I was traveling last week so I'm a little behind - but I finally got a chance today to listen to the Recruiting Animal's radio show (aka live podcast) on the topic of recruiting blogs: Have Recruiting Blogs made it big? I wish I could have listened live and participated - but such is life. It was great to listen to the Animal after reading him for so long. First, it was very cool that he gave a shout out to our very own Liam Goldring. Lil’ Liam is a blogosphere celebrity! ;-)
Anyway, the Animal argues that recruiting blogs have not yet “arrived.” They can be effective, and recruiters and marketers alike are getting some value out of them … but they haven’t caught on like people predicted … especially in the corporate / 1st party space.
A few thoughts … first, I agree with a lot of what the Animal says. My feeling is that blogs are one of many, many, many, many different channels that a corporate recruiting department can use to promote their company’s openings and general employment brand. And in general, I’ve seen very few companies (especially the big guys) who do a good overall job of promoting their company’s openings and employment brand in the first place. Employment marketing, in general, has been slow to evolve.
I also don’t think that corporate recruiters should spend their time writing a blog. I've always said that. They need to be recruiting, not marketing. The person who manages your career site or your ad campaigns or your events should be the person managing your blog. It’s just another channel to get the word out. It’s another channel to assist with your site’s SEO. It’s another channel to connect 1:many with candidates. And it's a way to do all these things very cheapy, very quickly, and very easily as compared to more traditional marketing approaches which require mondo overhead. I don't think it’s not a great channel for sourcing or immediate / short-term results. And if your organization doesn’t have dedicated resources or budget devoted to recruiting marketing (which many don’t), effective blogging probably isn’t going to happen. It’s icing on the cake.
The Animal does use Microsoft’s recruiting dept as an example. He says if recruiting blogging was really that great, Microsoft would have more than two recruiting blogs … Heather’s blog and JobsBlog. So, as you know, I no longer work at MS so I’m not going on inside knowledge here … just past experience and such. First, Heather has said time and again she’s not a recruiting blogger. She’s a recruiter who happens to blog. If she attracts candidates through her blog, cool, but from what I understand that’s not her mission, and her professional success/failure does not hinge on her blog. :) It's more of a hobby and professional passion than job responsibility.
And as for JobsBlog, of which I have first hand knowledge, I know I worked pretty hard to reign in rouge recruiters who wanted their own recruiting blogs. That’s why JobsBlog is a group blog. JobsBlog has google juice and it’s well read … so instead of fragmenting the reader base and increasing the blog management overhead, it was a deliberate decision to gather recruiters interested in blogging in one place. Just wanted to get that on the record. :) That, of course, may change - but it's my opinion that a company like MS is better served by one central recruiting blog, just as it's better served by central career portal. Anything more is just spinning your wheels and replicating work with diminishing results.
Okay, well, it’s about 20 minutes into the radio show, and I’ve got to roll. So if anyone talks about later in the show, do let me know. ;-)