« October 2016 | Main | December 2016 »

November 2016

Reserve 10% of Your Recruitment Marketing Spend in 2017 for Experimentation...

I had the opportunity to contribute to a project called the 2017 Recruitment Marketing Idea Book, sponsored and put together by Smashfly.

My entry into the mix covered the need to experiment with your recruitment marketing spend every year.  Most of us get into ruts where we rely on a single job board, Indeed, or similar service.  When you do that and aren't constantly thinking about what's next, you end up being late to emerging trends that result in better recruiting results.  People were late to Indeed, and now they're likely late to something else.

Whatever your budget is, use 10% to experiment with new sources of candidate flow.  See my full excerpt from this project below (email subscribers enable images or click through), and get the whole workbook full of ideas by clicking here.

Smashfly clip


What I've Learned About Perceptions of OT-Eligible Jobs In Periods of FLSA Change...

By now, most of you have heard that a federal judge issued an injunction to the FLSA laws that were going to cause most of our companies to do one of two things to a select group of employees - either increase salaries to continue to make lower level professionals eligible as exempt employees or move those employees to hourly status, making them OT eligible. FLSA

The injunction means you aren't required at this time to make the changes covered by that executive order. Of course, many of you have prepared and also communicated the changes, as Jon Hyman of Workforce.com outlines below:

Let’s say you’ve been a diligent employer and have done everything to prepare for Dec. 1. You’ve reviewed the exemption status of all of your employees. You’ve determined the group of currently exempt employees earning less than $913 per week. And, for those employees, you’ve determined which to keep at the same salary level (to be converted to salary non-exempt come Dec. 1), which to convert to hourly non-exempt (including determining the proper hourly wage), and which to keep exempt by grossing up their salaries to the $913 level. You might have even implemented a fluctuating work week for your new class of salaried exempt employees to try to control overtime costs. And, because this ruling came so late, you’ve almost certainly communicated these changes to your employees.

If you were waiting until the last possible moment to communicate the changes, you're good - you can wait and see what happens. If you have already communicated, it's more complicated.

But there's a silver lining to not making the changes or to rolling those changes back for now, even if you you have already communicated the changes.

That silver lining is this - there's a significant portion of the American employee base that was going to be moved from Salaried to Non-Exempt (hourly) that didn't want anything to do with the change.

The group that feels this way is pretty easy to spot.  Most of the time, they are the portion of your workforce that doesn't hold college degrees and started with you in an hourly role, paid their dues and then got the feeling they had arrived professionally by being promoted in to a salaried spot.  In most companies, those early exempt positions start in the 30k's and go up from there.

That group put in the work and got promoted.  Some of them worked more than 40 hours a week in those roles. Some did not. But in this segment of your employee population, not having to count hours, punch a timecard and do anything else associated with an hourly role was viewed as a great thing.

This is the group of employees that feels like they're being demoted by the change to hourly if they were impacted by the current FLSA change.  Doesn't matter if they're OT eligible. They don't want the classification change.  

Many employees view a forced move from salaried to hourly per the FLSA changes as a positive.  But a significant portion of employees view that change as a demotion, even if they have a chance to earn more. This group of employees view the salaried designation as having arrived.

Don't forget this group of employees as you figure out what to do with the now stalled FLSA changes.

Should the Work Tools We Use (Like LinkedIn) Be Clean of Politics?

There I was. Just working a little bit on a Saturday over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. Family is in bed. I'm up, no harm, no foul.

I click over to LinkedIn for some research. LinkedIn's a work tool, after all, right?  And there she was..

Oh - good morning Mrs. Clinton. What's that? Donald Trump should come down out of his tower and speak to the American people?

Wait - aren't you supposed to be mixing up stuff like this over on Facebook?  Why LinkedIn?  And didn't you concede and we hadn't heard much more?

Notification to my smart phone hits at that exact time - Clinton team agrees to participate in Wisconsin recount.

Ahhhhhhhh. OK

Here's your screen grab. (email subscribers enable images or click through for photo)

Hillary LinkedIn

Most of us got all the divisiveness we needed from the election from our Facebook feeds.  While I know LinkedIn considers itself a news aggregator (if not provider, which is entertaining and scary all at the same time) and that Donald Trump has similar accounts - is it too much to ask that we keep direct fire stoking from any candidate off the LinkedIn Feed?  If people want to share news, fine - but the whole direct rev up the base post election?  Ugh.  

What's next? Candidate accounts on Slack? Maybe there's a play to enable a news/contributor feed within Outlook?

I'd feel the same way if it was Trump or any other candidate.  I've grown to accept it during the election cycle.  

The equivalent of crack cocaine for LinkedIn isn't the post itself - it's the 15,000 comments, which I'm sure include enough two-way bashing to last anyone a lifetime.

LinkedIn, you're better than this.  Cut the candidates - all of them - off post election.  Nobody needs it on a work tool.  It makes me want to use you less, or figure out a way to disable the "influencer" feed.

Wishful thinking, I'm sure.  


CAPITALIST PODCAST: The Top 5 Recruiters in the Sports World...

Great college & pro sports coaches have more in common than just expensive suits—they've all got the same recruiting chops. And those recruiting chops are the same ones that your best recruiters have.

So who are the best of the best when it comes to recruiting for sports? And what exactly makes them the best? During this brand new episode of Talent Sniper Radio (The Kinetix Podcast), I'm joined by Kinetix Recruiting Director David Bach and we take a deep dive into the top 5 recruiters of the sports world (plus some honorable mentions) and why they stand out as the best.

From Nick Saban's process to Coach Calipari's brand, get your monthly dose of recruiting tips on Talent Sniper Radio—made for recruiters, by recruiters.  We even weave into the conversation whether each coach would make a good recruiter as part of our team.

(email subscribers, enable images or click through if you don't see the easy to use podcast player below)

Could Giving Your Employees WeWork Memberships Help Your Recruiting Efforts?

All of us have recruiting challenges, often times centered around technology.  

At the same time, our employees can long for a bit more freedom - to work remotely, or even just to break the monotony of the day to day grind.. We-work-transbay-2

Of course, the employees we should seek to satisfy related to that need for freedom are often of the same ilk as the ones we have the biggest need to recruit.

What if I told you there might be a way for you to satisfy both those needs at the same time?

Microsoft is making a co-working play that looks to meet a bunch of needs at the same time:

  1. Giving remote workers a place to go from time to time.
  2. Giving office workers a place to go to mix it up.
  3. Allowing both those groups access to a potentially strong sales and recruiting source.

Stay with me. Here's more from Inc.com:

"Microsoft is dipping a toe into the coworking world by giving nearly 30% of its New York employees WeWork memberships.

The company plans to take 300 WeWork memberships -; WeWork's basic, flexible membership plan -; in two WeWork spaces in New York. Those 300 employees make up 70% of Microsoft's global marketing and sales teams in New York.

The company also has 40 employees working in a private office in an Atlanta WeWork, and will have employees working out of WeWorks in Philadelphia and Portland as well.

But the move to coworking spaces represents something of a shift for Microsoft, which has lately been redoubling its outreach to startups and developers. Donovan said Microsoft employees will now have more flexibility and mobility but will also bring them closer to the startups working out of WeWorks.

"We’re a big fan of startups," Donovan said. "We were one ourselves at the beginning, so we know what those early days were like. We’ve been lucky enough to scale as a business and become a large enterprise, but certainly Satya [Nadella] is ensuring that we retain that growth mindset and that early hunger that we had as a business."

The partnership with Microsoft also falls in line with some changes afoot at WeWorks nationwide. The company said it's seen an uptick in enterprise clients -; which it defines as large companies with more than 500 employees -; moving some of their employees to WeWork locations. The startup, which was last valued at $16.9 billion, has been "fleshing out" its offerings for bigger companies."

For the uninitiated, WeWork is an American company which provides shared workspace, community, and services for entrepreneurs, freelancers, startups and small businesses. WeWork designs and builds physical and virtual communities in which entrepreneurs share space and office services and have the opportunity to work together.

It's an interesting stroke by Microsoft - give employees more flexibility, remote workers a place to go, salespeople a new audience to sell from, and a place for all to recruit from.  From a corporate perspective, it reduces the need for a long term commitment to office space by outsourcing that burden.

Don't forget- sales and recruiting don't have to be direct, meaning your prospects don't have to be at WeWork - referrals from the people you meet at a co-working facility work just fine as well.

Exploring co-working seems like a smart hedge by Microsoft.  I'm betting some of you are in major markets where coworking is a thing. If so, you'd likely be early to the game from a recruiting perspective if you experimented with getting some of your key employees co-working at least one week a month.

What's that?  Scared your people might get recruited? 

They already are -I talked to them last week.  They took the interview from a cube IN YOUR OFFICE.


The Decline of Social Snooping On Candidates and the Rise of the High School LinkedIn Profile...

At one point, my advice for HR pros who were wondering about the ethics and legal exposure of digging around on candidate's social profiles was simple.

"Just ask what your CEO wants you to do in order to have the best line of sight on a candidate.  She probably expects you to do everything possible to fully vet and get the best candidate possible."

Translation: Don't be lazy, and don't be weak.  Social snooping is a reasonable background activity, and anyone who tells you otherwise probably isn't as connected to business results as they need to be.

So, that used to be my advice, and I guess it still is, but my approach has softened a bit for a very specific reason.  The-who-the-kids-are-alright

Candidates are more aware than ever of the risks their social accounts provide, and the younger the candidate, the less likely he/she is going to have accounts that are open to the public.

Two words: Instagram and Snapchat.

Facebook, in case you were wondering, is for the olds.  Not only are candidates more cautious than ever, but the younger candidates aren't active on Facebook nearly as much, which was the platform that created the most risk.

They are on Instagram and Snapchat, and they're increasingly protecting their accounts to the fullest extent possible.  That means you might be able to find them, but once you land at the account, it's protected. You have to request to be their friend/contact/hombre to see what they're posting.

I think social snooping has become less important for this reason.

In addition, the youngest of users are attempting to play our need to social snoop by giving us accounts that put them in the best light possible, which is smart if they have college admission or work-related goals.  LinkedIn is seeing a surge in profiles among High School students wishing to indulge admission office's need to snoop.  More from the New York Times:

"Applying for admission to many American colleges already has high school students jumping through hoops.

School transcript? Check. Recommendations? Check. Personal statement? Standardized test scores? List of accomplishments? Check. Check. Check.

Now some social media experts are advising high school seniors to go even further. They are coaching students to take control of their online personas — by creating elaborate profiles on LinkedIn, the professional network, and bringing them to the attention of college admissions officers.

“They are going to click on your profile,” says Alan Katzman, the chief executive of Social Assurity, a company that offers courses for high school students on how to shape their online images.

Last year, for instance, Mr. Katzman’s company advised a high school senior in the Washington area to create a detailed LinkedIn profile and include a link on his application to Harvard. (His mother asked that the student’s name be withheld for privacy reasons.) Soon after, LinkedIn notified the student that someone from Harvard had checked out his profile."

What's that? You're worried about the digital divide and how this plays to the have and have-nots?  Good instincts, grasshopper:

“Kids from privileged families tend to do more of those things both offline and online — joining school clubs, writing for their school newspaper, getting tutoring so their grades go up, doing SAT preparation,” says Vicky Rideout, a researcher who studies how teenagers use technology. Using LinkedIn on college applications, she says, “is yet another way for there to be a disparity between the haves and the have-nots.”

For high school students, LinkedIn is partly a defense mechanism against college admissions officers who snoop on applicants’ public Facebook and Twitter activities — without disclosing how that may affect an applicant’s chance of acceptance.

A recent study from Kaplan Test Prep of about 400 college admissions officers reported that 40 percent said they had visited applicants’ social media pages, a fourfold increase since 2008."

Social snooping feels dead to me. It was only a matter of time before high school students started playing admission offices as well as employers by giving the people what they want.

The kids, as it turns out, are alright

Dear Netflix: Did I Miss a Memo About EMPLOYMENT CONTRACTS? (caps intended)

I wish I had a easy way to play audio when you opened posts, because if I did, you'd get the "liberal media' sound bite with this post.

"Liberal Media."  Probably more the point, "Liberal People on Social Media."

The topic of this one is pretty simple. There's a difference between non-compete clauses for at-will Netflix-fox-logos-780x439 employees and non-competes that are provisions in full-fledged Employment Contracts.  People don't seem to get that, especially when they're waxing poetic on social media.

Here's the set up from Fortune:

"A nasty spat between 21st Century Fox and Netflix over employee poaching took a new twist on Wednesday, as the streaming giant filed a counter-lawsuit that accuses the studio of using illegal non-compete clauses and creating “involuntary servitude” among workers.

The allegations, filed in Los Angeles state court, come one month after Fox sued Netflix for poaching two of its program development executives.

According to Netflix, the studio violates California law by using clauses in its employment contract that bar them from working for competitors, and by reserving the right to extend these contracts indefinitely.

A spokesperson for Fox challenged the Netflix claims and claimed the contracts are legal.

“As Netflix expressly acknowledges, California law fully recognizes that fixed-term employment agreements are valid and enforceable,” said the spokesperson in an email statement. “These employment contracts are sought by many employees in the media industry because they guarantee tangible benefits. We look forward to vindicating our rights in Court.”

That's a pretty factual account.  Fox sued Netflix for poaching it's execs and Netflix went on the offensive and started talking about illegal non-compete clauses and creating “involuntary servitude” among workers.  The story got shared, with a lot of the folks in my social networks waxing poetic about how non-compete clauses are bad and Fox was wrong.

I mean, damn...

They're either ignoring or missed the fact that these executives aren't like normal people who signed non-competes and remained at-will employees. The executives in question from Fox had full employment contracts, which guaranteed them compensation for long periods of time if Fox decided to let them go.

This is why we can't have nice things. People take liberal and conservative stances without reading the articles that are shared via social.  If you saw non-complete and ranted without understanding there was an employment contract involved and now get it, that's cool.  We're good.  If you're still of the opinion that non-competes are invalid even when employment contracts holding huge payouts for separations are involved..  well, I don't even know what to do with you.

Netflix poached the execs. They read the employment contracts and thought they could beat them in California. Of special interest is the reference they make to Fox "reserving the right to extend those contracts indefinitely", which sounds like an evergreen feature that would allow a judge to void the employment contract based on the fact there wasn't a fixed term.

Those are technical details, and if Fox overreached with that, the employment contract might get overturned.  

But if you think non-completes as part of employment contracts with payouts for termination aren't valid...I don't even know who you are anymore...

THE 5 BIGGEST LIES IN HR: Election Edition...

I'm up today to speak at the Birmingham Society for Human Resource Management (BSHRM) - topic is The 5 Biggest Lies In HR.  Going to have some fun and bust some myths about the lies we tell and how moving to the brutal truth can help reinvigorate your HR career.

Included in the warm-up portion of the deck is the following two workplace lies with a Trump/Hillary theme.  See those slides below (email subscribers click through for images if you can't see them).




Too soon?  As I said earlier this week, the s**tshow of this election can't stop America.  

Remembering Lincoln Via "Team of Rivals" on This Election Day...

Election Day 2016.  I offer up those quotes from Team of Rivals, Doris Kearns Goodwin's unbelievably good book on Abraham Lincoln.  I suspect they have more to do with how we'll need to come together as citizens than the potential of either candidate to lead in the way that Lincoln did:

“This, then, is a story of Lincoln’s political genius revealed through his extraordinary array of personal qualities that enabled him to form friendships with men who had previously Team of rivalsopposed him; to repair injured feelings that, left untended, might have escalated into permanent hostility; to assume responsibility for the failures of subordinates; to share credit with ease; and to learn from mistakes. He possessed an acute understanding of the sources of power inherent in the presidency, an unparalleled ability to keep his governing coalition intact, a tough-minded appreciation of the need to protect his presidential prerogatives, and a masterful sense of timing. His success in dealing with the strong egos of the men in his cabinet suggests that in the hands of a truly great politician the qualities we generally associate with decency and morality—kindness, sensitivity, compassion, honesty, and empathy—can also be impressive political resources.”

“When resentment and contention threatened to destroy his administration, he refused to be provoked by petty grievances, to submit to jealousy, or to brood over perceived slights. Through the appalling pressures he faced day after day, he retained an unflagging faith in his country’s cause.”

“No man is good enough to govern another man, without that other’s consent.”

Our country has a long history of emerging from dark moments.  From the ashes of many dumpster fires in America have emerged our greatest leaders. I expect greatness to emerge from these times.

I'm jaded, cynical and quick to cut someone off at the knees in this space, but if America is a stock - I'm buying more and doubling down.

How to Develop Training For Recruiters with Tim Sackett...

Most companies have a Talent Acquisition function. Guess what they don’t have? Effective training for recruiters. 

I jumped on a Google hangout with the good folks at Meridian Knowledge Solutions and Tim Sackett to talk about best practices in developing training for recruiters. Tim's got great experience at this and among the things we talked about were the following:

—How your training strategy depends on what type of recruiter you’re hiring and the specialization of your recruiting function.

—The most important components of a training platform for recruiters

—How to link training to ongoing coaching and performance management efforts

—Why the right training approach can be viewed as an investment in career development by your recruiters

 Check out the video below for more (email subscribers click through for video!)...