Why Does Spam Recruiting Work?

I just got done deleting the 17th phishing email from my personal email inbox today. Comcast, Amazon, Princes from far-off lands, I’ve never been more popular and, apparently, soon to be rich!

I was asking our Cyber Security company why phishing is still such a big deal. I mean don’t we all know by now that some Nigerian Prince isn’t going to give us a million dollars, or that Amazon doesn’t send us emails asking for our credit card numbers, or passwords!? There is no way someone can be this stupid, right!?

Apparently, I’m way wrong, we are all still a lot stupid! 

The reason phishing and spam are not because they are really tricking us. It’s the sure volume of messages and cadence. While we can all spot a fake fairly easily, can you always spot a fake when it’s sent a thousand times, all different times, with all different designs and strategies. Scammers will send a million to get one click. That one click will pay off.

Therein lies the strategy of why Spam Recruiting still works. It’s not about being good, or the best, it’s about being there all the time, knowing a certain percentage of the time will be the right time! Do we like it? Well, I guess that depends on who you are. If you happen to be that one person who gets the spam recruiting message at the exact time you’re desperate for a job, then yes, you will like it!

If you are the superstar performing software engineer getting twenty spam recruiting messages a day, you hate our industry!

Spam Recruiting Works Because It Works Some of the Time

I have never met one American-based TA Leader who believes that Off-Shore Recruiting firms (you know the off-shore RPO spam emails you get constantly all day long) actually are good. For the most part, they don’t recruit, they spam. Because they pay next to nothing to their workforce, they can spam a whole bunch and still make money, even if the entire process truly sucks.

They don’t have to be good. When you’re being paid like $10 a day, all you have to do is spam a couple of thousand people a week to get one placement a month and you’re making a profit for the “man”! Any company engaging in off-shore recruiting for hiring in the U.S. is basically engaging in slave labor. But, I digress. Back to crappy recruiting.

Bad recruiting is a lot like bad sex. If you really need a job, you don’t care how you get it. Which perpetuates you just continuing to be bad.

Spam recruiting works, and will always work, because the world will always have candidates who just need a job. They don’t care that you’re awful at your job. They don’t care that you are spamming them. All they care about is getting the job. Also, if you do care. If you do hate bad spammy recruiters. It turns out you also are fine with them being awful when you’re out of a job!

Spam works because we are all vulnerable at some point. It feeds on us being weak, naive, and desperate. But, at the end of the day, it works. It doesn’t work well. But it does work. And that sucks.

1 Free Job Posting from @LinkedIn if You Read This Post!

Pretty cool news coming out of LinkedIn this week! LinkedIn has made a few changes to help job seekers (#ImOpenToWork photo frames, Career Explorer, free skill courses, etc.) and also will be helping employers, especially SMBs, who need help connecting with this talent with FREE job posts! No, really, you don’t have to put a credit card or anything – no bait and switch!

Check out the video below…

How do we post that FREE job? 

Basically, if you’re a hiring manager, HR, TA, etc. and looking to hire, you just go and create a new job posting. You can find the job posting button by going to your main LinkedIn feed page, going to the upper right-hand corner, and clicking on “Work”. A drop down will show you a “Post a Job” button and you can click on that.

For SMBs who aren’t already using LinkedIn to post jobs, you will get one free job post to use. If you fill that job, you can post another. Basically, you get one free job to post at a time. If you are an enterprise LinkedIn user, you’ll get pushed into your account to post a job.

Once you add a job, you will be given the option to add the “Hiring” frame around your profile picture.

Check out this LinkedIn Blog post for additional details and links.

It’s pretty rare for an organization like LinkedIn to give away something so valuable for free! We know LinkedIn job postings work, we also know they can be quite expensive for SMBs to use.

I’m sure the cynics will say this is just another way LinkedIn is getting more people to use the platform and get addicted. Maybe! But, if it works, who cares! And, if it works and it’s free for an SMB to test, seriously, that’s a great thing! Take advantage!

Go post a job out on LinkedIn and then send me a note and let me know the results! I’m super interested to see how this works for everyone!

 

@LinkedIn’s Future of Recruiting Survey says the #1 Skill for Recruiters in 2020 is… @LinkedInNews

I know you hate clickbait headlines, but they work, plus I know you want to know, so why give it away in the title! I mean I don’t get paid for my dashing looks and witty charm! Thank goodness!

LinkedIn launched its 2020 Future of Recruiting survey results today and it’s one of my favorite content pieces to comment on. Click through the link to download it for yourself, it’s packed with interesting data around talent acquisition and recruiting!

The #1 Skill for Recruiters in 2020 is…Adaptability!

Did you guess that? I didn’t. I think I could have probably could have had 50 guesses on not got that one. Here are the others:

Fastest growing skills for recruiters in 2020:

● Personal Development +44%

● Diversity & Inclusion +42%

● Talent Pipelining +37%

● Decision-Making +34%

● HR Strategy +30%

Okay, I can see personal development being high on the list, since 2020 has brought a lot of quality time working in remote settings and high unemployment numbers for recruiting pros, I think most people have been thinking about their personal and professional development.

I actually would have guessed D&I would have been #1. 2020 will be remembered for a few things – Covid, Social Justice, and the U.S. finally getting a sane person in the White House. So, from a talent acquisition perspective, I would have guessed diversity and inclusion recruiting to be the top priority.

HR Strategy actually makes zero sense to me! So, you’re in talent acquisition and your most needed skill is HR Strategy? Quite frankly, it makes you question the results overall. How could that be? Talent Pipelining? Yep! HR Strategy? Nope! But, it’s 2020, weird times.

Another big eye-opening stat from the report:

70% say Virtual Recruiting will become the new standard!

Okay, this one will take some explaining and background. First, what do you mean by “virtual recruiting”? So, for this data, that basically means, the process we have for recruiting can be done virtually. Sourcing, video interviewing, online assessments, etc., can all be done virtually, so I guess, yes, in that case, “virtual recruiting” is the new standard.

But, honestly, most of that stuff was already fairly standard.

I think the bigger aspect is Recruiters believing they’ll continue to be virtual/remote after Covid. I think Covid has shown organizations that in a pinch, yep, recruiting can be done virtually. But, every organization will have to truly decide is it better or the same as before, or possibly worse?

I’ve spoken to a number of F500 executives who aren’t super keen on remote recruiting because the relationships with hiring managers are worse, synergies amongst the TA team aren’t as robust, and brainstorming around testing and how to improve seem weaker in remote settings. Some of that can be improved, but it still comes down to leader perception.

We’ve been automating recruiting since the first Caveman needed a new assistant to track dinosaur migration patterns, so the fact that we’ll continue to automate and be able to recruit from anywhere in a mostly Saas environment should not be surprising to anyone.

Go download the new report. Some really good stuff around TA budgets and everyone’s favorite new topic, Internal Mobility, as well.

You’re Going to Jail because of your LinkedIn Profile Pic!

Breaking News from down under! An Australian woman lied on her resume and used a fake picture on her LinkedIn profile and those facts were used in a trial where she was sentenced to over a year in jail! Let’s face it Australia is kind of like the Florida of countries.

From the article:

Veronica Hilda Theriault, 46, was convicted Tuesday of deception, dishonesty, and abuse of public office, relating to her 2017 application for the chief information officer role, which came with an annual salary of 270,000 Australian dollars (US$185,000).
Theriault worked in the position with South Australia’s Department of the Premier and Cabinet for over a month and earned about 33,000 Australian dollars ($22,500) before being fired.
She pleaded guilty to all charges and received a 25-month sentence with a non-parole period of a year…The court heard that she submitted a fraudulent resume to the department with false information relating to her education and prior employment. After she was granted an interview, she also posed as a previous employer during a reference check, in which she “gave glowing feedback” about her own performance.
But the lies didn’t end there. In earlier submissions, the court heard that Theriault used a photo of supermodel Kate Upton as her LinkedIn profile photo, according to CNN affiliate 7 News.

Can you imagine if we put people in jail for lying on their resume or using doppelganger photos on their LinkedIn profile!?! Half of our employees would be in jail!

Well, don’t think it can’t happen in the US! This position was for the Australian government. Turns out, if you lie to the government when getting a job, you might end up in jail! Not only in Australia but pretty much every country! I can only imagine how many employees of the US government, state and local governments, who have access to secret level information who have ‘exaggerated’ on their resume! It has to be upwards of 20% or more.

Now, this person flat out lied and probably has some severe mental issues. Which begs the question, how the heck could this happen for such a high-level position?

Quite simply, Malcolm Gladwell wrote an entire book (Talking to Strangers) about this simple idea. We all, all of us, default to truth. We believe what people are telling us, and we are awful at spotting liars. The higher the level of position, the worse we get. “Oh, she has an outstanding resume and background and education and she looks just like Kate Upton! She must be telling us the truth!”

We. Are. Stupid.

Once we actually come to grips with this fact, we might get slightly better at talent selection and interviewing. We assume everyone is telling us the truth when we interview them. We rarely believe someone is lying. “Oh, they wouldn’t lie, they really want this position! And I know her cousin, and she goes to church, and…” We are all biased in this same way. We do not want to believe someone would lie to us.

I think it would actually do some good if we started putting people in jail or lying on their resume, or at the very least for using LinkedIn profile pics that look nothing like you do now! “Oh, Hi…you’re “Tim”!? I didn’t recognize you, I mean immediately!” (Internal voice – “with that extra 25 pounds and no hair, from your LI profile pic that is clearly ten years old!)

I want to be the HR leader at court for the case where we’re trying to put someone away for their stupid, fake LI profile pic! That’s the pinnacle of HR!

Breaking Down @LinkedIn’s Entire Database! #TalentConnect

I have a confession to make. I use LinkedIn every day! Not just Monday through Friday, I’m on the app on Saturday and Sunday as well! So, don’t think this is a LinkedIn hater post! I’m a LinkedIn 1%’er! I’m a bit addicted to LinkedIn, to be honest, I might have to go see someone!

Being on LinkedIn every day like I am, you begin to notice a few things. Some are great, like content that I find my network sharing that I probably find on LI before I find anywhere else. I love to read about the celebrations of people doing great things at work. I love to read about the funny stories and the heartwarming stories of people in their workplaces. All great stuff!

The more time I spend on LI I begin to feel like the database is basically populated with about 6-7 main types of profiles. It’s like the world is broken down, not in male or female, or black or white, but in these mini-subsets of lives. Here’s what I see when I look at LinkedIn Profiles (these are not official LinkedIn database numbers!):

Sales Pros: I want to say that it’s at least 40% of the LI database, but I know it’s less. But, the reality is, if you’re in sales of any kind, you probably are on LinkedIn at least multiple times a week, and you’re probably sending me an InMail trying to see if I want to blindly give you access to my investment portfolio, sell me leads to executives, sell me offshore recruiting solutions, etc. It’s endless! Even the LinkedIn Sales Pros get into the game and I probably get a message through LinkedIn Sales Navigator from LI themselves at least once per month.

Recruiters: I think about 30% of the LI database are recruiters, but again, it’s probably less, but feels like more, because we (recruiters are my people) are so freaking active on LI! There are very few occupations you can’t find on LI. Of course, you’re probably less likely to find a great pool of truck drives on LI, but for sure any white-collar talent you can find. Recruiters and Sales Pros have to make up at least 90% of all InMails sent on LI, right?

Keynote Speakers: It feels like 1 out of 5 profiles claim to be “Keynote Speakers” which would mean there are approximately 100 million Keynote Speakers on LinkedIn! So, I know that number isn’t correct, but come on, you all can’t be Keynote Speakers! Maybe we need a “Keynote Speaker” definition. To put “Keynote Speaker” on your LI Profile you must be on the main stage speaking either in the opening session, the lunch session, or the closing session, and you must be paid. That probably knocks about 80% of the “Keynotes” out with just those factors.

Life Coaches: You know what happens when you get fired from your job, or can’t hold a job? You become a Life Coach and tell other people how to get a job or hold a job… Is it just me or does seem like 50% of LinkedIn profiles claim to be Life Coaches? “Life Coach” might be the single easiest job in the world to obtain. Life Coach criteria: 1. Are you alive? 2. Have you lived any amount of life? 3. Do you like to tell people to do things that you yourself probably wouldn’t do? If you can say “yes” to all three of those things, congratulations! You’re a life coach!

Executives: Turns out the great thing about LinkedIn is you can call yourself anything you want! It seems like about 30% of LinkedIn Profiles list their occupation as “Executive”. You really bend the matrix when you list yourself as “Executive Life Coach!” So, you are the sole person at your company? Awesome, you’re now the Chief Strategy Officer at Timmy Sackett, Inc.! In fact, I’m a Fortune 1 Million Executive in one of the fastest-growing industries in the world! It’s kind of like the banking industry where everyone is a Vice President, no matter what you really do.

Actual People Doing Real Work that are not in Sales or Recruiting, or playing make-believe as Keynote Speakers, Life Coaches or Executives: Like 3%? Okay, to be fair, I know it’s way higher than that because every week we hire real people off LinkedIn for all kinds of jobs in Supply Chain, Engineering, IT, Accounting/Finance/ and HR. But holy cow do they all seem like the minority. I’m guessing this is the case because these folks are not like me, they don’t live on LI every day. For the most part, folks with jobs are also not looking for attention, so they don’t stick out as much.

So, before someone goes postal in the comments about the value of their life coach or how my math on the profiles equals 347%, I understand that I built my LinkedIn network, so my view reflects a world I built around myself! I built my own nightmare! I put on my headline “Not a Life Coach” and stupid life coaches from around the world reached out to connect with me saying things like “I see we are in the same industry” in their invites.

My dream is that LinkedIn eventually gives me the ability to go in and easily curate my network. You know, do some searches and see that I’ve got “X” number of people in my network that I no longer want in my network and with one click, shrink it down. That would be so cool! Or maybe you’ve changed professions and while you used to want a network of HR pros, now you want a network of Business Intelligence pros.

As our networks get large, it becomes more difficult to curate, that would be super valuable to me. I would pay for that ability! As our careers grow and change over the years we’ve been on LinkedIn for a long time, we really need this ability. I hope as all of you are out at Talent Connect this week you enjoy the great content and networking. LinkedIn puts on one of the top Recruiting conferences in the world and I’m really upset I couldn’t make it this year!

The Latest Global Talent Trends from @LinkedIn

LinkedIn recently released their 2019 Global Talent Trends and it’s loaded with great data for HR and TA Pros! Take a look at the Top 4:

91% believe that “Soft Skills” is the biggest trend in the future of work! Really!? Can we discuss this?!

What do does LinkedIn mean by “Soft Skills”? Here’s how it was defined in the report –

  1. Creativity
  2. Persuasion
  3. Collaboration
  4. Adaptability
  5. Time Management

Oh! Now that makes sense because about 90% of people I know suck at least 3 out 5 of these! So, yes, we have a crisis in the global workforce when it comes to the Big 5 soft skills!

I’m not sure I’ll go all old guy on you and tell you that technology and our smartphones have ruined our ability to have soft skills, but it’s had an impact for sure. I hear from elementary school teachers who have been in the field for years talk about the trouble they have with kids who were born digital native.

(Me going all old guy) When I was a kid my Mom forced me to leave the house. Like locked the door don’t come back for HOURS. I was forced to be creative. Now, I have three sons and I wouldn’t want them out galavanting around the world, in today’s world. I love my kids, I wanted to see them return home. I’m not sure my parents really cared that much!

But there was a reason some of these skills were developed in some people and not others. I have a friend who didn’t allow his kids to watch TV for like their first six years. I thought he was a freak! Those kids are more creative and have a great ability to stay on task. Then they got computers and they’re just like every other kid!

The reality is, we (HR) are in charge of teaching adults soft skills if we want them to have soft skills, and with a number like 91% it seems like we all agree this is a big problem!

So, how do we do it?

Welcome to the new world of learning and performance management! It used to be we would work with employees to help them craft their development plans. But adults hate being told they suck at collaborating with others! It feels like you’re in kindergarten when someone tells us we can’t get along with others!

How would you feel if your boss came in today and said “Hey, Tim, yeah, um, you know, you really struggle with change, we really need you to get better at ‘Adapting’. Okay, you understand, right? So, yeah, thanks, go take a class or just fix it okay?”

Soft skill development is very personal. I think most people improve with great one-on-one coaching where the coach/mentor actually gets to see the person work and interact, so they can be confidentially called out when the bad behaviors raise their ugly head!

Great report, great data. Go download it and check it out!

The 2018 Emerging Jobs Report is Here!

LinkedIn released their 2018 Emerging Jobs Report today and as always it’s packed full of some great information that speaks to where we see the world of Recruiting today, but also what we need to keep our eye for the future! 

So, what stood out in the latest report? First and foremost it’s what jobs are hot this year to last – 

So, I think we’ve all been hearing all of this A.I. and Blockchain stuff. The reality is, we aren’t really talking about true A.I., it’s Machine Learning (ML) and we’ve seen giant increases in the needs for these skills. 

Out of the top 15 emerging jobs (those jobs growing the fastest on LinkedIn) 6 of those were related to ML, Data, and Blockchain. That’s significant in terms of the products and technology that are being built by companies for the future. 

What else did we learn? 

While the report is designed to make us believe it’s all about Tech hiring, it’s not really all about tech hiring! 

  • Sales Executives
  • Recruiters
  • Realtors 
  • Account Executives (another title for sales)
  • Administrative Assistants 

Were all super high on the list as well. What does that mean? Well, those really aren’t emerging or growing jobs, it’s more about who’s living, searching, and spending time on LinkedIn. That might not be the patronage that LI really wants long term for the health of the site, in terms of your normal mix. 

The largest skills gap is still good old fashion oral communications! 

Again, I’m not sure how much of this is truly a skills gap and how much of that coming up in the data is just a function of the types of roles people are trying to recruit for on LI. If the report shows that all of these A.I., Blockchain, and Data jobs are what’s truly hot, oral communication wouldn’t be the most critical thing in those roles. 

But, oral communication is definitely a skill that is in short supply for most professions, and much needed by most professions outside of tech, like sales type roles. 

Machine Learning is definitely a skill set that employers are begging for. I reached out to my buddy and Recruiting savant, Steve Levy, just the other day as we had a search for a client demanding 10 years of ML experience. I was like, I don’t even remember ML being used as a term ten years ago! 

Steve confirmed, it most likely wasn’t. We did find some mention from 2009, but that was about it. So, the hysteria is real. Entry level position, five years of experience! 

I was surprised not to see Autonomous vehicle knowledge on there as this is another skill set we see companies begging for and we are constantly helping our clients in these searches. It’s not just about cars. It’s about delivery vehicles, mass transit, freight hauling, garbage trucks, etc. If it moves people or things, it’s going autonomous eventually. 

Check out the report. It’s great read at the end of the year as you’re preparing for recruiting plans for 2019! 

Your Weekly Dose of HR Technology: @HiredOnLinkedIn Launches New Company Pages!

Today on The Weekly Dose I take a look at LinkedIn’s new company page design and break down what you need to know and change to take advantage of the new design.

Besides your company career site, your LinkedIn Company page might be most organization’s TA Teams next biggest asset when it comes to attracting talent. Much more hires are made from your LI company page than your Facebook page, twitter or IG profile, etc. LinkedIn for years has had the same basic design of its company pages, and most organizations set it up, left it, and forgot about it.

You might have noticed LinkedIn’s new company page design has been rolling out and is now public for all.

What you notice right away, as compared to your old LI page, is the navigation on the lefthand side. Visitors to your page used to see your profile front and center, and the new page is much more visual and visitors will have to click “About” to read your company description.

Of course, like most of LinkedIn you have the free version of your company page, and then you can do a paid version which really turns your LI company page into a full-blown career site for your company, with direct link button to your career site, ability to list jobs, employment branding tools, Life at “your company” section, etc.

So, what are the major changes you need to know about? 

1. Candidates can now easily set up a job alert on your jobs section of your LI company page that will notify them when a job is posted that matches their qualifications.

2. When potential candidates visit your company page on LI they will be shown recommended jobs, at your company, that fit their background, plus other employees at your company that are similar to them, in case they want to network with those individuals. LI data shows candidates are more likely to apply to jobs when they’ve networked with others at your company in similar roles.

3. The new “Life” page on the paid version of LinkedIn Company pages makes it super easy for you to find and share posts by your current employees. This gives you a simple way to show candidates who are visiting your LI company page an inside view to what it’s like to work at your organization. Also, for those TA teams who are struggling to understand what kind of content they should create, their new Life page will give them suggestions based on all searches and activity on LI.

The full blown new LinkedIn company pages are a big step forward from the old pages. Definitely, something to demo and check out based on how much you recruit on LinkedIn and how big of a source LinkedIn is for your organization.


The Weekly Dose – is a weekly series here at The Project to educate and inform everyone who stops by on a daily/weekly basis on some great recruiting and sourcing technologies that are on the market.  None of the companies who I highlight are paying me for this promotion.  There are so many really cool things going on in the tech space and I wanted to educate myself and share what I find.  If you want to be on The Weekly Dose – just send me a note – timsackett@comcast.net

Want help with your HR & TA Tech company – send me a message about my HR Tech Advisory Board experience.

Turns out, Boring Speakers Talk Longer!

I just had a discussion with Elaine Orler, the new incoming Chair for the Recruiting Trends and Talent Tech Conference, taking place in February in Las Vegas. I’m pretty excited about it because Elaine, the team at LRP who produces the conference, are really pushing the envelope when it comes to conference content.

Elaine isn’t the only one, but she’s really pushing it to the next level, Recruiting Trends is going to be amazing this year! I can’t wait to speak at that conference!

I’ve also had similar conversations with Steve Boese, who chairs The HR Technology Conference, who this past year did an HR tech startup Pitchfest in the middle of the expo hall that was amazing! SHRM’s, Letty Kluttz, is pushing a very traditional conference team out of their comfort zone, and you’ll see some new amazing content streams at SHRM Talent and SHRM National this next year, as well!

The LinkedIn Talent Connect team tested “Silent Disco” talks at this year’s event, and it was fascinating to watch and do one! As a speaker, the Silent Disco talk might have been one of the biggest challenges I’ve had in recent years! Shannon Pritchett over at SourceCon also has shorter keynotes and sessions, really trying to get to the meat of the content and less fluff.

So, why all of a sudden are conferences breaking up the traditional conference content flow?

For decades I think we all had a hard time imagining conferences in a new way. Most followed, and still follow, a basic format of: full group morning keynote, followed by hour-long sessions throughout the day, followed by afternoon day-closing keynote. Most of the design was directed by the continuing education community, which is why most conferences started.

You need one credit per session and those sessions need to be at least one hour of ‘training’ or education.

Then TEDx came around and people had 18 minutes to produce some of the most amazing content any of us had ever seen! DisruptHR-like events sprung up and we got to see great content happen in 5 minutes! Many people started wondering, why the heck are we sitting here for one hour listening to people drone on endlessly when they could tell us all of this in half the time!?

There was a recent small study done around this concept. A researcher went to a conference an sat in 50 sessions. Within four minutes he made the decision was this content boring or not. Based on that he also looked at the time the speaker went over or under their time, and his data showed him that boring speakers were more likely to go over their allotted time!

“For every 70 seconds that a speaker droned on (over their allotted time), the odds that their talk had been boring doubled.” 

So, if you ever sat in a boring session and thought, “Oh my, this is so boring and it’s taking forever!” You’re right! The boring stuff does take longer!

As a speaker, all of these changes that conferences are making and testing are really exciting. Here’s what I’ve learned over the past 12 months with some of these new content configurations that are being tested:

The shorter amount of time you have to speak, the more time it takes to prepare really great content! Seems counterintuitive, doesn’t it? Should be harder the longer you have, but it’s not. If you have a short amount of time, your talk has to be really tight and practiced. If you have a long time, as a speaker, you can wander around and come back to things.

Shorter segments of live content that are good, are much deeper and less wide. The best short range content goes really deep on one item, not surface level on many items.

The audience pays closer attention to shorter content. If you have an audience for an hour or more, they tend to come in and out. If you have them for 20 minutes, you are more likely to have them the full time, which means, they’re more likely to call you out if you try and slide some B.S. by them!

Most non-speaker, speakers, really struggle with short content. Most speakers at a conference aren’t professional speakers, they’re practitioners. They need more time, not less, because they aren’t on stage enough to practice short, tight sets of content. So, they’re more likely to fail doing short sessions.

Get ready for some exciting conferences in 2019! Conference producers are really working to change things up and keep modern attendees engaged with the content at conferences, and I personally love the challenge and the changes! If you’re building our budget for 2019 make sure you try and hit one of the conferences listed above in 2019, you’ll definitely get some amazing takeaways!