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    A reminder that even the world's most admired company has hiring challenges

    Lots of words are spilled in the HR/Talent/Recruiting space that more or less read something like this - 'Oh sure, that (insert HR/Recruiting/Benefits program of choice here), might work for Google or Apple, but there is no way that applies to us, we don't have a sexy, well-known brand.'

    Said differently, it is more or less commonly accepted that companies like Google, Apple, Nike, Goldman Sachs, etc., have incredible advantages in competition for talent by virtue of their brand equity, vast resources, employer brand reputation, and the like. If you are repping one of these companies from Fortune's World's Most Admired Companies list, you would think you pretty much could dial up anyone you need and they would be sold on the opportunity. And that is at least partially, if not mostly true.

    But even the World's Most Admired Company for 2015, Apple, faces the occasional recruiting challenge. Yep, I know, hard to believe.  But apparently in the global fight for scarce data science talent, even Apple has some issues attracting talent. From a recent piece on The Stack titled Apple's privacy policies repel the data scientists it needs to create 'predictive' smart phones:

    Just for once, it seems that Apple ‘can’t get the staff’. According to a Reuters exclusive, the Cupertino-based global device giant is falling behind in the race to create ‘predictive’ services for smartphones because its privacy policies are too protective of the end-user.

    The report has crunched numbers on Apple job openings and talked to various industry insiders, many of whom agree that Apple lacks the best conditions to attract the very limited supply of data scientists necessary to leverage cloud-based services and anticipate the most minute demands of smartphone users.

    The reason for the company’s difficulty in challenging the likes of Google, Facebook and Amazon for the brightest and the best new minds in data science and analysis seems to lie with its commitment to protect the privacy of its users. The report notes that data retention policies on user-centric information gathered into its Siri ‘personal assistant’ product is a reasonably generous six months, whilst information retained from the user’s exploration of Apple Maps expires after only 15 minutes

    So it looks like the world's best talent in the field of data science doesn't like the fact that Apple keeps comparatively less data around upon which to practice their science. Companies like Google and Facebook in comparison, seem to offer these scientists more of a playground for them to challenge themselves with.

    A couple really interesting points I think worth noting in this story, that are probably true for both the World's Most Admired Companies and for your shop as well.

    1. The work, then challenge, and the opportunity to be your personal best in your field still trumps the 'Brand' or the reputation of the company in general. Apple might be the #1 company in the world to work for, but for this group of highly scarce and talented folks it is the work that matters more.

    2. Often the factors that influence a candidate's decision about joining an organization sit well out of reach of the org's HR/Recruiting leadership. No matter how much influence the HR and Talent organization has at Apple, they are never going to impact Apple's customer data storage policies and practices.

    3. For a big company like Apple with lots of resources, acquisition might be the best (and only) way to get the talent that they require. The related Reuters study notes that Apple's 'acquisitions of startups such as podcasting app Swell, social media analytics firm Topsy and personal assistant app Cue have also expanded Apple’s pool of experts in the field.'

    Interesting times out there when even the most well-known, most valuable and most admired companies is facing recruiting issues. I guess that sort of makes the rest of us feel good, maybe a little anyway.

    Have a great Wednesday!


    WEBINAR: Top 10 Ways To Use Glassdoor For Good (Not Evil)

    Some time back I wrote that I thought Glassdoor was one of the most interesting companies in the HR and HR Tech space. I believed that back then, and I think it is probably even more true today. 

    Ask yourself (and be honest) - If you were considering joining a new company is there any possible way you wouldn't check out their Glassdoor ratings, reviews, and interviewing tendencies?

    Of course you would - you would be a fool not to. And that same logic is being applied by I bet 95% of the candidates you are trying to pluck from your competitors too. Like it or not, (and plenty of CEOs probably don't), Glassdoor and other employer reputation sources are now too big, too influential, and too much of a 'given' as a source for candidate research for you as and HR/Recruting pro to not be engaged with them on behalf of your organization.

    But how to get in the Glassdoor game if you are a little late to the party? First step - close that MySpace account. And next? 

    Sign up for the latest installment of the FREE Fistful of Talent webinar on September 17 at 2PM EDT titled Top 10 Ways To Use Glassdoor For Good (Not Evil), where the FOT crew will hat’s why we’re going deep on reputation sites like Glassdoor.

    Topics to be covered on the Webinar include: 

    How the the Yelp-ification of America—the trend towards consumer-based reviews in almost every area of our economy—is changing the way employees and candidates think about job search and employer brands. It’s second nature for your employees to rate a restaurant, a book or a movie online. That means that employees of all types (not just the ones who want to complain) are more willing than ever to participate in your brand through user review

    The 5 Biggest Myths about company reputation sites like Glassdoor and tell you which ones are completely BS and which ones you actually perpetuate by not fully engaging on sites like Glassdoor. We’ll hit the usual suspects here: “The only comments are from the bad employees”  and “The salary data out there isn’t factual,” and tell you why things have changed. More importantly, we’ll cover how you actually may make the myths a reality by not fully engaging on reputation sites.  Think about that last sentence: You’ve got to be in the game to influence the game

    A 10-step playbook on how to engage on reputation sites and become more of a Marketer as an HR/Recruiting Pro.  It’s true—you wouldn’t have read this far if you didn’t want to learn more about how to use reputation sites like Glassdoor to maximize your company and your career. We’ll help you get started.

    The FOT crew always delivers the goods, I highly recommend you get your push to the end of 2015 going strong and check out the Top 10 Ways To Use Glassdoor For Good (Not Evil), on September 17 at 2PM EDT.


    An incomplete list of things that are cool #1 

    New semi-regular series on the blog of things I like, things that are cool, things I think are really interesting but have not gotten around to posting about, and other miscellaneous items hanging out in my Feedly 'Saved for later' queue.

    Submitted in no particular order...

    1. Why are There Still So Many Jobs? The History and Future of Workplace Automation - Long read for the long weekend from the Journal of Economic Perspectives. Worth your time.

    2. Canoe Check pocket squares from The Tie Bar

    3. Nike Gold Rush running shoes for the Fall

    4. Purple, the on-demand gas (like for you car) company. Not incredibly interesting, but it did make me think of what other product categories could benefit from the 'on-demand' treatment. How about an app called 'Beer Run?' Two taps and within 13 minutes a cold 12-pack of Miller Genuine Draft shows up at your door.

    5. Speaking of beer, super post from Grant McCracken titled Cultural Leaders and Laggards, the Problem With Beer Ads. You know you have seen the TV spot that is the subject of the post, but have you really seen it?

    6. Super take on some recent pro-labor court cases from Matt 'akaBruno' Stollak - Why Good #HR Leaders Aren't Worried About The NLRB 'Joint Employer' Decision. Matt is 100% on the money here - employees at companies that are treated respectfully, paid fairly, and have opportunities to learn and grow generally are not rushing to hold quickie union votes.

    7. Pantone Smoothies - perk up your blender game with some of these colorful ideas

    8. The Rise of Work Doping - To what extent are we willing to go to improve our performance?

    Currently, people require psychiatric diagnoses in order to be prescribed any of these pills. But if these medicines are ultimately found to be safe, and they work for almost everyone, should anyone be able to take them?

    And if modafinil does become more widespread, where does it end? Will we soon be locked in a productivity arms race, pumping out late-night memos with one hand while Googling for the latest smart-drug advancement with the other?

    9. American Chess May Finally Emerge From the Shadow of Bobby Fischer - A potential renaissance for American players at the highest levels of international chess

    10. Robots are better at bricklaying than humans. But a human/robot team is the most productive combination of all.

    11. One generation's obsession with Pep. Man, back in the 40s, Pep was a really big deal.

    Have a great long weekend! Go Labor!


    PODCAST - #HRHappyHour 220 - Kathryn Minshew from The Muse

    HR Happy Hour 220 - Kathryn Minshew from The Muse

    Recorded Tuesday September 1, 2015

    Hosts: Steve BoeseTrish McFarlane

    Guest: Kathryn Minshew, Founder and CEO, The Muse


    This week on the HR Happy Hour Show, Steve and Trish welcomed Kathryn Minshew, Founder and CEO of the wildly popular website The Muse to talk about the next generation of workers, and how organizations can best engage with and attract this highly sought-after talent pool.

    Kathryn shared insights on the kinds of resources for career planning and development that these millennial workers are seeking out, the need for more simple and relevant content for early career professionals, and how at The Muse Kathryn and her team have created a large and engaged community of 4 million monthly users to learn more about work, workplaces and employers.

    You can listen to the show on the show page HERE, or using the widget player below:

    Check Out Business Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with Steve Boese Trish McFarlane on BlogTalkRadio


    This was a fun and really interesting conversation with one of the leaders helping to shape the modern workplace and in many ways the new paradigms that organizations will operate within as they strive to describe their unique company culture and their value proposition to the next generation of the workforce.

    We definitely recommend that HR and Talent Acquisition leaders take a look the The Muse to get a look at what many forward-thinking organizations are doing in their efforts to promote their companies and brands and to connect with their next great hire.

    Remember to subscribe to the HR Happy Hour Show on iTunes or your preferred podcast app - just search for 'HR Happy Hour' to add the show to your playlist and never miss an episode.

    Many thanks to Kathryn and everyone at The Muse!


    CHART OF THE DAY: All email, all the time

    So I have a theory about this week, the week leading up to the long Labor Day weekend in the USA, and the unofficial end of summer. After Labor Day the kids are all back to school, vacations have pretty much all been taken, and all of a sudden you realize that there are still 18 big unfinished items on your 'Things I wanted to get done in 2015' list.

    So this week is it, the last 'fun' week more or less, before the end of year holidays kick in. So have fun. And don't expect too much out your humble correspondent this week either. I want to enjoy the end of summer too.

    Full disclosure: I did not want to blog about email AGAIN. Even I am sick of it. And it kind of doesn't matter anyway. But over the weekend I (once again) received at least a dozen or so work-related emails, none that I would classify as urgent, and by the end of Sunday night I couldn't help but have email (again) on the brain. 

    Please stop emailing people on the weekend. Really. I am begging you. 

    Anyway, here is the Chart of the Day, I almost forgot that was the point of the post. According to some recent data spotted on Business Insider it seems like for most folks email is either an obsession, or something you don't care much about at all. 

    Let's take a look at the data, then some FREE comments from me after the chart:

    What to make of this data - where the vast majority of people either are on email all day long or just once or twice a day?

    1. It should be really, really easy to figure out what kind of person (a check all day or a check once a day type) you are dealing with after one of two email exchanges. From the data we see that from the wide divergence in how often people like to deal with email making any kind of assumption about expected email responsiveness is probably a bad idea.

    2. People who check email all day long every day often cannot understand and have little patience for folks who fall on the other end of the spectrum. Think about your own preferences and usage of email. If you are constantly on your email all day long just how frustrated do you get with people who do not share your email obsession/enthusiasm. 

    3. This isn't an email-specific take, and really doesn't have anything at all to do with the chart, but I wanted to share that I finally came to my senses and turned off just about all visible and audible notifications in my phone. The only time my phone now 'pings' me is when I am getting a call or a text. No more email notifications, no more 'someone mentioned you on Twitter' alert, no more 'breaking news' type messages. It is remarkable how much better and I hope healthier I feel about my relationship with my phone.

    Ok, that's it, I am out. It is still summer after all. 

    Have a great week!