Hire Recruitment: Career Chronicles

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Staffing Shortage in Interactive?

Wow it's amazing all of the press lately about staffing shortages in the interactive and online industry. I find it sometimes funny, because although there maybe a shortage of skilled talent; most of the problem is a shortage of skilled recruiters or HR folks that don't understand recruiting. There was an interview on a popular news radio show with a Creative Director of a large well known interactive agency claiming that he had 150 openings in his company and they didn't know what to do. I researched, got his contact information, and dropped him a line to offer help. He immediately returned my call, but we were unable to speak. I followed up a week later on his cell phone, and he is no longer with the company. This same agency was in dire need of an interactive PM, and one of the Directors in the deparment reached out to me to get some help. I found an excellent candidate, but they were unable to pursue because he did not come from their corporate recruiter. I understand being fiscally reponsible but how much money is your current agency losing because they do not have the right recruiting team and hiring process in place.

Because interactive is so new.....I have found that most agencies do not have an actual hiring strategy. I even heard of one candidate who took a position at a well known agency in Minneapolis and his first day at work they told him he needed to eliminate the 10 people that were working under him. Talk about having a bad day. They could have filmed it for the "Jamie Kennedy Experiment".
Most agencies have a very scattered hiring process. If you took a headcount in the hallway I bet you could find 5 people that were hired in 5 different ways and none of them went through the same process. Most of this can be alleviated if hiring is streamlined through one "recruiting champion". But who is appropriate and motivated to do this job?