We pause now, before beginning our workday, before we plunge into this post about Mars and Monster, to pay homage to television’s most real unreality comedy show, The Office.
The show’s finale aired last night, ending nine years of episodes that anyone who has ever worked in an office, especially a sales office, would instantly recognize as real life snippets slightly disguised. At one point or another, we’ve all had a boss or known of a boss as quirkly lovable as Michael Scott.
And what The Office did for — or is that to? — HR, but cast it as the stereotype of itself. Toby, the mild-mannered, accidental HR representative of corporate in the Scranton branch office, will forever be who every viewer of working age will picture when HR comes a’calling. (Unless they think of Catbert, who inhabits the opposite end of the HR spectrum.) keep reading…
Who is the best recruiter in the world? Would you believe it’s Joshua Brady, a 26-year-old Virginia man, who lives with his mom, grandmother, and young brother, and used to play a whole lot of EverQuest until he got caught stealing virtual money.
No way, you say. Yeah, well, before you shoot that down, hear this. Brady, posing as a CIA operative, recruited not one but two ordinary, otherwise law-abiding folks to rob banks.
Brady, or Theo as he identified himself, never met the two 20-somethings. All his recruiting was done over the phone, yet he managed to get the man and woman to rob, or attempt to rob, several banks, even convincing friends and relatives of the two that this was indeed all in the interests of national security.
They all got caught, though it looks like everyone except Brady is getting off, and he’ll probably only get probation.
Granted, the robberies were all botched. But you know how hard it is to find skilled talent these days. Read the entire, amazing story here on Businessweek. keep reading…
Are you sure you want to reject that former CFO who applied for an accounting manager job because she’s “overqualified” for the job?
In Massachusetts, a McDonald’s franchise advertised for full-time cashiers who “smile while serving lots of guests daily” and have at least a year of experience. And, oh yes, a B.A is required. keep reading…
The way Chris Holmes quit his border security job must have made Gordon Ramsay proud.
It wasn’t a bad-boy, burn-the-bridge resignation that has garnered all the attention for the 31-year-old new father whose friends and co-workers call him Mr. Cake (for reasons that will become obvious in a moment). That might have been more the Ramsay style.
I’m not talking some automated software process like an ATS ranking algorithm. I’m talking a Robot & Frank, R2D2 cute kind of robot the Aussies have built that conducts interviews and assesses what the candidates say and their emotional response to the questions.
Sophie the robot, and her pals, Charles, Matilda, Betty, and Jack, are a joint project between La Trobe University Business School in Melbourne and Japan’s NEC Corporation, involves students and faculty from management, health sciences, sociology, psychology, and education. keep reading…
Of all the occupations in the United States, which has so few practitioners that if you got them all together — a possibility since there are only 310 of them — they’d comfortably fit in a middle-school auditorium? (Maybe not in those eighth grader-sized seats, but they could all be accommodated.)
Need a hint? They comprise one of the nine specialties recognized by the American Dental Association, specializing in the restoration of natural teeth or replacing missing teeth or oral structures with artificial devices, such as dentures. These would be prosthodontists.
Maybe it’s the season, Passover, Easter, the Spring equinox. You know that whole rebirth, cycle of life thing. Whatever it is, something got BusinessInsider into taking the lipstick off the pig and showing the warts of life on Wall Street.
I was on a road trip last week that took me to Tulsa which, it turned out, is a pretty cool city. When my itinerary changed, I needed to make some new hotel reservations. One hotel group kept insisting I had to download an app before I could find out if there was even an available room. Another wasn’t even close to being mobile friendly.
Those two groups got none of my business, small though it was. The one with the easy-to-use, click-and-confirmed, mobile-booking method got all my business.
That little “for example” came to mind when I caught this cool video on the Johnston Search blog. As Brian Johnston, the firm’s owner and blogger, said in posting it, “After you watch it, I can only imagine how you think about how technology (or lack thereof) will affect your recruiting desk.” keep reading…
You want to talk office culture? Having fun at work?
Go ahead and try to sell that system admin you’re courting with the foosball game in the lunchroom, and free pizza Fridays. Really?
Over yonder there in San Antonio, where salsa is almost religion and Rackspace is headquartered, they take their fun seriously. (Add that oxymoron to your list.) The Rackspace folks, who inhabit an abandoned shopping mall so big it’s huge (this is Texas after all), have posted a Google Street View of their workplace. It’s almost 28 acres, making it bigger than some neighborhoods.
Still selling that foosball thing? Well, grit your teeth, because one of the coolest features of what might be the world’s coolest workplace (not counting the ISS) is the slide between the first and second stories of the place. Which, of course, all but demands slide contests. Which, of course, Rackspace happily accommodated. Strike that. Sub in “encouraged” and made part of the whole branding thing. keep reading…
As a kid, I had a farm job. Among the tasks was cleaning out stalls and spreading manure. One of the less experienced, but know-it-alls among the summer help jumped on the tractor after I hooked it up, but not before I disengaged the spreader. The rest of us just stood there watching as he went down the driveway, spreading manure on the road, splattering the barns and everything else, enroute to where he was supposed to spread the load.
That’s the idea behind a website called You Had One Job; spreading workplace detritus around the world. In pictures — lots of them — it tells the story of workplace errors great and small. From the “oops” kind to the “what are you, an idiot” kind. If only I had a video of that manure spreader.
After salary, CareerBuilder says a flexible schedule matters most to employees. A casual dress code, academic reimbursement, catered lunches, even a nap room are all nice perks, CareerBuilder found when it surveyed thousands of workers and hiring managers. But it was flexibility that consistently came out on top.
“What determines job satisfaction is not a one-size-fits-all, but flexibility, recognition, the ability to make a difference and yes, even special perks, can go a long way,” said Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human resources at CareerBuilder.
Bob is the kind of guy people don’t look at twice. He’s described as a family man, quiet, and inoffensive. For years he got stellar performance reviews, describing him as “the best developer in the building.”
But Bob had a secret. Years ago he had outsourced his job to China. Instead of slaving away writing software code, Bob spent his day surfing the Internet. Investigators discovered what Bob was doing only because his Chinese contractors regularly logged into the company’s network. When they dug through his work computer, they discovered “hundreds of .pdf invoices from a third party contractor/developer in (you guessed it) Shenyang, China.”
As they dug deeper, the investigators reconstructed a typical Bob day: keep reading…
“A penguin walks through that door right now wearing a sombrero,” your interviewer says, then asks, “What does he say and why is he here?”
If you answered, “Where’s the sunscreen?” congratulations and welcome to the Clark Construction Group family. The candidate who came up with that got the job.
And congratulations to Clark Construction, a 3,900-employee, $4 billion company with just a quirky enough interview process to make Glassdoor’s annual list of the Top 25 Oddball Interview Questions. It’s a list distinguished by questions that range from the almost ordinary — “How would you rate your memory?” asked of a candidate for a front desk job with Marriott — to the absolutely impenetrably bizarre — “What kitchen utensil would you be?” asked at Bandwidth.com, a connectivity and network company that has absolutely nothing to do with kitchenware. keep reading…
Having fun at work today? Leaving voice mail for every call you make? I mean, really, is there a hiring manager who actually wants to hear from you?
So take a time out and enjoy today’s roundup, which, I promise, is low cal, purely intended as entertainment, and has no particular message (unless you happen to recruit lawyers, in which case, I’m so sorry for you).
Some Recruiter I Used to Know
From the land next to the Land Down Under, comes proof that like love, the recruiter/candidate relationship is universal. (It also suggests there are too few lawyers in New Zealand, which, you would think, would be a good thing.)
The ultimate hiring freeze is scheduled for 3:11 Los Angeles time today. That’s one minute before the winter solstice, the time when the Mayan calendar — and the world, some say — comes to an end.
Now if the world does end — and you bet I’m milking this one — then what’s the hurt in making the final hours of all those job seekers happy. So email all your applicants with job offers; accept all counteroffers; and, what the heck, tell everyone in the company the new retention program means everyone’s getting a raise.
If Tom Savage’s new company 3Desk doesn’t turn out the way his mom thinks it will, here’s a hearty ERE invite to hop the pond for an open mic shot at standup. (Check the schedules here, Tom, and call ahead.) keep reading…
Guessing game time: What’s the #1 failure for the year in the recruiting world?
Oh, so many choices for the top (or should that be the bottom?) spot. The irreverent Jason Buss offers his list of seven “Recruiting Fails for 2012,” which includes those shiny new objects, Pinterest (for recruiting? Oh, come on. Did you really believe you could use it to source anything but recipes, cutsey animal pictures, and home decorating ideas?) and BranchOut.
One (that would be us) could quibble over the inclusion of mobile recruiting, and the exclusion of Monster and its slow-motion implosion. And argue about whether the Facebook job board disaster is really worthy of the #1 spot. But you (that’s you, and us, too) have to give Jason credit for the absolute best recruiting quote of the year. Commenting on the Facebook job board, Jason credits this to an anonymous recruiting leader:
The 5 organizations behind one of the biggest recruiting fails in the past 5 years should be spanked, and spanked hard.
It’s that time of year in offices all across America where Secret Santas are making their furtive appearance, and the HR department is planning the office party.
(Yes, of course, you can sit at the big table. Now, how about the Secret Santa?)
This is what stress is like in HR: First open enrollment, and then the end-of-year holidays that can land a visit from the EEOC or a process server or — JACKPOT — both. Just think of what your colleagues in compliance are doing: keep reading…