Vast Majority of Employers Recruit Via Social Media

While it’s too soon to say, there are signs (hopefully, maybe, knock on wood, God willing) that the Great Recession may finally be ending and hiring is picking up. And anyone planning to look for a new job in the New Year would be well advised to turn to social media, judging by the results of a new survey of 1,600 recruiters and human resources execs by Jobvite, which found that the vast majority of employers are using social media to find new hires.

Overall 94% of employers surveyed by Jobvite are currently using, or plan to begin using, social media to recruit workers. That’s up 5% from the 2011 survey, and 16% from the 2008 survey. Meanwhile 93% said they would at least look at an applicant’s social profile, and 42% said they have reconsidered a candidate (both thumbs up and thumbs down) based on their social profile. 78% of employers have already hired someone via social media. Unsurprisingly LinkedIn is the most popular tool for professional recruiting, used by more than nine out of ten recruiters to search or contact (or review) likely prospects.

An unflattering or ill-judged social profile can indeed torpedo your job prospects, with 60% of recruiters saying they were turned off by profanity or bad grammar and punctuation, and 47% saying they would judge an applicant negatively based on references to alcohol use. On the other hand 65% said they had a favorable reaction to people who mentioned volunteer work or donating to charity.

Social media may be ubiquitous in the recruiting world, but companies might want to be careful about letting applicants know they’re being screened on the basis of social media, according to new research by social psychologists at North Carolina State University, which found that employers pay a price for social media screening potential hires. Two-thirds of the applicants surveyed said they found the employer less attractive because of the screening process.

Of course not all employers are so judgmental: last week the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Martin Dempsey, said military recruiters should offer young people who posted damaging content on social media a “second start”: “We’d say to young men and women, ‘You know what? You probably exposed some things in your social media persona… that would disqualify you, actually, from service. But we’re going to give you a shot to start over.”

3 comments about "Vast Majority of Employers Recruit Via Social Media".
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  1. Paul Robinson from Viridian Development Corporation, December 9, 2013 at 3:49 p.m.

    This is why I generally don't use Facebook for anything except single-sign in, as a lot of websites allow you to sign into them using your Facebook profile. So, if it wasn't for that sign-in feature I personally wouldn't even have an account on Facebook.

  2. Douglas Ferguson from College of Charleston, December 9, 2013 at 5:17 p.m.

    Um, according to the White House, the Great Recession ended in the summer of 2009. Problem solved.

  3. Erik Sass from none, December 9, 2013 at 6:27 p.m.

    @Douglas Ferguson Oh right, how silly of me! Thanks, I feel more prosperous already.

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