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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
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to your
scale back
your plan.
John Sumser

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the Industrial Age
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Knowledge Age
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  • Read Today's interbiznet Bugler
  • 24 Electronic Recruiting Trends 2001 Requires Acrobat.
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  • Weekend Reading

    (January 5, 1997):
  • Web Sites Drowning in Deluge of E-mail from NetMarketing
    Many business when creating a site get caught up in attracting traffic without planning for the results of such traffic. This article examines how sites deal with the incredible amount of email they can attract and the costs of answering such email. This is a good case study that discusses an cautionary aspect of marketing that rarely gets attention.
  • 1996 Review of the Year from NUA Internet Surveys
    While reluctant to mention yet another article which reviews the last year, there is a lot which can be learned from taking stock of where we have been and where we are going. NUA publishes a monthly analysis and list of pointers to the major surveys about the Internet. This special edition, is an indepth analysis of the facts and firgures that have emerged from sources like Forrester, and the Gartner Group in 1996. While this a lengthy report, make sure you skim the chapters on The Internet Marketing Opportunity, Internet Market Sectors, and Online Advertising.
  • Beyond the Banner from Wired
    This articles examines the current general disatisfaction with banner advertising and discusses companies that are finding new ways to advertise as well as sites that are providing alternative methods of sponsorship.
  • Two Great Research Tools

    (January 4, 1997): With all of the clutter on the web, the last thing you need is a search tool that gives you thousands of answers to a single question. As good as the current search engines are, we get headaches just thinking about running a query that gives us endless strings of gobbledygook in response. Here are two very useful attempts to deal with the clutter

    Profusion allows you to search all of the major web databases simultaneously. It then processes all of the results to give you a single readout of the answers to your query with duplicates removed. If you have a little patience, it will even verufy that the links work before handing you a result. (In some of our recent research, we're seeing 50% broken links in search results). Finally, Profusion allows you to repeat queries over time and tailor them for relevance. It's really very useful.

    Companies on the Net is a handy database that includes lots of information searchable by keyword. At the simplest level of the search possibilities, it returns company names and domain names. In more complex searches, it returns the company URL. Very useful.

    AltaVista Accepts Ads

    (January 2, 1997): AltaVista was created to showcase Digital's search technology and therefore was the only search engine that didn't display banner advertising. Despite previous concerns that advertising would slow down AltaVista's performance or disenchant users, Digital has recruited Doubleclick to market their banner space. Doubleclick will sell keywords starting at $60/CPM. Keywords range form $50 - $60/CPM depending on the search engine, so AltaVista will be considered one of the more expensive search engines.

    Keyword advertising has proven very effective for a number of the large employment advertising firms.

    King of The Web

    (January 1, 1997): If you read our other newsletters, you're probably familiar with Dave Winer. Winer is a software developer who pioneered outlining programs in the 80s. For the past several years, he's spent his time integrating an unusual (by non-web standards) business that helps developers with their websites. His business model includes software development and a slightly irregular mailing list that focuses on Dave's perspective on the net. He's often right and always provocative. If you have the time, poke around his website at

    We mention Dave and his website because one of the most interesting experiments in Web Recruiting and Advertising came out of his operation. The Classified Ads For Web Professionals project is a very simple, straightforward approach to recruiting and placement. Job Ads go here, announcements go there, resumes go another place. It's all automated and happens in real time on the net.

    We've been talking all year about the importance of mining niches as a web recruiting method. That's where Winer's project shines. Because he is a pundit / businessman at the center of the action, there's no better place for a web professional to be seen. There's no better place for an employer or recruiter to find solid talent.

    The site is focused on effectively solving the problem of moving people around the heavily projectized webmaster/ web professional marketplace. No glitz, no fancy graphics, no hype, no claims of being the largest this or that just pure recruiting performance. The tool is the absolute model of simplicity. A recruiter's dream, jobs are posted and filled with astonishing regularity.

    We mention Winer's Classified Ads For Web Professionals because the model is portable. A similar sort of effective recruiting tool can be established anywhere that common professional interests are shared. Although it isn't all of the future, we'd bet that the combination of revenue potential and recruiting effectiveness will lead to a proliferation of offerings that look a lot like this first and very solid experiment.

    Prettier With a Lobotomy

    (December 31, 1996): Intellimatch has launched a gorgeous redesign. Smooth graphics provide an easy to navigate interface. It looks like they've invested intelligently in fast servers. It's pretty.

    Intellimatch faced a difficult problem with their initial approach to the marketplace. Their proundly simple idea was that a comprehensive structured skills inventory from job hunters would be matched against the same level of detail in job descriptions resulting in extraordinary pairings of positions and candidates. The difficulty (or so it seemed) with the initial design was that few job hunters were willing to take the time to conduct the inventory. In the new design, the structure is gone. It's replaced by a remarkable sea of skill descriptions organized by industry.

    Here's the problem. In the original Intellimatch concept, there was significant value (once properly explained) on both sides of the equation. The simple act of enduring the structured questionaire qualified both the job hunter and the recruiting company. It also forced both parties to clearly consider their strengths and weaknesses as a part of the process. Though it certainly wasn't for everybody, Intellimatch was able to claim a higher quality of a certain kind of candidate. (Anyone willing to persist through the structured resume development process is by definition a notch above normal).

    The new design fixes all of that. Now, instead of a structured process with defined results, the interface provides an endless sea of choice with no completion measures. While you can now enter a "cut and paste" resume into the Intellimatch database, the skills inventories are no longer standardized. So, the quality of the match between candidate and position starts to approach the rest of the pack. With all of the new choices in skill descriptors, we imagine that the resume completion rates are falling. User confidence will suffer in this new configuration.

    There's a very important lesson to be learned from the Intellimatch redesign. It's very tempting to solve sales problems with technical approaches. The pressure from sales will always be towards the "dumbing down" of the product. If you can use it as a way to force further design simplification, it's a great pressure. In the case of Intellimatch. it looks like the sales force won at the expense of the product. Good News For Newspapers

    (December 30, 1996): The newspapers bring several key strengths to balance these nearly crippling weaknesses. Though it will be hard for newspapers, used to perceiving themselves as arbiters of truth, politics and public taste, to see themselves in this light, it is clear that the community daily newspaper occupies several key strategic intersections. In addition, they are organized to specifically address the employment marketplace with tools and experience that take decades to build. In short, underneath their destructive self-perception are several important strengths in infrastructure, market position and core competencies.

    With instant regional brand recognition, an established advertising sales force, broad connections in local business communities, ties to other media outlets, influence in regional politics, a clear understanding of regional distribution and direct access to local job hunters, newspapers are uniquely equipped with strategic position and infrastructure. Harnessing these strengths is an intellectually simple but organizationally complex undertaking. Simply described, newspapers will have to learn to see and handle classified advertising as editorial content. It will mean undoing generations of internal prejudice.

    Once employment ads are viewed as "content", it is a small leap to the sorts of organizational services that newspapers are uniquely equipped to provide. As regional information centers, the organizations are uniquely equipped to assist their clients with the development of effective position descriptions. With a firm grasp of the local media environment, one can easily imagine the newspapers being able to effectively position a given ad in the most favorable and accessible positions. Given their organizational predisposition to immediacy (news is a change that matters), the adaptation to the recruiting industry will be straightforward after the first several hurdles.

    The brand new issue of Wired Magazine is worth buying on the newstand for a very provocative piece by Nick Negroponte (it's always on the last page of the magazine). Negroponte (actually one of his grad assistants) proposes an idea that shook our thinking to the bone. He suggests that the future of the net and its displays could well be....paper. In a very compact space, he describes the idea that what we're ultimately searching for is "Digital Ink" or "smart paper". If Negroponte is even close, the Newspapers have a bright future indeed. Read it. We've Added Daily News

    (December 14, 1996): We think you'll like this one. In partnership with Individual, Inc (the news providers), we're now offering a section of daily headlines for recruiters. Check it out.

    Recruiters' Internet
    Survival Guide

    (AUGUST 01, 1996): It's here and we're proud. Staffing Industry Resources has published the Recruiter's Internet Survival Guide by our editor, John Sumser.
    Order your copy today.

    See a detailed index of our past issues

  • Week Ending December 29, 1996
    • Net As Recruiting Tool
    • Navigator 4.0
    • More About Newspapers
    • Domain Names
    • Newspapers
  • Week Ending December 22, 1996
    • Specialty Recruiting
    • Perspective
    • Staying Abreast
    • The College Market
    • Names
  • Week Ending December 15, 1996
    • Registration
    • The Dating Game
    • Getting Closer
    • Cookies
    • Privacy
  • Week Ending December 08, 1996
    • Bad Design Tutorial
    • Forbes ASAP
    • Key Features For Recruiting
    • Holiday Humor
    • Parachute Packing
  • Week Ending December 01, 1996
    • Richard Miles Interview
      • The Future Of Recruiting
      • Staying Abreast
      • Consumer Education
      • Building Traffic
  • Week Ending November 24, 1996
    • Job Info Prototype
    • Internet Fever
    • Immigration Law
    • Building Traffic
    • Kaplan Career Center
  • Week Ending November 17, 1996
    • New Hodes Study
    • Kelly's Super Site
    • Chivas
    • About Work
    • Student Center
  • Week Ending November 10, 1996
    • IBM Eudora
    • Bad Design
    • Great Design
    • Revolution
    • StrategosNet
  • Week Ending November 3, 1996
    • Doing The Resume Sift
    • Follow The Money
    • Corporate Recruiting
    • Managing Links
    • 1997 ERI

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