Would you go on a crazy blind date where you didn’t have a chance to deconstruct every aspect of a potential suitor’s online profile?
OK Cupid believes you will.
They have a mobile app that gives users less information — not more — about a potential future ex-boyfriend. They are encouraging members to take a risk and go on crazy blind dates.
The way to get people to say yes to more dates is to offer them less information. A user can’t spend hours scrutinizing profiles or writing messages because there are no profiles to scrutinize and no way to exchange messages, at least not until you’ve already made a date. There aren’t even photos, really — just digitally scrambled headshots.
Instead, there’s an algorithm, which takes what it knows about you from your track record on the site and, if you have one, your OK Cupid profile, and offers you a limited number of dates to choose from. You can accept one of those or pick a time and place of your own choosing, in which case the algorithm will offer you up to others in the same manner.
[Side note: I am so glad that I am not single. Shit is très complicated in 2013.]
But I do like the idea of using a mobile app to tell people, “You suck at dating. You don’t know what you want. You suffer from analysis paralysis. You give us a ton of data. Let us help you have fun.”
[Side note: If I were single, my online profile would show that I don't want abusive men or drug addicts. And I like tall guys who make lots of money. But whatever. I'd probably take an average dude who lives with his mom if he likes cats.]
Anyway, I like the idea of crazy blind dates for recruiting, too.
We have two ways of hiring people in America:
- We scrutinize candidates for intangible shit like culture and fit.
- We have a secondary labor market where the local Director of Operations screams YOLO and calls a Kelly Girl to answer the phones for a few days while your receptionist is out with fake flu.
[Cough cough. I am sick. I need Friday off to make this a four-day weekend.]
This nice thing about the secondary labor market? If the Kelly Girl sucks, no harm/no foul. If she works out, you find a way to fire the sketchy receptionist.
So I wonder — what if we thought about the labor market a little more creatively? Does having more information about a candidate really make the hiring process any better?
What if we just used an OK Cupid app to say, “Hey, we need a project coordinator. Give us some profiles via our mobile device. We’ll pick one based on your recommendations and she will start on Tuesday.”
Bam. You’re done.
It’s so easy. You will never have to consider fake attributes like likability or fit. You can’t discriminate based on race, color, religion, national origin, sexuality, gender, family status, ability, disability, veteran status or genetic background. And if it works out, great. If not, you move on.
OH YOU FOOL! THE COST OF HIRING SOMEONE IS SO EXPENSIVE.
[Yeah, so is the cost of an ongoing vacancy. And you're not really all that good at predicting future success, buddy.]
Honestly, I think that OK Cupid offers a good model for the hiring process. And with this model, you don’t really need HR.
Hiring could fun, again! That’s worth a risk, right?