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Your Resume on Twitter; On-Boarding Seasonal Employees

December 14, 2011
Related Topics: Strategy and Management

I'm counting down the days until Christmas while checking out some interesting blog fodder across the Web.

With the holidays just around the corner, I find it appropriate to get into some of the techniques and challenges of on-boarding perhaps the most important members of the workforce this time of year: the temporary kind.

But before we get into that, there’s something a co-worker passed along that caught my eye.

Twitter, as we all know, is taking the world by storm. It seems as if nothing trendy can be said nowadays unless you can do it in 140 characters or less and use some brand of unusual Twitter jargon — like the “hashtag.”

With social media continuing to creep into the recruiting space, it seems natural to talk about what some are dubbing a “Twesume” — your resume, on Twitter.

That’s right. Don’t even think about applying for a job unless you can sell yourself in 140 characters. Sean Weinberg, the chief operating officer and co-founder of RezScore, a free Web application that reads, analyzes and grades resumes instantly, scribed this little number describing how the 140-character resume could very well land someone his or her next job.

He defines the Twesume as a short bio or resume that’s condensed into typical Tweet length, most often paired with a Twitter resume hashtag, such as #twesume.

Weinberg writes that the great thing about this form of selling is it’s a flexible, ongoing and living document. If something changes from the time of your last Twesume, you can simply retweet and send a new one.

He poses a holiday-themed example of what this might look like:

Santa Claus: World traveler and toy expert. 300+ years management experience. Looking for position in entertainment industry. (Insert link to example of full resume) #twesume.

Crazy! While as a journalist covering this space, I am not surprised at the role social media has played in recruitment, I still am having a difficult time fathoming that something like this — the Twesume — could actually be widely used as a tool for lining up serious candidates.

Calling all recruiters and recruitment experts: Please drop me a line if you have seen and/or used Twitter for this purpose before. Was it successful? How was it implemented in the overall recruitment process? I would be fascinated to hear about it:

On-boarding temporary workers

Oh, the holiday season — what a wonderful time of the year.

For many, the end of the calendar year means more work. Temporary workers, especially in the retail sector, have already come on full storm. Getting these employees up to speed quickly is a large challenge — in some instances more of a challenge than on-boarding a longer-term employee, because the luxury of time is not on anyone’s side.

An article written by a co-worker of mine in our sister publication, Chief Learning Officer, touched upon the difficulties of training these seasonal workers quickly and effectively. Perhaps the most important thing to remember, his article said, was to make sure to put an even greater emphasis on hiring the right person up front.

Because the holiday season is crunched into a shortened time frame, most companies that search for temporary help don’t have the time to put these workers through extensive orientation and training programs. This means interviewing and screening for candidates who appear to already have many of the skills required is placed at a premium.

Defining the role of the job up front will ensure that getting the temporary employee up to speed will be a simple, and minimal, process.

While on-boarding, in the traditional sense, is a long-term process -- where a new hire learns the ropes of the job, the company and its culture -- companies need to be able to streamline this process for workers who may only be there for a month, if not less.

A recent article in Staffing Talk ranks tailoring recruitment efforts as the most important step in on-boarding seasonal workers. Because if the recruitment is done well, the on-boarding process is next to nothing.

Quoting tips from Forbes Woman columnist and on-boarding guru Emily Bennington, the Staffing Talk post recommends five key factors of strong seasonal workforce on-boarding:

1. Tailor recruiting strategies: “It’s important to make the details of the opportunity clear from the get-go,” the article said. Also be wary of how, if at all, the potential of that seasonal employee to come on full time is communicated.

2. Perform due diligence: The on-boarding step — as I've written in this blog before — is really a process that begins in the recruitment stage. With that said, “don’t skimp in collecting legal papers and monitoring employees’ schedules,” the article said.

3. Provide proper training: There are three areas that Bennington says seasonal or temporary on-boarders should focus on.

The first is technical skills: “To what depth of expertise do seasonal employees need to be trained to perform the job?”

The second is company culture: “How thoroughly do seasonal hires need to understand company policies and values?"

And, finally, social integration: “In what ways can you connect seasonal employees to the organization so they feel like they are part of the team?"

4. Know capacity upfront: in essence, understand the organizational capacity — “can your back-office system efficiently handle an increased volume in applicants and new hires?”

5. Make them a part of the team: As the Staffing Talk article describes, it’s easy for seasonal employees to feel isolated if an on-boarding program “doesn’t successfully connect them to the organization.”

I am off the next two Fridays for the Christmas holiday and new year.  Have a wonderful and happy holiday season! See you in 2012!

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