Identified - Eric Schmidt invests in social recruitment

When Eric Schmidt, the ex-CEO of Google invests in recruitment software it's worth investigating. This week I caught a glimpse of a new company called Identified.com which I think has a real chance to do very well in the recruitment landscape. I spent a couple of hours this weekend reviewing it and I was very impressed. Check it out here.

What Identified does is offer a new professional networking play in a gender that is growing ever competitive.We are only beginning to explore the power of data analytics in recruitment and it is very very early days. In my time in LinkedIn I got the chance to work with some of the finest data scientists in the world who are working closely on a variety of algorithms, mashups and tools that will bring to reality the ability of recruiters to read a wide range of data sets to extrapolate new insights to information to make them more competitive. Identify brings us one step forward to a more complete job ubiquitous recommendation searchable skills index.  We live in a professionally networked world where the talent economy is unfolding in new and exciting ways. Professional skills graphs are a hot topic at the moment as are the current API wars taking place. What Identified tries to do is offer a professional job search engine in a clever new way. It does this by trying to offer a 0 to 100 scale for particpants using three key criteria:

  • professional career
  • education background and
  • social network.
The index ranks top candidates on various skills by using a combination of your Facebook data and data you have put in manual. Interestingly, another professional network in Ireland, SkillPages, is actually operating in the same space trying to offer a network purely focused on the skills component of a person's profiles. It currently is based in Blackrock and has approx 20 staff already and is growing quickly! We wish them well and hope they continue to expand quickly.  LinkedIn has also been focused on skills with their skills tags and skills pages which are growing quickly. The approach from each company is different though and that's where it get's very interesting, especially when you factor in the race to bring their products to new languages and cultures that haven't been tapped into yet and can offer quick hit loyalty for first mover advantage.  This is how Identified have done it!

What I don't like about this approach however, is if you don't have a strong education you score low. I'm not sure that is necessarily the right approach to take but I completely understand it is hard to index potential and passion for those entrepreneurs who either didn't go on to pursue further education or left mid way. Also, there are some other serious flaws when it comes to the focus just on your network, experience and education. Surely, there should be more factors involved when indexing an individual's score: creativity, leadership, intellectual curiosity, etc. It's crude but it's a fascinating entry into the market.

To join and use the site you need to allow Identified access to your social graph on Facebook. Once that is done you get quickly ranked against your friends and you get prompted to add more detail to improve your ranking. I started with a score of 45.

One excellent feature that the site explores is the wonderful world of analtyics which I will be writing about lot more in the future.If you want a glimpse into some of the data analytic offerings that LinkedIn could offer in the future, set up a profile in Identified and you'll get to see what type of analytics potentially can be shared about individuals and their networks. On your personal page, Identified lists the most common job titles, most common companies, most common universities. Powerful information.

Here is my search for recruiters. Unfortunately, no Irish Recruiters come up in the first page but I hope that changes soon.  Identify has been added as a topic of discussion on the certified social media course and advanced certified internet recruiter course where I will be teaching a lot of new techniques for recruiters to rank higher in their Identified ranking and how to search for new pools of talent using this new professional network.

To date, Identified has scored and indexed over 40 million professionals, 60,000 companies and over 8,000 universities. This is explosive growth and I look forward to seeing Identified spreading quickly across the US and then more into the international sphere. 40 million profiles is a lot! Google plus doesn't even have 30 million yet. While BeKnown, BranchOut and Google + have been getting a lot of attention of late it looks like the team behind Identified have been quietly putting their robots and crawlers to work.


Twitter Analytics and some excellent social media stats

Twitter for quite some time have had a hard time getting business advertisment spend over on their site. They've tried a bunch of things with marginal success. At tech crunch this week it was announced that they are working on a new Twiitter Analytics tool... this is going to help those advertising budget owners to understand where to lay their chips, and when they splice the data using this new analytics tool it may just shift some advertising dollars Twitter's way. Smart move. I'm looking forward to testing it on my Irishrecruiters handle.

Also, check out this very cool PPT on some of the latest stats on social media around the world in 2011!

  1. Awareness of Facebook is close to 100%
  2. More than 1 billion people (>70% of internet population) use social networks.
  3. People use more than Facebook. In Europe, people join on average 1,9 social networks. In USA it’s 2,1; Brazil 3,1 and India 3,9.
  4. Average Facebook session lasts 37 minutes, Twitter 23 minutes. More than 400 million people use Facebook daily.
  5. There is a big Twitter paradox:80% is aware of Twitter, only 16% is using it.
  6. Vkontakte is big in Eastern Europe: 55% awareness, 39% penetration.
  7. Difficult for new social networks to succeed. 60% does not want any new social networks. 93% is happy with what they have and won’t in- or decrease. Big social networks will get bigger and small ones will get smaller.
  8. People connect online with their offline friends. People love to connect to people.
  9. >50% of social network users are connected to brands.
  10. Offline brand experiences are the main online conversation starters.
  11. People become a fan on Facebook because they like the product, not because of advertising.
  12. 36% posted content about a brand on social networks.
  13. Consumers want to be in the boardroom. 44% is asking to take part in co-creation of products & advertising.
  14. Positive experiences are bigger conversation starters than negative experiences. People like positive stuff.
  15. Consumers prefer e-mail over social networks to ask questions to brands.
  16. 2 out of 3 employees is proud about their employer, but only 19% shares stories on social media: unused conversation potential!
  17. 38% of internet users has a smart phone. They are more intensive users of social networks than people without a smartphone.
  18. On average, people install 25 apps on their smartphone, but only use 12. Most used apps are social network apps.
  19. 12% of smartphone owners is using location based services. 4% of smartphone users are familiar with augmented reality.
    20%of location-basedusers checks in daily
Social media around the world 2011
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A busy few days

It's been a busy few days for me with setting up my new company and transitioning away from LinkedIn. It feels great to be working for myself and I'm looking forward to a completely new set of challenges. Thanks to all of you that have sent me so many positive messages. It is much appreciated. I look forward to catching up with you all in the coming weeks to discuss some of the services I will be offering. Also, thanks to you who are also agreeing to some consultancy work. I didn't think some job offers would come in so quickly!

I've decided that I am going to base myself in the Guinness Enterprise Centre with another 57 entrepreneurs who are working hard to build their businesses. I met some of the entrepreneurs hard at work there and it was inspiring learning about their determination and optimism as they face the challenges that lay ahead. Companies like Statcounter, Datakraft, Content Kings and Dove Tail are doing amazing work which I am looking forward to learning about.  A  huge thanks to Eamonn Sayers for all the tax, finance, logistical and strategy advice. I owe you one!

I've also as usual being paying close attention to the recruitment industry. Here are some of the things that this week have caught my eye.

Looks like Facebook are rolling out circles soon! You either love it or hate the way they copy so many ideas from their competitors but either way it makes a lot of sense to let the market test what is working and then simply copy.

LinkedIn now allows you include voulunteer experience in your profile. You can learn more here.

Also BranchOut is rumored to be launching something called "Recruiter Connect" which will be very similar to LinkedIn's Recruiter product. It will interface with ATSs and allow you search through millons of people on BranchOut. This Thursday at the Irish Recruiters conference we be discussing the latest from BranchOut and discussing what this may been for LinkedIn. If you want to come to the conference you can still get your tickets here.

Also big shout out to the organisers of CareerZoo this weekend for an excellent event!