Hiring Through Social Networking Sites

Do you really believe that social networking sites are relevant enough to cater to the ever growing needs of the job market? Are they capable enough to provide quality manpower to organizations? Is it a good and reliable solution?


I would like to tell you my story in few lines.It really feels strange that I got my job through a social networking website. None is ready to buy my story, but it is as true as the sun rising in the east. Everyone is amazed that I landed up with such a good job when others really have to slog it out scanning sites, looking for opportunities and mailing resumes. Things just don’t end here and have to keep waiting for the response. Luckily I joined the famous Indian student networking portal – www.collegespeaks.com, where I would regularly post comments in the ”Quotes” section and that helped me grab my first job offer even before I finished my college.


After the dot com boom a lot of jobsites came to the fore which could supplement the traditional hiring structure. Referrals also started gaining popularity. But still the job market was not completely untapped.Now comes the social networking way of finding candidates which many professinals and HR recruitment firms consider better than many job sites. So the questions- do you Orkut, or are Orkut you linked with LinkedIn, the most popular professional networking website, or is your face among the millions20080702_hiring_social_networking_orkut

faces in Facebook, or have you had your space booked in MySpace, aptly fall in line in the series of questions that I have put up so far.

Social networking websites have suddenly caught the fancy of job seekers 20080702_hiring_social_networking_face_bookand the Facebookrecruiters alike. The stats are not very much in favor of jobsites as they still account for 15-20% of lateral recruits in industries (Figures are in Indian context which may vary from country to country). Social networking Websites offer special avenues and special challenges simultaneously to both the entities- the seeker and the provider.

Pros and Cons of Hiring Through Social Networking

Mine is not the only isolated case to be sourced through a social networking site. If you make a search you will find a good number of people getting plum offers through various social networking sites. And a small fraction is of people like me who would never care to post resumes due to lethargy. Let’s see what job market is all about in the present day.
Pros and Cons of Hiring Through Social Networking
The job market consists of two types of persons. The proactive ones will search through different job sites emailing their resumes. Another category is of those whose resumes are not present on the job sites meaning a good number of quality man power is latent. But by engaging social network sites, the chances are very high that those latent potentials will be lucidly available. One can get in touch with persons who are not actively into the job market as per the organization’s needs and offer the proposal.
Social networking sites (SNS) also play an important role when you are trying to set up a new venture in a foreign land or an alien country. Sites like LinkedIn can definitely help you in finding the right candidate who fits the bill. These sites are basically for professional or business networking. So when you compare them with jobsites they have a definite edge on the number of profiles on a SNS over the number of CVs stored in the database of jobsites. Another important factor why companies are looking at shifting from jobsites to networking sites can be attributed to the good number of youth accessing the latter.

20080702_hiring_social_networking_advantagesCommunities, forums or user groups have a particular type of user base which consists of people having penchant for particular things. Take for example: Orkut has communities like Indian Journalists. If a media organization wants to appoint a journalist in India, he can visit that particular community and take a look at the profiles as per its requirements. Social networking site thus present a better idea about the candidate as people are more open in social networking to express their feelings.

The major factor that goes against SNS is credibility. Some argue that SNS are more credible than jobsites as the profile is in the public domain with all the references like friend lists, fans or testimonials. However, on the yardstick of credibility both hold equally and one must check through references in either case.

20080702_hiring_social_networking_disadvantagesApart from the question of credibility, investment- both in terms of time and money also goes against SNS. Generally, job portals return with results quickly as compared to SNS. E-sourcing requires special set of skills to effectively spot the right talent.

For the Job Seeker and the Recruiter

20080702_hiring_social_networking_seekerThe recruiter and the job seeker - these are the two who enter into a new relationship. So the impetus is on both to help each other. The job seeker can use keywords and describe about him or her. And this one is a must- join communities where he/she thinks that prospective recruiters will come, but they according to his interests.
Hiring agencies, organizations should be careful that they get across all the necessary references before they finally decide upon the candidates. We must remember that hiring through social network is still in infancy. Thanks to Web2.0 and other technologies that are really making it happen.

The Times Ahead

20080702_hiring_social_networking_handshakeHiring Through Social Networking
Human resource is unequivocally the major asset of any organization and it involves a lot of things before a candidate is finally handed the offer letter. So it’s imperative that the organizations have to be diligent about the prospect.
The future seems very bright for the social networking sites. But nothing concrete can be said as when. Sites like LinkedIn have their profiles featured in the Google search pages. That is a big advantage for a prospective recruiter or a job seeker as they can specify the search details. Many companies have already started searching profiles in different sites that suits their taste. Experts believe in today’s competitive world, it is important to target active as well as passive job seekers.Many other such sites are already are looking at options to make their profiles or user database Google searchable.

The trend of recruiting from social media sites is here to stay and will grow eventually as targeted hiring can take place for free and that too with a background check on all social media sites like LinkedIn and Orkut. Though the person commenting on the prospect can be found to be bias at times, the prospect might be also connected to other networking sites where they have a different set of people to interact with. The reviewer can visit other social media sites to know more about the prospect in question and form a conclusion by synchronizing all comments. Apart from recruiting through job portals, campuses and other mediums; social media sites are going to be one of the coolest ways to recruiting talent. Job portals are here to stay but for how long, we can just speculate.

So what say! Haven’t I given you a valid excuse to keep Orkutting? Happy surfing and start building your network, after all business is all about networking.

  1. Srikant Patnaik on July 4th, 2008 at 09:11 | #1

    I think I have to change my notions abt social networking. i always thought that its wastage of time.But now I will definitely join other sites like LinkedIn and MySpace for sure. And if I get hired through a SNS, I will definitely send a packet of sweets to the one who authored this article.

  2. Sweta Sharma on July 18th, 2008 at 09:12 | #2

    hey its gr8 …by this it got easier for me to explain others that its worth spending our time on social sites .i mean it breaks the myth that social sites are good for nothing .apart from connecting people it helps in keeping us updated.at last i shoul appreciate the writer of this blog who presented the subtle stuffs which cant be easily digested in very easy and acceptable way.

  3. adult social network on September 24th, 2008 at 09:13 | #3

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  4. krishnan on November 10th, 2008 at 09:14 | #4


    Its a very great idea / one of the channel of hiring a right candidate who is in need for a challenging oportrunity.

  5. ravi arora on January 14th, 2009 at 09:16 | #5

    yeh thats true even as a a Internet marketing professional i havegot lots of job opportunities and communities related to my field from all these social networking sites its a real boom of web 2.0 trend :)

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    Great Post Thanx.

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