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Our Community
(June 02, 2005) If there's an overused word in 'cyberspace', it's community. Somehow, the definition has been stretched from what we all know (these are the people in your neighborhood) to an artificial variant of mailing list or resume database. Marketing abuse of the language coupled with sincere desires for improvement are at the root of the problem.

It's too bad, really, we need a word like community to describe the wonderful evolution happening in the Recruiting space. Little mounds of activity, woven together with links spell a change in the way our industry works. What happens online is increasingly distinct from the rest of the world.

Some companies have recognized this and moved to make it an asset. We love what they're doing online at Veritude. Their newsletter/online resource, Workforce Insights (Registration required and worth it) directly competes with the likes of HR.com, hr.blr.com, Staffing.org, SHRM, the Human Capital Institute, and a variety of others. While we're still unsure that any of these organizations should or will be independent, it's interesting to see an area of shakeout where private company publishing is competing directly with for profit and non-profit entities. At the root, for the 'others' is the customer dollar for information.

Veritude, rightly we think, sees the competition differently. The real competition is for mind-share. Revenue is so secondary in the battle that it poses a disadvantage to any company that needs it. You see, from Veritude's perspective, delivering useful and exciting information is a cost of doing business, not a product cost to be marked up and sold. For Veritude, this is intelligent marketing. For the others, it's their business.

The blog/rss revolution is all about the fact that companies must publish and give away valued information in order to keep intimate with their customers. The product of the forgoing list of competitors really should be the marketing product of their sponsors. We imagine that soon, a number of the folks will be front ends (or hood ornaments as we've called them over the years).

Then there are the blogs.

We got very excited yesterday when we discovered the "Recruiting Revolution", a blog put forth by Steve Fogarty, Senior Staffing Partner, Waggener Edstrom. Steve oversees staffing/recruitment for Wagged's core public relations practice. There are few PR firms as powerful and a recruiting blog from them is a real milestone in the evolution of the neighborhood.

We're now following 29 recruiting blogs each morning. We feed you the best pieces in the "You Should Know" section of the "Bugler". Like all of the big ships in our harbor, the small craft (blog) universe is sometimes hot, sometimes not. The point is that it is thriving.

The information landscape is changing rapidly. Like all communities, ours is built on our part of that landscape. As the media revolution continues, we expect that blogs will assume an ever larger (and more representative) role while the bigger institutions will start behaving more like smaller shops. ERE is setting a very interesting example in this regard.

John Sumser

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Materials written by John Sumser © TwoColorHat. All Rights Reserved.
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