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It is better
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John Sumser

is more
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The Electronic Recruiting News is a Free Daily Newsletter For Recruiters, HR Managers, Advertising Agencies and Clasified Advertising Operations

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Email Is Dead III

(September 04, 2003) - There's a huge opportunity opening before our eyes. While the email clog may not show its impact in an economy flush with job hunters, alternatives will have to be in place when things heat up. Services that rely on email for their value will need alternatives quickly.

You'll quickly see declining results in Recruiting activities that depend on email. Direct marketing techniques for harvesting candidate pools will start to suffer dramatic decreases in productivity. The era of the resume as email attachment is closing, no one in their right mind opens attachments. (Although later editions of MS Office make the use of attachments superfluous, Office is not currently distributed widely enough to offset the email problem.)

This is great news for HotJobs. A minor tweaking of the Yahoo Messenger service would make it an ideal, spam free communications environment. An encrypted (for privacy) Instant Messaging system that had the ability to sort and organize conversations / message threads could solve the problem caused by email overflow.

It's also a fascinating inflection point for a major Microsoft play in our industry. That's where we'd see Monster heading. The integration of Microsoft's vast arsenal of tools makes it possible to imagine tailored recruitment communications environments, much as you can imagine with Yahoo.

For CareerBuilder, shifting away from email is a question that assaults its very foundations. As a newspaper enterprise, the CB view of the world very seriously reflects the biases of its owners. While we see every reason for CB to become the reason that the newspapers adopt a Yahoo style strategy (becoming the full service information utility), the newspapers have routinely shied away from the required investment. Interestingly, the current deal with AOL may make technical integration with more of AOL's services the path that CB takes.

For others, the news is not so good.

Employers are about to be faced with the costs and expenses associated with developing discrete Recruiting communications channels. While technical tools abound, no one has taken the time and energy to integrate an environment that is both candidate friendly and reasonably accessible to a variety of employers. Remember, email is dead, so environments that drive traffic to a website for communication are going to be increasingly less effective.

A desktop based communications platform with file storage, message archiving and other email like capabilities is what we're talking about. Video and voice integration will be a real plus. A cellular communications link would be nice.

The challenge for existing job board companies is that the move towards the end user's desktop will force new forms of industry measurements. The current model needs email to drive repeat traffic to a destination website. The death of email means that the destination will be right on the user's desktop.

John Sumser


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