Atlassian, of course, is not new to innovating their HR/recruitment processes. When you are growing at great speed, there is little choice, but to innovate. Trial and error often rules the roost, but a key driving force for Joris is ‘not wasting time’. Running a team of three and servicing offices in three continents is no easy task. It’s easy to see why Atlassian frequently experiment. Standing still is not an option.
It may be recalled, a year ago Atlassian controversially embarked on a new way of working with recruiters (check out Ross Clennett’s blog for a complete lowdown). The subsequent outcry was somewhat puzzling given that most recruitment firms willingly subject themselves to PSAs with equal or more restrictive conditions.
Atlassian’s new effort is interesting. At first glance it looks like fair game – perform and receive more than average rewards; falter once and you are out. My main reservation is Rule 3. I think ‘one strike and you are out’ policy is probably too harsh. Even the best recruiters make mistakes. Unless mediocrity is an endemic trait, a recruiter deserves another chance to redeem herself.
It will be interesting to see how recruitment firms approach the new initiative. Last time around the protests were loud and laced with vitriol partly, I suspect, because the state of the economy was dire and few employers were hiring. In times of plenty recruiters tend to behave very differently, as does their clients.
Two things are worth pondering.
Atlassian is not the first and will not be the last to innovate the client-recruiter relationship. Throughout our industry’s history, examples of employers trying to work a relationship to their benefit abounds – PSAs are created to control price, online procurement tools are used to screen suppliers, internal hiring team are rented and new engagement models concocted daily.
Today’s reality is employers have a lot more options at their disposal. Social media alone opens a whole new world of opportunities. However, it seems to me, attitude, more than anything else, is undergoing the fastest change. Small and nimble organisations like Atlassian are harbinger of things to come.
Secondly, it’s clear that Atlassian recognises the importance of recruiters. That one of the most visible employment brand in Australia feels the need to design an elaborate system to engage recruiters is a testament to the value of recruiters. Ironically, at a time when alternatives to recruiters seem to be most abundant, the value they can provide is gaining prominence and appreciated.