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Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Linked In Kills Monsters In The Marketplace

Although I wrote this for Cybersleuthing - the best blog for Searchologists on the planet, I thought this would prove of interest to jobseekers as well. Cybersleuthing is written by Shally Steckerl, a legend in sourcing talent and a god among online researchers (smile).

Linked In Kills Monsters In The Marketplace

Genius!

That is the best (and in my opinion) only way to describe what is going on at Linked In (www.linkedin.com). I received an email today hyping Direct Employer’s latest offering, a job board for recruiting candidates. In case you are saying “So what?” Let me be the first to enlighten you on why I think this move will kill Monsters in the marketplace. Every job board out there uses resumes as their collateral, but who else has managed to leverage social networks as effectively? It is a widely-known secret that if you are sourcing candidates in a hurry, Linked In is among the first few places you visit. While there may be similar offerings by competitors, I wonder how well they have been integrated into a sourcing routine. (I would LOVE to hear back on this.) Linked in functions best (I think) in offering so much in a simple package (Was it designed by the UI gods themselves?) that passes the grandma-what-does-this button-do test in user-friendliness hands down. However, what makes it an automatic winner (with me) is in how it delivers the most valuable offering any recruitment tool can give: “relationships, references and reputation.”

If you are already a member of Linked in and a recruiter, let me explain why you should be excited about this.

1. It will save you time and money.
2. It will save you time and money.
3. (and this is most important) It will save you time and money.

Consider this, you post a job, resumes come back and you review several resumes that you HOPE are accurate. Additionally, you overlook those applicants who are the most qualified because they do not use the keywords you are looking for nor do they have the wherewithal to create a stunning work history. Yet, your client would see them as the position messiah sent from above to deliver their department to profitable glory. Now, thanks to Linked In, you get the inside scoop on everyone who applies. You see who you know that they know, you see who they know that (perhaps) you would like to know and you see what people who have worked with them have to say about them. As a recruiter, what more could you hope for prior to actually speaking to the person applying? (Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus and he works at Linked In.)

Curiously enough as I write this, I realize that a whole new dynamic is taking shape in recruitment. I can sense savvy candidates becoming keenly more aware of the power they have (and really, always had) over recruiters serving a certain niche. The good recruiters always had a cadre of standby candidates they could prod for references or client leads at any given time. Now the power is shifted to those savvy candidates who are now instant power brokers. For example, “Mr./Ms/Mrs. Recruiter, take a peek at who I know on Linked in! Look at the endorsements from their co-workers. Would you like to know them? Yes? Then play nicely with me. What is “play nicely?” Return my phone call (or at least send an email), know who I am when you call me; do not waste my time by missing our scheduled call. I understand things happen, but consider my time and (at least) give a courtesy call or email (ahead of time) explaining the delay. And by all means, when you call please let the job match my skill set.” Not only has Linked In empowered a recruiter as never before, but they have likewise empowered the job hunter. Now exemplary service to potential hires has become all the more crucial. If I as a candidate do not like how you treated me, it is going to get that much harder for you to get to my known contacts (and get your messages forwarded to people connected to people I know) after I bad mouth you to my peers.

To recap, Linked In has leveled the playing field on both sides of the recruitment process. Recruiters get to save time and money while jobseekers are elevated from faceless pieces of CV meat trapped inside a blackhole. What happens next will be very interesting…

Jim Stroud
Searchologist
Google

Comments:
Hi Jim - actually the new LinkedIn Jobs functionality combines several thousand new jobs posted by hiring managers and recruiters directly on LinkedIn (which have the benefit for jobseekers of seeing how closely connected they are to the hiring manager or recruiter) with the existing 300,000+ jobs we have through our relationship with DirectEmployers. The new functionality is offered by LinkedIn and more details are available at http://www.linkedin.com/jobs (and you'll have to be a LinkedIn user to search jobs during the preview period).
Rob Leathern, Director of Marketing, LinkedIn
 
Nice piece, so I'll try to respond to Jim's implied question... What happens next is already happening: a job board on LinkedIn.com is only one of many pieces of the DirectEmployers strategy. My day-job company is a member firm of DE, and I can tell you that this not-for-profit consortium has a plan. They don't want to replace Monster (many DE members also subscribe to Monster), but they'd like to see a viable alternative that answers to the member companies' desires rather than one vendor and its stockholders.

--Glenn Gutmacher, Recruiting-Online.com
 
Yep... Many companies missed the boat on this one. I always thought that Classmates.com would be the next BIG THING in recruiting.
 
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