Is It Really That Scary to Put Yourself Out There?

Jessica Lee Communication, Culture, Jessica Lee, Recruiting

I was at the Jobvite Customer Summit the other week and we closed out the day with a discussion on social recruiting surprises. We shared the good, the bad, the ugly… and surprise number four? That the act of simply being findable goes a long way for employment brand equity. Did ya’ get that? Just the act of putting yourself out there on the social web as a recruiter, the optics of being accessible and visible, it goes to combat the entire resume black hole black eye companies suffer from.

I know – people are scared to stick their necks out there like that. You don’t want to be so accessible to job seekers. Trust me – you’re talking to a gal who has broken up with a dude by email. And once by IM too. I hate conflict as much as the next gal. But here’s my experience with job seekers —

At one point, inspired by The Recruiter Guy, I put my phone number out there on this little blog. Want it again? My direct dial is 202.478.3723. And for job seekers, I invited them to reach out and call if they so felt inclined. The reality? Only a few calls came through. I put my email address out there pretty liberally as well – jlee at apcoworldwide dot com. My phone number and email address is on every email I send out to job seekers. Even generic rejection blasts. My name and contact information is on the careers section of our corporate website. My email address is plastered on my LinkedIn profile and I welcome job seekers to reach out and message me. I’ve made myself “findable” on Facebook, Twitter and more. I have a Google profile page. You can click around here on ye olde blog to connect with me.

And guess what I’ve found over time? The job seekers who you’re so scared to be bombarded by? They aren’t that aggressive. Every day, I receive at least one email from a job seeker saying they found me on LinkedIn and felt inclined to email me because my profile welcomed them to do so. But never more than that. And when I send rejection emails to applicants with my email address and phone number included? They tend to be much more polite and much less intrusive than I would have ever expected. And when you put your information online for people to reach out to you? They will address their cover letter to you, they’ll follow up if they haven’t heard back in a while, they’ll call if they have troubles with your website. Sometimes they will bug you. But only sometimes.

I was reminded of this just yesterday too. I was catching up on closed reqs and I sent out a bunch of thanks for applying but the job has been filled emails to folks who were not granted interviews. And on average, these jobs had 250+ applicants and with five to eight interviewed for each position. 242+ applicants received emails thanking them for their interest for each position – and for each position, I received an average of FOUR email replies saying something to the effect of… thanks for simply letting me know that the job has been filled – that doesn’t always happen as a job seeker. They were thanking me! And for the hundreds of “rejection” emails I sent out yesterday – I only received ONE nasty reply from a job seeker saying, “I wouldn’t want to work for your crap company anyways.” (Why apply in the first place then, buddy?! But I digress…) And then the rest just probably deleted my email and left me alone… Are those numbers surprising to you at all?

So go on – it’s not so scary. Put yourself out there. Every once in a while you might get a nasty email or phone call…  but the messages of gratitude will far outweigh all the others. And the optics of simply being available, and accessible – well, I think it will go a long way for that resume black hole that job seekers so believe the career section of your website is.