Why Facebook is the Recruiter’s Choice

May 11, 2012 8:11 pm Published by Bill Boorman

A few weeks ago I blogged about how I was seeing more and more companies looking to move their career pages from traditional websites to fan pages on Facebook. As you’d expect, there are still a few people who are showing resistance to this. Andy Headworth went as far as to write a blog post about this, outlining why it was a bad idea. Whenever there is talk of Facebook for recruiting, there is a clamour of recruiters and recruiting specialists who battle against the rapid move from personal space to a mix of business and personal space. What is becoming clear is that the two are becoming inseparable, and that trying to resist is a bit like King Canute telling the sea to go backwards.

What is clear following the conversation that followed my post is some clear misunderstandings as to how the application process through Facebook actually works. Recent job seeker research conducted by Bullhorn Reach demonstrates that whilst candidates are most likely to look for a job or career advice over their next move on Facebook, recruiters are most prolific on LinkedIn. This isn’t really a surprise. LinkedIn is really the sourcing channel in my opinion. It is the easiest channel to identify people through search, and the easiest place to make approaches.

What I’m seeing is that the users of each channel are deciding the purpose and function of each of the social channels. Twitter is the place where they are most likely to go browsing for content, or talking to people they don’t know. LinkedIn is their reference point when they want to apply for things, be found or check people out. You come across a new contact, you check them on LinkedIn.

Facebook is Different
The social network is where people spend most of their on-line time, and whilst some success can be achieved promoting jobs to browsers through advertising, increasingly a companies fanpage is the place where people form connections and relationships with brands. It’s what I would describe as personality branding. Different to the over used term personal branding, personality branding is more about giving a business a human voice and feel. Detached from previous marketing and advertising efforts, which were transactional in nature, and more about emotional connections and communication. What we are seeing from the applications coming from Facebook is that we may not get the volume of Twitter, but we are getting much better efficiencies in terms of conversions, and that has to be good for recruiters.

The other big reason cited for shying away from Facebook is that people don’t want to give access to their personal details. With the recruiting apps there is no need to be a friend or give access to personal data. There’s also the argument that not everyone has a Facebook profile. This argument is a bit like saying not everyone is on the internet, so best not go there. More people are on Facebook than aren’t, and they spend more time there than anywhere else. They are used to engaging, liking and sharing content. The application process, when kept in a Facebook environment leads to a better experience, and with the right app, you don’t need a Facebook account to apply.

Page, Sweet Page
Pages are proving popular because they enable external people to look inside the company. Photos, comments, video, blog posts and updates all live on timeline and get people talking and sharing. A simple job app gives access to jobs without the need to push jobs in content, and the application process can link with the ATS, without needing to go in to the ATS. The data capture is driven by the application rather than the applicant, ending up in the same place.

Facebook has moved on and is a channel that will be driving more and more successful hires, without the volume of candidates who end up disinterested in the organisation or the job.

Bill

This post was written by Bill Boorman