Fish where the fish are, the old saying goes, and when it comes to job recruitment that increasingly means social media, according to the Financial Times, which documents the cultural transition at parcel shipper UPS. FT notes that in five years UPS has gone from spending 90% of its recruitment ad budget on traditional media in 2005 -- including print media, local and cable TV, and radio -- to spending 97% on social media currently, including of course a substantial presence on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
Overall, the number of employees hired by UPS through social media channels has jumped from 19 in 2009 to 955 in 2010. FT quoted Matt Lavery, UPS corporate talent acquisition manager, as saying: "We certainly think that there is going to be a shift away from traditional job boards to a social media paradigm." The article notes that UPS headhunters use text messages and online tracking tools to communicate with applicants and also pick out potential employees.
So basically, UPS completely shifted its entire recruitment budget out of traditional media into online media -- specifically social media -- in the space of a few years. While UPS is just one company, figures like these nonetheless attest to the massive shift in online behaviors brought about by social media, and may also hint at the implications for traditional media spending down the road.
Overall, according to stats from social recruiting software company Jobvite cited by FT, 83% of U.S. companies said they will use social network Web sites for job recruiting this year, with 46% planning to increase their investment in these channels.