Web 2.0 - Social media Organizational tips

Web 2.0 organizing your hiring resources –Original publication 2008, update 2009

Are you unemployed and looking for a position on every job board and social network under the sun?
Are you a company looking to brand and market your goods or services in online media?
Do you have so many resumes coming in that you don't know how or where they came from?
Are you seeking some talent for a niche job, and can't seem to get a pool of qualified candidates?
Are you on Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, and My Space all the time, but don't seem to get the nuggets and gems you truly need?

Well maybe it’s your Web 2.0 strategy, or lack of it. Information and Resource overload is a common problem in today’s world of email, twitter, and blackberry euphoria. I have a list of tips that have assisted me in my navigation that many of you have asked me to share. You can get the specifics of each resource from the horse’s mouth...I.e., Google has their tips for searching, LinkedIn has podcasts (recruiters listen for me on Bill Vicks podcast), etc...

However, if you are like me--and want it boiled down this might help:

1) Align your vision, values, and mission with your web plan. In short: What is the purpose of using Web 2.0 technology? and what are the preferences you have established to be viewed with or for?

Companies: Do you have values that you want reflected in everything your marketing dept. sales, or recruitment says online, or in distributed format? Do you want one story told or several?
Personal: Are you an individual or family? Do you want to be viewed by all, or just a small group? What do you want...are you the type of person whom wants to see everything in one place? Do you use the Web for communication only? Do you want to stick with an industry or a company or a product you have used in the past? Do you want to mix business with pleasure or keep it separate?

2) Plan, Budget and Purpose:

  • People: Are the people who need to be involved involved? If yes, then Plan what the goals are, and what resources really are preferred. Do you need to update or notify others?
  • Budget of time, money and resources: What are you willing to spend, what have you already invested in, and what resources will take time?
  • Process: Do you have people along the way to test the data, do the links work, and will the process catch failures? Have you planned for success in numbers; if volume of information comes in, have you planned for response, or filters? Does the flow of technology align to the use and the customer?
  • Make sure the plan includes templates to disseminate information, and performance metrics that you can track to re-assess the plan in the future.
  • Milestones and timelines should be set with metrics aligned i.e., the web analytics will track the hits to those jobs by resources and feed in monthly. Metrics will track and be available by week-end.

People and Audience should be included:
Company: Is this important to IT, Marketing, Recruitment, Engineering, Customer feedback, Academia?
Business: Is this being used for freelance or contractual agreements? Some software licenses prevent business use, for applications, or groups formed with Web 2.0. Do you have all parties involved, accountant, lawyer...? Don't forget your customer or potential customer--can they find you?
Personal: Is this for yourself proclamation, entertainment, career? Are there parties that if you link to them it will expose private information or risk the wellbeing of data, or person?
Children: Plan for accessibility and controls.

3) Research and Investigate. Research different mediums, products and avenues of Web 2.0. Your goal is to learn the definition of the source, and understand how you can use them, and if they align to your mission and values. Also if there are products you need--i.e.) speakers or a microphone to use non-paying services. Is there already someone in your team, or company currently a member or using a resource? Can they filter data, or do you need to link directly? What are your options and what is the success rate.

4) Record Keep: Gather up hardcopy files of agreements with companies, or search engines. i.e., you pay for Monster and have a contract, or you are a member of an organization that shares its member list with Monster--make sure you know your agreements. Can you copy information, can you email it? If you have the information in hardcopy, keep it, but also scan it in so you can organize it in one folder, or location. i.e., If you post on Monster.com, make sure you know the title of what you posted, and the information released. REMEMBER Once you post electronically, it can be uncovered for much longer and is exposed to many more people than your lonely file cabinet. Make sure you understand the documents, agreements, and resources security and policies.

5) Contact and Track: Know the owner of your websites, administrative options internally, and externally know the addresses, posts, locations of all the information that may link, or gain access to the information i.e.) you have an association of marketing personnel--who is the contact, address, etc. Track the websites, or feeds in one location.

6) Organize: Look over your plan, and organize accordingly. Are you someone who checks email every day? Can you create templates and send them to multiple places with one link? Create filters, folders, and links that automate it for you. Plan to set aside hours in a week to re-organize as you share information. If it involves a Team, plan organizational meetings once weekly.

7) Assess, Trial, Test and User Groups:
Assess all the technologies regularly, reassess occasionally, and track the metrics, performance, and optimization weekly. Ask if there are demos of new products, and releases. Regroup with all levels of people involved and check that your Web 2.0 is still aligned and delivering to Plan.

8) Listen to your Pain. If something isn't working or is costing pain of resources, then re-think its use. Use what you use and get rid of what is not working. So many companies keep writing programs to amend a bad choice. However, the opportunity costs, and administration costs can be greater if tracked, then scraping a plan in its early trials. Work with your vendors or resources, and see what really is working, is it worth revamping? If you aren't using or updating a resource with ease, and regular changes. Then think about deleting it from the plan. If it’s impossible, then try coaching a few specialist within your team--or if it’s just you--then think about scheduling some training or reading time, to see if you can learn a shortcut.

9) People before Product.
It is critical to any web 2.0 plan to make sure the people, resources, and customer are being serviced. You can have a dynamic website, but if no one gets back to customers in a timely fashion from those web postings then nothing will help you regain that customer appreciation. So make sure there are people along the way.

  • Establish Relationships beyond technology; Keep human contact, if your system is automated and your voicemail is automated--make every effort to send a personal note, or call person to person monthly.
  • Allow personal responses to be changed or addresses by administrators or contacts. i.e.) nothing bothers me more than getting a spam email addressed to Cindy at Networks, when my name is Susan. Allow your sales associate the freedom to say thank you...I know you love the Celtics so here is a link to our internal Celtics pride day.
  • Human Responsiveness and Contact: Allow an out for a candidate, or a customer that isn't technology savvy. Think of the environment...if your customer is in India without a laptop, but has a cell phone call them, or allow them to dial 0 and get an operator. If your candidate is on a manufacturing line all day, with no access to a computer, mail them a response card.

10) Keep informed and Current:

Read the information, metrics provided, Understand your customer base, Research new frontiers, and resources , and always know that it’s not what you have its how you use it.

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