Web 2.0, looking beyond the fancy name…

Wikipedia defines Web 2.0 as a living term describing changing trends in the use of World Wide Web technology and web design that aims to enhance creativity, information sharing, collaboration and functionality of the web.”  Sounds great, but what does it mean and more importantly, what does Web 2.0 mean for staffing and recruiting? 


I think Web 2.0 has less to do with technology, and more to do with the way it affects business models.  The following is a simple example of how Web 2.0 is beginning to affect change your recruitment advertising business model:

Web 1.0 – We post our jobs on Monster and CareerBuilder (and sometimes in the print media) and we wait and we hope that candidates will see those postings and apply to our jobs.  While this was a revolutionary change in recruiting, the business model really isn’t different from the print advertising model, is it?  We simply moved some of our print media recruiting dollars into the electronic media.  I’m not going to argue that the electronic job boards don’t make job posting/searching easier, faster, more efficient for candidates and recruiters.  What I’m saying is that it isn’t really a change in the business model… you still pay for your adverting to get candidates to apply for your jobs using the shotgun approach.

Web 2.0 – So picture this… You post a job for a Senior Account… and yes, you probably still post the job to Monster and CareerBuilder (and maybe your local newspaper) but look what else happens:

  • Your applicant tracking system scans your internal database as well as a number of external sites and finds appropriate matches for the position.
  • Your applicant tracking system immediately notifies your job seeker community (those people who have expressed an interest in working for you) about your new posting.
  • Passive job seekers receive notification on their Yahoo/Google desktops via an RSS feed.
  • Your employees “share” this opening with their network of MySpace and Facebook contacts.
  • Candidates find your job posting using targeted searches on Google and Yahoo.
  • Your job is distributed throughout the “LinkedIn” network as employees and candidates share this opening with their contacts.  

I would submit that what Web 2.0 means to the staffing and recruiting industry is that we’re making the World Wide Web smaller… we’re making it more relevant to those people who our interested in what we’re doing!  Web 2.0 is changing the recruitment advertising model from a “shotgun” approach to a “targeted” approach.


In my example, we’re still using much of the same technology… we’re just using it differently… we’re changing the model.  Web 2.0 is not a “software upgrade” or a major shift in technology.  It is using our existing tools and technology in creative ways to affect change in our business model. 


I can’t close this article without providing you a subtle commercial for myStaffingPro… so here it is…  We’ve tried to incorporate “Web 2.0 thinking” into the myStaffingPro Applicant Tracking System wherever possible.  Our recent release of a new set of free Web 2.0 tools is focused on making you more targeted and relevant to your pool of job seekers.

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