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November 15, 1995: The Catapult
On one level, the Universities are the unsung backbones of online recruiting. For example The Catapult maintained by William and Mary routinely points job seekers in the direction of the more commercial markets on the web. Leo Charette has been tirelessly building and expanding this Web treasure on the limited budget of a college placement office. In a perfect world, there would be a way to fully repay organizations like this for their contributions to our industry.

Here's our thanks.

November 14, 1995: H.E.A.R.T.
Using the term oldtimer in this marketplace is a bit silly. But, if anyone qualifies, it's H.E.A.R.T.. Continual adaptation is the name of the game in the ever competitive world of electronic recruiting. In a reasoned way, H.E.A.R.T. is remaking itself again with a new, intuitive interface being unveiled this week.

November 13, 1995: Industry-moves
Even as the number of online recruiters continues to explode, the logical consolidation is starting. Two key announcements that involve four of IBN's top 25 recruiters.

In a widely publicized move, CMP's Techweb has begun using E Span's job and search engines as a means of building business for both organizations. This appears to be a brilliant mix of technical/professional content wrapped around a job agency that really produces. Looks like it strengthens both organizations.

In a similar move, On Line Career Center and Recruiters Online Network have announced a pact that gives all members of RON access to OCC. This ought to really shore up OCC's ability to produce and fill job opportunities. It also reinforces the synergy building in Bill Vick's exploding organization.

Our bet: expect to see more strategic alliances between the players in this industry. While the new kids are getting on board, the now ancient veterans (with a year or two of web time) are making the logical moves.

November 10, 1995: HEC's Tip of the Week
Check out the Tip of the Week on the HEC Group's updated Website. It's the kind of changing content that will bring visitors back again and again. Through the clever use of a form, HEC Group offers the reader a quick overview of the site and its offerings without burying the client computer in download time. It's not perfect, but you can see that they have thought seriously about site usability. The forms based menuing trick is used throughout the site. It has the effect of making navigation easier for the user. NICE Job.

November 9, 1995: America's Employers
Another interesting new entrant to the fray. America's Employers is a service from a relocation company that includes a massive employer database and a recruiter's section. It's not clear that they are really encouraging contact with recruiters because they don't include phone, fax and email data. What's very interesting about the site is The Conference Room. Offered is a dialog with a "professional" counselor. Some services are password protected and only available to corporate clients. It's an interesting beginning model for the delivery of outsourcing services online.

It remains to be seen whether or not the company intends to back its promises with the required investment, but that's always the case with new websites.

In general, the site is attractive though the graphics are a bit heavy handed.

Although their policy for listing recruiting firms is unclear, this would be an interesting place to have your firm listed. It would be even more interesting if they encouraged complete contact information.

Conclusion: Good start, but the jury's out on performance.

Everything is Broken

According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the San Jose Mercury News and the Los Angeles Times have refused to publish an ad by Thompson Recruitment Advertisers for a "Virtual Job Fair". The Chronicle says:

"Rejecting the advertisement is a sign newspapers see the Internet as a threat to their long standing dominance in advertising, said advertisers, perplexed by both companies' decisions."

Now, think about everything that you've heard about promoting web sites in other media. It's beginning to look like not everyone thinks this is a great idea.

We believe that this is restraint of trade.

November 8, 1995: The Missing Ingredient
What's most often missing from the online Employment search? Well, besides a decent search engine. A sense of humor, that's what.

E-Span's new interface is a step in the right direction. The job hunt can be a dreary, frustrating time and the overabundance of opportunities on the net does little to reduce the stress.

E-Span continues to demonstrate its adaptive staying power with this charming, quick to load, interface.

The October 20th issue of USA Today (print) included an article on Net based Job searching. Technology critic Kevin Majney compared the online job market to the three age old promises: the check is in the mail; interactive TV will be here in 1995; and ....

The article went on to describe his frustration with learning interfaces and finding few opportunities for journalists. He concluded that the Net might be useful......someday.

We agree, sort of. The Net offers job seekers a bewildering array of opportunities and sources. And, it takes time to master the tools. But, there are thousands of success stories out there. It seems like it's time to start celebrating the successes and move away from marketing the companies

Of all people, a technology critic like Mr. Majney should understand that technology is not yet transparent. He should also realize that any job search takes work, research and the use of unfamiliar tools.

Nonetheless, he has a solid point. Today, the Electronic Recruiting Industry is fragmented into small islands of information. It's obviously not a solid long term strategy for any of the players.

In surprisingly related news, Quarterdeck has announced a search engine that takes the results of searches in Yahoo, Lycos, Aliweb and several others and integrates them into a single database that resides on the user's PC. How long will it be until the same product exisits in the recruiting marketplace? We'd hope that the major players will find a way to develop this kind of product from within the industry.

November 7, 1995: I.P.A.
The Internet Professional's Association continues to be a wonder story. Now the largest association of employment related firms in the world, IPA was not possible before the advent of the Web. Their member's and associate member's listings are a job hunter's dream.

We get the impression that all of the firms who join do well by the association.

November 6, 1995: CareerPath
The big recent news is the entry of the Heavyweights into the Electronic Recruiting game. CareerPath is a "joint venture" between the big Newspaper Dailies from Boston, New York, Washington, Chicago, LA and San Jose. Talk about your 10,000 pound gorilla!

The good news for worried recruiters....they can't even field a single point of contact for online sales.

The Website itself sports a fashionably sleek design and promises access to tons of jobs. Search results, however, make a point of letting the job hunter know which newspaper the ads are from.

Now for the good news. This is probably the only place that you can find employment ads for exotic dancers like:

DANCERS, exotic, m&f. Med. bnfts. Tony 1 800 472-3948 Published 11/05/95 - San Jose Mercury News

Net Recruiting is becoming democratic overnight....this should shred the "techies only" image.

Straight from the classifieds to you. Notice how each ad is tagged with the name of its source.....Who cares?.

Meanwhile, the site is full of promises of future features and has the nerve to require registration from applicants. They must have clustered together in a dark room and refused to listen to the consultants who tried to tell them about online employment advertising. It feels like the lawyers did the bulk of the information design.

Someone should program the CareerPath computers to chant "Less is More, Less is More, Less is More".

November 5, 1995: WebWeek
If you're going to thrive in this new world, you've got to read the "trades". Try Web Week. It's no Interactive Age, but it has a stronger understanding of the industry issues (telcos etc.)

Besides our industry analyses and newsletters, we help recruiters integrate this new technology into their operations. We've added a detailed description of IBN to the website. We'd love to help you.

Contacting Us
Call, fax, write, email. We'd love to talk about your project.

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





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