Has the 'Net Made Old-Fashioned Recruiting Obsolete?

By Paul Feeney Managing Director, Sanford Rose Associates - Wayne | October 28, 2008

Alas, while companies across the country have experimented and implemented electronic recruiting as a very beneficial and cost effective tool, results can be decidedly mixed for recruiting for all positions. In order to understand the potential and the pitfalls of on-line searches, those who are considering a cruise on the Internet may appreciate a few words of explanation first.

Much of this business presence is found on the Internet, the "Yellow Pages" of cyberspace. All sorts of for-profit and nonprofit organizations have established Home Pages on the Web to promote their products and services (and, in some cases, to advertise for job applicants).

The Function of Outside Recruiters

Recruiters of executive, managerial and professional talent know one simple truth: If hiring managers didn't have problems finding people, they wouldn't turn to outside recruiters for help. When a position opening occurs, the ideal solution often may be to promote a qualified candidate from within - assuming that one exists. (In some situations, however, the company may want the fresh perspective of an outsider.) Promotion from within costs nothing, enhances at least one employee's career and bolsters organizational morale.

The next best solution, especially at lower levels, may be an existing employee's referral (usually a financial "reward" is now the norm with many firms) of a respected business or personal acquaintance. After that, a lot of companies will turn to advertising - at least once.

What happens when you have advertised in some local newspapers and on some of the more popular job recruitment web sites and you have not found "the most suitably qualified candidates?" These days it is very easy to apply to a few jobs online in a matter of minutes, but this will also mean that many candidates will send resumes everywhere to every company "spraying and praying" whether they are qualified for a position or not. When advertising produces several thousand resumes of people who are looking for work and (after laborious screening) prove to be under-qualified, over-qualified or simply lackluster, employers at last enlist a professional recruiter.

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Eco-Friendly Practices: Corporate Social Responsibility

The hotel industry has undertaken a long-term effort to build more responsible and socially conscious businesses. What began with small efforts to reduce waste - such as paperless checkouts and refillable soap dispensers - has evolved into an international movement toward implementing sustainable development practices. In addition to establishing themselves as good corporate citizens, adopting eco-friendly practices is sound business for hotels. According to a recent report from Deloitte, 95% of business travelers believe the hotel industry should be undertaking “green” initiatives, and Millennials are twice as likely to support brands with strong management of environmental and social issues. Given these conclusions, hotels are continuing to innovate in the areas of environmental sustainability. For example, one leading hotel chain has designed special elevators that collect kinetic energy from the moving lift and in the process, they have reduced their energy consumption by 50%  over conventional elevators. Also, they installed an advanced air conditioning system which employs a magnetic mechanical system that makes them more energy efficient. Other hotels are installing Intelligent Building Systems which monitor and control temperatures in rooms, common areas and swimming pools, as well as ventilation and cold water systems. Some hotels are installing Electric Vehicle charging stations, planting rooftop gardens, implementing stringent recycling programs, and insisting on the use of biodegradable materials. Another trend is the creation of Green Teams within a hotel's operation that are tasked to implement earth-friendly practices and manage budgets for green projects. Some hotels have even gone so far as to curtail or eliminate room service, believing that keeping the kitchen open 24/7 isn't terribly sustainable. The May issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some hotels are doing to integrate sustainable practices into their operations and how they are benefiting from them.