Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Coming Flood

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Not every industry is hurting right now. Many businesses are even hiring. Just take a look at or There are a lot of open positions...

But with rising unemployment and the fluidity of marketable skills, comes the inevitable flood of job hungry candidates knocking at the door.

The number of online job postings at sites like and might have fallen in the last couple of months but the number of applicants crawling these sites has ratcheted up tremendously. Given the job market and the purpose of these sites, that's obvious...

But what might not immediately come to mind is the stress this is putting on the companies that are hiring. All of a sudden, the number of qualified candidates seeking employment is through the roof (and that number is still growing).  A lot of our clients are telling us that they are now spending as much time just organizing their applicant pool as they used to spend (total) on filling all of their empty desks.

The last thing that a recruiter or manager or whomever whats to have to do right now is to blindly pitch 50% of their applicants simply to 'narrow it down a little'. To put it another way, there are a ton of really smart, well qualified people on the market right now and you simply cannot afford to run the risk of rejecting A-candidates just because you don't have time to look at everyone's application.

Now, a lot of really big companies have applicant tracking software that can help them with this a bit, massive departments dedicated to hiring,  and whole teams that spend their day's conducting interviews. 

Fine. But what about small and medium sized businesses that A) don't have the above resources already in place B) don't have the funds to puts said resources in place (even if they wanted to) C) don't have 10K (minimum) to drop on fancy applicant tracking software?

Well, it seems to me that there are at least 3 (this is certainly not an exhaustive list) resources to turn to:

1) You could "blindly pitch some percentage of your applicants to narrow it down a little". [BAD]
2) You could turn to a local recruiter. Your local recruiter has already done a lot of the work for you. [Decent]
3) You could start using your own basic pre-selection 360 tool (which is what the recruiter is doing anyway) and cut out the middle man. [Best]

We talked about a little of this before the flood: See "New Tricks" and the employeement report just below this post...