Social Recruiting Summit

I arrived this afternoon in Palo Alto to attend the Social Recruiting Summit, catch up with several people here in San Francisco and have a few meetings. While it is a damn long way to come for effectively 1 day event I am hoping it is worth the effort.

We kick off tonight with a Tweet Up, which happens to be in the hotel where I am staying. Some of the sessions from tomorrow include:

  • A Conversation with LinkedIn Founder Reid Hoffman
  • Google Campus Tour
  • Mobile Marketing
  • Ubiquity & Authenticity in Social Media
  • No Sacred Cows: Making Sense of Social Recruiting
  • Online Employer Reputation & Social Recruiting

The event is very community focused, while each formal session is 1 hour in length on 30 minutes has been allocated to presentation. The rest of the time is for audience engagement. In addition there are three unconference sessions which anyone can speak, including yours truly.

I hope to blog and tweet (#socialrecruiting) about the event, although Twitter will be limited to PC based tweets as I could not get a decent prepaid SIM with a data plan.

Following the summit I have meetings with several key influencers within the recruitment industry, attending the San Francisco HR Technology Breakfast and catching up with Karen Beaman from Jeitosa.

I also hope to duck away and check out some of the Redwood Trees.

Step 1 define Social Recruiting

I wrote yesterday asking is the hype around social recruiting over, while a bit of a attention grabbing title I think the question still needs to be asked. Because when the hype is over we will all have moved on cause it failed to deliver or social recruiting will be part of everyday business.

In the comments Joshua Kahn from Find & Attract pondered:

Social Recruiting” isn’t that a bit redundant? It’s like saying “wet water”. For anyone who’s ever recruited, its social.

I have to admit the first time I wrote the post I called social recruiting a tautology. But then I thought a bit. Is social recruiting about using social media to recruit? Or is social recruiting as Joshua says a tautology? Or is social recruiting like cloud computing something we are all a bit confused about?

I see social recruiting as a broader topic than just social media, a broader topic than just all recruiting is social because you deal with people and broader than just community building. I see social recruiting as all three. As a rough cut:

  1. Using social media tools as part of recruiting
  2. Building a community of potential candidates
  3. Engaging with candidates as people not numbers

Now these three points are defined from the Australian point of view which is very third party recruiter centric and looking at all phases of recruitment; attract, source, engage, screen and offer.

Social Recruiting: Is the hype over yet?

Gartner HypeNext week I head to the US for the Social Recruiting Summit a one day extravaganza being held at the Googleplex in Mountain View. But as I sit here in wintery Melbourne pondering the future I am wondering when Social Recruiting will fall off the top of the Gartner Hype-curve? It will fall the trick will be to ensure that it does not get stuck in the Trough of Disillusionment.

Social Recruiting is going through a similar phase as cloud computing, I drew this conclusion after reading the McKinsey paper on Clearing the air on cloud computing. Lots and lots of talk, hype and tremendous promise but technical and operational issues are hampering wide spread usage within large enterprises.

Let’s look at McKinsey’s recommendations to stabilise the cloud computing discussion and apply it to social recruiting.

  1. Get an industry definition on social recruiting, Riges Younan and John Sumser have been having a discussion on this over at SocialRecruiting.com
  2. Figure out how to get around the hurdles for adoption in large enterprises; Financial, Technical, Operational and Organisational.
  3. HR/Recruiters should focus on ensuring their operational service delivery is excellent instead of creating unrealistic expectations that social recruiting will save them.
  4. Everyone should take solid actions to limit the time in the trough, recruiters show clear ROI, technology vendors enhance integration, HR develop strategies.

More on this later.

ATC Summary

Over the last few days I have published a number of posts summarising the sessions at ATC that I attended. However I wanted to pull together an overall summary of my thoughts from the event. This was my first ATC, mainly as I had now been in the position to attend before due to my previous corporate life which was a pity as I think attending in previous years would have been good. Well no point looking back let’s look forward.

First question was ATC worth the money? Yes. Even in the light of this GFC thing.

So what did I get out of the event to justify my expense?

  • Attending the sessions, while not all were good I took something from most of them. I could not say which was the best session, they were all different.
  • Meeting other Australian commentators such as Phillip Tusing, Jo Knox for the first time.
  • Catching up with Russell Kronenburg from Pacific Brands over lunch on the first learning in detail about some of their social media activities. They are doing awesome stuff!
  • Hallway time with the US speakers, most of whom I had never met in person, such as Master Burnett, Dr John Sullivan, Kevin Wheeler, Gerry Crispin, Charles Handler, and Sue Polo.
  • Having several business, dinner and social engagements organised with Master Burnett, Kevin Wheeler and Gerry Crispin for when I am in San Francisco for the Social Recruiting Summit next month. None of which would have been possible without ATC.
  • Catching up with locals like Riges Younan, Ross Clennett, Phillip Tusing, and the boys from Happener.
  • Meeting Belinda and Danielle from Buchan and chatting about marketing and PR, Daneille joined a number of us for dinner one night.
  • Meeting the Deloitte’s team (James Elliott and Tanyth Lloyd) and many other Australian organisations who are doing exciting things.
  • Chatting with Karen Cariss and Simon Cariss from PageUp People, Simon for the first time.

So as normal with these types of events, the sessions are good but it is the networking that makes it valuable.

If you are in any form of talent management, sourcing or a corporate recruiter and you did not attend shame. For transactional 3rd party recruiters I can see limited value, but if you are a 3rd party recruiter who wants to be ahead of the competition again shame you did not attend.

Another final comment there were several sponsor sessions most were traditional let’s try and sell you on our product. The PageUp session was different. PageUp approached their slot with an attitude of let’s inform the audience about something, virtually unrelated to their product but important to the audience, Twitter. The result was after the session their stand was the busiest of any of the stands over the two days, other than Hudson where we all went for good coffee.

Next Year: Yes.