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Wotnews now monitoring Twitter

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 1:15pm Tuesday 02 June 2009    Print Article

News aggregation service Wotnews, has updated the monitoring service to search conversations on Twitter. This is great news if you are trying to monitor your brand or keywords in the marketplace. The searched content can be grouped into topics, themes and trends for further analysis.

Are you monitoring what people are saying about your brand in the marketplace?

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Article Tags: wotnews brand management twitter monitoring news

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Ethical Considerations when Drug Testing in the Workplace

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 7:05pm Monday 01 June 2009    Print Article

Most people don't realise that I have a background in HR. While studying at university, I undertook a number of business ethics units, to focus on behaviour in the workplace. This is a snippet from a report I wrote titled "Ethical Considerations when Drug Testing in the Workplace" from 2002.

Everyone is entitled to his or her own view on the ethical considerations about drug testing. But there must be some underlying common arguments to help the discussion.
  • A libertarian position believes that people should be permitted to indulge in activities that do not cause harm to others and that this applies even when those activities may harm the person carrying them out;
  • An opinion that some drug use, however defined, is inherently wrong;
  • A related opinion that addiction is wrong; and
  • A middle ground that has no particular view on the morality of drug use as such but holds that drug use is undesirable when its use reduces individual, community, and business welfare.
Business and organizations are held legally and ethically liable for any harm done to their staff and or customers, where knowledge of employees drug use is present. Business need to know the health and wellbeing of its employees to protect other workers and customers from any risks related to such liability.

That is of course a lose-lose situation – How can you protect the rights and privacy of the employee, and yet, let the drug abused employee continue to work for the business?

Results like these speak for themselves - Individuals who use drugs are a third less productive, 75% of industrial accidents may be linked to the use of drugs or alcohol, Individuals who use drugs are 3.5 times more likely to injure themselves, Individuals who use drugs are 2.5 times more likely to be absent from work for 8 days or more.

If drug testing is in place in organizations, it needs to be:
  • Uniform. That is, that everyone is tested, and it is not just placed upon a few individuals;
  • There needs to be an independent officer or company doing the sample collection, to ensure that the tests are carried out without tampering and bias;
  • It needs to be legal;
  • The drug testing should not violate privacy – the information the organization seeks, must be relevant to the employment contract;
  • The tests must respect the dignity and rights of the person to be tested. The employee should not be forced, but make their own decision;
  • Alternatives should be identified to methods of sample collection. Either bodily fluids, hair samples, etc.;
  • That advanced notice of the tests is given, as well as procedures and policies are in place for the retesting and appealing of any results.
All possible steps should be taken to ensure that the individual’s privacy is not invaded. Some people may be offended by the notion, and there should be policies to abide by any religious or ethnic concerns.

Drug abuse by individuals is a serious problem, and generally it calls for some medical or psychological help. The moral assessment of any problem of drug testing must rest on the individual giving consent for the test. They themselves know if they are taking drugs or not, and must face the consequences of their actions – Will they face immediate dismissal and potential criminal proceedings? Or allowing the individual to go to rehabilitation and a chance to retain their positions? There should be steps in place so that employees assistance programs are adopted by organizations, so that drug affected employees can go for help, before it becomes a problem.
  • Drug use adversely affects job performance; therefore leading to lower productivity, higher costs and consequently lowers profits when employees aren’t focused on the job. Ie hung-over, or stoned.
  • Since employees are contracted with an employee for the performance of specific tasks, employers seem to have a legitimate claim upon whatever personal information is revellent to an employer’s ability to do the job.
  • Most people claim that drug use has been and can be responsible for considerable harm to the individual employee, to their fellow employees , the employer, 3rd parties, including customers.
Overall it is the individuals right to take drugs. It is however, discriminatory if employment is refused on the basis of drug use.

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Article Tags: drug testing workplace issues ethical considerations business ethics performance management privacy employees employer hr human resources hr policy health and safety

Comments View Comments (0) Test Ads

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 1:11pm Monday 01 June 2009    Print Article

I have always thought Monster was a good job board platform. But while I was searching Monster today, I came across 123 test adverts (approx) listed in Australia. Not sure whose fault this was - CareerOne? Monster? Advertiser? But it dose intrigue me as why they do not have a "report job" function?

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Article Tags: monster fake ads testing report job job board careerone

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RCSA needs your help

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 11:17pm Sunday 31 May 2009    Print Article

It's great to see the RCSA has (not) fixed all the website issues it has been having. For the past 6 Sunday's in a row it has failed like clockwork. So how do they fix the issues?

  1. Get correct advice
  2. Change server hosts

Why do you get 80070070 errors?

One of the disks that your ASP page is trying to write to is full. It may be the drive the ASP page is running in, or creating a file in (which could be a share on another machine). It may be the drive containing the temp folder(s) or the page file(s). If you are using CDONTS, it could be the SMTP server.

Check the code, and analyze where it might be writing files; then, check those locations for sufficient space.

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Article Tags: rcsa website server asp errors

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How secure is your Recruitment website? Part 1 - Server Directory Listings

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 9:08pm Thursday 28 May 2009    Print Article

Every day, I am informed of another insecure recruitment website. How could this still be possible? The economic downturn has lead to an increase in data theft, with recruitment agencies one of the easiest targets. Information is an asset that, like other important business assets, has value.

Remember the issues with Monster? RCSA? CareerOne? NSW Government?

Websites are built with a structure - they contain files and folders. Hackers can deconstruct your website structure by reverse engineering the source code, or simply reading the robots.txt file.

Try this basic test…

In your web browser enter your URL/images/ - just the name of your images folder, nothing else afterwards except for the trailing /

If you see a “Forbidden” or 403 error message, that’s normal, but if you see a list of files and folder names, it means that your server is configured to allow for directory browsing!

Also try other folder names such as images, conn, includes, modules, system, admin, administration, secure, css, js, javascripts, clients, resumes, documents, scripts

You need to contact your website developer or server host to have your server directory listings turned OFF

Protecting your directories from being listed by your website's visitors does not, in and of itself, make your website more secure. At best, it's security by obscurity - that is, you hope that by hiding stuff from view, visitors will not be able to get access to your files.

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Article Tags: hacking security rcsa recruitment website job board insecure careerone monster server directory listings

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Upcoming Webinar - Social Recruiting 101

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 5:36pm Wednesday 27 May 2009    Print Article

There is a lot of buzz surrounding the use of Social Networking sites like Facebook, MySpace, Twitter and LinkedIn. But have you actually mastered the use of basic web 2.0 tools? Most recruiters are confused on how to integrate these tools into their recruiting strategy in a scalable fashion!

During this FREE webinar presented by online recruitment specialist Thomas Shaw MRCSA, you will learn:
  • What is Social Recruiting
  • How to create a basic Social Recruiting Strategy
  • How to best use tools such as social bookmarking, RSS, aggregators, social networks, virtual worlds, video, podcasts, wikis, referral networking, blogs, micro-blogging.
  • How to effectively manage and integrate these tools into day-to-day use
  • Integrate these tools into your website, career site or job board
  • ROI, measurement & management
  • Tips & tricks
Thursday 11th June 2009, 11:00am AEST
Duration: 1 hour

Find out how why these tools are important for you to master. Don’t get left behind. Sign up now

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Article Tags: webinar thomas shaw facebook myspace twitter linkedin web2.0 social recruiting social recruiting strategy social bookmarking rss aggregators social networks virtual worlds vidoo podcasts wikis referral networking blogs micro-blogging roi social recruiting 101

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SEO Glossary

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 5:16pm Wednesday 27 May 2009    Print Article

With all the hype around search engine optimisation (SEO) for recruitment websites and job boards. I thought it was important that you first understood a number of the common words that have been thrown around.

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) - Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is a series of techniques used to improve a website’s search engine rankings.

SERP - Abbreviation for Search Engine Results Page/Positioning (SERP). The aim is for number 1 rank on your keywords.

Organic Search - These are the “natural” results that appear when a search is performed on a search engine. Your website’s ranking depends on a number of factors, the most influential being your content and coding.

Web Crawler - A program, sent out by the search engine, to brows the Internet in a methodical, automated manner. Web crawlers are mainly used to create a copy of all the visited pages for search engine indexing.

Search Engine Indexing - The process of reading a web page and extracting the content into a database. If a page is not in a search engine’s index, it cannot be shown for an organic search query.

Search Engine Rankings - The position a website has on a search results page when a search is performed on particular keywords. Google, Yahoo and Live are the three search engines to be concerned about, as other engines do not have enough traffic or are actually driven by one of the big three.

Backlinks - This is any link from another site which directs users to your site. Also known as inbound links, backlinks are one way in which search engines determine ranking.

Keyword Impressions - Keyword impressions represent the number of times a search term is typed into a search engine.

Keyword Density - The ratio of repetitions of a particular phrase or keyword compared to the total number of words in a page.

Meta Data - Meta data represents tags and titles that are utilized within the source code of a site. In the earlier days of search engines, meta data had a more direct impact on search engine optimization. Today, search engines use many more factors that meta data, and meta titles and tags serve more of a lesser, but still necessary, role in optimizing for search.

Anchor Text - The word that can be clicked on within a text-based link. The anchor text of a link impacts the relevancy of which it links.

Further resources

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Article Tags: seo seo glossary search engine optimisation serp organic search web crawler search engine indexing anchor text meta data keyword impressions keyword density career sites recruitment website job board

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Advanced Twitter use for Recruitment

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 4:58pm Wednesday 27 May 2009    Print Article

If you missed out on attending the Advanced Twitter use for Recruitment webinar dont despair. You can still purchase the webinar recording, presentation slides and twitter resources sheet for $45.00 To purchase the webinar recording and resources, please use the online payment form and you will be able to download the documents.

Did you know that since the first webinar Using Twitter for Recruitment, Recruiters have successfully used Twitter to fill roles making $$$! Are you one of those smart recruiters who can say… "I made a placement using Twitter”

This 60 minute webinar is packed full of information including
  • How Twitter can add value to the recruitment process and your business
  • Automation! Cut costs, resources and speed up your productivity on Twitter
  • What is API, OAuth, OpenID
  • Branding - appearance & presentation, content & conversation, trust
  • Managing multiple profiles
  • Automate manual tasks – increase productivity
  • Posting content via API or RSS directly to Twitter
  • How to measure ROI and effectiveness of campaigns on Twitter.
  • Advanced boolean/x-ray search functions
  • Tips and tricks

Article URL:

Article Tags: webinar thomas shaw advanced twitter twitter recruitment advanced twitter use in recruitment online recruitment tips social recruiting xray search boolean search api oauth opened productivity training session recruitment branding

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SEO Meta Tags

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 5:00pm Sunday 24 May 2009    Print Article

Meta Tags are a Key strategy to Optimizing a website and individual web pages for the search engines, especially the "title tag". The "title tag" is what Search Engines use to determine what a site is about. In this blog post we will also look at the description, keywords and robots tag.

A Meta Tag is invisible to your visitors, but along with other Meta information may be useful to search engines to derive a brief description of your website. This information is what you will find if you do a search of your own website through a popular search engine. The Meta tag is added through the use of html language.

Title Tag

This is the dominant on-site SEO element. Now having said this, this does NOT mean you should stuff all your major keywords into a title tag.

A common mistake to avoid is putting too many keywords into the title. There are two reasons for this: the search engines might interpret that as "keyword stuffing," a practice that is frowned upon by search engines, and give the web page a low ranking.

In addition, putting too many keywords takes importance and weight away from the most relevant ones.To do SEO well, you want to make sure you optimize your title tag for one, maybe two keyword phrases.

Description Tag

This fits well with the title tag as both of these are the HTML elements that show on the search engine results pages. The description tag should contain your main keyword phrase, but should still be readable and interesting to visitors. Tell them why the page is exactly what they're looking for.

Spamming this tag with all your keywords will only push people away from your search engine listing.

Keywords Tag

If you MUST use the keywords meta tag, then use it carefully, and remember that many competing SEOs will look at this first to see what keywords you're targeting for your page.

Put other keywords you couldn't fit naturally into your page content that are still relevant and part of your page's theme, and keep them limited. Even deciding to put no keywords meta tag on your page will not hurt the SEO for your page.

Robots Tag

One other meta tag worth mentioning is the robots tag. This lets you specify that a particular page should NOT be indexed by a search engine. To keep spiders out, simply add this text between your head tags on each page you don't want indexed. The format is shown below (click on the picture if you want to copy and past the HTML for your own use):

You do not need to use variations of the meta robots tag to help your pages get indexed. They are unnecessary. By default, a crawler will try to index all your web pages and will try to follow links from one page to another.

Most major search engines support the meta robots tag. However, the robots.txt convention of blocking indexing is more efficient, as you don't need to add tags to each and every page. If you use do a robots.txt file to block indexing, there is no need to also use meta robots tags.

Article URL:

Article Tags: seo search engine optimisation meta tags website optimisation title tag keyword tags robots.txt description tag search engine

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Brand Identity Guidelines

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 9:00pm Thursday 21 May 2009    Print Article

Establishing and developing your Recruitment brand and image is a process which takes a great deal of time, energy and money. A brand identity creates loyalty, inspires trust, and allows for ease of recognition of you and your services.

Brand guidelines can often seem a little pedantic – pages of detailed company rules about logo specification, colour palettes, typography and tone of voice can, to some, appear trivial. But, there are plenty of reasons for having them and for sticking to them.

They create consistency of image in your audience’s mind, build stronger brand value over time, deliver an accurate perception of your identity, improve customer confidence in your business, increase your profile and help enhance your competitive advantage.

We have created a template which will help you create your own guidelines and is intended for anyone producing communication in your business.

Download Template

A complete brand identity can be comprised of several segments, not all of which will be present in all circumstances.
  • Business Name
  • Logo, colours
  • Tagline/Slogan
  • Stationary
  • Website
  • URL/Email
It doesn’t matter weather your agency is large or small. The aim of the document is to ensure that all your work embodies brand attributes, expresses them consistently, and helps to build an awareness of the brand.

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Article Tags: branding guidelines brand identity template recruitment agency branding guidelines

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