Is Evernote Really Fixing Recruiting Or Just Collaborating in General?

If you read my hiatus post, then you know that I’ve been job hunting for the past several months. Also in that post I mentioned that I believe that the entire recruiting process is broken. From people looking for work to HR managers to hiring managers to job sites themselves—then entire system is just not working efficiently (or quickly).

To be absolutely clear here, I’m not pointing fingers. There isn’t “fault” here. We’re all dealing with the same issues. People want to work. People have skills that are marketable. Companies need people, people with those skills, but connecting the dots just doesn’t seem to be working. Why?

I think it comes down to a few things: visibility (of the job and the person), communication (between job seekers and employers), and clinging to the past (resumes, how work has changed, and what “experience” really means). Each of these parts keeps companies from finding people and people from finding work. I can’t say that I have many answers for any of these problems, but an Evernote case study on how Etsy hires people touches on many of the issues I’ve addressed. Is Evernote or Etsy “fixing” hiring in this article? No, not really, but what is interesting (the “a ha” moment) is how Evernote’s basis for collaboration and information sharing is a step in the right direction.

From the article, Randy Hunt the Creative Director at Etsy realizes that he often finds great hires in non-traditional ways. Instead of losing those leads, he puts them in a shared notebook. When someone is going through the hiring process a shared notebook tracks activity over time (and I’d say using the new Reminders feature would help with “inform candidate of status” or “make offer to our pick” tasks. Randy and Etsy’s use of Evernote highlights that in order to find and hire new talent, employers need to have better ways of tracking and following up with people who they come across. This information is then shared with a team of people (who are free to add their own info into the notebook as well) so nothing is stuck in a black hole of a person’s inbox. Smart first step.

The point here is right from the title. The Evernote case study highlights the problem in recruiting, but doesn’t fix it. The Etsy solution probably won’t work for all companies. What Etsy has done is leverage how Evernote has improved collaboration and information sharing, that’s all. So Evernote isn’t a magic bullet to fix recruiting, but it highlights part of the issue. Now the question is finding ways to fix it.

In case you’re wondering, yes, I’ve noodled around ideas myself and I’m still coming up empty, but I think what Etsy is doing with Evernote might inspire some ideas for real solutions.


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