Sure, blogs were cool years ago when everyone and their 13-year old niece had one. Today they seem to be everywhere and cover topics from conquering global climate change to cleaning the soap ring off your bathtub. The question is: how can blogs improve my hiring process?

Many of your best undiscovered prospects are too nervous to give you a direct phone call. Instead, they will send electronic applications from your website, respond to advertisements, or send a bland resume through snail mail. You are then tasked with picking through the mountains of hopefuls to find a handful of potential interview candidates. This is a waste of your time; frankly, it is a waste of your patience and skills as well.

Blogs have become more accessible to the masses in recent years, and job seekers are creating them frequently. A blog is a great way for those seeking employment to show off their expertise in either the industry they work or the one they’d like to move towards. Rather than waste your time trying to read over-inflated one-sided resumes, take a few seconds to Google your newest candidate. If they have a blog, their writing will give you greater insight into their personality and professional style than any one-page career description or 15 minute phone conversation.

If their blog is twelve months of sound sales strategy, they are probably qualified to be your new Senior Sales Trainer – take some time to give them a call and ask more questions. If, instead, their blog chronicles their live of under-age college bar diving, then you probably don’t want to offer them the vacant Alcohol Awareness Advocate position – but make sure you still take time to put them through the traditional resume screening and phone interview process. A blog can give you great insight into a candidate’s abilities, but its power should be used only for good – not to hurt the candidate’s chances.