For those of you, not familiar with Zappos, it’s an online shoe retailer where women (and some men) spend far too much on their shoe addiction. Ok, that was a joke (unless you’re the spouse who keeps seeing Zappos charges on your credit card). Zappos has always taken a unique approach to how they do business. Take a tour of their offices and you’ll really see how unique a place it is. For example, you can call their customer service and ask about anything. Let’s just say they’ve sent pizza before. Makes sense for a shoe company, no?
In the recruiting world, Zappos is best known for paying people to leave the company after training. The idea being that if you’re trained on the Zappos culture and you’re willing to take the money, then you’re probably not a good fit for the company. Well, Zappos just announced something similarly radical, they’re doing away with job postings.
I ask you, should healthcare IT do away with job postings as well?
My simple answer is no. You’ll notice in the article linked above that Zappos hasn’t done away with job postings for their tech jobs. They say they didn’t because they wanted to have a control group. There is definitely more to it than that.
A year or two ago my Vegas Startups blog partner was also working as Director of Website Systems at Zappos. He did a small test with his job postings. He did one more traditional, straight laced job posting and then one more off the wall “Zappos style” job posting. I can’t find his post with all the details, but the more traditional job posting for a tech job outperformed the non-traditional job posting. Obviously, this is a small sample, but the test is interesting.
You have to remember that there’s a big difference between hiring for a healthcare IT job versus hiring for mostly call center jobs at Zappos. Your past job experience and training matter a lot less at Zappos than it does with healthcare IT jobs. In fact, your experience might not matter at all at Zappos. It really is more about personality and culture fit. While those things matter in healthcare IT too, a person’s experience matters a lot more.
One thing that we can learn from this change by Zappos is how their new hiring model focuses on building a relationship and a connection with a potential new hire. While I still think healthcare IT job postings are valuable and expected by most people you’d want to hire, there is and always has been a lot of value in relationship building during the hiring process. The key difference today is that the technology is there to scale up the relationship building in ways that were never before possible. We’ll have to keep an eye on this.