Defining Excellence In Electronic Recruiting


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Recruiter's Toolkit:

An Introduction To Electronic Recruiting

Defining Excellence In Electronic Recruiting


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Update 1.33 © 1999,, all rights reserved

Toolkit Addition

Email Newsletter Formatting

Many of our readers are experimenting with email newsletters. How do you:

a. create an email newsletter that appears on the recipient's screen in the same format as on yours and

b. attach a Word document that can be opened by recipients and have the same appearance on their machine as on yours?

Many times, a document in both Word form and email text form that looks fine on your machine and sends internally to another machine in your organization properly, will appear corrupted when sent to outsiders.

The issue here is control of how the document appears on the recipient's screen! Is it possible?

The question involves two separate issues. The first involves basic e-mail, while the second involves attaching documents written in other applications. In both cases, the problem is a result of differences between software programs.

With simple e-mail, the display is determined by the client software on the machine of the recipient. Not only will different programs display the same message in different ways, but the same program can be set up differently, so two people using the same e-mail software will not necessarily see a message the same as each other.

With attachments, the problem is a bit different. One purpose of using an attachment is to give you the ability to format a document, such that your recipients will see the formatting. Assuming all of your recipients use the *same version of the same software*, the formatting should be consistent.

In some cases, you will experience problems when sending an attachment to someone who uses the same program on a different platform (Windows vs. Mac). But, if the various people are using more recent versions of the software, you should not experience much variation in the display. The more serious problems tend to occur when you have to deal with older versions of the software.

The solution to the display problems depends on who your recipients are. If you have some control over the versions of software that your recipients use, then you can effectively use attachments. You just have to make sure that they use comparable versions of the software needed to read attachments. As long as they use the same version, you should be OK. Also, you can solve some problems by saving your file as an earlier version of the software - using the "Save as type" box in the save window.

If you can not control the software, then you are limited to basic e-mail. Even though you can experience problems based on people using different e-mail clients, or even because their clients are set up differently, you can get some consistency with basic e-mail. The following guidelines will help you:

  • Don't use tabs when sending e-mail. The length of a tab is set by the recipient's software, so if you use them, the person who reads your e-mail will very likely see the message formatted differently than you intended.

  • Don't use special formatting options. Many new e-mail programs allow you to change the size and style of fonts, and to use other advanced formatting options. Unfortunately, there are no standards yet for these options; therefore, your efforts to format a message will be wasted if your recipient uses software that does not allow for advanced formatting.

  • Write short paragraphs (keep them to 6-8 lines or less). Between paragraphs, insert a blank line (by hitting the enter key twice). The "white space" will make it easier for your recipients to read the message.

  • Avoid ALL CAPITALS except in limited circumstances. Using all capitals is the e-mail equivalent of shouting, so you should only use them to *really* stress a point. Surrounding a word with *asterisks* is or _underscores_ is a better way to place emphasis on a word or phrase.

  • Find the "Word Wrap" function of your software, and make sure it is on. This function will keep lines at a consistent length.

    NOTE - No matter what you do to keep things consistent, the differences between software will cause formatting problems for at least a small percentage of recipients.

  • Search Tips

    Search Tip: Coming Changes

    Recent Surveys have focused on the fact that even the best search engines (HotBot, AltaVista and Northern Light -- in that order) cover about 37% to 40% of the overall web landscape. Of the approximately 350 Million web pages available for public consumption, they capture information on roughly 130 Million (at best). This means that your search techniques will increasingly depend on the use of spiders, both commercial and custom based.

    The situation is further complicated by Compaq's recent acquisition of the Digital Equipment Corporation. As you probably remember, Digital has used AltaVista as a marketing tool for a variety of product lines. As a showcase item, the pressure to produce black ink at the bottom line wasn't as great for the AltaVista team as it was for its competitors. That may well be changing.

    Over the next several months, keep an eye on the results you get from AltaVista queries. We have a hunch that the new management will produce a number of revenue experiments. That will mean that you have to work a little harder to understand the results that you get. Expect AltaVista to become, at least temporarily, increasingly full of distractions designed to maximize the number of pages that you view on their's the tried and true first attempt to increase revenue.

    Over the longer haul, Compaq is going to have to decide just how AltaVista fits into their corporate profile. Unlike DEC, Compaq dose not have a long standing tradition of either research and development funding or high profile marketing giveaways. Expecting that they'll swallow the current operating principles of AltaVista seems optimistic at this point.

    Now, if we were a Compaq recruiter, we'd be drooling over the possibility of mining the data in AltaVista queries for potential new hires. We can even imagine a fairly profitable business in selling that data to recruiters on a subscription basis. But, that sort of derivative data extraction revenue poses all sorts of tough issues, both culturally and politically inside the new organization.

    Whatever the future holds, you can be certain that the quality and intelligibility of your results from AltaVista are about to change.

    Table Of Contents SEARCH TOOLS
      1. Search Basics
      2. Search Strategy
      3. Company Info
      4. Finding People
      5. Resumes
      6. Web Pages
      7. Usenet
      8. Mailing Lists
      9. Competitors
    10. Discussion Areas
    11. Cheat Sheet
      1. Master Sites
      2. Free Sites
      3. Usenet
      4. Niches
      5. Writing Postings
      1. Newbot
      2. Informant
      3. URL Minder
      4. Other Robots
      1. Starter Tools
      2. Browser Tips
      1. Salary Surveys


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