In the early days of the 20th century, fish-processing plants in Manhattan’s Fulton Fish Market would throw open their doors early in the morning, quickly vetting and then employing many of the assembled fish-processing workers waiting outside. That process is largely the same, today—employers place job ads online or (less and less often) in print newspapers, figuratively throwing open their factory doors to begin vetting and choosing among the people who respond to those ads.
That’s all changing, as talented job seekers reject this approach. So employers have hit on an alternative to the bureaucratic recruitment system: Talent Hives. These are communities of people interested in an employer (whether because they’re job hunting themselves, or just curious, or because they’re fans of the product or service the organization produces) and willing to be in two-way touch with that employer over time. (For the simplest example of a Talent Hive, think of a Facebook company page or a LinkedIn group). Talent Hives are popular because they’re easy to set up, and because the two-way and group communication makes it easy for companies to learn more about potential job applicants (including people who are currently working for their competitors) even when they don’t have open positions.