7 Things Confidential Job Postings Say About Your Company

I always snicker and shake my head when I see a job posting listed as “Company Confidential“.  “Don’t these people get it?” I say to myself.

A job posting is one of the most frequent forms of advertising your company – and perhaps the number one way to represent your employment brand – you know -the image you project as to whether your company is a good place to work or not?  By publishing your job postings confidentially, you not only miss the opportunity to spread your employment brand, but you actually hurt it!  Plus, you’ll just delay the time it takes you to fill with your really bad version of grown up Hide and Seek.  Here’s what posting your open jobs confidentially  says about you:

  1. You don’t get talent! Candidates are leery about applying for confidential postings.  You’ll potentially miss out on the one by hiding who you are.
  2. You’re sneaky!  Do you already have someone in this role and you want to try and back fill them before they are out the door?  Would you post my job without talking to me someday? Are you conducting interviews in dark alleys?
  3. You’re ashamed! What are you hiding?  Shouldn’t the name of your company draw in applicants?
  4. You’re cowardly! Are you trying to avoid internal applications and the difficult conversations associated with having to let someone down?
  5. You’re old school! You think people should be lucky to work for you and have no other options.
  6. You’re not resourceful! You’re missing out on referrals from your employees and network.
  7. You’re lazy! You don’t want to “waste your time” wading through so many resumes so why not limit the amount you receive?

Sure, we can think of benefits to posting jobs confidentially…I’m talking to you staffing agencies who can’t hunt us down and blow up our phones…but the benefits nowhere near outweigh the detriment to your employment brand and your talent acquisition strategy in the global fight for talent.  Post confidentially, and you’ll enjoy less resumes, less talent,  and longer time to fill.  Enjoy!

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BUSTED! Don’t Be an Interview Liar!

A job interview can be an anxiety causing situation – you want to make a good impression, you want (or need) the job.  So something happens inside you – you’re not the same person – you start to exaggerate your experience – and then – BAM – you’ve gone too far! 

Bad idea, mon frère!  We HR folks are pretty crafty – and it’s our job to smoke out the liars.   Recently, I conducted an interview with a candidate and asked them a question to see how they would describe a very technical concept to a non-technical person.  To be fair to them, I first asked if they knew the difference between Concept A and Concept B – to which they quickly said “Yes, I do”.  I then asked them to explain the difference to me as if I did not understand the technical jargon.  This caught them off guard and the person struggled to explain something that they clearly did not understand.  Ultimately, as the candidate stumbled through their answer, they finally came clean and said they did not know the difference.  They also said they weren’t expecting to be asked technical questions in an interview with an HR person.  Oh no you didn’t just underestimate me! 

The truth is – I wasn’t asking the question to see if they knew the difference between the two concepts – I was asking them to see how they would explain something technical in an easy-to-understand way.  The problem was not that they didn’t know.  The problem then became that they LIED about their knowledge, assuming I wouldn’t ask a deeper follow-up question.

It amazes me how many people don’t recognize that a good interviewer is going to ask follow-up questions.  When asking about computer skills, I start off asking the person to rate their skills for various Office programs on a 1 – 10 scale.  When a person rates themselves high – like a 9 or a 10, I probe further, asking for them to tell me about the most complicated spreadsheet they ever created, or to tell me about the advanced features they know.  Surely, if they are a 9 or a 10, they must know some advanced features, right?

One more example, I interviewed a candidate for a position that would have required the person to work with Spanish-speaking workers.  The person claimed as a strength their ability to speak and understand Spanish.  Being an intermediate Spanish-speaker myself, I asked him to tell me something in Spanish.  He couldn’t do it.

While this type of questioning does give insight into the candidate’s knowledge-base, the main purpose is to see how honest and how willing to admit their mistakes they are.

Recruiters – what liars have you BUSTED in your interviews? Did you hire them?

Job seekers – what lies have you told to get the job?  Did you ever get BUSTED?

Guest Post: Dear Recruiters – Help Me, Help You! (by Mark Campanale)

I love LinkedIn. There are so many powerful tools in this one community that can help you meet new people, reconnect with business contacts, and get questions answered by people you’ve never met who are willing to help you, even earn new business and find a job.

What LinkedIn is not for is – unsolicited spamming. I’ll explain:

Earlier this month, I put myself back on the job market.  I changed my contact settings to include ‘interested in career opportunities’.  My friends and connections were more than happy to help me in my search and gave me some fantastic referrals.  However, this also opened the door for phone calls like this:

Recruiter:“HI Mark! Your resume just came across my desk, and I have the perfect opportunity for you.”

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Me: “I’m sorry, I didn’t catch your name and who you are with.”

Recruiter: “This is (doesn’t matter) and I’m from So-and-So Recruitment.”

Me: “Hmm. I didn’t send your firm a resume.  Can you tell me how you found it?”

Recruiter: “I saw your status on LinkedIn that you were looking and we have lots of jobs that you may be interested in.”

The biggest issue here is that the job(s) this person was calling me for had nothing to do with my experience.  My profile clearly defines me as a social media and marketing professional and NOT someone interested in entry-level insurance sales with no experience necessary.  This particular recruiter could have benefited if they had tried to get to know me by:

  • Viewing my profile for ‘fit’
  • Seeing if we had any contacts in common, and asked for a referral
  • Sending me an InMail with an introduction to warm up their cold call

And even if I wasn’t a fit, maybe I know someone who is!  LinkedIn is about building solid, professional relationships. As of this posting, I have 496 connections which equal approximately 6.5 million professionals in my network. I am far more inclined to take an appointment when someone is referred by one of my trusted contacts. It happens all the time – it’s why LinkedIn is so powerful and has been around for so long because it PRODUCES ROI!

There are some AMAZING recruiters on the web (Tim Walsh, David Graziano) who truly get that personal branding and positioning yourself as a trusted advisor are the best ways to earn business.

The take away is, don’t lurk; don’t think the answer to somebody’s question is your services. Find a way to connect with prospects through your contacts. You’ll earn more than new business; you’ll earn trust, which, in business, is the most valuable tool you can use.

This is my profile: http://www.linkedin.com/in/markcampanale

Feel free to see whom we have in common or who you may know that can introduce us. I’m always willing to help other’s succeed in business.

Your comments are greatly appreciated.

This guest blog is from Mark Campanale of the Ultimate Customer Experience blog

The Myth of the One-Page Resume (Kinda-Sorta)

One of the most common questions I get asked when someone finds out I work in Human Resources is whether or not their resume really needs to be only one-page long. My answer? No, it doesn’t.

Why do people think this? Certain books suggest it. Some career counselors swear it’s the way it should be. The truth is, no self-respecting HR professional is going to look at a resume and say “Oh, this qualified candidate’s resume is two pages…they’re out!”

But there is a benefit to keeping your resume to one-page (or as few pages as possible)…the more concise you can be on your resume, the more likely the items you want to highlight will be read by the person reviewing it. Resume reviewers, in many cases, receive hundreds of resumes from job seekers; and to get through them all requires screening for key words and information that matches the requirements being sought. Only when the screener finds information of interest will they stop and read more. If they find nothing of interest on page one, they most likely won’t turn to page two. If all the good stuff is on page two, it may never be seen!

So, what’s important is not keeping your resume to one-page, but structuring your resume in such a way as to highlight the most relevant and important information about your qualifications and experiences by locating them as close to the top of the first page as possible. That’s why you’ll see many resumes begin with a “summary of qualifications” or a list of achievements. Just like a good book, if the beginning grabs the reader’s attention, they will keep reading further.

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