Silly Bandz and RPOz

As I recently learned from my niece, Silly Bandz are the latest kid craze. Silly Bandz are the silicone bands that come in all different colors and shapes — animals, princesses, alphabet, baseball, etc…. Kids wear them around their wrists and trade them, ad they’re so popular they’ve been banned in classrooms around the country because they’re too distracting.

Recruitment Process Outsourcing is, as the RPO Alliance summed up in 2009, “a form of business process outsourcing (BPO) where an employer transfers all or part of its recruitment processes to an external service provider. An RPO provider can provide its own or may assume the company’s staff, technology, methodologies and reporting. In all cases, RPO differs greatly from providers such as staffing companies and contingent/retained search providers in that it assumes ownership of the design and management of the recruitment process and the responsibility of results.”

So, what do these 2 seemingly unconnected phenomena have in common?

Well, the answer occurred to me the other day when I joined the RPO Summit 2010 LinkedIn group.

The kids wearing Silly Bandz have created a vibrant community built around a common interest.  All these kids are wearing Silly Bandz on their arms and seeing one another wearing Silly Bandz that it gives them a sense of belonging to something.

Similarly, for both RPO buyers and RPO service providers, we have created a vibrant community with the hub being the RPO Summit, the RPO Alliance, SharedXpertise, and HRO Today. It too is extremely visible. Our community is united in promoting and developing the RPO industry.

And while Silly Bandz will probably go the way of the Webkinz, Koosh Ball, and Hula Hoop, RPO is definitely here to stay.

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