By Patrick Richard:
Job seekers find a reliable resource in the Internet. This socially enriched space makes it possible to connect with people far and wide and to unearth viable job leads when looking for work. A survey conducted by Jobvite revealed that 92 percent of U.S. companies are using social media networks to recruit talent, up from 78 percent just five years ago.
Social job sites have indeed revolutionized the online job space, leaving job seekers who are less technologically inclined and social media savvy with a major gap to mine. The advent of the social-media powered job search — and the influx in the number of options available to job seekers that followed — have changed the way people identify land positions.
The Rise Of Referrals In The Job Search
Using social media-enriched job sites puts job seekers with well-kept social media presence and massive networks at an advantage. Research shows that while only one in 100 general applicants wind up with a seat in the office, one in seven referrals will land a job with a company they apply to. Job sites that leverage online social connections allow job seekers to pinpoint the organizations that they’re already connected to by a few degrees of separation, meaning they increase their likelihood of being hired if they do in fact have someone in their network who has been previously employed or is currently working at the company they’re interested in.
Online First Impressions Matter
Results of one eye-tracking study shows that the average time spent viewing an applicant’s online profile is 5.7 seconds, with most of the attention going to job title and profile picture. While having a personal brand that’s clearly defined and conveyed by up-to-date social media profiles improves your attractiveness as a candidate to employers, the hyperfocus on this job search tool reduces talented candidates and their accomplishments to a photo on a web page and job title that may not adequately portray capabilities. This can be problematic for job seekers who have less time on their hands to devote to maintaining their presence on social networking sites. Now, even the the time-strapped and those who are less technologically inclined must dedicate valuable time to building online profiles that will catch an employer’s attention.
Power in Numbers?
There are numerous sites available to employers, recruiters, and talent that offer services, software, and job search engines. Job seekers post resumes and while employers supply the job openings and review talent profiles and submissions.
The increase in the number of socially powered job search sites social means there are far more options available, but do they all stack up? Most engines turn up the same results, and the few that don’t update often lead talent to expired postings, job sites that require a credit card and registration to view, or scams.
Today’s job search space has been changed by the influx of social job search sites and search engines in general. Talent must exercise discretion when using job search sites and employers using these spaces must work to ensure postings are up-to-date, complete, and accurate. The joint effort of every contributor to the online and social job search space bears responsibility for maintaining effectiveness and results for employers and talent alike.
Patrick Richard is the president and founder of ShinyNeedle, a job site that allows employers to submit challenges to job candidates and see how they can impact a business from day one, making the hiring process more interactive. You can connect with Patrick and ShinyNeedle on Twitter and Facebook.