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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


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Wal-Mart II

(May 19, 2003) -- We got an interesting note from a Wal-Mart associate regarding our recent column. We received several similar notes.

I am replying to an article you wrote about the Wal-Mart internet job applying piece. I have been a Wal-Mart associate for 23 years and you are wrong on how this works. The associate is first at Wal-Mart when it comes to hiring. The associates are treated good--and it is a family type environment. And in case you did not know--they have hired people off the street to become big wigs that have not worked at a Wal-Mart store before. But when we want to advance at store level or go to district manager, we do have that option, and they work with us to try to see that we do advance. How do you think that Wal-Mart is the #1 company in America if they do not know what they are doing? I do not see a company that you own doing so well for as long as they have. I guess that should tell you something. Like----those who bad mouth are those who do not know what they are talking about. When you write articles like that, it only makes you look bad, because there are alot of people that do know how it is---talk to the millions that invest in Wal-Mart stock that keep up with how Wal-Mart works.
Sincerely, (Name Withheld)

Quite often, the hardest thing to explain to a company is the fact that perceptions really matter. While we are certain that Wal-Mart owes a great deal of its success to its 20th Century recruiting practice, times have changed. Their online employment offering is difficult to use and a serious blemish on the company's reputation. More importantly, their advertising drives candidates to a website that leaves a bad impression. They simply have not invested adequately in the processes that could keep them competitive in the 21st Century.

Assuming that our correspondent is correct, Wal-Mart ought to be setting the benchmark for online employment tools, techniques and practices. Instead, they have chosen to sully their brand with an ill-conceived and badly executed offering. Candidates who do not share a 23 year history with the company will find it hard to believe that a company that is so arrogant online could be the family friendly place described in the note.

More or less, all candidates eventually end up reviewing the employment section of a potential employers website. Usually, this happens well before a physical encounter. Whether or not the site is well planned and effective matters more than is easily imagined. It is the place where first impressions are formed.

Wal-Mart is hardly alone in having a great employment story coupled with a bad employment website. They are fortunate to have motivated and well intentioned employees who will defend the company. Unfortunately, those same employees can do little to minimize the damage the company does to itself (unintentionally).

Employment Brands really matter. Currently they suffer neglect and little accountability. As the economy moves forward, the problem will magnify. Now is the time to get the company employment site in order. Fixing it while the rush is on will only give competitors a chance to move in.

- John Sumser, © TwoColorHat. All Rights Reserved.

Your ATS is a brand-building machine,
according to Jeremy Shapiro

Applicant tracking systems (ATS) are about managing candidate flow, right? Most people assume you invest in an ATS to build a talent pipeline, boost a recruiter's effectiveness, and lower cost-per-hire.

But according to Jeremy Shapiro, Senior Director of e-Recruiting Solutions at Bernard Hodes Group, an ATS can have a major impact on your employer brand, as well as on the relationship you're trying to build with active and passive candidates.

In Shapiro's mind, how an ATS is designed and integrated into your candidate-care program can be the difference between a talent pipeline bursting with potential-or one that's dripping a slow death. Read our full interview with Shapiro at:

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Copyright © 2013 interbiznet. All rights reserved.
Materials written by John Sumser © TwoColorHat. All Rights Reserved.
Mill Valley, CA 94941

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