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Social Media: Influencing the Hiring Process

Social media is helping companies and recruiters reach more candidates. Social media is a fast, effective recruiting tool that is changing the way businesses post jobs.

This type of recruiting tool should be used in addition to other traditional search methods. For example, using LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter can help attract tech-savvy applicants, while promoting jobs on websites, such as Monster.com and Indeed.com are also good methods for attracting traditional applicants that do not search for jobs on social media sites.

Employers cannot discriminate based on online profiles, as this is unethical. This should give applicants the peace of mind to apply for jobs online. In fact, many companies are using online job applications, which are helping to simplify the employment process.

Employers need to focus on branding before placing job applications online. It is crucial to advertise the right message, as this attract candidates that are more qualified. Statistics show that social media has helped to make recruiting easier, more open and allows companies to reach a larger demographic. However, social media is unlikely to replace traditional recruitment methods anytime in the near future.

Hiring managers should work closely with recruiters or in-house marketing teams to make sure that the right business messages are relayed online. This includes highlighting the values, vision and culture of the company. Just because someone is hired for a job, does not mean it has been a success. Success is determined by how long an employee stays with a company.

Many traditional job recruitment sites have seen a substantial decrease in their revenues. In 2009, Monster.com experienced a 31% drop in revenues. Recruiters and hiring managers are taking a proactive approach to employment by reaching a wide variety of potential talent across several social networking platforms.

In fact, more candidates that are qualified are advertising their skills via social media sites, which make it easier for recruiters to find employees that meet the required skill sets. However, online profiles do not necessarily offer an accurate representation of candidates. It is recommended that employers are cautious about the content of social media profiles. Some potential candidates may not feel comfortable sharing their information publicly. Additionally, some companies are requesting that employees not promote themselves online, as this makes them vulnerable to poaching. In some cases, it is best to post job openings on social media sites and allow applicants to apply.

There are some problems with only posting jobs on social media. Statistics show that nearly 80% of LinkedIn users are of Caucasian decent. This means that minorities are often overlooked. Additionally, a small percentage of users have postgraduate degrees and high earners are less likely to participate in social media.

Most importantly, relationships matter when it comes to making business decisions. Personal communication is never a substitute for the convenience of social media.

The latest studies also show that nearly 80% of companies use social media for recruiting purposes, while 95% used LinkedIn for recruiting.

Ultimately, social media is fast, cost effective and allows employers to advertise their specific branding. However, it does lack the ability to attract a diverse group of applicants, can be very time consuming, can subject a company to discrimination claims and ultimately lacks the control of traditional recruiting efforts.

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