Tag: recruiting

Are you in London or Paris? If so, check out what I’m working on.

One recruiter’s plea for help in locating top tech talent “across the pond”:

Boolean strings simplified

Here’s a color coded breakdown of a boolean search string for resumes of software engineers with cloud computing experience in Seattle.  

-job (inurl:~resume | intitle:~resume) (distributed | parallel | multithread* | concurrent) (“C#” OR “C++”) 98000..98999

I’ll explain the color coding below:

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Zip code targeted boolean strings

Google is a great way to find resumes, but filtering your results to local candidates is often a requirement. While including city and/or state names in your boolean search is a good way to narrow your results, it presents a major challenge.

First, resumes often include a city name for each role. This means somebody who worked in Seattle 10 years ago then moved to San Diego still has “Seattle” on their resume. Sure, you can still contact them and ask if they are interested in moving back to Seattle, but this takes time away from engaging candidates who are still in Seattle. Very often, this is the only location information that appears on resumes.

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Maximize your online recruiting spend

Every recruiter has one or more favorite job boards they use to post jobs and search resumes.  But job boards are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to developing a successful and holistic online recruiting campaign.

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I realized I’m a professional networker. I think that’s a good thing.

Here’s a breakdown of my day:

– Sent about 100 emails and social media messages to potential cloud candidates on behalf of Microsoft.
– Had an impromptu conference with my daughter’s kindergarten teacher
– Invited 500 people to a Portland business networking website I’m working on.
– Played around with some Twitter tools I am developing
– Drove to Portland, texted rap lyrics to a couple of my boys (not while driving)
– Exchanged about 40 emails/IMs with my partners at Microsoft
– Getting ready to attend Portland Seed Fund launch
– If time permits, I’ll roll over to the ERE HR Meetup for last call

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Social recruiting is great. But don’t forget to PICK UP THE PHONE.

Here’s me in 1999.

My first recruiting gig was with Aerotek in Seattle in 1999.  On my first day, I was handed a stack of about 200 paper applications that were not yet entered into our applicant tracking system.  These were the forms people were required to fill out in the era right before 1999, when online applications were not yet the norm.  I was tasked with calling these people, screening them, and entering their profile into the ATS.  When I got done with the first stack, I pulled another stack out and called those people, and so on. 

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What is recruitment marketing?

Recruitment marketing is the term I use to describe outbound recruitment efforts that involve some sort of advertising or strategic group communication aspect.  Let me explain.

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Use LinkedIn Answers more effectively

Here’s a link to an article I recently contributed to Expert Bits (disclaimer, I launched Expert Bits and am the expert for the Internet Marketing channel).  This post focuses on the top 5 ways to use LinkedIn Answers, let me know what you think.

Integrating recruitment with the overall marketing efforts of your business

I was having an email conversation with another recruiter yesterday about foursquare.  His company utilizes foursquare as part of their overall mobile/social marketing strategy, but not so much for recruiting (as far as I know).  This got me thinking about how companies can tap into the existing brand initiatives of their business to increase their employment brand as well.  Can this be done successfully without diluting the overall marketing message?  What other pitfalls might arise?  Does your company do it?  Why or why not?

With regards to the foursquare example, it seems as if retail outlets are already using this tool to engage their customers, they can take it a step further and ping them with job details here and there too.  I’m a bit of a mobile luddite so I am still holding off on using foursquare, thus my grasp of it is very limited.  That being said, if people are connecting with your brand while at your physical location, why not connect with them to a degree beyond brand marketing, and engage them as passive candidates.

To take this a step further, if foursquare users are checking in while at your retail location, that at means they a) like your product and b) probably live relatively close and c) have disposable income, thus they are employed, and therefore, employable.  That doesn’t necessarily make them a grade A candidate, but if you are already making the media spend, why not mention that you are hiring?

This isn’t specific to foursquare.  Print and web advertising could easily incorporate your recruiting message without diluting the overall brand message.  For instance, Amazon could place some text like “Love shopping with Amazon?  You might like working here too.”  Or Microsoft “Think you can make Windows 7 better?  Join us”.  Maybe they already do something like this, but overall, I would say most companies don’t.  Seems like a good way to reduce duplicate advertising spend while reaching loyal passive candidates.

Four steps for finding a job

I’ve been getting quite a few calls from friends, their parents, relatives, neighbors, etc., asking me for job search tips.  As we all know, the current job search environment is quite competitive.  Here is a quick list of job search advice, by no means comprehensive:

1) Update your resume and your LinkedIn profile.  In my opinion, volume “self marketing” is the key to getting the word out about your availability.  To effectively do this, you must first have a cohesive message, which in this case, is your resume and professional profile.  Chances are, you haven’t updated your resume since you last looked for a job, and you now have a lot of relevant experience that you need to capture.  Do the same on your LinkedIn profile, and Facebook too.  When you update your status on these social networks, an update will be sent to your contacts, which should jump start your networking efforts.  An effective yet simple approach is to update your LinkedIn profile, then send a message to contacts in your email address book, as well as your LinkedIn and Facebook contacts.  A message like the sample below would suffice:

I am currently seeking new job opportunities, and I wanted to reach out to you to let you know what I’ve been up to.  Please take a moment to look at my updated LinkedIn profile, and let me know if you (or anyone you know) may have a job opportunity that aligns with my expertise.  Please let me know if I can repay the favor!



Your Name
Your Email

2) Post your resume and create job alerts.  Once you’ve updated your resume(s), post it on a few job boards.  I highly recommend posting it on Monster.com, since Monster’s resume database seems to be the most popular with recruiters.  If you are in IT, post it on Dice too.  I also recommend posting your resume on Craigslist, first removing all contact info (name, phone, email).  This will position your resume to appear when recruiters large and small conduct a search on any/all of those websites. 

All job boards offer some sort of job alert function, often called a job agent.  These allow you to save your job search criteria, and register to receive email alerts of new jobs.  Once you start receiving these agent emails, you can simply click a link in your email and go directly to new job descriptions.  Ultimately the best candidate gets hired, but it never hurts to have your resume submitted early.

3) Don’t depend on recruiters to “find you a job”.  This isn’t really what most of us do.  Most of us are paid a fee, by the employer, for finding them talent they can’t find on their own.  If you are a good candidate for a particular role, you’ll hear from us.  That being said, it is wise for job seekers to register with any staffing agencies in their niche for current and future openings.  Just be aware that our focus is not on placing every candidate.  It is on filling every job requisition we have.

4) Network Network Network.  This has become cliche, and anybody that has been networking unfruitfully will cringe when they read this, but it’s true.  Networking is the absolute BEST way to learn of unadvertised job opportunities.  You have to remember, companies are getting flooded with applicants, many of them unqualified, each time they post a new job.  I imagine this is leading them to network for referrals (more than normal) from their current employees, vendors, clients, etc.  You don’t necessarily need to know somebody at your target employer, just somebody that has some sort of contact with them, no matter how random. 

To network, start with the easiest methods and work out from there.  Connect with previous employers and colleagues on LinkedIn, and let them know you are available.  Engage them in conversation.  Join groups and connect with people you may not “know” in real life, but that you now share the group with.  Email or call people you know who have a good job, and ask them about their company.  People may know of the perfect lead for you, but may feel uncomfortable talking with you about your job search.  Break the ice and ask for help.  That’s networking.