Did You Catch P. Diddy’s Creative Recruiting on OPRAH’s Show?

By Becky Regan

Now, I must confess that I am an “Oprah” fan….and I certainly enjoy some of her shows. That’s how I know who P. Diddy, a.k.a Sean Combs is (no, I don’t typically listen to rap music)…..but what’s the connection with HR, you rightly ask???

About a month or so ago, while I was catching up on my Tivo’d collection of shows, P. Diddy was on a show that Oprah did about You Tube. She had You Tube’s founders on the show, and she was highlighting some of the most popular videos posted on You Tube.

P. Diddy was featured because he had placed a video for a job posting advertising for a new assistant. I thought, what a creative way to source candidates! They showed the video he’d created, then brought the three final contenders on the show. P. Diddy asked them a few more job-related questions, then announced who of the three finalists got the job! What an effective publicity stunt-he got tons of exposure it from going on Oprah’s show-talk about leveraging one purpose into multiple venues! I admire how clever his publicity and recruiting stunt was. It worked not only to fill an open job, but to create multiple points of contact on You Tube, The Oprah Show, etc.

Today, as HR professionals we’re constantly challenged to fill open jobs with highly qualified candidates in a tight job market. Even in a declining economy, unemployment is still low. We all know how tough it is to find great people. So how can we best source qualified job applicants?

By becoming creative in sourcing candidates in using technology and media channels to access them.

It’s simple, really. Think of where they go to get information using mixed media including the web, printed materials, physical locations, etc. Market your job openings to them using their realm of influence.

Go where they go to advertise your jobs!

Here’s a few tips to help you source qualified candidates for your open jobs:

  • Enhance your company’s website: Add audio and/or video to your company website to sell applicants on your company and your open jobs.
  • Craig’s List: Free site for posting jobs, highly visible and utilized for job searches
  • Industry Association Websites: Whatever industry you’re in, use your association memberships to post jobs
  • You Tube: Have your IT staff work with you to post a video for your high turnover jobs that you consistently recruit for.
  • Job Search websites: such as careerbuilder.com, sacjobs.com, etc.
  • My Space, Facebook and other websites offer cost-effective advertising.

Don’t forget traditional means of sourcing either:

  • Network with other HR professionals when stumped in sourcing candidates; they may be able to refer you to leads in your search.
  • Use print media. Rent a mailing list from an industry association and create a fun, colorful, oversized postcard to send out to members. Couple of suggestions: Use either modernpostcards.com, psprint.com or vistaprint.com.
  • Advertise in publications they subscribe to, or in organizational publications they belong to. High schools, community colleges, churches, non-profits, Chambers of Commerce, etc. can all work to broadcast contact information for your open jobs.
  • In really tough job searches, use a headhunter but only after you’ve checked them out to see if they have a proven track record for delivering quality candidates who will fit your culture. Interview them, request multiple references, and check the references. ALWAYS negotiate their fee downward; I have never paid their original fee quotation when using a headhunter.
  • Create an Employee Referral Program. This is one of the most effective (and cheap) ways to recruit new employees by using referrals from your existing employees. Your employees will only refer people who they believe will be a positive reflection on them. It also a morale builder for your company.

Copyright 2007 Regan HR, Inc.

Becky Regan, M.A., CCP began her own consulting practice in 1995, Regan HR, Inc. to provide human resources consulting services to businesses in California. Her work as a consultant includes the full spectrum of HR technical expertise with an expertise in compensation studies. In addition to consulting with clients, in 2008 Becky expanded her practice to include online marketing of her custom HR products and established coaching programs for developing HR professionals. For more HR tips and to receive her FRE*E special report, visit http://www.ReganHR.com