Skype launches new app directory

Skype appears to have launched a new app directory in the cloud, allowing users to access all the third-party apps for both consumers and businesses built on top of Skype’s API.

Very cool! At launch, Skype has 23 apps featured as soft-launch partners, expect this to grow quickly!


Guest Blog Post - Recruiting the Candidate – Five things many employers do not do well….

Thanks to Peter Cosgrove,  Director CPL for this blog post!

For certain skill-sets there is a lack of supply of good people, here are 5 things that employers regularly fall foul of, so even when they have the candidates they often cannot find the right person. 

Job specification:  All jobs require there to be some sort of a job specification as this is what helps the prospective candidates understand the role. Many job specs are out of date, do not really highlight what the job entails and are often written by someone who is not close enough to want the job is – line managers should sign off on all their own job specifications as they truly know what they need,. A line manager needs to be fully involved in the hiring process and not leave it to the HR Department.

References – the amount of times I receive a reference check and it is a tick-box exercise where you can hear the other person who is regularly not the prospective boss asking standard questions. It amazes me that one of the best ways to find about a person is the three year interview they just did at their last company. Despite the fact that more companies are not giving references, it is critical to find out as much as you can about the person at their last job – this is information you cannot easily gauge at interview .

Lack of awareness of the company brand – interviewing a candidate is not all about your company. Guess what - just because you believe you are a great company to work for does not mean everyone else does. What will help is a strong first impression, a passionate interviewer, a company that seems to care about the person they are interviewing and one who actually interviews that candidate. Good candidates want to be interviewed and challenged, they want to feel they earned the job so give them a strong interview and a great first impression.

Wanting a replica of the person who has just left – “We want someone like Bob” is a well heard phrase. Try to think about your vacancy, what you really want is Bob from three years ago, as Bob today knows everything about the job and is leaving, so you will not get someone like him. If the person can already do the job, then they should not and most likely won’t want it.

Assessing the candidate: Interviews are poor indicators of the quality of the hire, a Belgian survey highlighted that an interview had about a 25-30% success rate whereas an assessment centre brought his up to 63%. It makes sense that if you test someone through psychometrics, see how they perform in a group, give them a task to perform in a live environment and also interview them , you are more likely to get the person you want – but only if you know how to set these assessments up fairly and appropriately,
Great people are very hard to find – don’t make it harder by not doing the basics right.

Download the new LinkedIn App

How many folk out there in Irish Recruiters have downloaded the LinkedIn app for their Iphone, blackberry, Android enabled phone or iPad. Please leave a comments if you have!

Did you know we just launched some new apps! For the first time, we’ll be providing that experience not only in our iPhone and Android applications, but also in a brand new HTML5 experience for use in any modern mobile web browser. You can get the apps here:

The coolest thing for me is you can now access groups with this release! This has been the number one feature request and it a real godsend! You can learn a lot more here.


Changes in the search engine world recruiters need to know

Did you know that Microsoft made an announcment last month that Bing will now power the English language queries for Baidu, China's number one search engine. This is a big step forward for Bing and if the team at Microsoft continue to integrate social search using Facebook's data and do a similar deal with RenRen China's biggest social network the search engine industry in China could start to get a lot more interesting.
Also, Yahoo converted the organic results for its European properties to Bing’s search directory. Now, Yahoo US, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Spain, UK, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, New Zealand, Peru, and Venezuela are now all powered by Bing.

What this translates into is the commands that used to work for Yahoo's European index are now the same as the commands recognised by Bing. For those who want more detail go to  Microsoft and Yahoo!'s search alliance site: www.searchalliance.com/

If you want to learn more about search engines and how to use them properly for recruitment you should check out the Irish Recruiters in association with the CIPD's certified internet recruiter course. 

Here's some of the content on the course:

  • What are search engines and what is Boolean searching with clear examples included
  • How to flip search and x-ray servers and peel back URLs
  • The important anatomy of a URL
  • You’ll learn how to use field commands and wild card searches
  • What is our philosophy on passive candidates and why we think they increase quality of hire
  • How to tailor your search to international recruitment assignments so that you can carefully craft Boolean strings for the European and Asian markets
  • How to do time machine searching, code language searching and quick competitive analysis tag sourcing
Contact me or the CIPD if you want to learn more. The next course is Tuesday the 6th of September.

On the topic of search in my up and coming presentation at the Irish Recruiters annual conference on the 15th of September I'll be talking about how LinkedIn's Paid Recruiter product allows my recruitment team at LinkedIn search and will be showing how the amazing "Similar Profiles" feature has helped to speed up our time to hire.

If you want to know more about LinkedIn's Recruiter Product and a host of other LinkedIn corporate solutions go here.

Innovation at LinkedIn you don't want to miss and the financials!

Some things catching my eye at the moment at LinkedIn.

LinkedIn now has a new profile makeover to help you enhance your professional identity, learn more about it here. It's worth 3 or 4 minutes of your time.

Check out the company's impressive latest financial statements here . Some of the highlights that caught my eye were:
  • Members grew to 115.8 million, an increase of 61% from the second quarter of 2010
  • Unique visitors of 81.8 million per month, an increase of 83% from the second quarter of 2010
  • Page views of 7.1 billion, an increase of 80% from the second quarter of 2010
Also the creative energy of some of the brighest interns in America particpated in LinkedIn's first intern hack day! This signifies the innovative culture permeating through LinkedIn. You can check out more in the video. Some of the results were amazing. My favourite being LinkedInOut! Very very cool! Also was great to see James Gosling the founder of Java being on the adjudication panel!

Did you miss "Apply with LinkedIn"! This for me is one of the very biggest innovations ever at LinkedIn. Over time a bit like PayPal's payment button I think will become a world wide recognised internet standard. In this case the ability to apply for a job with your LinkedIn profile.