Google: Your Searches Could Land You A Job Here - InformationWeek
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8/28/2015
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Google: Your Searches Could Land You A Job Here

Google is targeting people for job offers based on their search activity. It's certainly a way to attract people with an inborn curiosity and willingness to investigate unusual things (and no fear of malware).

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Imagine working to solve a problem for your current project, and the process helps you get a new job. This is what has happened for at least one new Googler, Max Rosett. Rosett was working on a project for his Master's Degree in Computer Science at Georgia Tech when he Googled "python lambda function list comprehension" and he was startled by an invitation to a challenge. The challenge led to a job at Google.

The surprising thing is that Rosett didn't immediately assume it was malware (you can check out a picture of the invitation here). The usual Google search results split open to reveal a black bar that said, "You're speaking our language. Up for a challenge?" It is a wonder it didn't ask if he wanted to play a game of thermonuclear war.

(Image: HebiFot via Pixabay)

(Image: HebiFot via Pixabay)

Rosett clicked on it and it took him to a site called foo.bar which somewhat reassuringly has a Google address. Foo.bar put Rosett through a series of challenges. He had 48 hours to solve each set of challenges. For two weeks Rosett solved the challenges without any promise of a job offer or without knowing anything about what was happening to him. He enjoyed the exercises. After two weeks of solving the challenges, Rosett received an email from a recruiter asking for a resume. After that, a slightly more normal recruiting process happened and Rosett is looking forward to his new job.

In many ways this is nothing new for the tech industry. Such companies have been hiring people who can solve puzzles and challenges for quite some time. What is new, and a bit strange, was that Google reached out rather anonymously via search results. On one level, it's a random way to get people to try the challenges. It's as if the New York Yankees recruited employees by targeting those who searched "Infield fly rule" or an accounting firm recruited workers from a pool of people who searched for "amortized deductions."

[ Finding the right job involves more than playing with keywords. Read 10 IT Job Search Habits To Nail A New Gig. ]

It's not only about getting the search terms right. You have to find a person who is willing to click on an unexpected pop-up, is in a position to drop whatever else they're working on to check out the pop-up, has 48 hours starting that very minute to work on a challenge, and has two weeks more to keep trying new challenges, all to finally get to the resume stage.

It's certainly a way to attract people with an in-born curiosity and willingness to investigate unusual things (and no fear of malware). Google has a reputation for liking those kinds of people. So maybe it is the right way to attract Google's kind of person.

What do you think? Would you have clicked on such an invitation? Is Google is smart to recruit this way? Do you plan on running to Foo.bar to see if you are the next Googler? Don't bother. You need to be invited. But search away and you might receive an invitation of your own.

David has been writing on business and technology for over 10 years and was most recently Managing Editor at Enterpriseefficiency.com. Before that he was an Assistant Editor at MIT Sloan Management Review, where he covered a wide range of business topics including IT, ... View Full Bio

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batye
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batye,
User Rank: Ninja
9/1/2015 | 10:47:18 AM
Re: That is the most unexpected
@vnewman2, yes, but Now Microsoft join the Google with Win 10 customer profiling...it like getting from bad to worst:(... anyone else ???
batye
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batye,
User Rank: Ninja
9/1/2015 | 10:44:51 AM
Re: Google: Your Searches Could Land You A Job Here
@zerox203, interesting point... I would say it more like what if....

but anything possible
batye
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batye,
User Rank: Ninja
9/1/2015 | 10:33:43 AM
Re: That is the most unexpected
@Brian.Dean, I would say you are 100% right as communication is a key... and Co. this days want a great communicators on boards... - how I see it :)... but I would love to know, what others think???
batye
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batye,
User Rank: Ninja
9/1/2015 | 10:26:42 AM
Re: That is the most unexpected
@progman2000, interesting observation... I think this days it no way around as everything get interconnected more and more... How I see it... it like you need to know a little of everything :) 

I would love to hear what other members have to say??? 
batye
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batye,
User Rank: Ninja
9/1/2015 | 10:23:26 AM
Re: That is the most unexpected
@impactnow, yes, I could not agree more... it all depends on the Co. as each Co. this days trying to save anyway posibble... how I see it...

 

ps: hope others could put they two cents in :)
vnewman2
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vnewman2,
User Rank: Ninja
8/31/2015 | 1:34:18 PM
Re: That is the most unexpected
@PedroGonzales - but we all know Google et al spies on all of us anyway, so why not applaud when they use their evil powers for good?
zerox203
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zerox203,
User Rank: Ninja
8/31/2015 | 9:41:35 AM
Google: Your Searches Could Land You A Job Here
Sounds rather odd. As cool as this certainly is, the hiring process is already lengthy and convoluted enough. I can't help but think of all the people who presumably gave up just as much time taking that challenge only to receive no such followup... or people who did excellently on the challenge, sent in their resume, and got declined at that step because of what kind of degree they had, etc. (although, Google is one of the leaders in more open hiring practices). I can imagine a nightmare version of this perpetrated by a company that tries to mimic Google's idea and just makes something incredibly painful for everyone. A cool anecdotal story, but I sort of hopes it's not much more than that.
progman2000
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progman2000,
User Rank: Ninja
8/30/2015 | 3:19:14 PM
Re: That is the most unexpected
@Sunita - I agree, this has certainly been true in my experience. Our banner exployees have been the well rounded types while the specialists have faded in their usefullness.
SunitaT0
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SunitaT0,
User Rank: Ninja
8/30/2015 | 2:50:58 PM
Re: That is the most unexpected
@nasimson: true but the soft skills are tested first. Most companies don't need a person who had high programming skills. They need an all rounded person with ideas.
Brian.Dean
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Brian.Dean,
User Rank: Ninja
8/30/2015 | 12:17:42 AM
Re: That is the most unexpected
You raised a great point about the complexities that are involved to communicate or retrieve information about a skillset in its entirety. I feel that the complexities are due to the amount of information that can be added or extracted from a résumé. It is a problem that technology can solve and sites such as, LinkedIn, etc., has improved the process of communicating a person's experience. However, there is still a long way to go.
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