When "Innovation" Backfires
Yesterday I had a most bizarre situation crop up. I was evaluating candidates that had applied directly to positions in our ATS and then dispositioning them appropriately. One feature I do like about our ATS is that it generates an automail letting candidates know when we are not pursuing their candidacy.
I was looking at a Senior Software Engineering applicant that applied from the UK. There was no resume, and his education stated “GED”. So, I declined to pursue his candidacy. He replied to the auto-generated email, and it turned into a business development fishing expedition for expanding his company’s recruiting business into the US; he asked to set up a phone call for a sales pitch with both me and my manager. When I went to check out his company via the link in his autosig, I got a message “Directory Listing Denied-This Virtual Directory does not allow contents to be listed.”
I must say this whole roundabout way of trying to garner new business is not only puzzling, it also sends several negative messages. First off, if his goal was to talk to someone, he could have called our main switchboard and just asked for the recruiting manager. Second, he could have used LinkedIn to contact any of our recruiters, recruiting manager, or director of HR in the US. And finally, the chances he would actually receive *any* sort of a response by applying through the corporate website are slim at best. I am very big on a positive candidate experience, which is the only reason why I answered the original mail at all. And using a link in your professional email that is a basically dead activates my internal alarms in this whole bizarre situation.
From an industry perspective, it makes me question whether this firm/individual actually understands current recruiting trends and practices. While we do laud “innovative” methods for doing different things, credibility is imperative for business development. And methodology combined with a “stealth business” that I cannot even verify exists makes this whole situation a big “Fail” in my book.