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Updated: 32 min 27 sec ago

The Top 10 Shipwrecks of Hiring Mistakes

Tue, 07/01/2014 - 12:58am

No one launches a business or accepts an executive position with the goal of incurring unnecessary expenses. Yet, time and again, shipwreck hires cost organizations three-to-five times the hire’s salary. My book The Hiring Compass points out these top 10 hiring mistakes to avoid: (more…)

Always Open ‘Evergreen Jobs’ Can Improve Your Chances of Recruiting Top Talent

Mon, 06/30/2014 - 12:22am

As the war for talent continues, it’s time for recruiting leaders and hiring managers to shift to more creative and innovative recruiting solutions. A bold approach that I have been recommending since 1999 is the creation of “evergreen jobs.”

Simply put, these are the one or two most critical corporate jobs where you literally continuously search and hire every more-than-qualified applicant who fits the culture in order to ensure that you always have enough talent in these critical positions.

The term evergreen comes from the fact that the jobs are always open, just as an evergreen tree is always green. Now it might initially seem crazy to hire when you don’t have an open job, but the approach has proven to be quite effective. Imagine if you were an NBA basketball team and LeBron James suddenly became available. Would you hire him immediately, even if you didn’t have an open job or requisition? Of course you would. That’s the concept behind evergreen jobs. Evergreen programs frequently cover jobs with high turnover, including nursing, retail (i.e. REI), and call centers. But they work even better in high-impact mission-critical jobs at growing tech firms with large campuses. 

An Evergreen Job Program continually sources top talent in a mission-critical job. But rather than stopping when you create a pipeline of reserve talent, it continuously “over hires” each of the “more-than-qualified” applicants, in order to create a talent surplus in this critical job.

The Top 10 Reasons Why the Evergreen Job Approach Is So Impactful (more…)

More Alphas, More Betas, More Vegans in the Recruiting Technology Startup World

Fri, 06/27/2014 - 5:18pm

Last Saturday night I went to a “Vegan Meetup” at a Los Angeles tavern. (I was accompanying the vegan, not one myself.) Why not take a few minutes off from hearing about, say, recruiting technology startups?

I told the first person I met what I did for a living. She said to me, “my friend is starting a recruiting technology company in Brazil.”

You can run, but not hide.

Just a sampling of the many new companies working to get your business, or someone’s investments: (more…)

Quixotic Quixey Pinup Pitch Is Perfect Publicity Ploy

Fri, 06/27/2014 - 5:50am

Sticking a Help Wanted sign in the window works for your dry cleaner, so, who knows, maybe Quixey, a Mountain View, California, startup, might be on to something. It’s using its Castro Street display window to pitch jobs, putting a little different spin on pinning.

The mobile app search engine company has (for now, anyway) a storefront presence on the downtown main street of this Silicon Valley community. With developers as hard to come by in America’s tech heartland as pirate gold, Quixey is used to a little guerrilla recruiting. The company already hosts a monthly programming contest where engineers compete to solve three problems. Winners get $100 and Quixey builds a pipeline. (more…)

Waiting for Godot: What to Do When Social Media Fails to Deliver on Its Promise

Fri, 06/27/2014 - 5:19am

Expectations for what social media can deliver for recruiters have been a lot like the story of the play mentioned as the title for this post. The characters spend all their time getting excited about the arrival of Godot — a man or perhaps a deity. They can’t be sure if they’ve met Godot, if they’re waiting in the right place, if this is the right day, or even whether Godot is going to show up at all, but great things are supposed to happen when he does show up. Well, you can guess how this ends. (more…)

Company Culture: Your New Secret Recruiting Weapon

Thu, 06/26/2014 - 12:08am

Recruiting is an arms war, with rapidly advancing technology and complexity. At stake is the future of your company. Social media has changed the game, raising expectations of the applicant experience and making everything faster and more connected. Employees and prospects have the upper hand and our tactics have to keep up.

But we can all name companies that are snagging (and keeping) top talent. So beyond the most recent recruiting weapons, what one thing is helping them win that race?

Company culture.

What’s Culture?


Stop the Excuses — a Frustrated STEM Woman’s Simple Solutions to The Diversity Recruiting Problem

Wed, 06/25/2014 - 4:02pm

There is a huge issue in the tech world where firms like Google, LinkedIn, Yahoo, and Facebook are having great difficulty recruiting technically trained diverse women (known as “diverse STEM woman” or DSW). As a STEM diverse woman myself living in the Silicon Valley, I know and have experienced firsthand the many barriers that diverse woman face. And because of my recruiting background, I have also concluded that individual firms cannot find enough women to fill these technical roles because they have continuously used the wrong recruiting approaches that fail to address the barriers that restrict the movement of the DSW between jobs.

If you are a male corporate leader working in the tech industry, you will benefit from reading this article. (more…)

Recruitment is Marketing: 3 Changes You Need to Make

Wed, 06/25/2014 - 12:04am

Once upon a time we sold products much as we “sell” jobs and organizations today. At the turn of the 20th century, merchants waited for a potential buyer to show up. The buyer was supposed to know what they wanted and ask for it. Most of the merchandise was kept in drawers or under the counter. A customer had to ask for something specifically and the merchant showed them only one particular item. There was no engagement, no selling, and no touting the benefits of the product.

But, soon department stores like Macy’s changed all this by displaying items openly, running ads targeted, in particular, to women. It offered well-known socialites the newest fashions and relied on gossip and word of mouth to attract new referral customers. Window displays created dream worlds and played to emotions. They encouraged salespeople to engage with the customers, build relationships, and even try on clothes or demonstrate the product.

Recruitment has a lot to learn from this story and from marketing. (more…)

Indeed Buys MoBolt

Tue, 06/24/2014 - 12:00pm

The arms race among job boards and job aggregators continues today, as Indeed buys MoBolt to try and make it easier for employers to accept job applications from smart phones. (more…)

Jobvite Introduces Mobile Career Site Service

Tue, 06/24/2014 - 12:00pm

Jobvite cut the ribbon this morning on a mobile career center service that if the reality is as cool as the screenshots, is at once simple and convenient, and brings mobile recruiting about as close to what job seekers want as any service now out there.

This is not an app, but a full-fledged career site tool that is specifically configured for mobile users, particularly those who job search on phones and small screens. Instead of merely shrinking down a full-sized site or abbreviating what already exists, Jobvite has considered the usability issue, which is one that is ignored by too many employers. (more…)

Reaching the 2nd Layer of Your Company’s Social Network

Tue, 06/24/2014 - 12:58am

Social network mapping has been a popular buzzword with talent acquisition professionals for the last few years, but acquiring a solid understanding of how to build and use a map of our social networks is still well beyond our grasp. Most recruiters’ experience with social network mapping begins and ends with the LinkedIn Maps tool. While this is an excellent place to start, there are several limitations to the tool:

  • You can only see your first level connections
  • It’s difficult to navigate and sort through 1,000 to 10,000 dots and lines
  • Depending on your connections your map could take 30 minutes to load
  • You are just examining people that you’re connected to and not growing your network

Here’s a screenshot of my InMap … it looks like the most intense game of connect the dots on the planet. (more…)

Startup Ups the Ante for Employee Referrals

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 5:30am

That $2,000 bonus you’re offering  for every referral hire you make is going to seem like chump change this morning for anyone who caught last night’s news.

CBS aired a piece about a Silicon Valley startup offering $20,000 — that’s right, $20,000 — for every tech hire made from a referral who came from an employee company friend or family.

“We want the best of the best,” ThoughtSpot CEO Ajeet Singh told the San Francisco Chronicle, which wrote about the rich referral before it aired on CBS. “We thought $20,000 was an interesting enough number that a lot of people might actually refer people to us.”

By no means is this the first such juicy referral bonus. (more…)

Diversity Recruiting – What’s Wrong With It? Pretty Much Everything (Part 2 of 2)

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 12:53am

In the first part of this series, I highlighted how a weak business case, not being data-driven, failing to segment your recruiting targets, and failing to effectively use employee referrals can severely reduce your diversity recruiting results. In this part II, I will complete the list of the common diversity program design errors and briefly highlight some recommended actions.

The Remaining 12 Most Common Diversity Recruiting Errors (more…)

Grading the Performance of a Recruiting Department

Fri, 06/20/2014 - 1:51am

What grade would you give the performance of your company’s recruiting department?

That’s a question we asked you in ERE’s State of Recruiting Survey.

I can sum up the results in one letter: (more…)

Woof, Woof. Fido Gets to Go to Work Today

Fri, 06/20/2014 - 12:09am

Today is the one day out of the year that many offices across the country have unarguably gone to the dogs. As you suspect, it’s Take Your Dog to Work Day.

For some companies, Amazon, Google, and Procter & Gamble, to name three of the larger ones, every day is a dog day. Others, not yet ready for that much togetherness, today serves as sort of a test of what is becoming a slow, if steadily growing trend toward tolerance of furry friends in the workplace.

There’s a practical side to allowing dogs, as many companies, particularly in the high-tech world. have found. A survey conducted for Wellness Natural Pet Food found that a large majority of 18-34 year-olds want to bring their pets to work, at least occasionally. That happens to be the demographic sweet spot for tech giants and startups. The latter, especially, see allowing pets as a recruiting plus when talking to candidates with dogs. (more…)

This Employee Handbook Is So Good, It’s a Recruiting Tool

Thu, 06/19/2014 - 1:21pm

Inspired by Valv, The Motley Fool has released an online employee handbook, one of the most memorable you’ve ever seen, so much so that it’s as much a recruiting tool as it is a set of rules. (more…)

A Stealth Startup Wants to Create a Better Way to Put Teams Together

Thu, 06/19/2014 - 5:35am

Working under the radar out of northern California — and Armenia — a stealth startup is building a piece of human resources technology to help in team building.

In short, companies would use the product to search their own employees’ skills, team fit, location, and availability.

Then, they’d click on profiles and piece together a team of people for a project. (more…)

A Conversation, Not Just Technology, Can Help You Hire a Veteran

Thu, 06/19/2014 - 12:20am

“Civilian Life.”

These are two words that can strike fear into a veteran. Yes, the same veterans who have seen unspeakable tragedy defending our country from enemies foreign and domestic. One of the few things that can scare those brave souls is coming back home.

Why? Several reasons associated with post-traumatic stress disorder have already been chronicled, but another source of real concern for our heroes is employment. Getting a job places more worry upon those men and women than just about anything, because while they come home to a country with open arms, several of those soldiers go to a home with a family doing the same.

They want to provide for their family but they have to get a job once their tour is over. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, unemployment rates among veterans who have served in the Gulf War of 2001 (Gulf War-Era II) and later is 9.0 percent, which equates to more than 700,000 people — individuals who have bravely served our country. Among that, 60 percent are 45 years of age and over. They can’t find a job because they don’t understand they already have the skills.

Is civilian life that difficult to manage? We encounter candidates on a daily basis looking for work, wanting help with their resume, and hoping one of clients in talent acquisition and hiring will scoop them up. They don’t seem to have a problem, so why do our heroes?

Tap Into It (more…)

Media Eating Up Religion-of-job-candidates Story

Wed, 06/18/2014 - 4:53pm

A study published three months ago — March 24, 2014 — is quickly making the rounds in the media and social media. In brief, the paper says that in the southern U.S. states, only one religion is helpful for job candidates to have on their resumes. (more…)

Not-too-expensive Employer Branding

Wed, 06/18/2014 - 12:26am

co-authored with Michael Pelts, RightJoin

What do folks think about your company? Every organization has a public image as an employer (and if you don’t, all the worse), and the image determines whether in-demand professionals will agree to be in touch.

The hands-down champion in employer marketing to software engineers is Google, which regularly gets photo-shoots of its toy-filled offices in top media like the New York Times. These campaigns are planned to draw in the best candidates in the industry and also to increase retention among current employees. In the final calculation, they more than pay for themselves with a significant reduction in recruiting costs.

In many small and medium sized companies, the priorities cannot justify the budget for long-term branding campaigns to boost the corporate image. But employers have started to realize that strong employer branding can make the difference between excellent hires and unfilled reqs; or, even worse, filling the position with unqualified candidates. Luckily, employer branding can be done on the cheap by combining it with recruiting: They both have the same target audience, and they boost each other when done together.

In this article, we’ll explain how to do this efficiently, focusing on the area we know most about: software engineering. (more…)