When HR Is Bad PR

Even when the résumés are stacking up, they must not be ignored.

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GL Hoffman

Most of the time, PR departments have it pretty easy. Press release here, a photo opportunity there. I understand that there are skills that good PR people bring to the team. But . . .

The latest example of poor PR was the auto executives' flying three separate corporate jets to D.C. to beg for our money.

This is not intended to be a "bash the PR guy rant," but something else is happening in the bowels of your company—this time in HR—that has a similar potential to bite you where the sun doesn't shine.

If you have a company of over 100 people, chances are good that you are getting a LOT of résumés now. Almost all of them are unsolicited . . . so your HR department, having much better things to do, is ignoring them and throwing them away.

Here is the warning I issued to HR people over at wwds yesterday:

"It's like getting on an elevator with someone who greets you with a cheery 'Hello' and you completely ignore them. You wouldn't do that, but many HR people feel it's all right to ignore the person who sent in his or her résumé. Never mind the negative PR for your company. I bet if your CEO knew you ignored these résumés, he'd drive his own hybrid to Washington, D.C., too.

"There are only three reasons why you ignore these vain attempts at contacting you for one of your treasured jobs. The first is unsolvable: You have no heart, no soul, and pretty much dislike everyone. The second is that you don't have some kind of automated way of responding that is simple, easy, and fast for you. The third is you simply do not know what to say."

I answered the last two reasons over there. Sorry for the jump, but my space here is limited. Treat these job seekers better. Please.

G.L. Hoffman is a serial entrepreneur and venture investor/operator/incubator/mentor. Two of his companies have traveled the entire success path from the garage to IPO. Currently, he is chairman of JobDig. His blog can be found at WhatWouldDadSay.com or at JobDig.com.