Author Archive for @BillBoorman

@BillBoorman is the person behind the #tru brand and a serial conversationalist, whether it is in person or on-line. I have views to share and enjoy nothing more than talking, listening and learning on and off line. 10 Things About Me: 1: I’m a serial twitterer. I joined the channel in March 2009 and to date have posted over 31,000 tweets, with no signs of letting up. Thanks to 2: I have worked in and around recruiting for 27 years as a Recruiter, Temps Consultant, Manager, Operations Director and Training/HR Director. (12.5 years.) I started consulting and training recruitment firms in 2005, and have been doing that since. 3: I have been ranked 6′th and most recently 4′th in the trakkr/HRExaminer index of “Most influential on-line recruiters.” The index is based on an algorhythm that measures mentions, link-backs, reach and relevance of content. (Taken from key-words associated with recruiting.) You can read the full list HERE 4: At the end of 2008 my network consisted of 50 Linked In connections, mostly ex-colleagues, then I decided to get social. 5: I am not technical in any way. I can’t programme and I often have to ask for help with basic tasks. What i am quite good at is finding tools and applications and working out how to use them to network. 6: I love talking, listening and learning. I share my networks with some great people that help me do this. I can usually be found in twitter chats, on the phone or out meeting people for networking or just a beer. 7: I’m Dad to Frank (11) and Alice (8). They both keep me busy and give me plenty of inspiration.Kids have an inherent ability to question everything, learn and not worry about looking stupid. When do we lose these natural abilities? I have been married to my long suffering wife Fran for 16 years. 8: I have run 27 marathons badly, though I’m a bit out of shape at the moment. Will be working on this in 2011. I once tried to break a world record for dragging a tyre around the London Marathon route, all 26.2 miles, while dressed as a 6ft clown. It took 10 hours and I came last, crossing the line in the dark. 9: I live in a village (Earls Barton) in Northamptonshire, UK with my wife, children, Bear the Cat and Jack the Rabbit. 10: I split my time between organising #tru events, (The Recruiter Unconference), training Recruiters and key-note speaking. That and quite a lot of networking! I will travel anywhere in the world to speak. Thats me. Would be glad to answer anything else you want to know, but I’d rather hear about you in comments. Bill

Why haven't more recruiters jumped on the Social Media bandwagon ?

Hi, I’m Elkie Holland  Director and founder of Prospectus IT Recruitment  and Bill asked me to guest blog for him whilst he is hopefully having a fantastic holiday.

I run a boutique IT recruitment agency that works in a very niche market. A question which I often hear from those involved with Social Media is:  “Why haven’t more recruiters jumped on the Social Media bandwagon and started Social Recruiting?” In their minds, it is fundamentally free (except for time) and simple and gives great results. I’d like to try to shed some light on this question;  Specifically the “when” and “why” more agencies haven’t adopted it faster.

Basically a Recruiter has to get the forces on their side, then traverse the Social Media Universe avoiding the TimeLoss Vortexes and hopefully making it through the Asteroid Information Overload Zone then stop on the variety of planets to set up bases and learn the local language and alignment and can only then get closer to arriving at the promised land of Social Recruiting and Social Media success. Let’s explore this analogy further:

Read the blog below or watch the movie:

Roger the Recruiter has a busy and hard enough job already in that he/she already has three separate forces to contend with that he has to juggle:

- Force 1: The agency boss or recruitment manager – demanding financial targets to be met.
- Force 2: The clients – all want the perfect candidate yesterday.
- Force 3: The candidates – who want the perfect job and constant communication.

As those savvy with Social Media already know, it takes time to plan and implement an effective campaign in Social Media , so it can take quite a while for a Recruiter to learn how to effectively use it to gain results. There is no handbook out there to help them.

Imagine this: Roger Recruiter gets all the forces in agreement with his concept and proposal that Social Media / Recruiting is a great and effective route forwards. Finally, his mission to go into the Social Media world is cleared for launch. Roger Recruiter gets into his Rocket and launches into the Social Media Universe. His voyage begins …

Roger Recruiter first comes up to the Planet of LinkedIn and sets up a base (profile) and starts to make connections : excellent, the SM Mission is progressing nicely.

WAIT … Roger’s radio phone buzzes:

Agency Boss: “…. return to base immediately, do not make any further advances or moves in the Social Media Universe. Your SM Mission has been terminated with immediate effect“
Roger: “Why, what’s the problem ?”
Agency Boss: “Return to base immediately or you risk other things being terminated too!”

Roger returns to base. There is a disturbance in one of the forces: his Agency Boss has contracted “Loss Fear Malady”.   Loss Fear Malady is the Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt (also known as the “FUD Factor”) about who owns SM connections and contacts, who can keep what, who has access, etc, should Roger Recruiter decide to change jobs in the future. The larger Agency Boss now goes under “Legalese” Care to try to find a remedy and solution to this problem – the smaller Agency Boss can’t afford Legalese Care so the disease stays with them. Time passes, and some missions into the Social Media Universe are permanently grounded due to “Legalese Care” and “Loss Fear Malady”.

Luckily for our intrepid hero Roger Recruiter, a balance or truce is struck and all his forces are in agreement once again more so another mission is launched into Social Media Universe.

Roger Recruiter reaches LinkedIn and things have changed there already since his first encounter but Roger continues undaunted. He decides that as he already has a base on LinkedIn, he’d better plot courses to other planets (Twitter, Facebook, YouTube) quickly to set up bases in case of a quick recall again.

Danger! Roger now finds himself deeper in Social Media Universe, and wanders into the Asteroid Information Overload Zone. This is filled with loads of free advice, helpful fellow astronauts (social media gurus) all pointing different routes with varying messages, massive amounts of software, free apps, plug ins. There is no clear pathway.

He’s being pounded and bumped around in his rocket: The noise is HUGE … “Go to Facebook” – “Use Twitter” – “Don’t forget YouTube” – “Go back and do Groups on LinkedIn” – “Use x,y,z tool” –  “Agents you must engage” –  “Listen don’t talk to start” – “Facebook is personal” – “Facebook is a recruiter’s goldmine” – “Facebook is purely personal” – ““Agents don’t broadcast jobs”.

Roger Recruiter suffers massive head trauma from the information overload and has to retreat for medical treatment. Fortunately, Roger Recruiter is refreshed after a break and ventures forth again, feeling he’s more prepared this time to navigate the Asteroid Information Overload Zone, but wait! Everything has moved place and there seems to be even more noise than before with even more tools to investiage.

Roger Recruiter stays calm and carefully make his way, but he bombarded by new information and feels he’s making great progress. There is a constant buzzing from his Rocket’s Radio Phone. His Forces back on Earth are disturbed: they are questioning progress and demanding results one way or the other. Eventually one message comes through that cannot be ignored. “Agency Boss says: “ We’ve been patient, we’ve given you time but it’s been 3 months and you have no results. Without results there will be no job. Get results !”. Roger Recruiter is surprised that it has already been 3 months then realises that he fallen into one of the many TimeLoss Vortexes.

Roger still firmly believes that the future lies in the Social Recruiting Land which is at the far side of the Social Media Universe, but now he has 2 choices.

1) Continue to chart the Asteroid Information Overload Zone and try to get results before losing a job.
2) Return to base and continue with already known, tried, traditional and tested techniques.

What’s an Agency Boss supposed to do? Let a Recruiter continue with non-billing periods ? There are agency bills to pay and Recruiters sales are needed.
What’s a Client to do? Continue waiting or go to another agency? He needs to hire.
What’s a Candidate going to do?
Hmmm, what’s a Recruiter going to do? He needs to earn money to eat …

So…. realistically there are many who have tried but fallen at the variety of hurdles along the way to Social Recruiting:

1) Couldn’t start the journey as their forces were not in alignment.
2) Recalled from SM Mission due to Fear Loss Malady (FUD) and then grounded by Legalese.
3) Non-Recovery from Head Trauma caused in the Asteroid Information Overload Zone.
4) Sucked and still whirling in one of the many TimeLoss Vortexes.
5) Forces terminate mission.

So, while there is not an easy answer, there are Recruiters using Social Media for their jobs. It just requires, as all worthwhile things do, time, effort, and luck.

Who should be part of the candidate recruitment experience?

Following on from my first guest post for Bill on Tuesday (yes, it’s Martin Couzins back again), today I want to look at what type of role will deliver the new candidate experiences that are emerging (or are being talked about).

I’m not a recruitment industry expert so be gentle on me – these are just some thoughts . . .

If you have attended a Tru event or the recent Social Media in Recruitment Conference you will be aware of the fact that in social recruitment channels content is king (Linkedin, Youtube, Twitter, Facebook etc).

But who is responsible for creating and managing this content and the relationships and connections that start to build around it? Well, from what I can see it is the marketing team. Or the comms team, or a mixture of both.

In a very few cases, it might be someone in an emerging role such as Matt Burney, resourcing and community executive at G4S or Mervyn Dinnen, community and content manager at Jobsite UK.

So as content and the engagement around it grows should responsibility for it be handed to marketing teams and community and content managers? Yes, but there is a greater opportunity here.

Check out these job responsibilities that I have taken from a random recruitment consultant job ad:

  1. Identifying new business opportunities, developing client relationships and managing a client database
  2. Developing a network of candidates and managing their aspirations and career search
  3. Managing your clients and candidates recruitment process from initial interview to offer stage
  4. Focussing on the importance of service delivery and client relationship management (CRM)

Looks to me as if anyone involved in the recruitment process who is charged with these kinds of responsibilities should also be an active player in social media channels. I’d say there is a bigger win in helping wider teams who liaise with clients and candidates to understand how to engage in social media.

As we grow engagement around content we need to ensure internal teams are just as engaged as clients and candidates. If we do not we could end up with a transactional type of engagement in one part of the business and a very different type of engagement in online social channels.

SOCIAL MEDIA: A compulsory subject for all university degrees?

Hi, I’m Ruxandra, one of the #trugrads. Bill is climbing mountains in sunny Wales this week so he invited me to write this guest blog on his behalf. This is the topic I will talk through at #Tru Amsterdam.

SOCIAL MEDIA: A compulsory subject for all university degrees?

Definitely!!! I would like to start this post by picturing the usual process of a third year student searching for the job he wants upon graduation. Alex, a very good third year Law and Business student at an average UK university wants to work in Recruitment. What is he going to do? He will follow the usual process like any other third year student. Alex will seek advice for writing his CV at the career office in his university, spend long hours filling in application forms for the top 20 UK recruitment companies, he will get positive feedback from 7 or 8 of them and the final result? In the end he won’t get any job offer, or he might get one, but not the one he wanted. What are the possible reasons for this? There are a few reasons like: fierce competition as graduate recruiters prefer candidates from top universities, applying for the wrong recruitment sector, he might not have matched the needs of the company at that time, lack of experience, and I could give many other examples.

Did Alex make use of social media in any way in his job hunt? LinkedIn? Facebook? Twitter? He might have a profile on each of them fair enough, but does he actually know how to use them to get the job he wants? Or get noticed? Not really!

How can social media help a third year student in his job search?

First of all, social media represents the best way for students to advertise themselves and catch the attention of employers. An updated LinkedIn profile with an appropriate professional headline, accompanied by group posts, related tweets, and interesting blog topics will make an employer browse through that student’s profile, download his CV and eventually give him a call. Let’s not forget that nowadays recruiters, especially internal recruiters, use social media in a big way.

There seems to be something wrong about this entire student-graduate scheme as at the moment, students tend to apply for jobs only to well-known companies but the majority of these companies look for graduates only at top universities. I would raise two questions out of this sentence:

Are students unaware that SME’s offer jobs too?

Are companies unaware that skilled graduates can also be found in top 100 (or even 200) universities rather than top 10?

There is definitely a gap somewhere and I strongly believe that it can only be filled if students start using social media more. I would now like to give a few relevant examples.

My best friend from Romania who wants to work in social media kept applying for jobs and internships at well-known companies for the past two years. She did not have any luck, and was very disappointed. I advised her to start looking for jobs on Facebook (most popular in Romania). One month after she started her job hunt on Facebook, she is working for a medium-size estate agency providing exclusivist services. She is of course in charge of their social media, and really enjoys it.
On the other hand, a few weeks ago I refused a job due to its location. At the end, the interviewer kindly asked me if I knew someone else who could be interested in the position. In this case, how can students say that they cannot find jobs? Do they actually know where to look for them?

My last argument would be that social media can help students better define what they want from their future job. Through social media students can get in touch with experienced people who can give them valuable advice about the career they want to have. In the last weeks, after I posted in groups on LinkedIn and started to write on my blog, many nice people approached me offering their help and advice. The conversations I had with them helped me understand Recruitment better, decide what sectors I would like to work in, what type of recruitment I want to do as well as the type of company I want to work in.

Having said this, what is the best way to make students aware of the benefits of social media and teach them how to use it? Should social media be a compulsory subject in universities?

Recruitment content marketing

Hi, I’m Martin Couzins and I’ll be posting two guest posts for Bill this week – one today and one on Thursday.

Today I wanted to take a look at some of the great examples of content marketing we are seeing in the recruitment space. Having followed Bill’s endeavours with Hard Rock Cafe and having attended last week’s Social Media in Recuitment conference it would seem that content is the big buzz for recruiters.

If you are wondering what the term ‘content marketing’ means then here is a definition from Joe Puluzzi on the Junta42 blog (a great content marketing resource).

Content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action such as visiting client’s website landing page, for example.

For recruiters that target audience is mainly jobseekers. And for this audience we are seeing some interesting content marketing to help drive engagement and ultimately fill positions.

As I’m on Bill’s blog it would be impolite not to start with a link to his work with Hard Rock, where Bill worked with Hard Rock to build a Facebook page to recruit for a new opening in Florence, Italy.

Clearly, Hard Rock is a strong brand ie you know what it stands for and you know what you get when you walk through the door. But that does not necessarily mean that you build a FB page and the right people will come. Create the right type of content and they will come, which is exactly what they did.

Last week’s Social Media in Recruitment conference featured quite a few case studies of companies/recruiters doing interesting things with content.

One niche recruitment consultancy – Redfox Executive Recruitment – is having great success distributing content using a variety of social media channels. I spoke to founder Max MacGillivray who told me that he sees his company more as a communications company because he is providing relevant industry content to his audience. How many recruitment consultancies would say that?

Particularly interesting is the fact Redfox has created a bespoke news feed which clients can also sign unto via email. Each week Redfox industry news is emailed to more than 8,000 people globally.

On a much larger scale, The Army and security services provider G4S also presented how they use content to engage with jobseekers. Both use different approaches – G4S pulls people into a secure forums area on its career site, The Army uses Facebook and Twitter to engage with its core demographic (16-24 year olds). For both organisations, content is the key to attracting and engaging the right type of people.

Listen to British Army marketing director Colin Cook talk about why the Army is so focussed on Facebook.
And watch G4S global head of resourcing Colin Minto discuss the G4S approach to social media.

We are seeing a wide range of approaches and channels for creating and distributing content. I hate to say that content is king for recruiters, but it would seem that it is.

All of the examples I have pointed to here adhere to a few basic rules, which anyone in recruiting can follow – and at low cost.

They are:

  1. Identify target demographics
  2. Understand where they are on the web and how they like to be communicated with
  3. Create relevant and useful/interesting content
  4. Distribute in the right place and at the right time
  5. Participate in the conversation – publishing any content is always the start of something
  6. Continually evaluate the impact of your content and tweak your content marketing accordingly

It goes without saying that all your content marketing efforts will be wasted if the experience at the end of the journey is poor. So, make sure the user destination is well designed with the right calls to action and prompts in the right place.

Bill will be talking through the Hard Rock Facebook case study at #Tru Amsterdam.

A Recruiter's Guide to Twitter

Bill is on vacation this week in sunny Wales so he has kindly invited me (Jonathan Campbell, Social Talent, @recruiterblog) to write a guest blog on his behalf.

I run a free weekly recruiting webinar (nearly) every Wednesday at 4pm GMT and Bill helped me with last week’s entitled “Twitter: The Great Untapped Recruitment Tool”.

Here’s what we discussed:

  • Getting the basics right
  • “Push” Job Marketing Strategies and getting your Twitter SEO right
  • “The Long Game”: successful engagement strategies for recruiters
  • Bio & Location Search: Go straight for the jugular & head-hunt
  • When 140 characters is not enough: What can a person’s tweets and followers tell you?
  • Klout: What is it and do you have it?
  • To Follow or not to Follow: when is it time to just listen?
  • It’s all about the Apps: why is only the beginning
  • Hashtags and Lists: What do you need to know

You can check it out for free here:

If you’d like to view any of our previous webinars or sign up for the next one, check them out here.  If you’re planning to come to truDublin next month, give me a shout as I’d love to get some of our tru fans on as guest webinar presenters over the coming weeks as we get ready for the greatest tru yet!

How to build a recruiting desk.

I made this video for Next Level training in Dallas about 14 months ago, for Next Level Training, the training exchange. it has taken a while to get an airing, (due to all the other great content available.)
I think this 5 minute snippet gives you a good idea of some of what I believe in. Building a desk that supports a specialist recruiter requires some basic disciplines.
What do you think?


Embeding live tweets in your blog

Today I found a really simple WordPress function that enables you to embed a tweet in a blog post and keep it active.
This means you can highlight a particular post, promote an event, job or post, just about anything you either see or tweet about.
I see this as being really useful for posts relating to twitter conversations because any reader can retweet the message, favourite it, reply with a comment of your own or send a DM to the originator (if you are following them), direct from the post.
It’s called “Twitter Blackberry Pie!” Strange, I know, but it works well. All you need to do to feature a tweet is click on the date displayed at the bottom of the post.

This takes you to a twitter page that shows just the tweet.

Copy the URL for this page from the address bar and post it in you’re in your content in a line on its own.

Thats all you have to do. The tweet appears in a border with all the message functions live, thanks to a change in the twitter API allowing for remote access and embedded tweets.
The avatar is shown complete with picture, surrounded by a stand-alone border.

This is my test post to see Twitter Blackbird Pie in action. If you like it, reply to the message and see how it works.

Look forward to seeing tweets in your posts!


Content and images taken from the WordPress.Com support blog, my constant source of WordPress info!

PS: If it doesn’t work first time, go to: Settings – Media – Allow Auto-Embed in your WordPress dashboard. Simple!

Work4Labs Launch Personalised Jobs Referral Feature For Facebook #SocialRecruiting

If you’ve read my posts recently on the Hard Rock Firenze recruiting project, you will know that the Work4Us tab played a big part in driving 4000 applications over a 2 week period via the fan wall. The simplicity of the application process makes it a great add-on to a fanpage to convert it in to a career site on Facebook. When candidates review an individual job they also get a listing of similar jobs from the same company,increasing applications. Job seekers also like it because you don’t need to join or like it, show anything on your wall or share any other part of your personal profile other than your contact details..

My one concern for the future use of this and other similar apps is the ease with which jobs can be shared in to the stream. I believe users attitudes to indiscriminate posts on their wall or in their stream will lead to a blocking of accounts.Think BranchOut, and the first thing that comes to mind is spam and uninvited wall posts. Applications in this space need to come up with something different to win user confidence.

The new feature, which comes available from today,works in a similar way to Linked In Jobs Insider in that potential candidates who review jobs also get to see recommended fans from Facebook whose profile match the requirements of the job, as well as LinkedIn connections, based on skills and experience. The difference with the Work4Labs app is that messages aren’t posted to your wall,they are delivered as a private message one-to-one from a friend. Although the new feature is labeled a referral recruiting tool,I see it as more a personalised job sharing tool, but we shouldn’t underestimate the potential of personalised sharing between friends and contacts. The fact that it matches from LinkedIn and Facebook also sets it apart.

You can see how the app works on the L’Oreal Talent Recruitment fan page. At the bottom of the job spec you get the choice to see friends who would be perfect for the job. To activate the feature you need to give permission to access your profile and import your friends from LinkedIn. You only need to do this once, then the feature is live whenever you want to use it. It’s quick and simple, and you get your recommendations,with either a standard message or a free-text field to send to friends who match the spec.

With 6000 companies using the work4us tab,and over 250,000 jobs posted over the last year,Work4  the number one Facebook application of choice.  Having spoken to Sales Director Matt Brown about some of the other developments that will be coming out of Work4Labs in the coming months, I expect this app to continue to lead the field.



The Monster i-pad application: An audience with James Brian

I was lucky enough to get a sneak peak at the recently released Monster i-pad app for job seekers, and to spend some time with Monster UK’s director for Product,  James Brian

I’m not going to cover too much of the functionality, Matt Alder of Metashift has already done this in an informative post. What I will say is what I liked about it, and a few areas I think the product could be developed.

On the plus side, it’s very easy to use and navigate for job seekers. Search results are delivered according to location (GPS based), showing whats close by against your search criteria.

The larger screen space also makes applying much simpler that it would be via the i-phone or other mobile devices. The reality is that most job seekers using mobile apps bookmark jobs and apply later from a PC or laptop. the app is largely for browsing during down time and referencing.

With the i-pad app you can find a job, see the detail clearly, access your on-line resumes/c.v.’s (Monster allows you to store up to 6), write a tailored cover letter from a series of templates and apply. The application is then recorded against your monster profile, enabling you to keep up to date as to where you have applied on the move.

I have a few suggestions as to how Monster can improve the product, but overall I was impressed. It’s simple, quick to use (which is critical in the job seeking footrace which sometimes evolves), and makes job seeking on the move a real reality.

For job seekers looking to search for jobs away from the area they are in (and location is the top search criteria for job seekers in the UK), the default to search away from the location you are in could be easier to activate, without having to change the settings every time. Not everyone is going to want to search for local jobs close to their current location.

I’d also like to see the addition of being able to edit the resume/CV prior to submission. at the moment you can only use the resumes already stored on your Monster profile.

Whilst the i-pad currently has no camera, the very soon to be released i-pad 2 will have 2. For local job searches, the addition of augmented reality through the integration of a platform like layar would really work well in this app.

Adding data-maps, rather than directional maps would also help visualise your search in the local area, which would be very useful when you are looking local, and would enable job seekers to drill down in to local jobs and access other web-based data that might help determine whether to apply or not.

The LinkedIn Jobs Insider toolbar is a USP for Monster in the UK, as they are the only job board it works inside. This enables job seekers to see behind the ad and identify how they might be connected to the hiring company. This would be a really useful add-on to the app for job seekers which is not integrated at the moment. By the same token, a social sign in similar to the Bernard Hodes career site app would enable job seekers to apply using social profiles rather than resumes. I see these growing in popularity, worthy of consideration for a later release.

The only other feature that could be improved is that you can only apply for jobs via Monster, and need to log in to your full monster account to submit to jobs that require you to apply via their own career site. Whilst these are in the minority, I’m sure it could prove an irritation to job seekers to find a job and then be unable to apply via the app. I’m sure it would not be too difficult to integrate something to overcome this.

These are improvements, rather than essentials. The app works well in its current format, and I’m sure will be a hit in the i-pad toting sectors.  Hat tip to monster for developing a dedicated app for this audience!

Whilst with James, I took the opportunity to shoot a video on my new Bloggie using the 360 degree lens. You might want to expand the video to watch it, but we had a great conversation on i-pad, mobile and just where Monster see the app fitting in.