With companies facing increasingly stiff competition as they look to fill IT jobs, they need to step up their recruiting game. That means looking beyond big online job boards to smaller niche sites and even to non-career sites like Facebook and YouTube.
As I blogged back in October, social networking sites like Facebook are gaining in popularity among job recruiters, with one recruiter telling ITPro that such sites offer "a dynamic, two-way dialogue between recruiter and candidate, which is a very efficient form of communication."
According to a Wall Street Journal story republished at Computerworld, some employers are also now turning to tools like video, podcasts and other interactive media to make themselves stand out in a crowd. Accenture, for example, produces monthly podcasts featuring its employees talking about their careers and airs them on its online job portal.
Job boards still remain popular destinations, according to the story. Some of them, including Dice.com, which specializes in IT jobs, have added interactive features like discussion forums.
Some companies use Webcams to conduct first interviews online. This cuts down considerably on travel expenses, notes the WSJ. One Communications Corp. recently asked several job candidates to participate in video interviews at its Waltham, Mass., HQ so that executives based in far-flung locations could "meet" the prospective hires.
In order to ensure a good "fit," a growing number of companies are making assessments designed to gauge intangible qualities, such as work ethic and leadership ability, part of their pre-interview process.
One employer that apparently gives lots of consideration to intangibles is Google which, according to Valleywag, requires its interviewees to meet with a bunch of people "who have little-to-no incentive to hire a person just because they can do the job." Such folks don't hesitate to diss candidates they think won't adapt well to the Google culture.
While use of creative new recruitment techniques is growing, it remains far from the norm, writes recruiter Joel Cheesman on The Industry Standard blog. Cheesman cites Electronic Arts, a developer in the highly competitive gaming industry. Thought the company is mentioned in the WSJ story, Cheesman says its online job center isn't exactly cutting-edge:
The experience leaves you feeling more like you've checked out a paper brochure instead of surfing the pages of a hip employer. The destination for careers is text-heavy and has none of the progressive elements of today's Web. Video? Nope. Pics? Hardly any. Employee profiles? Didn't see 'em.
Among the challenges faced by HR professionals, writes Cheesman, are IT departments that claim to be too busy to help with recruitment initiatives and legal departments that view innovative tools such as podcasts as "potential legal land mines and headaches."