So what’s the deal… are employers REALLY using social networking sites and search engines to screen candidates? I used to believe this was true and in growing numbers until I saw the SHRM (Society for Human Resource Professionals) 2011 survey. This begs the question, Is the use of social media hype or reality?
SHRM Data Indicates HR is NOT jumping on the bandwagon
67% of HR professionals say No, we are not using social networks to screen and don’t plan to.
59% of HR professionals say No, we don’t use search engines to screen applicants and don’t plan to.
This is from the 2011 study of SHRM professionals and 541 respondent answers were used. Here’s a link to the study so you can read this for yourself.
66% say they are not using social networks due to a concern about legal risks/discovering information about protected characteristics (e.g., age, race, gender, religious affiliation)
I scratch my head and wonder why these numbers are so high. Is it the respondents? Is it the year 2011? Is it how the question was asked, screening applicants, not recruiting applicants? Here is other data showing the rise of social media being used to recruit/source/find candidates.
Microsoft’s Survey Says…
89% of recruiters and HR professionals said they were researching candidates online.
They called it online reputational information. In 2010, Microsoft commissioned a survey. 275 HR professionals and recruiters were surveyed during 2009 for this report.
89% of companies will be using social networks to recruit
(that means to source candidates and announce openings). Jobvite is recruiting software and an ATS system.
45% say they ALWAYS use social profiles to assess candidates.
This survey was also released in 2011. Jobvite surveyed 800 respondents from the HR and recruiting industry. Most were in a recruiting/staffing and HR role and represented technical, services and healthcare industries. You can see for yourself by downloading their survey.
Other Sources Weighing in:
45% of companies plan to invest more in social recruitment
(a 2012 survey of 400 company representatives) TweetMyJobs shares job openings via Twitter.
48% of recruiters use only LinkedIn to recruit and 21% of recruiters are using all 3 social networks
according to Bullhorn’s survey of 35,000 recruiters in the Bullhorn user network. Bullhorn Reach is a social recruiting system.
There are many infographics showing the use of social recruiting and job seeker activity across social networks. So how wide-spread and how deep does this trend run? The answer will vary depending on who you ask (the respondents), who conducts the study, the size of the company, and the industry. Some people are early adopters, others are afraid of the legal implications, others don’t care at all and have asked for Facebook logins and passwords.
You can wait on the sidelines or you can jump in and test the waters now. As I see it, it can’t hurt!
How are you using social media in your job search?
Hannah Morgan speaks and writes about job search and career strategies. She founded CareerSherpa.net to educate professionals on how to maneuver through today’s job search process. Hannah was nominated as a LinkedIn Top Voice in Job Search and Careers and is a regular contributor to US News & World Report. She has been quoted by media outlets, including Forbes, USA Today, Money Magazine, Huffington Post, as well as many other publications. She is also author of The Infographic Resume and co-author of Social Networking for Business Success.