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“The power, and what you can create when the employers come together and work as a team is amazing.“

Ray Schreyer
Global Interactive Recruiting Manager, IBM

Ray Schreyer is a pioneer of both Internet recruiting and the DirectEmployers Association. He is one of the Association’s founders and served as President for the first five years. During this period, Ray was instrumental in facilitating our organization’s growth and key partnerships with the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) and the National Association of State Workforce Agencies (NASWA). Ray has also co-authored three books: The Employer’s Guide to Recruiting on the Internet, Recruit and Retain the Best, and The Best 100 Websites for HR Professionals. His passion and knowledge around new media and recruitment platforms is contagious, and we were delighted to pick his brain in an interview captured at last year’s annual meeting.

Tell us about yourself.
My name is Ray Schreyer. I’m with the IBM Corporation. I work in Corporate Recruiting as the Program Manager of Internet Recruiting in a global role. I’ve been there since 2000 and IBM has been a Member of DirectEmployers since the founding in 2001.

What originally attracted you to DirectEmployers? Why become a founding Member?
At the time we saw the prices of participation in the online recruiting industry going through the roof. I’ve been around long enough to recall the early ‘90’s, when my first job board contract was $2,900 a year with an entity known as Online Career Center, which is the pre-cursor of Monster. You can imagine what the prices have grown to, so costs were out of control. That was one thing. Secondly, there was no forum for me to speak to my colleagues in the industry – to hear the truth about what works and what doesn’t. This industry has been filled with a lot of sizzle, hype and promise, but you know, as a person that has been here for years, we want to know what’s really working…what is the truth. And obviously there are very reputable consultants out there, but then there’s also paid bloggers that have points of view pushing products and it’s really hard to tell. We thought what we could do with this Association is create a forum to have an environment where we as employers could come together and talk to one another and find out what are best practices, and work together to create shared technology that would lower the cost and better our recruiting operations.

What is the value proposition is for people becoming members of DirectEmployers?
The value proposition is shared technology. It’s very cost-effective and efficient. Through some of the products, like Direct SEO, Direct Syndication, and now this whole .Jobs Universe, the value is just phenomenal compared to anything else out there. So it’s the products and services, one. Number two is camaraderie – the networking, meeting your colleagues, like never before. We do these annual conferences. We’re able to come together. We also occasionally have regional meetings and we’ll have phone chats, so it’s coming together as a group and connecting with your colleagues. There’s also a commitment to reach out and change some of the practices out there in the community and the industry. We’ve done a lot of testifying to Congress on best practices and working with OFCCP on hiring veterans and the like. It’s too numerous to mention the all of the good that this Association is doing in the marketplace. As I said, there is nothing like it out there. The power, and what you can create when the employers come together and work as a team is amazing.

You mentioned .jobs – would you mind expanding on that more and telling me a little bit about your perspective?
It’s so exciting because finally, we’re going to have this top-level domain, one place on the Internet, one top level domain that’s trusted with vetted content – only real employers, no fake jobs or duplicates. The idea is to have all the jobs in the marketplace. Now, we’ve got a very unique model, so it’s very exciting and there’s a question…how popular will this be, right? Well, I can tell you I was showing some senior executives some of the undercurrent from some of the existing marketplace players and the comments they’re making, and the comment made to me was “this is going to be big.” So we’re very excited. Now, I think with .jobs, a lot of the ideas we had in the early ‘90’s of what the Internet could become for recruiting, are finally going to be realized.

We’re already thinking 3-5 years down the line about what else can be done to make this an efficient labor marketplace, creating a standard nomenclature for how we label jobs and how we communicate. There is so much more to come, and the possibilities are endless, but the key now is that HR is back in control of the marketplace… and that is what’s exciting.

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