Mees van Velzen: ‘We live in the golden age of recruitment’

Finding and connecting with the right candidates in these times of shortage is hard. Mees van Velzen (MrWork) thinks that we, on the contrary, live in the golden age of recruitment. He will tell more about this on TA-Live, but we wanted to see a glimpse of his presentation.

What are you gonna talk about at TA-Live?

“Our mission is: we make recruitment social. We believe that we live in the golden age of recruitment. This means that when companies recruit the right way they don’t suffer from shortage on the job market. But how do you do this? Nowadays you have a direct line with your target group via social media. Imagine that I told you 20 years ago: you can send everyone who works at the competitor a message. As a recruiter you would have gone mad of disbelief, but this is reality. The important thing is how you utilize this line the right way. If you have the right focus you can build a talent pool of people who really feel a connection with your company. Then you don’t have to depend on recruitment agencies and people will work longer for you, because they are intrinsically motivated.”

What is talent management for you?

“It’s a big concept. I think that companies should realise that they are actually naked and everyone can look inside. This means that you can form the dialogue with your target group the way you want and if you do it the right way, you will enter the golden age of recruitment. The recruitment process should be more social with the acknowledgement that we live in a new era.’

MrWork has offices in the Netherlands and the UK. Do you have plans to expand?

“Yes, the markt of Germany with a physical office is high on the agenda. Of course there a differences between countries. The Netherlands has a lot of startups and technology and we are ahead when it’s about employer brand. In the UK for example, this is different, because the traditional recruitment agencies have more power. They need to take more steps when it comes to thinking about how employer branding can be efficient for their recruitment strategy.

We are people that embrace new technologies quickly. When you look at LinkedIn, you will see that the Dutch are the most active community in the world. There is a lot of innovation here, but companies start abroad. We went to the UK, because their market is really interesting. We have the ambition to make sure that companies never experience shortage again, preferably worldwide.”

You say we are in the golden age of recruitment. What follows after?

“You have to know for each job who the next 3 to 10 candidates are who would be suitable. You have contact with them, even before the person who has the job now has left the company. This means you can be more strategically with your staff planning, which creates more flexibility on the job market. It is important that when we come in an economic downturn again you don’t have to build up your recruitment from scratch.”

What is your biggest challenge?

“We try to change the market in a way that companies realise that we live in a new age and adjust there recruitment strategy. That is a challenge on its own, because you’re dealing with traditional companies who have been doing the same for decades. It’s about a mindset that’s needs to change. We do this by having conversations and to achieve success, so the rest of the market will think: this is the way to go.”

Can you tell something about yourself that most people don’t know?

“What a lot of people don’t know is that – apart from the chance I saw in the market of consumers because of the rise of social media –  I founded MrWork, because I hate to apply for a job the traditional way. It’s hard to decide on an interview of half an hour if I want to spend a lot of my time at a company. That’s the advantage of founding your own company: you don’t have to deal with that anymore!”