really like the approach of looking at networking like a starting pitcher. Sharpen skills in a few key areas, and like a pitcher, throw 3-4 solid types of pitches as your bread and butter (the “outs” pitches) and a few that you throw in for some changing up.

    Don’t worry, I’m not going to go off on some “Less is More” rant, like Jerry Maguire. I just think that focus in important when considering your networking approach. We’ve already become an ADD-riddled society with our technology, and the recruiters are supposed to be the very epitome of the ultimate multi-tasker, so don’t fall prey to spreading too thin.

    My personal favorites right now, are LinkedIn, Plaxo, Twitter and ERE, as well as being an avid reader of numerous blogs (Thank you AGAIN, Google Reader). This style won’t work for everyone, but as with the networking sites, its a choice.

    What do you think?


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    Keeping The Ambulance Chasers Away When Recruiting With Social Media

    It’s coming. As sure as the sun will rise tomorrow, it is coming. The US has become an incredibly litigious society in the last 20 years or so. Remember the lady who sue McDonald’s because the coffee she bought was hot, and burned her? And about 100 other similar cases over time? Well folks, soon they will be attacking recruitment practices on social media (SM) sites. Mark my words.

    As Jessica Lee highlighted this in her most recent Fistful of Talent post, there are concerns that lawsuits may rise because of the rise in recruiting on social media sites, such as Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace.

    Now I’ve been saying for sometime, that we’re just in the waiting period before the first company gets hit with a discrimination suit after recruiting on a SM site. Not because it is an inherently bad practice, but because it is a wide open target. From my perspective, I’m a bit leery of actively recruiting off of SM sites, not because I think it’s bad, but more because I don’t want to be the first to get hit. Our team uses a more passive approach on these sites, to divulge information about the company and it’s openings, and to formulate more of a circular recruiting approach to drive traffic back to our company site. In this way, we’re using the site for a recruitment purpose, but not necessarily sourcing off of there, per se. I recently hired someone off of Twitter (our 1st off of there), but it was someone who reached out to us, after seeing some tweets we put out there, and having viewed our career site, hence circular recruitment.

    But as Jessica puts it, and as I’ve seen it in other posts out there, SM CANNOT be your only method of recruitment. Sure, if you are seeking people with SM backgrounds or certain creative skill sets, these might be a strong source for you, but hopefully you are supplementing this with other sources. You’ve got to cast a wide net to source and identify the best of the best out there, and one or two sites won’t get you there.

    The ambulance chasers will always find something to file a suit against, and people will always look for a way to get rich quick at someone else’s expense. But a well thought out, and well rounded approach to your recruiting will hopefully guard you from any frivolous accusations. You should be taking an active look at your process, and evaluate where you might have any risk exposure.

    Plan accordingly, avoid the mob.

    Plan accordingly, avoid the mob.


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    Job Board Leopards Changing Their Spots………… Again

    I’ve taken some notice lately of the current trends in the job board marketplace lately. It seems that many of the boards are looking to transition from the old model of “post & pray” to more of an Ad Network-centric approach.

    Update & Disclaimer: I’m not an Ad Network or job board employee, so I won’t try to define the industry, but I realized I neglected to define an Ad Network. So, here it is as Wikipedia defines it. Mea Culpa, I digress, and we move on.

    What we’re seeing in the marketplace is a dramatic shift from what the bread an butter of the job board business model has been since the mid-90’s. It started with the ability to post your open positions, and have people fax a resume in (because, really who was using e-mail in a widespread format in 1995?), then progressed to overwhelmed in-boxes (which is/was/will be every recruiters nightmare), and then finally to the redirection to the career site. All of this still amounts to a theory of putting it out there and seeing what happens.

    We then experienced the Sourcing Revolution, where it became commonplace for (good) recruiters to actively source candidates. we saw user groups, technical forums, LinkedIn and professional sites become the chum tank for the sharks. If you were out there, you could be found. This too, still applies today, but has gotten vastly more mature in the approach and technical style, thanks to blogs, and training seminars, like AIRS, using available techniques like Boolean searching.

    Now, with the emergence of Twitter, Facebook, and other social media, we’re starting to see more of the job boards move toward sponsored ads, and impressions that (allegedly) drive traffic back to your site, and ultimately drive people to your postings, assuming it will lead to more candidate flow for you. Having done an impression campaign in the past, I’m not yet convinced it will work the way it is intended. I mean, I see tons of trailers online and on TV for movies – I’m AWARE of them, but it doesn’t necessarily make me want to see it more. The hope here for job boards (we think) is that they will be able to capitalze on the market of people who are actively using the social media sites, and other popular avenues, and can cash in based on the recrutiing departments metrics tally that they are getting traffic from Ad Network related content. But isn’t that really the same as ye ol’ “post & pray”? Perhaps the only difference is that someone on the job board side is posting it, and you as the recruiter, are not.

    But the folks who dream up the next big thing at the job board headquarters know what they are doing. They see that so many of these corporate and TPR clients are cutting, slashing and burning external costs at an alarming rate – both because of the economy, but because of better trained recruiters. That means less money year on year, in total contract value (CV). If the CV decreases, so does the revenue and ultimately the stock prices. NOT GOOD, if you are waiting on that bonus. Now, they can provide a “value-add” (and I challenge anyone to tell me that the job board sales rep did NOT use that term when they tried to see this to you – it’s their go-to hot button) service with the Ad Network. A colleague of mine was able to just cut 5k off of his most recent contract with one of the larger job boards. He declined the Ad Network package, and impressions, because his company has a strong social media presence, and strong brand. Had he taken it, he’d be paying 3-5k more than his old contract. So the brass at the job boards has struck some more gold to keep revenue at least where it is at, if not higher.

    My question is will they stick with this, can they sell it widely, and will they be able to truly prove the worth of this, or will the Ad Network model go the way of the dodo bird and “post & pray”?

    The end of boards as we know them?

    The end of boards as we know them?

    What are you seeing?


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