Will Facebook Recruiting Be A Friend or Foe to RPO?

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"Like" it or not, the social recruiting universe is expanding. Facebook has entered the scene with its long-awaited job board, aggregating open positions from an array of public and private career resources to help candidates find jobs. So will Facebook prove a friend or foe to RPO?

Our opinion: friend.

Like LinkedIn, Facebook has an opportunity to expand its influence among jobseekers by becoming a go-to resource for companies looking to reach their largest, most diverse applicant pools. The more jobseekers Facebook attracts, the more companies will rely on Facebook as a recruiting tool, creating an organic cycle of improvement that benefits everyone involved – especially recruiters.

That's because behind every great recruiting tool lies an even better recruiter. A large applicant pool is always beneficial, but it's the recruiter who can sift through that pool to find the star players who will succeed.

According to a recent survey conducted by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) on behalf of the Social Jobs Partnership, nearly 50 percent of employers are already using Facebook in their recruiting process. We recently conducted similar research into the strategic use of social media for sourcing efforts by the Fortune 100 companies and uncovered comparable results. Of the Fortune 100, 44 percent have a dedicated company careers page on Facebook while a whopping 91 percent have dedicated careers pages on LinkedIn.

But companies aren't necessarily using Facebook as a recruiting platform just yet. As NACE pointed out, approximately 96 percent of current users cited using the platform for their company information pages, where potential job applicants can educate themselves on the company, access job listings and get contact information for further inquiries. Most are still using Facebook as a passive communication platform, while actively engaging and vetting potential candidates elsewhere.

The opportunity for RPO providers on Facebook – and a host of other social platforms – lies in our ability to help companies determine how to transform these venues from points of access into points of engagement. It isn't enough for a company to simply have its job openings listed on its Facebook and LinkedIn careers pages. Companies who stop there often end up with a large number of applications from an equally large pool of unqualified applicants. Rather, companies need to socialize within each user community to promote their most vital roles, and advertise them when it makes sense strategically. They need to join like-minded groups where they'll be most likely to interact with qualified candidates, and optimize their job descriptions to ensure that their listings are actually appearing in the searches of their most promising prospects. They need to use every opportunity available to bring the best candidates into their talent community, and then deliver on their promise to keep them informed about and engaged with their brand.

At Seven Step, we believe the job board is only the beginning for Facebook. Like LinkedIn before it, Facebook will aspire to close the gap between available jobs and qualified applicants through advanced targeting tools that are improving every day.

And we'll be happy to rub elbows with increasingly targeted groups of potential candidates from across the globe.

That's what "friends" are for, after all.


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