Archive for July, 2013

International Recruiting: LinkedIn Usage By Country

July 27th, 2013

Planing on doing some international recruiting? LinkedIn should be a part of the equation. Thanks to Link Humans, a social media marketing agency, for compiling a list of the top 10 countries per continent on LinkedIn. The firm says the figures were taken from LinkedIn’s own advertising engine which Link Human nots as, “not entirely reliable as well as official figures released with investor updates”.

How to Hire Silicon Valley Engineers – What Do the Experts Say?

July 25th, 2013

Silicon Valley HiringWhen the success of your business depends at least in part on hiring the best engineers in Silicon Valley, you should know that it’s not always about high salaries and stock options, according to a number of hiring experts from top Silicon Valley companies.

Recruiting highly talented engineers in this region is always intensely competitive. To that end, the Commonwealth Club’s Inforum recently hosted an event in San Francisco to discuss the various strategies that local technology firms are using to recruit the best talent, according to a recent article at ZDNet.

On hand were hiring professionals from Cisco Systems, Collaboration Group, Google and Twitter.  The following are some of the top hiring points they made:

Cater to the Generation

Members of the generation born after 1981, often referred to as “Gen Y,” may seem to require a bit more coddling, with expectations of perks such as transportation, house cleaning and free beer and food.  Although wanting these perks may seem like the candidates have a sense of entitlement, keep in mind that these extras make them feel welcome at a company on top of the high salaries and multiple benefits.

You need to acknowledge that your applicants will have an expectation of some perks like these, at the very least so they can have a bit more incentive to come on board as well as have some bragging rights among their peers. Besides, offering employees free bus rides to and from work is a good way to ensure that they will get to the premises on time.

Working at Home

Tech-savvy workers may feel hamstrung if their companies require them to always work on-site.  If your corporate culture can accommodate it, you will definitely want to consider offering the option to work at home to your most promising engineer candidates to sweeten the deal. Twitter’s representative, for example, said the company welcomes its employees to work at home, as long as they continue to do their work.  This trend is continuing to proliferate the engineering space as many coders do their best work at strange hours that are more conducive to working at home.

Coaching for the Future

Potential employees want to have a sense that they can continue to grow in their field, the article noted, emphasizing the importance of offering coaching to your engineer candidates.

When an engineer feels that the company is taking an active role in helping him/her develop for the future, it can go a long way toward job satisfaction. The representative from Cisco said that in fact, coaching is more important than salary for people who believe they will grow with their company.

As a human resources professional, you need to make sure that you are providing the most compelling options for attracting the best of the best when it comes to your engineers.  No longer can you feel secure by focusing on incentives such as stock options and big salaries.  Although these items should surely be up front during the hiring process, don’t forget about those other perks that might stick with the candidate when they are considering the position.

Can Social Media Really Reveal Good and Bad Hires?

July 10th, 2013

hiring with facebookAfter favorably evaluating a job candidate’s resume, you look him up on Facebook. And there he is in all his age twenty-something glory – sitting in a hot tub, wearing nothing but a cowboy hat, looking as if he’s had way too many beers. Do you automatically toss his resume in the “No” pile and continue your search?

Your answer should be “Not always,” according to Shelley Dubois in her July 3 article on “Hiring Managers misuse (and misunderstand) Facebook” found at CNNMoney.

Dubois points to a recent study published in the monthly social networking journal Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking. Researchers assessed 175 university students on qualities like emotional stability and conscientiousness, and then asked them to examine their own Facebook pages for signs of substance abuse and badmouthing others.

Study Results

The study revealed that a tendency to badmouth others is linked to negative job applicant traits. However, the researchers also found that those students who may go overboard in posting photos and videos of partying with their friends tend to have extravert, or outgoing, personalities, which can be valuable in functions like sales and marketing.

The results of this particular study may be distorted because of the young age of the participants, as their FB posts tend toward impressing their peers. Also, because researchers asked them to self-report on their own FB posts, the students may have downplayed the negative material.

Standardize Your Process

If you routinely check social media sites like Facebook during the hiring process, it’s advisable to standardize your procedures so everyone involved in hiring performs the same steps. Although young people are becoming more adept at screening out uninvited eyes through their FB privacy settings, many are still available. Be consistent in reviewing applicants on social media – do it for all, or none.

The degree of tolerance you have for questionable Facebook postings depends on several factors, including your organization’s culture. You may be willing to go forward with a candidate who displays an inappropriate photo or two, but can you ignore discriminatory comments, signs of excessive drinking or any hint of illegal substances?

Implement Background Checks

While a few drinking photos may be harmless – having a background check reveal a potential employee’s criminal past is a clear red flag.  Not only do you need to hire competent employees who will help your company grow, but you need to make sure your company is a safe environment for everyone that works there.  Be sure to integrate background checks into any hiring process and make standardized decisions based on the results.

The advice to employers seems clear – don’t screen out job prospects based on their Facebook profile alone. Depending on your company culture, bring the qualified candidate in for a face to face interview, even if their Facebook page is less than wholesome.