Archive for January, 2008

Air New Zealand reaches out to students and school leavers on Bebo

Monday, January 28th, 2008


Check out this Bebo page.  I think it’s a fine attempt to connect with a younger demographic.  Take a look at the comments from Bebo members - they’re asking Air New Zealand good questions. And if you dig down a bit deeper and peek at some of their profiles you realise that some hunger for information about their career choices in general - with a few getting quite specific about comparing certain employers.

PS: Jobseekers on social networking sites need to realise that employers and recruiters may peek at their personal profile and that any information therein may have an impact on any recruitment decisions made. I urge anyone who is a member of a social networking site to check their privacy settings and ask their friends to do the same. Though one’s non-work persona doesn’t necessarily reflect one’s work persona, it’s good to keep a check on the use of one’s language and content, including any comments made about work and employers.

Paul Jacobs

Pre-launch: NotchUp - The art of getting paid to attend a job interview

Thursday, January 24th, 2008


Very interesting things are percolating in the United States, which could have the potential to transform recruitment as we know it. The topic du jour in the blogging world is of Californian tech startup, NotchUp, which plans to officially launch later this month. Their site is currently in pre-release beta and is invite-only. I had a sneak-peak through their site yesterday and was impressed with what I saw.

The premise behind NotchUp reminds me of a story I heard recently about a company in the US. This company sent a star candidate at a competing company a personalised letter from the CEO and an iPod as a gift. This all happened prior to the first interview! This example really illustrates to me how employers are thinking outside the square in the competitive war for talent. NotchUp itself gives employers a way to reach the large market of passive jobseekers – those who are currently working elsewhere and haven’t put themselves on the job market, but may be enticed to change roles if they receive a better offer. The incentive with NotchUp is that they will be paid by an interested employer, at a level that the jobseeker determines, just to attend an interview. It could be a million dollars (but typically a few hundred to a few thousand) for say a half-hour interview. The site provides a calculator that takes into account things like experience, skills and salary to help jobseekers arrive at an OK figure. Show me the money!

The popular web 2.0-focused blog Techcrunch describes the process well:

“Setting up a profile is easy, especially if you already use LinkedIn. NotchUp just imports your LinkedIn profile, you set your price, and you are ready to go. Any friend you refer to the site who gets an interview earns you a 10 percent referral fee. As employers search the site, they can make offers to interview you, which you see in your inbox. You can choose to only get offers from corporations, or from headhunters as well. And you can block recruiters from any particular company (like the one you currently work for) from seeing your profile. The service is free for job seekers, and companies pay NotchUp a fee for each resulting interview.”

I’m sure this model will be attractive to active jobseekers as well. The trick will be to entice those passive jobseekers, but I guess money talks. For those employers who think paying a candidate is an outrage, one has to ask: Is paying a recruitment agency necessarily any better? An agency typically offers a broader service, but those elusive passive jobseekers aren’t necessarily registered with an agency in the first place. Agencies may even become users of this service if it takes off.

Techcrunch readers have voiced possible concerns around the practical delivery of this model, some of which I share. I suggest you read through the comments on Techcrunch.

Interesting times!

Paul Jacobs

SEEK meets YouTube

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2008


Following on from the theme of the last Engage Blog post on recruitment videos, I was asked today whether any NZ job boards allow advertisers to post video content. Well, yes, SEEK has just enabled YouTube video clips to be embedded into job listings - apparently at no extra cost to advertisers. SEEK were talking about the prospect of embedded YouTube content toward the end of last year and now the first examples are rolling out, including Frog Recruitment’s New Zealand College of Fitness advert, mentioned in the last post. If you want to go hunting for other examples of video ads on SEEK, unfortunately searches of advertisers specifically using video can’t be done presently on the SEEK platform.

Below is a snippet from Shortlist’s discussion with SEEK’s product manager Carey Eaton on the topic:

“Jobseekers want more content - not only about the job, but about the workplace, who they’re going to be working with, what the lifestyle is like, commuting, the eateries around the place … They spend half their lives [at work]. Jobseekers are starting to demand a lot more information, given they have such a massive amount of choice.”

Eaton also told Shortlist that video ads didn’t need to be polished, corporate-style productions. “In fact our prediction is that honest realistic portrayals of the organisation and role are likely to work better than an over-produced sales pitch.”

I agree totally with Eaton’s comments. I look forward to other generalist and niche NZ job boards going down this track. This move by SEEK will lift the idea of using video in the consciousness of NZ employers, which in turn will only have a positive spin-off for companies like Engage, developing branding, video content and targeted campaigns for clients.

We will keep you posted on developments!

Paul Jacobs