I like trends, and the recruiting trend of things going more granular is one I’ve been thinking about lately.

By “granular”, I’m talking about things getting chunked down to smaller, more particular items…think grains of sand on a beach versus the beach itself.


The Internet is causing all this of course…I know, no big news flash there.

Other Industries Already Think Granular

Other industries are already thinking granular.

Take books — In the old days, if you liked a band like Arcade Fire, the first book out on them would probably be a 200-page biography.

Nowadays, you can buy more granular books about Arcade Fire such as a Fan Guide ($3.25) or an e-book on Top Arcade Fire Songs & Lyrics on Amazon ($2.99!).

Or how about restaurant reviews — In the old days I would rely on a general review of a restaurant (e.g. from the San Francisco Chronicle or Zagat Guide) and would be lucky to learn about a handful of the restaurant’s dishes,

Nowadays, I use Yelp to look at hundreds of more granular reviews of that same restaurant, including opinions on just about ever dish on the menu (in fact I now search Yelp by dish (not just location).

How Recruiters Can Think Granular Too

Recruiting is getting more granular too.

A few granular recruiting examples to think about:

The Resume/CV — Instead of just looking at one LinkedIn or Word doc resume, recruiters must increasingly explore dozens of granular sources whether it be Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, blogs, Klout, portfolio sites ( e.g. Github or Behance) or any other source of information on the candidate. Our friends at Entelo are already indexing 20+ social sites to create profiles of candidates.

A Shift from “Company”to “Team” to “Individual” — In the old days, many employers would market jobs at just the company level (e.g. “Google is a good place to work”). In this new world of things going granular, candidates will demand that you recruit at more granular levels. For example, you may want to consider recruiting Web pages based on:

  • Location — e.g. Yelp created a micro-site with 4 different videos to show off the 4 locations at which they are recruiting junior sales people.
  • Department — e.g. Dolby dedicated a micro-site to its new Dolby Voice department (which is a pretty different experience than working at the Dolby Research department).
  • Hiring Manager — An increasingly powerful recruiting weapon will be the hiring manager themselves, who has higher visibility due to social networks and reputation score sites like Klout. Many hiring managers will have their own “Employee Brand” that may be just as, if not more, important, than your company’s employer brand to a candidate looking to join the manager’s team.

Analytics Becomes Ubiquitous — The best tools recruiters use will track deeper levels of candidate engagement. It will be commonplace for recruiters to see such granular information, for example, as the fact that a particular candidate heard about your job on Facebook, while they were using their Android device in Berkeley, CA and spent 1 minute looking at your recruiting video before they applied.

If you are talking to any recruiting tool vendors these days, you should demand to know what analytics they will provide you.

You will come up with many more examples of recruiting going granular.

This is an awesome trend for recruiters.

Just like with books and restaurant reviews, going granular will get you things faster and cheaper and in many cases you will discover things previously unavailable.

Think granular!

Disclaimer: I was an advisor of Hyperink (the publisher of an Arcade Fire e-book above) and I’m a co-founder of Ongig (which helped create the Yelp and Dolby micro-sites mentioned) — shameless plugs, I know.

by in Trends