Monthly Archives: July 2013

Probationary Periods – Are they counter productive?

Recruitment Utopia

I had the absolute pleasure yesterday to meet a truly innovative Talent Management / HR Professional who works for a global company based in Leeds. What immediately struck me as being immensely impressive about this particular professional was their absolute commitment to innovation and to challenging accepted norms in the business environment.

One innovation was the removal of probationary periods from employment contracts. Her view was that very often both parties used this almost as a get out clause. Her belief was that new employees when faced with challenges and obstacles to overcome saw the 1 weeks notice as an easy way to get out of the job, instead of seeking assistance, help or resource to overcome the challenge and develop through it. Probably more importantly and undoubtedly far more difficult to overcome resistance to was the belief that Line Managers across the business saw the probationary period often as…

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Beware LinkedIn Endorsements – Balloon Artists Rule Okay

Initially I thought that the LinkedIn Endorsement feature had the potential to be ground

Endorsements may be not what they seem.

Endorsements may be not what they seem.

breaking. Misguidedly I assumed (and we all know the dangers of assuming anything of course) that people who knew you, had worked with and had an actual insight to who you were and what you did would be able to flag up your exemplary level skills and or services.

The idea that you could for example have 100 people genuinely endorsing you for recruitment strategy, talent acquisition or international search and that it would actually be searchable sounded quite appealing.

But it would appear this is far from the truth. In the past week or so it appears everyone has been attempting to provide me with an endorsement for:

Temporary Staffing – I have never provided temporary staff, have no desire to do so and have no knowledge of the concept or the delivery.

Screening Resumes – really, you don’t say. I would hardly call screening resumes a skill, a service or an experience. It is as fundamental to the job I do as switching on my pc, answering my phone and it certainly isn’t something I would distinguish myself for.

Permanent Placements – this one I find hilarious. I have more endorsements for Event Planning (5) and Human Resources (18) than I do for permanent placements (2). Perm placements is my life blood, it is the crux of what I do along with. Event Planning maybe has at some time formed a part of my role and HR is something that I have become involved in as part of my internal recruitment solutions, but I am by no means a HR professional. In essence this is misleading.

These endorsements are usually from people who I may well be connected to for some reason, often lost in the mists of time having used LinkedIn for over 10 years, but who have generally no idea what I do or who I am. Never mind actually endorsing me skills and services that I have never provided to them.

As a result I have decided that every time someone ‘endorses’ me for something that is not relevant or is not appropriate I am going to endorse them back for things like Balloon Artist, Ballroom Dancing or Floristry. Try it, there are some truly amazing options, even things like ‘Snakes’. Which could be very apt of course in some cases….