Thursday, October 31, 2002

Securing Employee Names from Recruiters

The HR Department of University of Delaware accidently gave a system password to a student pretending to be a University professor. The student used the password to change her grade from an "F" to an "A". Luckily, about two weeks later, the student called the HR department to try the trick again but by this time they were on to the scam. She was arrested and charged with several counts of identity theft, criminal impersonation, unauthorized access of a computer system among other charges.

This story, reported in HR Executive Magazine, reminds me of another area of confidentiality that is often overlooked--securing the names, positions and phone numbers of employees from recruiters and headhunters.

Take a look at the following "Research Tip" from

Integrating an Internet recruiting effort with “Voice Mail Mapping” to quickly build a cold call list in a specific “source” company.

Let’s say that you’ve taken a great job order and done the research to identify the 5 top competitors of your client as the best places to source. By applying the Internet techniques we regularly write about, you can build what I call a “foot hold” in each company – that is, you can get some names and some phone numbers/email addresses of people in the function you are targeting. At this point I like to build a voice mail map. Being an “early bird”, I like to start by calling in between 4am and 6:30am to use the source company’s voice mail system directory to identify the names of the people 5 to 10 extensions above and below the extensions of the people I’ve already identified in my Internet research. If the Internet research went well, I may see a pattern that lets me fill in the gap between several extensions. As you build your voice mail map, listen to the tone and content of the voice mail messages… you can tell who the sales people are versus the techies, versus the admin staff in many cases just from their communication style. The work goes quickly and I can often build cold call lists of 100+ people before regular business hours. Many of these calls connect with good candidates later in the day – AND – I don’t lose time rusing, as I already have the names and direct phone extensions of the people I wish to speak with.

So there you have it. The voice mail has now become a target along with the company phone directories, company intranets/internet and the all-to-kind receptionist who unwittingly repeats the names and extensions of all of the employees in the IT department.

Over the years, I've worked in both Recruiting and in Human Resources. I used to think that I had seen it all--only to find that I was being continually surprised time after time. If you are in charge of Human Resources for your company, don't assume that it's obvious to your employees what information needs to be kept confidential and how that confidentiality should be achieved. Take that added step of providing consistent and regular training to all HR employees in this very important area.

Beth C.

Thursday, October 17, 2002

Workplace Reality Shows

I just read this...

"After a five year break from primetime network television, Roseanne is returning to ABC to star in an 'unscripted reality workplace comedy', VARIETY is set to report in Friday runs... "

I wonder what this could be. There was that odd game show in Argentina called "Human Resources" about two guys facing off for the same job but a show here in the US with Rosie? Who would let her into the workplace for any length of time....?

Speaking of the Argentinian Human Resources program, there was an excerpt from the show printed in Harpers Magazine, October 2002 issue. It was actually somewhat poignant in that both of the two "contestants" were somewhat pitiable and literally crying for the job.

There was Gaston Gamboa. A 25 year old bachelor who has been unemployed for two years. He had this to say, "I want to work because my heart is breaking. Mother tries so hard. She gets up at four in the morning. I am not able to do anything to change the past, but I would like to change the past. I would like to give her a better life, because in these times she suffers a lot. That is my great dream. I have a strong, healthy body, and yet I can't work."


Santiago Perez. Also 25 year old bachelor who has been unemployed for 2 years. Santiago said this:
"Work to me represents dignity. I want to help my family with a little money. I want to be a teacher, and I'm going to be one. It doesn't really matter to me if I don't win, the other person, Gaston, who also deserves it, will get it."

The job was for a grocery check-out clerk position at the Super Uno Supermarket. In Argentina, 14 million people, 45% of the population are unemployed or underemployed according to the host of the program.

The winner of the job, based on the audience calling into a toll free phone number to cast their vote, was Gaston Gamboa with 58% of the vote.

Let's hope things don't ever get that bad here in the US. And I'll keep my eye on what Rosie has up her sleeve...

Beth C.

Comments? Email me at

Wednesday, October 09, 2002

Career Opportunities of the Future

According to the World Future Society, the following job titles will become prevalent in the next 10-25 years.

1) Artificial Intelligence Technician
2) Aquaculturist
3) Automotive fuel cell battery technician
4) Benefits Analyst
5) Bionic medical technician
6) Computational Linguist
7) Computer Microprocessor Technician
8) Cryonics Technician
9) Electronic Mail Technician
10) Fiber Optic Technician
11) Fusion Engineer
12) Horticulture Therapist
13) Image Consultant
14) Information Broker
15) Information Center Manager
16) Job Developer
17) Leisure Consultant
18) Materials Utilization Specialist
19) Medical Diagnostic Imaging Technician
20) Myotherapist
21) Relocation Counselor
22) Retirement Counselor
23) Robot Technician
24) Shyness Consultant
25) Software Club Director
26) Space Mechanic
27) Underwater Archaeologist
28) Water Quality Specialist

Electronic mail technician? As in E-Mail technician? And what do you think a Software Club Director will be? Anyone have any other guesses of what will be hot in 2020? Email me at:

In the meanwhile, I think I'll start studying up for the Leisure Consultant job. See you at the beach.

Beth C.