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Resume search: are the walls coming down?

resume searchIn the old days – say, 2 or 3 years ago – you had an internal database of candidate resumes that you used for a resume search. Perhaps you paid a job board for its resume search. Or perhaps you paid a recruiter, who claimed to have access to resume sources that you couldn’t even imagine. If you were innovative, you might use a tool like AIRS to search across multiple databases (that is, if you had paid for access).

Flash forward to now: last week LinkedIn announced the launch of its Talent Pipeline, a tool that allows recruiters to import resumes, tag them, and link them to the appropriate LinkedIn profiles. It’s designed to manage prospects, not applicants, thus staying out of the ATS zoo – but I can see how it might easily be modified to handle the entire candidate flow. Given that 98% of respondents from my last survey use LinkedIn, this tool seems like a slam-dunk – who wouldn’t want to consolidate what they’re already doing on LinkedIn with the data from their other sources? Oh, did I mention the tool is free for users with the LI corporate recruiting package? Nice upsell, guys!

This release comes on the heels of Monster’s announcement in July of SeeMore, a tool based on Monster’s 6Sense semantic search engine that allows recruiters to comb through internal and external databases of candidates – and the technology is arguably more powerful than LI’s.

Both tools reflect a fundamental change in resume databases that has been brewing for years: tearing down the walls that surround this data. As noted above, recruiters can become overwhelmed with ‘buckets’ of applicant data – and if these buckets exist alongside each other without allowing any type of cross-searching, they lose much of their usefulness. Talent Pipeline and SeeMore represent attempts to tear down the walls between the data buckets (and, of course, these tools provide new revenue opportunities for their respective companies).

I suspect an interesting side effect is that recruiters will be able to see precisely which databases provide the best candidates.

Will we see more resume search tools like these? Undoubtedly. What do they mean for the future of job board resume databases? Hard to say. For those boards with high value, hard to find candidates, there may be little or no effect, as their data will continue to be useful and cost-effective for recruiters. For others with more general and less lucrative candidates, charging for resume access may become a thing of the past.

In either case, this trend is a ‘win’ for recruiters – they can do more with the resumes they have, and spend less time climbing over, around, and under walls.

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This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Hi Jeff,

    When you write an article as well and complete as that – it is hard to write any comment that would contribute to it! 🙂

    I would only differ slightly that we will see many more like this. Since LinkedIn and Monster are effectively the two largest databases (or one of the largest in Monsters case), it is on them to try to acquire all those other applications and CVs in their ‘environment’ for recruiters to use. Not many small web dev company would have understanding of how to manage the CV related data in a meaningful manner to the recruiters. Those two have been at it for a while, and acquired a lot on their way as well.

    Just my 2 cents!


  2. Linkedin is an ATS by any other name. Bigger, more social, but still an ATS, an email-inbox-flooding ATS.

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