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2009 - Year of the Recruitment Videos

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 11:45am Thursday 08 January 2009    Print Article

Many clients have asked me for my 2009 predictions, and I have been quite reluctant to give many at this stage. 2009 will see the rise of videos as well as other web 2.0 tools. Recruitment software and job posting providers will partner more with organisations, they will be gatekeeper as well as leaders in the industry. Consolidation and collaboration will increase dramatically.

There are many discussions going on behind closed doors which you would not be aware of. Job boards, talent providers, aggregators all in discussion about consolidation in the industry. We will see a number of these in the first half of 2009. The recruitment industry will open up and collaborate more with suppliers, competitors and the industry through online networking forums and the like.

Recruiters will struggle, and be slow to pick up on the web2.0 tools trend. But they will see the benefits from creating and using videos in their marketing campaigns especially now that anyone and everyone can view videos on line, and that more and more people are inclined to watch videos rather than read!

Few tips to creating videos for online recruitment
  • Target your audience
  • Engage with the audience
  • Be honest in your presentation
  • Integrate with the rest of your recruitment campaign
  • Short and sharp
  • Encourage feedback
However, simply posting your videos on YouTube, Facebook, Myspace or other similar video sites would be utterly useless if you don't lead them directly to your own website. That is why it is essential that you put the URL in the descriptive box when posting your video. This way, when viewers can click on the URL, they will be instantly directed to your own website wherein you can further encourage them to apply for a job or subscribe to your newsletter..

Another essential item that you have to supply in posting your video is a keyword loaded description of your video, meaning it has must be composed of the essential as well as mainstream keywords. The keyword description that you put in for your video works similarly to an SEO, meaning that by typing in the keywords in the search engine, the search engine will directly lead the searcher to pages of search results, consisting of sites that use those keywords.

Search engines are the ones to recognize if the video or site is a relevant one. And what puts your video or site in a good spot is that many search engines must notice it. Thus, it is also advised that you submit your video to as many video hosting sites, blogs, podcasts, and other social bookmarking lists. This is called Social Media Optimization. By optimizing your online presence, it makes you more visible through searches within community websites as well as online communities. Other social network connectors include tags, bookmarks, RSS feeds, reviews, trackbacks, comments, and ratings. See my other blog post on SMO

Also see this article on "How to make your own recruitment video"

Below are some recruitment videos from a number of agencies and employers.

Retailworld Resourcing

Working at Google Sydney



Frontier Recruitment

FIT - Helath & Fitness Job Board

Rural Doctors Workforce Agency

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The real Job Genie

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 12:30pm Wednesday 07 January 2009    Print Article

Protecting your brand identity is a must for any business. Last night while I was checking up on my own IP, I came across a new site logo and name which looks a bit familiar to a friend of ours 2vouch.

Currently we are finalising our own trademark registrations (logo and words), and it is a very costly and drawn out exercise. But it is essential in protecting your uniqueness in the marketplace.

We like 2vouch - good idea and great team. I was certainly surprised when I noticed this logo trademark application on for "" by an individual

I am no expert on this subject, but on the surface "" sounds, and has identical word strings to 2vouch's trademark of "the jobgenie", but there are more factors to consider when comparing trademarks - categories, what the product actually is etc.

So what now? In the above example, the trademark of "" has just been "filed" with IP Australia. I would asume that 2vouch will object to the registration.

The trademark application process takes a minimum of seven and half months from the date of application to the date of registration. The first hurdle in the trademark application process is the examination of your trademark by the IP Australia, which generally occurs three to four months from the date of application. Shortly after that, the trademark will enter the mandatory three month opposition period, which commences four and a half months from the original date of your trademark application.

When the mandatory three month opposition period expires, the trademark will then move to registered status. The trademark registration will span for ten years from the original date of the application.

Last year Facebook objected to the registration of "facebookjobs" by a Sydney Recruitment Agency.

What are your thoughts?

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10 tips to avoid PowerPoint disasters

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 9:55pm Tuesday 06 January 2009    Print Article

I have been preparing my presentation for the Inspecht HR Futures Conference in late Feb. Oh my... that’s less than 2 months away. But I came across an interesting article on SmartCompany - 10 tips to avoid PowerPoint disasters

For more information about the upcoming Inspecht HR Futures Conference

You may think these tips are quite basic, but anything can happen on the day. Readers might also want to have a read of these tips

10 tips to avoid PowerPoint disasters, Smart Company
  1. Check the power: Is the laptop plugged in and is the power on?
  2. Disable power saving and screen savers: A system kicking into sleep mode is irritating enough, but I’ve seen a presentation stop when a password protected screen saver came on and no-one in the room knew the word to unlock it. Turn off all the power saving features or crank up the time settings to the maximum.
  3. Turn off updates and scans: Run virus scans and system updates before the presentation. Turn off all scanners or update tools while you are presenting.
  4. Don’t run any unnecessary programs: Constant “you’ve got mail” type noises are distracting, also you do not want an embarrassing instant message from your idiot brother-in-law popping up as you give your call to action.
  5. Keep it simple: Exotic fonts and rare graphics increase the likelihood something will go wrong. Watch your image sizes too as well as many computers struggle with big graphics.
  6. Test your presentation: Get to the venue early and test your show on the venue’s system. Just because it works on your computer doesn’t mean it will on someone else’s. This is particularly true if the venue uses a different presentation package to yours.
  7. Clean up your system: If you are using your own system, give it a good clean out the day before. Clear out the browsing history just before the presentation.
  8. Test your equipment before the show: If you are bringing your own technology such as mouse/pointer combo device, install it before you take the stage. The famous Bill Gates Blue Screen of Death when showing a preview of Windows 98 is the poster child for what can go wrong when you don’t test beforehand.
  9. Check your connections: Personally I like to avoid accessing the net during presentations, but if you need net access, check you have it before putting your show together and test it at the venue.
  10. Call for help: The moment you notice something not working right, raise the alarm. If something starts beeping or spewing toxic smoke, it’s probably a good idea to let the organiser know about it before the sprinkler system goes off.
Need a good laugh, there are some funny videos on YouTube.

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Moving Domain Names

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 1:29pm Tuesday 06 January 2009    Print Article

It's straight forward right? Change the website address, inform clients, generate as much buzz as possible, stock the printers with new stationery and copy and paste the website to the new domain name. Well, let’s just go over that last bit.

Your organisations domain name is literally the address of your website. It is the identifier/tag used by Google to establish who you are, what you are about and where to rank you. Your domain name will also have visitors reaching it from websites linking to you, book marking by users and direct traffic (people typing the domain directly into their web browsers).
  • How much business would you loose?
  • How much would it cost to get your domain name back?
  • What can I do about managing old domain names?
You should keep your old domain names for at least 5 years. The cost of registering a domain name is very low compared to the expense you may have to pay out to get the domain name back from squatters or even worse - your competitors!. The steps bellow will give you the best chance of protecting your current traffic and all important Search Engine rankings.

Planning ahead is the key to a successful switch over. Having copied all your website files to the new domain you will need to divert all traffic from your current domain to the new one. Leaving the two running simultaneously will cause the new domain to be treated as duplicate content by Google and therefore will not rank in the search results.

Do not redirect the whole domain name as users looking for specific pages will just be taken to the home page of the new domain. It is far better to redirect each page on your old site individually to the new site. Not a small task, but it is important enough to warrant the long hours and endless stream of coffee needed to be completed properly.

It is also advisable to ensure the IP address and WHOIS (domain registration details) records are the same on both the old and new domain. The idea is to change as little as possible, thus ensuring the best possible user experience and make it easier for Google to establish the owner of the new site.

Finally, registering with Google Webmaster Tools will help you in testing your sites links and redirects. Google will transfer the accrued value of your old domain to the new one through the 301 redirects. With all being well, you will be in an excellent position to launch your new website and continue benefiting from previous investment in your internet presence.

So let’s look at a real example. PageUp changed names to Pageup People changing domain names from to great, everything works well. (Yes this did happen a while ago)

But either they have forgotten to renew or expired one of their domain the new site is

Expired domain names go through various stages before they are deleted (length depends on the tld)

If you have a domain name in "Redemption Period" it is a 30-45 day period in which the owner of the domain may pay for the further dues to their registrar in order to retain the domain before it is deleted and other people can register it.

It is strongly recommended that you renew your domain registration in time before the domain name is placed in redemption lock because once its placed in redemption, the zone files of such domain gets automatically removed from the Domain Name Service and associated website and email etc services will cease to work.

The .jobs domain is regulated, so it would be difficult for another company to register see terms and conditions about the .jobs domain here

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Recruitment Agency Websites

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 9:58pm Monday 05 January 2009    Print Article

In this ever competitive recruitment marketplace attracting the best candidates (and clients) is paramount to your company's continued success. Ask yourself these questions.

  • Does our current web site or job board work?
  • Does it look inviting to potential candidates?
  • Is it easily found on the internet? Search Engines?
  • What are our competitors doing?
  • Are we social?
  • How easy is the website to update?
It is a fact of life that first impressions are important to the success of any business and this is no different with recruitment agencies. Put yourself in the shoes of a candidate, on the one hand a recruitment company has a modern, well presented, easy to use web site and on the other a poor, dated web site where searching for vacancies is almost impossible, which of these sites are you going to submit your resume to?

Let’s think in terms of a potential client. How easy is it to find details about your services and offerings? List of contacts? Are you displaying your Terms & Conditions?

There is no excuse for not displaying a list of current jobs you are recruiting for. Most ATS's and Job Posting software providers have a web module where it will show your latest jobs. If not there are many scripts available on the internet to download and install.

Another key strategy with recruitment website and job board development is Search Engine Optimisation or SEO. What good is a beautifully crafted recruitment web site or job board if candidates and clients are unable to find it?

Many recruitment businesses now identify the successful search engine positioning of their recruitment websites and job boards within the major search engines as one of their main reasons for growth.

There are many website design agencies available in the market place. But very few specialise solely in recruitment agency websites and job board design. 

You should be able to update and manage your website, online and anytime. Are you able to log in and change the website with a few clicks of a button?

We have the knowledge, expertise and experience to design and develop recruitment industry websites which are feature rich, well presented, rank well within major search engines and meet all the requirements needed to succeed in this competitive market place.

Contact me for more information on our upcoming software launch

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Did I forget the job advert?

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 7:38pm Monday 05 January 2009    Print Article

Someone forwarded this to me today. They say bad things happen in three's. 3rd mistake by Hippo in the past few weeks PS your test site is still online here whoops. Hey gen Y, g8 fkin jobs 4u, mad. aply now :)

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How much would you charge?

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 8:39pm Sunday 04 January 2009    Print Article

I have been searching the internet looking to see if there are any Recruitment Agencies in Australia passing on any charges for advertising a role on social networks or using them as a database for clients. I have found an example (not that good) but still it's an example.

So how is this agency advertising the role through Facebook? I did a search and managed to work out that they are just posting the role to their own "page" as well posting the role via the consultants own "profile".

Come on... you can post it to your own profile/page via the click of a button!! Do I think this agency is pulling the clients leg? YES
  • Why don’t they create an application? Latest jobs, refer a friend etc
  • CPC/CPM adverts?
  • Post the role in the marketplace?
  • Join groups
  • Why just Facebook? What about Myspace, Twitter, etc...

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Facebook Advertising - Part 2

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 1:58pm Saturday 03 January 2009    Print Article

Following on from my previous post on Facebook Advertising Part 1 I have collected a number of adverts that are currently showing on Facebook related to recruitment. These are only a small example of adverts targeting my profile.

As you can see, attaching an image to the advert is very effective.

But it hasn't taken long for a number of scam adverts to appear on the site. The attached image on the right, the role looks too good to be true. It redirects you to a ebook which you have to purchase to find out how to make money.

Sounds a bit like the job adverts apearing on SEEK

Have you seen any other interesting examples of social recruitment advertising? I would be keen to hear from you.

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Facebook Advertising - Part 1

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 1:32pm Saturday 03 January 2009    Print Article

If you are like most online recruiters, then more than likely, you are concerned about how to grow traffic to your site and increase sales or placements. There are actually ways to do this that are easy and affordable. By simply taking advantage of the social networking site craze, you just might catapult your business to the next level.

How many times do you think I ask people - Are you on Facebook? This question was asked to me when I was at a retail store purchasing a book over Christmas. Usually stores will ask for your postcode or email address, but now they are targeting the social networking sites.

Facebook Ads is becoming the hottest advertising platform because of its laser targeting ability. With new improvements in its ad platform, Facebook is becoming a serious rival to other ad platforms like Google AdWords and Yahoo! . Facebook will allow an advertiser to determine exactly what type of person is responding to an ad in ways that AdWords cannot.

Some advertisers stay away from Facebook because the site has many subscribers in the 18-25 age group. But I say "So what?" There are still plenty of subscribers in ALL age groups to make advertising in Facebook more than worthwhile. Plus, the 18-25 year old subscribers are consumers, too.

You can choose the exact audience they are looking to target. The system will ask a series of questions about the characteristics of the persons they are looking to advertise to. They are asked about that group's age, sex and are prompted to type in specific keywords.

Facebook will then calculate how many people fit those criteria. Individuals can pay per click or per impression. They have a choice of paying per action or per impression and how much they want to pay. Marketers can decide whether to run ads continuously or only during a certain times.

Facebook can be extremely effective because the website allows advertisers to target their market based on age, sex and by keywords. Facebook does a good job of placing ads where they catch the attention of viewers. Advertisements are placed in prominent positions so individuals have a great chance of actually viewing your website. They are placed in strategic spots of each Facebook page and also on each individual's feed.

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Web 2.0 Recruitment Sites

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 11:33am Saturday 03 January 2009    Print Article

I am involved in online strategy for a number of recruitment businesses and they are finally starting to learn about web 2.0. The key difficulty here is actually agreeing a definition of what Web 2.0 actually means and what it might offer a recruiter.

If it can be said to mean anything at all, Web 2.0 refers to a number of technologies and trends that have become more prominent over the last few years as the internet has become a genuine mass medium.

On the one-hand there are the mass-participation social-media trends such as blogging and online networking. There's also the increasing ease by which information can be shared and aggregated through feeds.

On the other hand there are the maturing technologies that allow for a richer experience for users, from smarter interfaces in your browser via technologies such as AJAX to multi-media and animation.

Put all these developments into a single box and you have Web 2.0. It is an attempt to define how the web is evolving and explain how people are engaging with it. Whether or not you agree with the definition, it is clear that internet usage has become a mainstream activity.

So what does this mean for the recruiter?

If you are like me, spending a lot of time looking at recruitment web sites, you'll be disappointed at how little recruiters have genuinely engaged with users. This is particularly surprising given the fact that recruitment accounts for more online advertising spend than any other sector.

The general standard of recruitment websites is poor. The user experience often leaves a lot to be desired, job information is poorly presented and sites offer users pretty limited tools to search for jobs. Recruiters should be looking to develop more engaging and useful websites, but to what extent can the trends associated with Web 2.0 help?

The key focus should be on improving the user experience and a number of the trends associated with Web 2.0 are not necessarily of much value to the online recruiter.

From a commercial perspective, recruiters looking to enhance their online activity should always keep a close eye on return on investment. I judge the success of recruitment sites on their rate of candidate capture, not raw numbers of visitors.

Social media and user-generated content - i.e. blogging and social bookmarking - can be an effective means of drawing large numbers of traffic to a web site, but will this be the relevant traffic that you are looking for, or will it be low-quality traffic which does little for your rate of candidate acquisition? Ideally you want to build a site that is "sticky", drawing job-hunters in and keeping them there so they will apply for a job.

Attempting to promote a recruitment business by engaging with social networking requires a considerable amount of consistent effort over a long period of time. The technology is easy enough to engage with - hence the recent explosion in blogging on the web. The difficulty lies in generating enough interesting content on a regular basis and finding the resource to engage with online communities consistently. As a marketing activity the potential returns can look like pretty small beer given the amount of effort required.

Recruiters who have attempted to build their own online communities have found it pretty hard going. It is worth bearing in mind that the majority of candidates tend have a fairly brief period of engagement with recruiters and only take an interest in the job market when they are actively job seeking. This does serve to limit a job board's potential for developing an enduring relationship with their audience.

Encouraging candidates to join in with online debate is also fraught with difficulty. Candidates are unlikely to enter honestly into an online debate with somebody who might help to determine what their next job will be. The candidates who are brave enough to enter fully and freely into a debate on an recruiter's website are thin on the ground.

There are elements of the whole Web 2.0 agenda that recruiters should be paying closer attention to, particularly those that serve to enhance the candidate experience.

Richer interfaces and multi-media and can really help with candidate engagement - not only can candidates read about a job but they can watch and listen to what the working environment is like. Flexible information sources such as RSS feeds can allow recruiters to disseminate their job information more freely, sharing it with candidates and other job boards.

Some aspects of Web 2.0 clearly offer some value to recruiters. It's a matter of how and where you are inclined to dispose of your resources. Social media is time-consuming to engage with and does not necessarily offer the kind of returns that recruiters want from their websites. Enhancing the user experience however can provide the most obvious benefits, delivering impact to potential candidates that serve to enhance the reputation of recruiters and their clients.

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