Google now conducting interesting trial on their search engine

Once again Google is tinkering around with its search engine as it makes small strides towards its universal search concept.

If you want to play with it yourself type the following string into your Google.com: javascript:void(document.cookie="PREF=ID=4a609673baf685b5:TB=2:LD=en:CR=2:TM=1227543998:LM=1233568652:DV=AA:GM=1:IG=3:S=yFGqYec2D7L0wgxW;path=/; domain=.google.com");

You'll see a variety of new options, some of these  I am aware of through Google Labs, others I've never seen before.

Learn more here. Try it out for yourself and/or check out this video.


To twit or not to twit - Grafton Recruitment answers the question

To twit or not to twit? What do you make of it?

It seems like George Hook and Grafton Recruitment are out of the traps and leading the charge for Twitter in Ireland. George has recently been letting us all know what he has been eating in restaurants and his views on Munster and Ireland's magnanimous rugby campaigns. Grafton Recruitment on the other hand has been out there tweeting their jobs and trying to catch the attention of the passive candidates out there who are beginning to join the warble of the Twitter converts that are growing in their thousands each week on these shores. Here's what the Irish Independent had to say about it yesterday:

"Grafton Recruitment has become the first recruitment agency anywhere in Ireland to incorporate the revolutionary internet tool 'Twitter' as an integral part of their e-marketing strategy.

The company have used existing technology to ensure that every new job posted to their own website broadcasts as a 'Tweet' on Twitter which is then added to the TwitterJobSearch.com database opening up Grafton jobs to a potential worldwide audience.

As well as this facility Grafton Recruitment will also be 'tweeting' updates on news, industry statistics, market trends as well as exclusive jobs making it one of the must-read recruitment Micro-blogs online.

Nico Fell, Grafton Recruitment e-Business Manager said:

"By allowing candidates to follow Grafton jobs on Twitter, we have created a channel of pull media which is perfect for those on the move or people who aren't based in front of a computer all day. With mobile access and the explosion of the iPhone and Blackberry into the online world, sites like Twitter and www.TwitterJobSearch.com  are ideal for keeping up to date with the latest jobs. With this new tool commuters weary of their current job can keep up to date in the market for a more rewarding role on the way home from work."

Outlining Grafton's experience of how the job market has become increasingly global in recent years. Mr Fell said,

"Grafton Recruitment's own site attracts visitors from over 130 countries worldwide and will be complimented well by the global reach of Twitter's new job search service which is already serving over 80 countries. We see the competition for roles coming not only from local candidates but also those from overseas as the willingness to travel to find your ideal job increases."

This weeks' announcement comes on the back of Grafton Recruitment's recent shortlisting for 'The Recruiter Awards' for Best Recruitment Firm Website and Nico Fell said the Twitter service was just one of a number of recent innovations Grafton Recruitment had added to their online service as web-based traffic continued to grow."


So how does it work?
Most of us know by now but just in case you don't it's basically a status update search engine aggregation that allows you post a 140 characters at a time. Check out the video  to see it in action.

Should I be using it to recruit?
It has its pro's and con's. On the plus side it's free, easy to use and quick. It could help you target passive candidates and now that www.TwitterJobSearch.com has hit the market, which is also free, it could be a new channel to get your message out in a new and novel way and help you reduce your recruitment budget along the way. On the con side, from a multi-national employer perspective, it seems to be dominated by recruitment agencies looking at new ways to cast their nets.  Also, if could become a distraction if you start to get traffic coming your way, that doesn't match what you're looking for and are not teaching you anything. It could be deflecting your important time away from searching for a candidate using a different channel that may be more effective.

Howard Lee, CEO of Workdigital, the company who created www.TwitterJobSearch.com, believes that recruiting through Twitter does have its benefits, and points to firms such as Intel, who's IntelJobs account currently has over 600 followers. "The advantage of Twitter is that it taps into the passive jobseeker market," he suggests.

It's worth a try so give it a go and let me know how you get on?

I'll be at: http://twitter.com/irishrecruiters 

Also, get ready for Twitter offering some added functionality and launching some pro accounts in the near future. Word on the street is they've hired a new product manager and will be launching soon! Also, there's plenty of Apps already out there for Twitter so check them out on your smart phone.


Facebook Connect and an interesting new API

The App Wars continue and today I came across an interesting article about the new Facebook Connect App which connects with the iPhone.

This is an interesting move as App Store developers will now have access to a new Facebook API which will be a big win for Facebook and help it expand into the expanding social network mobile world.

Job Boards are already beginning to see the advantages of using the API. While I don't know of any job boards in Ireland that have tried this yet it is happening in other parts of the world. Take for example:
 Tribehq, LawEnforcementJobs, HealthJobsNationWide.

So if you manage a career site or a job board should you integrate this into your site?

Possibly. I'd give it serious thought - especially if you have a niche job board and still want to build up its brand. Most people will probably baulk at not having people register on their own site -  but how many people if they see any for of registration form simply decide to leave the site straight away. I know I've done it many a time but with this App you simply hit the Facebook logo and you have one click authentication and your in. So by allowing easier access you may catch some extra users that you otherwise may have lost. Once in you can see how many of your friends are already in the site. You can allow people post comments to others walls which will drive traffic to your site, you can pull basic profile, change avator images, etc. If you have a Facebook account click on one of the example companies above to see what it's all about and check out the video.

Twitter can get you fired in less that 140 characters

As Helen Popkin of MSNBC quite nicely put it "Why waste valuable social networking hours getting yourself "Facebook fired," when Twitter allows you to humiliate yourself quickly, and in 140 characters or less?"

For more information, read here.


Ireland's first recruitment "Mobile Blog" is here!

Now in true cloud recruitment form readers of the IrishCyberSleuth can now get their posts on their smart phones on the go!

Thanks to MoFuse I'm now able to get the latest postings on my iPhone and it works great!

MoFuse is simple, just sign up, fill up a couple of compulsory text-fields and your mobile site is ready to hit the ground running.


CPL Interm Results - Country and Recruitment Industry Barometer

Compared to last year it's been a tough year for CPL and the market.

There 2008 interm results were published on the 2nd of Feb of this year but I am only getting a chance to look at them now. You can check them out here.

This is the 10th year after CPL floated on the stock market. They continue to grow with the recent acquisition of K6 in the Czech Republic and they are building out their job board strategy with the development of their Cpljobs platform and recent bookmarking sharing functionality on their http://www.cpljobs.ie/ site which would suggest that they are beginning to engage more heavily their web 2.0 strategy. Rationalisation is taking place. The contract business is holding strong but the contingency hiring business has been hit. Shares are trading at .90 cents.

Worth reading is John Hennessy's comments on the report:

"Cpl is pleased to report profits before tax and impairment charges of €6.022 million for the six months ended 31 December 2008. This result has been achieved against an extremely challenging business and employment background in our principal markets.

Since 30th June 2008 the global economic downturn has gathered pace, adversely affecting business performance and employment activity in Ireland and in many other parts of the world. The confidence of employers and job candidates has been adversely affected by the downturn and this has had a negative impact on the trading and financial performance of the Cpl Group. We are experiencing a significant reduction in activity as businesses retrench and potential job candidates defer possible job changes, and it has become more difficult to forecast future performance accurately.

Notwithstanding these developments, Cpl continues to be the leader in a highly competitive environment. Although we have reduced our costs significantly, we are maintaining our focus on the delivery of valuable products and quality services to our clients and candidates.

In the six months to 31 December 2008 Group net fee income fell by 26% when measured against the same period last year, reflecting the deterioration in market conditions in most of the countries in which we operate. Net fee income from the permanent placement business decreased by 40% in the six months to December 2008. Net fee income in our temporary placement business, which has been more resilient to date across most of the group, fell by 10%. The pace of the fall in net fee income accelerated during the six months to 31 December 2008.

Cpl has reacted quickly and decisively to the downturn in business caused by the worsening economic environment. We are continuing to respond appropriately to these challenges by managing our cost base, focusing on cash generation and maximising our opportunities in both the temporary and permanent placement markets. The Group had cash balances of €36.4 million at 31 December 2008, and our net cash position has improved further since that date. Our balance sheet remains strong.

In the period since we issued our trading statement in December 2008 we have taken the opportunity to review the carrying value of Goodwill in our balance sheet. Although our annual impairment review was not due to be undertaken until mid-2009, we decided to conduct such a review now in the context of the current business environment. As might be expected, the reduction in business activity caused by the downturn, combined with the uncertain trading conditions facing us in the near future, have given rise to the need to recognise impairments in the carrying values of goodwill arising from the acquisitions of certain businesses in recent years. The total impairment charge required on foot of this review is €4.5 million, and the Board has decided that it is appropriate to record this charge in the six month period to 31 December 2008. A further impairment review will be conducted in connection with the preparation of our financial statements for the year to 30 June 2009.
The continued success of CPL Resources plc, notwithstanding the difficult trading conditions, is attributable in the main to our entire team and to their tireless dedication to providing a service of exceptional quality. It is also a result of the loyalty and partnership approach of our clients. We are grateful to our clients for their support and their creative approach to doing business.

The Board is recommending an interim dividend of 1.5 cent per share. The dividend will be payable on 13th March 2009 to shareholders on the company’s register at the close of business on the record date of 13th February 2009."


New Recruitment Model in the UK gets Dragon's backing!

Web Recruit has just come out with a very interesting new business model which I believe has set the tone for the restrucring that is inevitably going to happen with the recruitment industry over the next 18 months.

This new model is a clear response to the question I asked on the Irish Recruiters LinkedIn discussion board a number of months ago. Is the day of paying for job posts on job boards without getting a guaranteed hire from your investment gone? Web Recruit and James Cann of Dragon's Den fame seem to think so.

James has now recently become the chairman of Web Recruit and they are now offering  a "flat fee" online recruitment service guranteed to fill your vacancy from £295, or your money back. If you don't make your placement in 4 weeks you get a refund.

In 2009 and 2010 I believe in the Irish industry some of the strongest companies that will come out of this recession will be those that can offer bundles services to their clients. It's going to be very interesting to watch how the job board industry in Ireland reacts to this, if at all! The ones that react first may get invaluable client loyalty that may help them leap frog their competitors and help them ride out the recession much easier. Certainly, a topic worth discussion in one of the up and coming Tuesday Clubs.

To learn more read here.



This was bound to happen sooner rather than later but as of yesterday www.twitterjobsearch.com was launched by Bill Fischaer and the crew at WorkHound. Lots of recruiters are begining to enter into the world of Twitter and if you've ever gone there you'll see a huge amount of informaiton being spread around at ligtening speed. It looks like another aggregation tool for me like Indeed.com but with a new shiny medium. Whether it takes off or not let's see. That said excellent idea and well deserved hat tip to Bill.

Interestingly enough speaking of Twitter I noticed that LinkedIn now allow people to comment on any edit you make to your profile header. I wouldn't be suprised if we see some Twitter like functionality built into LinkedIn very soon.


Google Voice

Google Voice is a new service that Google offers at the moment for all GrandCentral clients, it is however planning to unleash to the world market for free soon. Check out here to learn more. While the technology is by no means 100% accurate it is a step in the right direction and certainly something worth considering as you become more of a mobile recruiter.


LinkedIn and the new "Follow" command in groups

If you are a member of some LinkedIn groups and a reader of discussions you'll be happy to know that LinkedIn have added a neat feature called "follow". It's similar to the RSS functionality that exists in blogspot around tracking comments. With this new functionality not only the originator of questions will get an email update when someone posts a comment to a discussion so will the readers once they hit the "follow" button.


Mobile Phones and Social Networks

Mobile Phones will increasingly become the gateway for more people to access their social network site/s. Gen Ys addiction to mobile devices has meant that there is now a race on for small mobile devices to be the defacto access point for the Bebo and MySpaces of the world.

The number of users on these services is accelerating quickly - a new study by InStat is predicting that by 2012, there will be nearly 30 million "millennials" in the U.S. using a mobile social network of some sort, and a ComputerWorld report confirms that worldwide, that number will soar to 975 million by 2012.

The latest states I could lay my hands on now show that there is 4 billion mobile phone subscriptions on the planet, with an estimated 6 billion subscribers expected by 2013!

1 billion phones will be sold in emerging markets in the next 12 months! And as we all know our very own, Denis O'Brien continues to make huge head ways into Central America with his phones and new job boards. Nice mix of technologies Denis! If he adds some social networks to his portfolio he'll begin to muster Murdoch or Bellisconi like media power.

The mobile device is here to stay. What organisation will be the first in Ireland to learn how to master it Obama style and bend it towards their recruitment and marketing campaigns!

"The Future of Recruitment is the cloud" Happy Hunting!

Here are two very different videos to get you thinking! Africa is getting quickLy connected and not just APAC. The story of Bluepulse is pretty amazing. it's a company I'm tracking. Started in Australia, now located in YouTube's former offices, this social network for mobile users is hot and in the video you can meet Ben Keighran, CEO.


Some new LinkedIn polls!

I've put together some polls for the Irish market that I think will make some interesting reading. If you get a spare moment please give them a go. Please go into each one seperatedly and give your answer.

1. If you had to choose one job board to work with this year what would it be? go here [no job board owners or employees need apply]

2. What fees should agencies charge this year for a full-time hire?, go here

3. What is your company's forecast for the rest of the year, until Dec 09, go here [only in-house recruiters need apply]

4. I've had 46 responses to this one but if you haven't taken it already please do: when will the Irish recruitment industry turn around?, go here