The landscape of technology is changing right before our eyes (and actually ON our eyes – Google Glass anyone?) and is subsequently changing the landscape of workplaces and recruiting. With each new technology that makes a significant impact on our lives, the expectations from employers, employees, recruiters and job seekers change and grow. Of course, technological advances are fluid and happening all around us, but every once in a while there is a technology that makes a splash and changes the way we think.
For me, Google Glass is one of those things. I recently started beta testing the product and I feel as if I’m seeing the future of how we utilize will utilize technology and what types of expectations people will have when we all have the power to access Google search and find answers to any questions we could think of by just a few taps of the finger on the device or by speaking a couple of words. It’s more than just wearable technology. It’s about the performance of now. Video is streamed, pictures are taken and the answers to the questions we seek are available immediately. It’s a powerful thing to have any information you could need available at a moment’s notice and it will impact how human resource pros operate.
The Performance of Now
The time that we live in has conditioned us to not need to exercise patience in very many situations and Google Glass is at the forefront of the Performance of Now movement. Though Google Glass is certainly on the cusp of becoming a mainstream technology providing instant gratification, one of my favorite books, Age of Context, by Robert Scoble and Shel Israel really paints an image of how all the technology we are surrounded with promotes Performance of Now. All these technologies will continue to develop and advance, placing even more pressure on people to provide the same instant results that technology can.
This instant access means that job seekers will expect results from their prospective employers in the same fashion they receive it from their technology. As they research the organization, ask questions to the recruiting teams and participate in the formal hiring process for their target companies, a two to three day communication turnaround will seem like a lifetime and companies that don’t have information and answers readily available will miss out on candidates.
Question is are we ready to give candidates the resources and information about our company, industry or culture to those questions they seek, or do we rely on a competitor or news outlet to distribute and tell stories about us as an employer of choice or company? More importantly, does the performance and information in the now only stop once we’ve onboarded that new employee?
Providing candidates with what they’re looking for
For employers, instant answers will sometimes be available but that will not always be the case. We must anticipate those questions to provide information our employees, bosses, peers and candidates will be asking. So how do employers and recruiters keep up with the desire for instant communication? Employers, recruiters, managers and leaders must be asking the right questions and rewarding those that ask questions without holding back.
This starts with focus groups, employee surveys and meetings that really get to the heart of what’s important to the job seeker, your team and employee before you create a strategy or evaluate a plan. Do this before writing a word, sending a tweet or shooting a single frame of video. The best way to provide candidates a full experience, which is supplemented by social media and other outward facing channels is by asking the right questions to build a strategy in which to create resources through digital storytelling, content creation and information to those questions they seek. A customized environment that is unique to the organization and hosted online will create a centralized gathering place that candidates can visit and get their questions answered through one of many channels. Just like the user group for Google Glass, companies must provide a unique environment customized to their ideal job seeker and employee.
Jessica Miller-Merrell, SPHR is a workplace and technology strategist specializing in social media. She’s an author who writes at Blogging4Jobs. You can follow her on Twitter @blogging4jobs.