Best Companies to Work for in Ireland 2007

Best Companies to Work for in Ireland 2007

According to the Great Place to Work® Institute Ireland The best place to work in Ireland is in one of the 10 companies listed below:

Accenture
Airtricity
Brightwater
CB Richard Ellis Ireland
Diageo Ireland
eBay
Google Ireland Ltd
Microsoft Ireland
Sigmar Recruitment
Unicare Pharmacy Ltd

In other words, if you work in one of those you are within the ‘privileged’ ones between us and should consider him/herself extremely happy. Why? Since the rest of us DO NOT work in the 10 best companies to work for in Ireland! You who work for the best companies to work for in Ireland have absolutely no right to moan and complain about ANYTHING!

The rest of us? We can say EXACTLY what we want about:

– That crazy, crazy, crazy new layout on the Red Cow roundabout. Why do they call it a roundabout anyway? It looks far more like a mixture of a number 8, the infinity sign, and a few more 9-es and 6-es!
– The Bus that is full again, just passing by the station where we are waiting in the rain, and some idiot smashed the bus shelter again.
– CHAOS in traffic in city centre
– M50 is a parking place again. They should start charging per hour!
– M50 Toll Bridge cue forming at Malahide roundabout.
– Sandyord Industrial Estate MADNESS. And you from Aitricity and Microsoft, just keep your mouth shut!
– DART, ohh, DART…. not again? What works on the rails now?!
– LUAS where one gets that sardine feeling (who said smell?!)
– Rent up again? How comes rent always goes up more than my salary increases?!
– … and do not get me started on,… well, that’s enough here.

So if you work for one of the best places to work listed above, just keep on enjoying your life. The rest of us can complain. You cannot!

From the looking for the new job perspective, wouldn’t it be normal then to first try to get a job with one of the best companies to work, and then talk to the recruitment agencies if you do not succeed to enter this holy circle?

Google Ireland Jobs

The Google Ireland Jobs page is designed in the traditional Google Design Stile. The only ‘Outstanding’ design elements Google Recruitment or Web Development department found appropriate to place on the site is a bit of the green font. Noticeable is also the usage of the word ‘Opening’ instead of the job. That is most likely the trace of some super-wise marketing agency, trying to avoid the connotation of job – work – long hours – low salary – slavery. Instead they call it an ‘Opening’ where one could build his career – success – happy family – new house – a Volvo Estate, two dogs, and a house in the suburbs.

A bit of showing off with the always suspicious: 10 Best Companies to Word For – Ireland 2007, awarded by the Irish Independent (presumably to the largest advertisers).

Striking is the Google’s complete ignorance of the SEO on its own recruitment pages.
The URLs like:
http://www.google.ie/support/jobs/bin/topic.py?dep_id=1054&loc_id=1110
http://www.google.ie/support/jobs/bin/answer.py?answer=74881

The non existence of the proper and relevant META and TITLES just shows how Google is the company that does not depend at all on the Search Engine Optimisation, but probably has a completely different set of problems like managing the volumes than the average recruiter.

The absence of any contact details, not phone, no email not even a physical address(???) just confirms the obvious problem with the quantity of applications.

From the usability point, there is no way for a job seeker to subscribe in any way. No email alerts and no RSS. That is a decision I do not really understand. It is like saying: “We do not want return visitors!”. Non inclusion of the RSS feed is probably the biggest mistake on the Google’s Jobs site.

There is also a greyed out footer on all the pages that reads:
To all recruitment agencies:
Google does not accept agency resumes. Please do not forward resumes to our jobs alias, Google employees or any other company location. Google is not responsible for any fees related to unsolicited resumes.

Perhaps the last sentence of that footer tells you about the business practices of the recruitment agencies Google has had to deal with.

Overall impression? Google’s Recruitment web site is the fastest recruitment web site. But there is a feeling that there is something missing here. The absence of any contact details is just striking. I believe it is unique in the Irish market, and that alone makes it hard/not acceptable. The absence of the RSS feed is also surprising from a 100% Web 2.0 company.

The extensive usage of Google AdWords to advertise this site puts other AdWords publishers in the recruitment industry in a disadvantage, since Google itself does not have to pay for it. In the same time it is competing for the positions in AdWords with its clients who pay big sums every month. It might be (or is it?) legal, but certainly is not moral at all.

Conclusion: One would expect Google should do better. Recruitment obviously is obviously falling far behind the strengths the company has in other fields.

Web 2.0 Recruitment

The recruitment industry is changing. To stay on top any recruiters has to in one way or the other follow the change, since the ‘old’ recruitment model will soon simple disappear in most industries. The Web 2.0 Recruitment will differ greatly from the traditional recruitment in the aspect of the recruitment advertising and searching and sourcing the candidates. The combination of the whole collection of the social networking web sites, the collective bookmarking and scoring web sites, the personal blogs, corporate blogs and a purely recruitment blogs with change the role the traditional job sites (job boards) have today.

Web 1.0 Recruitment

The job boards have replaced the traditional media like newspapers, radio, billboards, and TV. After the year 2000 the web was catering for the vast majority of the recruitment advertisement business. The broadband penetration was fuelling it. It still keep on fuelling it 8 years later, and bringing it to a next level. The level of the Web 2.0 Recruitment.

Web 2.0 Recruitment

The job boards and their CV databases will start losing their value in the Web 2.0 Recruitment model that we are entering. As Encyclopaedia Britannica disappeared when Wikipedia gained popularity the similar future is ahead for the job boards.

LinkedIN is slowly replacing the CV databases in the more advanced economies like UK and US. The most popular CV database in Ireland, the Monster’s CV database will soon start feeling the heat from LinkedIN. The crucial moment will be when the quantity of the newly created LinkedIN profiles becomes greater than the number of the new CV’s Monster’s database receives a day. And that is very likely to happen in the year 2008 if the current trends continue.

Recruitment agency and employer’s web sites will start blogging and utilising all the blog related content syndication, RSS, pinging, trackback and comment features to attract and engage the job seekers. The Job seekers will from their end in their personal blogs generate their own related content, and ‘engage’ really more than just ‘subscribe’ to the recruiters offerings.

Altogether the Web 2.0 Recruitment will be more characterised by networking, contributing to the content, and engaging in content development than just traditional advertising jobs.

Microsoft International Tech Jobs Blog

As Gretchen correctly pointed out in the comments of the Microsoft Jobs Blog – The Winner of The Best Recruitment Blog in Ireland Award 2008 the Microsoft Jobs in Ireland are actually covered on the Microsoft International Tech Jobs Blog as opposed to the US one.

The Microsoft International Tech Jobs Blog is actually on a Live Space platform that has its own advantages and disadvantages as a blogging platform. Live Spaces is great for networking since it is integrated with both Hotmail and Instant Messenger, and you can have your Profile and Photo albums there as well. So kind of a well rounded service offering a nice integration of all various social networking activities. The drawback for a blog itself is that if the blog is the only thing you want to promote, your interface is extremely cluttered with all this MSN stuff all over the page. There isn’t a 1000 WordPress Skins to choose from to apply to match you taste and needs. You are just stuck with all this advertisements for Windows Live Something. OneCare. WhoCares?

Declan Fitzgerald’s blog is in the Irish environment simply revolutionary. Two things stand out:

  • 1. RSS Feeds of Microsoft jobs in each EMEA Centre
  • 2. Video representation of each Microsoft EMEA Centre

Oh, and BTW all the Microsoft Jobs in Ireland posted as blog posts.

Declan has got it right. It is extremely simple to check and subscribe to the RSS of fresh Jobs in Ireland for example, and there is an inviting video where Declan will walk you through what they do, and what they are looking for. Those are the two main messages a recruitment blog should have. It needs to say what are we looking for in the skills list, and show what positions are currently open. The RSS Feed is actually above the expectation here. Since this is the first Irish Employers Recruitment Blog, it has set a high standards for the followers.

Again, well done Declan, and well done Microsoft in Ireland!

Irish Recruitment Blog Toppic?

Every Recruiter in Ireland I spoke to about Blogging asked me the following same questions:
How should I go about it? See the bottom post 22 hours for detailed steps.

Then the next question is always: What should I blog about?
Danny Wall wrote the shortest and simplest answer in the article Number 1 in Google – The Blog:

The Blog

This is one of the best and easiest methods of getting traffic and links, yet it is also the one that is most often done wrong. All too many blogs for ecommerce sites are nothing more than “product posts.”
So, let me say emphatically that:

People don’t care about you, your cat, or your products!

That may sound harsh, but it’s true, they don’t. What your potential customers will care about is their problems, wants, and desires. Therefore, your posts should play to the customer but target the niche to which you market.
Blogs should contain articles that will be of help and interest to your target market. They should contain links to interesting news stories or bits of information. In other words, your blog should be a valuable resource to your target market independent of what you sell. Additionally, you should post to your blog every day (and twice a day is better).

So in the Irish Recruiters world, what can you blog about? Just start the two lists. One is the list of questions that your employers ask you during your day. Write them all down, one under another. Do the same for the questions you get during the day from the Irish Job seekers. An hour before you go home take a look at your lists. See chat questions keep on popping up. Are the clients concerned about the quality of the candidates? Perfect. Your first Recruitment Blog Post is going to be titled: ‘Quality Candidates’. In the article define the ‘Quality’, write a short quality matrix table, search the web to se what others wrote about the ‘Quality’ of the candidates. You might learn something!!! Put it all together in a short one page post and Voila! You have your first post!!!! Just do the same every day.

Irish Jobs

Defining the list of the jobs that are really Irish Jobs, or specific to Irish people both in Ireland and abroad is not an easy task. There are the traditional jobs Irish people have been associated before that include the list below

This is a list of the truly traditional Irish Jobs:

  • Farmer
  • Brewer
  • Irish Dancer
  • Musician
  • Poet / Writer
  • Those jobs are all based on the old Irish traditional values.

    Where are we today?

    Traditional Irish jobs are not advertised online today The modern Irish online recruitment industry does not serve the traditional Irish jobs recruitment at all. The Farmer inherits the farm from his father. Same as the brewer. A dancer, a musician, a writer, they are just born with a skill that if nourished blooms into the piece of art.

    Modern Irish Jobs advertised in Ireland by both employers and recruitment agencies are some completely different Irish jobs. Based on the numbers advertised online on the Irish jobs sites the Irish Jobs sought today in Ireland are:
    Pharmacy Jobs
    IT jobs
    Sales Jobs
    Banking Jobs
    Marketing Jobs
    And so on…

    Notice the difference? We still drink milk (or beer&whiskey) every day! Where is a Farmer’s job advertised? A Brewer’s job?

    If you want to get a job in Ireland to contribute to the Irish Dairy or Drinks production, you will not get a job as a Farmer or a Brewer. What you will get is one of those beautiful Modern Irish Jobs.

    A Dairy Factory will have a list of Jobs like:
    Junior IT Customer Support (1st level)
    Senior Management Consultant
    PA to Marketing Director
    HR Administrator
    Experienced Process Technician

    Hey? Where does the milk come from????

    Good old Irish Jobs were much simpler…

    Microsoft Jobs Blog – The Winner of The Best Recruitment Blog in Ireland Award 2008

    Welcome to the:

    The Best Recruitment Blog in Ireland Award 2008

    Irish Recruitment Blog Awards 2008

    In not that strong competition between the Employers in Ireland

    The Winner of The Best Recruitment Blog in Ireland Award is:

    Microsoft Jobs Blog

    Microsoft Jobs Blog

    Ta – daaa!!!!!!!

    This is the first Blog used for the recruitment purpose I have found by any Irish Employer. Well done Microsoft!!!

    Recruiters Turn to Facebook

    Is it a dawn ow the job boards with all the Facebook, LinkedIN and the rest of them popping up? Or is there a space for both to coexist, perhaps in an semi integrated / partnership way?

    Would it not be nice if you would get an Job Applicatin with a CV and a link to a LinkedIN Profile, so that you can check if you know someone who knows the applicant? Did some of the people you know know them and trust tehm, or even reccomend them? Or a MySpace web page? Or anything else to help you get ‘The Feel’ about the person? It would, wouldn’t it?

    Facebook will not replace a job board, but could definatelly help if brought in into the recruitment process. The question is, would job seekers like it?

    http://www.pcworld.com/…/tech_recruiters_turn_to_facebook.html

    Internet Activity, or ‘Will Irish Recruitment Agencies get the importance of the Google.ie Search Engine Ranking?

    What do people do most on the Internet? When asked, the response is the mixture of:
    House hunting
    Cars related searches
    Jobs searches

    Holyday related searches, mortgage, insurance are the second most important group.

    Almost all the behaviour monitoring will record the same above activities. This is what we ‘admit’. In the same time Internet itself consists of more than 2/3 of some king of pornographic content. I wonder whom is that for?

    Anyway, the major three activities, let us call them Property, Cars and Jobs here, and really very funny when it comes to the Irish Google placements (web site positioning) for the relevant key phrases. While Property and Cars have a 3 to 5 strong market leaders, and the rest of the first page of Google.ie search results is filed by the sites that just ended up there, the Jobs category seems to have a super strong competition (compared to the two other categories).

    By default Google.ie shows 10 results of a search performed. So 10 web sites can be of the first page. The rest of the results has a far less ‘Visibility’. The top 5 or 6 pages are what was called ‘Above the Fold’ before, since ht monitor resolution would allow only the top half of the Google.ie results page to be displayed at a time. To see the rest, the user had to scroll down.

    In general the people click more on the result positioned higher. The Number One listing in a Google Search Result is extremely important for any Internet related business. So if you are a Job board… you get the point.

    Again the problem with the ‘Jobs’ market in Ireland is that there is currently about 35 web sites that would like to call themselves a Job Board. There is also about 400 Recruitment Agencies web sites that would benefit greatly from the high placement in Google.ie search engine results pages.

    Historically looking, for the most important keyword for job searching in Ireland: ‘Jobs’ – there NEVER was a single recruitment agency on the first page of the Google.ie search engine results page. At least not in the last 5 to 7 years. That is simply because there are all those job boards filling up the spaces. To make the situation even more interesting every year there is more and more job boards in Ireland. Niche job boards are popping up like mushrooms all over. It really is not that easy to find the industry that does not have its own ‘Specialist Job Board’. Most of the strong industries have multiple niche job boards active today.

    It really is interesting to see the recruitment agencies that are multimillion businesses paying for the advertising slots on a job boards that are a single man operation, or even someone’s ‘Second Job’.

    I am really interested to see who will be the first Irish recruitment agency that will realise the importance of being listed on the first page of Google.ie for the phrase like ‘Jobs’, and actually manage to do it! Anyone ready to place a bet???

    Declan Fitzgerald’s (Lead Technical Recruiter in Microsoft)Blog

    It is interesting to see how Microsoft employees know how to blog only, and I mean ONLY about Microsoft. They might stride to a game of golf, but in general, every single blog post from a Microsoft employee is about the Glorious Microsoft. No other company managed to ‘swing’ the employees as well as Microsoft does.

    Declan is a Lead Techincal Recruiter in Dublin. Check the blog yourself:

    http://internationaltechjobs.spaces.live.com/

    www.joinmicrosofteurope.com is brilliantly designed using’…. something tells me I will disagree, but let’s not jump o conclusions, perhaps this Silverlignt is not as it looks like, just another Flash. I will be writing about SilverLignt as a development platform for a recruitment agency web site early in the next year. It would be interesting to see if Silverlight can challenge WordPress (on php!).

    The Job Hunting Cycle

    An interesting definition from Texas Workforce on how we actually ‘flow’ trough the job hunting phases in our career.

    Job Hunting Cycle

    From: http://www.twc.state.tx.us/news/tjhg/cycle.html

    ‘Landing a job doesn’t mean you’ve reached some final destination. It’s really just another stage of the job-hunting cycle, which you will travel throughout your working life.’

    Step Zero/Six:
    WORK: Track Achievements; Connect with People; Increase Skills; Assess Yourself

    Step One
    ASSESS: Identify Assets, Deficits; Prepare Portfolio; Develop Résumé; Target Specific Jobs

    Step Two:
    PREPARE: Office Materials; Wardrobe; References; Support System

    Step Three:
    SEARCH: Used Varied Methods; Connect with Others; Track Progress

    Step Four:
    CONTACT: Phone Calls; Cover Letters; Application Forms

    Step Five:
    INTERVIEW: Research; Questions; Offer; Negotiations

    WordPress has a built in RSS – What about Irish jobs sites?

    The WordPress blogging engine that is blog is written on has a built in RSS feed. The RSS feed is under the URL:


    http://www.jobsblog.ie/Jobs/rss/

    Subscribe to JobsBlog.ie RSS Feed


    Which is exactly where you would expect it to be!

    Anyway, a RSS feed is what you can send your job hunters to subscribe to on your job site. Most of the good job boards do it, but Irish Recruitment Agencies and the Direct Employers especially fail here graciously.

    Just imagine where your recruitment web site feed (RSS) that delivers a new job to the RSS readers as each time you post a new job.

    So exactly what Google XML Sitemap does to the Google search engine results page (SERP), where you can ‘push’ your new page in the SERP instantly, the RSS ‘pushes’ the new job to the RSS reader like Microsoft Outlook 2007.

    Job Secs vs. Blog Posts

    Blog posts and job descriptions are similar sized chunks of text. Both are written to attract the reader. Job description has a definitive and clear call to action, the Apply button underneath. Blog post does not have a natural path where you want to send the visitor. One of the best tactics is to finish with the sentence that lists relevant articles, for further reading. You cannot really do this with the first blog post, since there is nothing to link to (jet). You will find out that your will further develop some ideas you already blogged about, and will continue writing on the same topics. When you do, you can go back to the original posts, and edit them to include the links to the never articles for the further reading.

    The other way of achieving the similar result are ‘Tags’. By adding tags to your articles you are grouping them, so anyone can list all your blog posts based on the tags printed below the article.

    The best solution is to post both. The finishing sentence or two where you are recommending a further reading, and a list of tags that are links to all the articles marked with any of those tags. Luckily the WordPress places tags for you under each post (in the default Themes).

    Recruiter blogging…. why?!

    If you are a recruiter in Ireland today, your largest problem is to get relevant and ‘high quality’ applicants. In 95% of the cases you are better off with a candidate that is local, and also having the working permit is in most cases requirement as well.

    Getting the job applications The Traditional Way:

      Job boards
      + their CV databases
      Newspapers
      Radio
      Your web site (+ Google AdWords)
      Mailshots (to the same job hunters you got the ways above)

    All the above are getting more expensive each year. The quantity is decreasing steadily, and the quality of the applicants is decreasing rapidly.

    Is a blog a way to recruit in the tomorrows market?

    It certainly is! Why? Simply because the return on the investment is going to be far greater than from any other traditional jobs advertising media. Imagine having thousands of local and regular visitors to your blog, interested in the topics that are relevant to the industry you are hiring in?

    What to write about?

    Local
    If you want local visitors write about local topics. Did you got stuck in traffic again today? IS a road closed – warn your readers. Any good tip about something local is good. A new sandwich bar? Starbucks opened around the corner? Is the coffee good? Keep a local note in every post.

    Fresh
    Your blog posts have to be about something that have just happened. Have you had an interesting chat with someone (who is well known). Did you participate in the symposium or an open table? Is there something new invented or implemented in your industry?

    Positive & Professional (with a friendly touch…)
    People far likely read a positive story. Leave Jackass to someone else. You are writing a professional blog, and it has its purpose. You want peoples CV’s. No one would send a CV to someone you do not trust.

    Photo
    Get your camera on the way to work out and take snapshots about the things you will write. Photographs and films make the story alive.

    Topic
    Do you have an opinion on the industry in general that you discuss with colleges? Do you have experience you can share so your readers benefit from it? Whatever is interesting to talk about with your colleges is worth blogging about! New technology? New process? Anything that is new, you have had some exposure to it, and would like to share it with your friends. That is what you should write about.