Sunday, August 17, 2003

My major efforts continue to be the SPM ResumeBlog Project, signing up leaders for the new software guilds, and developing a value statement for membership fees.

The most recent instructions on how to create your own SPM ResumeBlog.

Two SPM BlogProject team members are putting the instructions into a combination of screen shots and text. Then we hope to turn it into a presentation (ppt with audio). Here's an example from my website - Web Communities, Web Collaboration, Social Software

I'm working on a presentation that explains the purpose of the ResumeBlog (and its accompanying services such as the SPM Knowledge Center,, etc.)

Here's a draft of the email I plan to send to the SPM Members this week:

    Subject: The Future of SPM - pls read

    Dear SPM Members,

    On November 15th, SPM will be two years old. During this time we have grown to more than 4,000 members and each weekday post approx. 10 (?) jobs targeted for software marketing and business development professionals. The SPM Members are recognized as a high-quality focused group from which to find software, networking, and internet marketing and business professionals. Job posters continually tell us that when they post a job to SPM, the percentage of qualified respondents is very high (approx. 70%), As you may know, the biggest challenge facing a job poster is sifting through the deluge of respondents to find the qualified candidates. Other job boards typically have a much lower ratio of qualified to unqualified candidates and the best candidates can even be overlooked! The jobs SPM posts are of equally high quality. The SPM Job Posting Team screens each job to make sure it is appropriate for the group, ensures that the job information is adequate, and structures the job posting in a standardized way to make job posting scanning easy.

    But....with 4,000 members and 50 job postings per week, it will take 15 years for every SPMer to find a job.

    So, we are devising new services to enable the SPM Members to tap into the jobs that are never posted, but are instead filled by the hiring manager, human resources manager, or recruiter seeking out and finding the appropriate candidate. Estimates vary widely on the percentage of jobs that are filled this way, but we believe it may be as high as 80%

    In order for SPM to develop these new services we need funding. While I believe there are seven potential revenue streams for SPM (and its siblings - Software Engineering Professional Guild, Software Entrepreneur Professional Guild) the two simplest to implement at this time are:

    • charging for job postings
    • charging a membership fee

    Within the SPM Management Team, we have decided that charging for job postings is not a wise move at this point for several reasons:

    • given the state of the market, putting any barrier up for a job poster is not appropriate
    • given that the number of jobs posted is 50 per week, charging for job postings would not bring in much of a revenue stream unless the fee was in the mid-hundreds of dollars
    • most importantly -- we believe the job seeker/job poster relationship is undergoing a profound change -- fewer and fewer jobs will be posted and more and more jobs will be filled by the candidate being "found" by the person who has a job to fill

    We are aware that other job boards charge a job posting fee, and while that may be currently viable for a job board which has tens of thousands of members stretching across all markets and roles, we do not believe this is appropriate for us, or even a sustainable revenue stream.

    Therefore, the SPM Management Team has concluded that in order to continue forward with SPM and its sibling Professional Guilds, we will need to impose a small membership fee starting in the last quarter of 2003. While the exact fee has not yet been determined, we estimate that it will be $10/month or less. In return, SPM Members will receive additional services, in particular, a service that allows the member to create a "360 Degree Resume", that is, a multi-dimensional view of you as a professional. Key to our implementation of this service is the concept that YOU, the member, will have full ownership of your data. While it may be OK to let an organization like Friendster own your profile as a friend, and links to your friends, when it comes to your career and professional persona on the web, no corporation should have those rights.

    We are looking for additional volunteers to help us design and implement the new services. Here are some of the volunteer roles that need to be filled. All tasks are done as projects with 2-3 people per project. Volunteers must be able to devote at least 4 hours/week.

    • volunteer project management
    • "360 Degree Resume" definition, implementation, rollout (this is an extension to the ResumeBlog project)
    • pricing analysis, cost/benefit analysis
    • implementation of membership fee software
    • incorporation as a not-for-profit
    • survey analysis and reporting
    • press communications
    • job postings
    • partner alliances
    • other?

    To find out more about my vision of the future of SPM, visit The Future of Professional Guilds.

    SPM Management is also working with the top academic researchers in professional guilds, labor relations, social networking, and contractual relationships. We are on an inexorable migration from the "lifetime employee" environment to professionals being their own business, or "free agent". Professionals will no longer be able, or want to, rely on any employer to manage their career. It's now solely our responsibility to build our own business of ourselves, and we need to invest in the infrastructure to do so.

    Feedback welcome. Please send it to the SPM Management Team at


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