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It is better
to not be on
the web than
to be on and
not know why

John Sumser

is more
it seems.
John Gall

It's better to
do a few things
really well than
than to do
a lot of things
If you can't
make the necessary
commitments of
time and energy
to your
scale back
your plan.
John Sumser

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Yabba Dabba Doo
(January 19, 2001) We like the tag line used by Munder (an investment firm) in their TV commercials. After talking about how smart they were to invest in TMP, the screen fills with "we focus on comapnies that Get It". While we aren't always sure who gets it, it's pretty easy to see who doesn't.

Fresh from the press release factory in Noclue, Idaho, the Association of Executive Search Consultants

(really old timers will recall how big the battle was to introduce a code of ethics into the field), has announced the launch of BlueSteps, a pay to join database for executives. Noting that this is a "global" database, the system pries pocket change from executives for the privelege of being viewed by headhunters.
Executive Profile allows you to enter your summary career information into BlueSteps global database (a process that should take no longer than ten minutes) thereby providing the essential information against which AESC firms can search according to the needs of a particular assignment.In addition you are invited to submit your full resume or curriculum vitae as an attachment to your profile to provide additional information to search consultants when necessary.

You can rest assured that, once your career details are entered into our global database, they will never be shown to a hiring corporation without you having been contacted to first discuss the opportunity in question and to obtain your consent to proceed. Your details will also be completely protected from direct access by corporations and by recruiting firms that are not members of the AESC.

Posting your profile is a long-term investment. That is why you will only be charged a one-time fee of $100. As long as you continue to update your career information on an annual basis then your profile will remain in BlueSteps for as long as the service is in operation.

My goodness, a system that allows you to enter career information and attachments confidentially! Protection from corporations and by recruiting firms that are not members of the AESC. Why, it's Back To The Future with a racketeering twist.

We can imagine the planning meeting that spawned this bizarre entry:

"Uh, hey. This web thing might last."
"You know, my wife is learning web design."
"What if we got us a web page tingie with a database."
"Uh, hey, no one else is charging job hunters, we could make one beeelion dollars and have an IPO"
"I wanna be the webmaster"
"No, I was first"

There is a reason that one of the few non-internet sectors to underperform the NASDAQ over the past year is the Recruiting and Staffing Segment. While our New Era Recruiting Index lost nearly 20% of its value, the staffing sector tumbled by twice as much. The hint: Inventory is expensive, the tide has shifted, candidates are compensated for joining databases, costs are up, results are down.

The good news for BlueSteps is that they are certain to win this year's Flintstone award for best stone age headhunting mindset. Yabba Dabba Doo.

- John Sumser © TwoColorHat. All Rights Reserved.

The Gateways

(January 18, 2001) From sophisticated to silly, the following operations have one thing in common.
  1. RecruitUSA,
  2. Net Temps,
  3. CareerBuilder,
  4. CareerEngine,
  5. eQuest,
  6. GoJobs,
  7. IIRC,
  8. All In One Submit,
  9. Boxwood,
  10. DICE,
  11. HRPal,
  12. WebHire,
  13. Who To Choose,
  14. DBK

By posting a job ad through their service, you can have it distributed to a wide array of outlets. This job broadcasting service, at its simplest, is a great way to clog your email box with unwanted resumes. At its most sophisticated, it is a way to build a foundation for extremely targeted delivery of job advertising.

Each of the services takes a slightly different approach. RecruitUSA, in the midst of building the most powerful alliance network in the industry, focuses on targeting and volume. Net-Temps, serving the staffing industry, uses distribution across the board for its clients to increase response rates. CareerEngine, Boxwood and CareerBuilder are pulling together extraordinary internal networks of publishing sites. IIRC and eQuest are slowly building employment branding franchises. DICE appears to have evolved into a highly focused IT targeting tool.

Each of these companies is approaching a key vector in the industry from a slightly different angle. From pure gateways (like RecruitUSA) to the Networks to the Job Board In A Box providers, these companies are in the business of trying to make our exploding industry make sense for their customers. Some do it better than others, each has extremely loyal and vocal customers. They all have their place.

Frankly, the question isn't really "What are they doing now?" Rather, it's "What are their future plans?"

Almost any one of the players at these companies will tell you that broadcasting a job opening has begun to lose its effectiveness. The much hoped for "network-effect" can only be achieved with precision targeting. For the most part, these tools still engage in carpet bombing rather than laser guided precision munitions delivery.

We'd like to suggest that these companies are the vanguard of Employment Branding Systems. They have each paid their dues in coming up to speed and are all looking, in one way or another, for the next competitive advantage.

While they are, as a class, unlikely to perfect micro job boards (at the intersection of region, interest and profession), they, in many cases have the capacity to deliver increasing value to their customers by providing the capacity to tailor deliveries in detail.

Watch these guys as the source of innovation in the near future.

- John Sumser © TwoColorHat. All Rights Reserved.

Click Here!
24 Electronic Recruiting Trends 2001

(January 17, 2001) John Sumser's 24 Electronic Recruiting Trends 2001 piece is a must read. The trends piece is part of the 2001 Electronic Recruiting Index (available momentarily).This Annual interbiznet™ Report highlights the 24 Trends listed below:
  • Trend 1      Recruiting Gateways Emerge
  • Trend 2      Inventory Principles Take Hold
  • Trend 3      Perfection Of "Do Nothing Recruiting"
  • Trend 4      Continued Rumors Of Consolidation
  • Trend 5      NASDAQ Crash Drives Profitability Up
  • Trend 6      Proliferation Of Job Boards Unabated
  • Trend 7      Explosion Of Trade Shows
  • Trend 8      The Recruiter Returns
  • Trend 9      Search For A Business Model Goes On
  • Trend 10    Consequences Of The Staffing Industry Crash
  • Trend 11    Internet Search Techniques Wear Out
  • Trend 12    Job Posting Explosion Goes Exponential
  • Trend 13    Enterprise Players Join The Fun
  • Trend 14    Job Board In A Box Business Opens
  • Trend 15    Traffic Development Techniques Deployed
  • Trend 16    New Ad Agencies Take The Field
  • Trend 17    Newspaper Wars Won By Surprise
  • Trend 18    Market Segmentation Multiplies
  • Trend 19    Referral Networks Try Their Hand
  • Trend 20    Alumni Networks Connect Ex-Employees
  • Trend 21    The Use Of "Communities" Expands
  • Trend 22    Emphasis on Strategy Rediscovered
  • Trend 23    Talent Markets Grow Slowly
  • Trend 24    Limits Of Tools Understood
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A Laugh Or Two

(January 16, 2001) Here are ten takes on current workplace issues of interest to Recruiters.

- John Sumser © TwoColorHat. All Rights Reserved.

Mee Jah Beestro

(January 15, 2001) We tossed an off the cuff remark about the global expansion of Craig's List in an article last week. We suggested that the idea that community is a "one size fits all" equation was sophomoric. Let us offer a little detail to support that idea.

From ethnic composition to the "liberal dome" we live under, San Francisco is very different from other places. We think things are funny that shock people from other regions. We take a certain range of social experimentation as the norm. In the small town we used to live in, those things were meant to be kept well inside of the house and not shown publicly. Her in the Bay area, our hypocrisy is a little different than the rest of the world. We're often closet conservatives.

There's a hook there. We ended up in San Francisco by way of a little, very conservative town. Our hearts had been left in San Francisco but our tails were in the Right Wing Rotary club. We'd read about the goings on on the West Coast under the cover of darkness so to speak.

Life is less censored in really big cities and you can find just about anything you want if the city is big enough.

So, if Craigslist trolls for the San Francisco component of the cities they're growing into, they'll have some luck. It's a huge market and there is lots of room for lots of offerings. But, the only people who think that San Francisco is a good preparation for New York live in San Francisco.

On one level, it only takes about 10,000 people to make Craigslist work. From that angle, there's room for 1,000 Craigslist variants in NYC. It's entirely possible, in other words to generate a financial home run with a New York outlet and never come to grips with the regional realities of the big Apple. In that case, the question of what constitutes success is key.

You might take a look at MediaBistro, a somewhat less pretentious version of Craig'sList, based in New York but targeted at a region of industry rather than geography. Focused tightly on upwardly mobile media people, MediaBistro offers trade news, shows for media folks, job listings and employer services. While it wants to be National (we're guessing that National Ambition is a drug resistant disease), it's heart is in New York.

Like Craig's, MediaBistro really is a party masquerading as a website. But, it's a New York party. And, interestingly, media people like to go to New York parties.

Sometimes, we feel like the venerable Pooh Bear. There's an important point lurking just beneath the apparent ramblings.

Yes Craigslist can make it in New York; No They won't save the world; Maybe no one will even notice; They could still be very profitable.

Yes MediaBistro can go National; Yes, no one might notice; Yes they could still be very profitable.

The problem, we think, is that no one, us included, is very good at talking about just how potent tiny little niches of 10,000 really are. In the staffing business, 10,000 active professionals who changed jobs every 5 years would constitute a $30,000,000/year business. While it's no Monster Board, it is nearly 10% of their current revenue. And, it can be run by a small staff.

Ultimately, the small operations will prevail as the bulk of the market.

- John Sumser © TwoColorHat. All Rights Reserved.

© 2013 interbiznet.
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Materials written
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© TwoColorHat.
All Rights Reserved.

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