The role of social networking in HR recruitment


Jacob Mathew Pulikotil, 2Dr. K. Anandanatarajan, 3Dr. Sheela Srivastava

Holy Grace Academy of Management Studies, 2Annamalai University, 3Holy Grace Academy of Management studies 3



Holy Grace Academy of Management Studies Kuruvilassery P.O., Mala, Thrissur dist. Kerala – 680732, India

Abstract: Social media is widely used by people and organizations. People are using the benefits of social media in variety of ways, be it marketing or promotions or entrepreneurships. Many organizations and employers use social media to advertise and recruit new employees. There are a lot of websites which are dedicated to recruiting employees through social networking. These websites strategically promote jobs through corporate and personal profile pages. Social recruiting also is a cost-effective way to find qualified candidates and an ideal way to boost employee referrals. The reason is because many social networks are free, practically everyone uses them already, and they’re a good means for showcasing a brand. Social media or social networking provides greater visibility of potential opportunities for candidates who are not actively searching for a job. At the same time, recruiting or assessing potential recruits using social media can exclude people who do not have access to these facilities. Moreover employers also can discriminate people based on color, caste and creed. This study focuses on the use of social media networks for Human resource recruitment and the problems associated with its use. Introduction Social networking sites such as Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter are making it possible for an organization to share information among employees, in a new way on the Web. In February 2010, Facebook had 400 million active users (Owyang 2010). Facebook jumped ahead of Google by claiming 7.07 percent of U. S. traffic compared to Google’s 7.03 percent in March 2010 ( 2010). Facebook reached 29.9% of global Internet users versus 22.4% for MySpace. MySpace continues to be the most profitable social network, having about $1 billion in revenue versus $300 million for Facebook (Ostrow 2009). Twitter, a site that allows users to post only 140 characters at a time, has stabilized to roughly 20 million users (Gross 2010). Internationally, social networks have a high percentage of reach among Western Europe’s Internet audience. There were 282.7 million Internet users in Europe as of December 2008, 200 million of whom visited a social networking site. According to ComScore, the market reach is highest in the United Kingdom, with 79.8 percent, followed by Spain with 73.7 percent, Portugal with 72.9 percent, and Denmark with 69.7 percent (ComScore 2009). Russia is the fourth largest social networking market in Europe, behind the United Kingdom, Germany, and France (FreshNetworks Blog 2009). Not surprisingly, social networking is becoming increasingly prevalent in the workplace. Social networking sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn are some of the most powerful tools available to recruiters today. Facebook has more than 500 million members and regularly surpasses Google in site visits per day.1 LinkedIn has increased its number of registered users from roughly 40 million in 2009 to more than 100 million in 2011.2 As usage continues to skyrocket, more businesses are recognizing the fact that high-quality candidates can be reached faster and at lower cost using social networks than traditional recruiting methods. Social networks can give recruiters a competitive edge in locating and engaging the best candidates available to reach your company’s recruiting objectives. A recent survey indicated that 46 percent of IT professionals believe online social networking (OSN) is a valuable business tool, and of those, thirty-one percent indicated that it was crucial to business. Moreover, 85

Planning involves the forecasting of human resource needs in organizations and designing appropriate actions such as recruitment.percent of those surveyed. create a common culture. 2008). The software helps businesses find people and information. It is a vital part of corporate planning and budgeting procedures since. “Moreover. Many process improvements may be found through efficient social networking programs and organizational connectivity. and keep former employees in the loop (CIO Insight 2009). to on-boarding and learning programs. organizations can facilitate a collaborative corporate culture. enhance friendships among customers. human resource costs and forecasts both affect and are affected by longer-term corporate plans. OSN is becoming increasingly popular because of internal brand building. human resource planning deals with the systematic and continuing process of analyzing a firm’s human resource needs under mutating conditions and developing workforce policies suitable to the longer-term effectiveness of the organization. By offering employees the tools and technology to reach out and connect with one another. According to Leader-Chivee et al. diversity. Planning is carried out within the goals and general policy framework of the firm or agency. Human resource planning is a vital ingredient for the success of the organization in the long run. and developing products and offerings faster regardless of the organizational design (Communitelligence. facilitate recruiting and retention of younger workers who actively participate on social networks. improve knowledge management. training and career development based on identified needs. “corporate adoption of social networking. HR is playing an increasingly important role in businesses today. The benefits to employers of corporate social networking are many. it can also lead to employees spending increasing amounts of time involved in social networking. There are procedures to be followed by an organization which ensures that it has the right number and kind of people at the right place and time to enable achieve its objectives. enhancing employees’ motivation and satisfaction. even those who question the usefulness of social networking. while benefiting from a wide range of improved efficiencies. while new. What are the benefits associated with recruitment through Social networking sites? Review of Literature Recruitment: The strength of a company is based on the quality of its employees. Thus the role of HR is to bring the best employees to its stable so that the organization becomes productive. women’s and retiree 2009). understand relationships. finding. However. Human resource planning involves a complex task of forecasting and planning for the right numbers and the right kinds of personnel at the right places and at the right time to perform activities that will benefit the organization in accomplishing its objectives and in helping its members to satisfy their needs. . (2008). HR professionals have responsibility for recruiting and retaining talented employees too. changes in technology and availability of manpower. in everything from sourcing and recruiting. Objectives of the study The objective of the study is to find out: 1. How can social media be used effectively in the recruitment process? 2. unlocking and engaging hidden employee intellectual capital. as is often the case when technology rapidly advances. Recruitment is the process of generating a pool of qualified applicants for jobs. Another survey indicates that between 25 to 30 percent of companies with 500 or more employees have adopted some form of social networking (Leader-Chivee et al. to improved alumni. What are the tools available to recruit via social networking? 3. According to Fajana (2002). The objective of HR is to see that they recruit the right candidate for the right job. It is also affected by public policies. acknowledged that employees are using social networks at work (Perez 2009). is already showing enormous benefits. Human resource planning will be successful to the extent that it properly coordinates each of enumerated elements and it is essentially the fitting of resources to business needs in the longer term or shorter term as the case may be.

according to Pilbeam and Corbridge (2002) recruitment and selection extends to attracting suitable candidates. This aspect makes it even more important. career planning. eliminating unsuitable candidates and converting the successful candidates to an effective employee. The internet is becoming popular for its ability to provide suitable hi-tech. In order to decide on giving the information the firm should look at all the aspects including the impact on its image. Schwab. the organization have to go for external recruitment. Robertson and Smith (2001) support Armstrong’s viewpoint and added personality assessment to the lists guided by tests and interviews. selection and recruitment.. performance appraisal. (1997) the relationship between an employee and an organization begins much before the person joins the organization. and it is the policy of many organizations to promote from within the organization wherever possible to fill up a vacancy. In a study one of the important aspects of recruitment was the message the organization gives to the prospective candidates through various communications channels such as advertisements. with these potential benefits there are also some possible consequences. Thus. the British Psychology Society (BPS) (2007) concludes that the ability tests measure the capacity for: verbal reasoning. This results in overall improvement in the morale of the employees and their commitment towards the organization. training. There are many advantages from recruiting form within and it has been observed that such policies contribute to overall growth and success of the organization. Employment exchanges. targeted web advertisements etc. The relationship begins at the first point of contact between the person and organization. Promotion is used as a reward for past performance and intended to encourage the employees to continue their efforts in that direction. The promotion from within policy also provides other employees an opportunity to develop and take up higher roles. By filling vacancies in this way. similarly these technologies offer tremendous potential for recruitment. transfer and promotion. selection and socialization processes also. External sources of recruitment include: Educational and training institutes. customized recruitment messages to virtually infinite number of people at relatively little cost. Boxall and Purcel (2003) observe that many organizations including the well resourced still imagine that recruitment is all about attracting young workers fresh from schools or after only a few year in the labor market. Promotion from “within” is generally recognized as a foundation of good employment practices. selecting candidates and placing them on the job. an organization can capitalize on the investment it has made in recruiting. Another important tool for internal recruitment is organization’s ‘Intranet’ The web-based portal of the organization which can be accessed only by the employees of the organization. Armstrong (2009) states that recruitment and selection process come in four stages: defining requirements. The internet has and its technologies have revolutionized many aspects of business operations. Correspondingly. With the emergence of the World Wide Web and associated technologies. Types of Recruitment: a) Internal Recruitment: Many organizations have a policy of filling up a position above the entry level through promotion and transfer. the first point of contact is. (1989) Anderson and Ostroff. risk management. spatial reasoning and mechanical reasoning.The main functions of human resource department are: human resource planning. normally at the organization’s website or other web-based employment advertisement Cober et al. making informed decisions about the optimal presentation of organizational and employment-related information requires basic research on candidate reactions to realistic messages varying on different dimensions. According to Herriot. selecting. (1982) In the case of hiring. b) External Recruitment If there are no suitable candidates available in the organization. However. training and development. and developing its current employees. However. (2000). attracting candidates. numerical reasoning. experience within the organization. The interested employees can then apply for the job as per policy of the organization. The employers’ can increase their efforts with respect to search extensiveness by using more than one recruiting sources to reach different pools of potential applicants. Executive search agencies. The effective use of internal sources requires a system for locating qualified candidates and for enabling those who consider themselves to be qualified. it is important that maximum numbers of potential applicants are reached. In these cases the messages becomes important. casual . website. etc. The Human resources information system with the use of information technology has made it possible to create a database of each employee containing their qualifications. Binning and Barrett (1989) Organizations who take a decision to communicate with prospective candidates should give clear with regards to what to convey and how to convey so that the information provided to the candidates are real.

This suggests that they are seeing online recruitment as being a successful method in the future. (2) Ranging from most to least important. This automation allows recruiters to automatically post job openings to social media sites. meaning that the number of organizations using it grows more slowly. user-friendliness. However. thereby creating an upward trend in its overall use. As usage continues to skyrocket. an even fewer 34% reported using social media for HR purposes. it is presumed that the growth in the use of these methods was greater prior to 2000. (2) Ranging from most to least important. almost half of the organizations surveyed expected to increase their use of both corporate and commercial web sites during the next year. while Internet recruitment was used by a significant proportion of the recruiting population. placement agencies. Social networks can give recruiters a competitive edge in locating and engaging the best candidates available to reach the company’s recruiting objectives. the results were not in line with the predictions made in mid 1990. In comparison to the 77% who utilize social media for their recruiting efforts today. Social media sites have become such an important piece of the recruiting puzzle that they are being integrated into applicant tracking processes. efficiency. Therefore. process fairness. advertisement in media. studies have reported that HR professionals prefer some social media sites over others: • LinkedIn (94%) • Facebook (54%) . Only 40 per cent of current Internet recruitment users and about a fifth of non-Internet recruitment users expected to reduce their use of other recruitment methods because of their use of Internet recruitment. and Internet. Facebook has more than 500 million members and regularly surpasses Google in site visits per day. userfriendliness. we have witnessed quite a spike in social media recruitment activity. as well as granting candidates mobile access to job openings and applications. mine candidates through their social profiles. d) Recruitment using Social media Social networking sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn are some of the most powerful tools available to recruiters today. Summarize the key results. efficiency. employee referrals. selection image were identified as determinants of applicant satisfaction.callers. In their study they observed that out of the organizations surveyed only a quarter used commercial web sites. LinkedIn has increased its number of registered users from roughly 40 million in 2009 to more than 100 million in 2011. and Internet selection image were identified as determinants of applicant satisfaction. HR professionals have shifted focus to social media for recruiting purposes for a few reasons: • Ability to recruit passive job applicants who might not otherwise apply (80%) • Ability to target job candidates with specific skill sets (69%) • Increase employer branding and recognition (67%) In fact. 2011 survey results showed that 56% of respondents cited using social media to search and communicate with job applicants. In 2008. They conducted a survey of HR managers. given the fact that online recruitment was first introduced around 1995. With that being said. it was found that: (1) Applicants reported generally favorable reactions to the web-based procedure used by the organization. four out of five HR professionals are using social media as a recruitment tool primarily for its ability to attract candidates who would not typically apply. process fairness. just under a quarter found the method successful. many current non-users of online recruitment do not appear to be converting to the method. C) Online Recruitment Parry and Tyson (2008) studied the user of online recruitment in UK for a period of 6 years. However. The number of employers using social media for recruiting candidates is rapidly rising. report on the success of each channel in providing the best candidates. advertisement on the website etc. They noted that: (1) applicants reported generally favorable reactions to the web-based procedure used by the organization. online recruitment. however. more businesses are recognizing the fact that high-quality candidates can be reached faster and at lower cost using social networks than traditional recruiting methods. Interestingly. suggesting a longerterm trend towards the expansion of Internet recruitment in the future. Their results did not show a large increase in the number of organizations using corporate or commercial web sites over the past four years. labour contractors. Sylva and Mol (2009) observed in their study on e-recruitment which was conducted on 1360 applicants who used online method of application. Of those organizations that did use either online recruitment method.

there are various tools for human resource recruitment. It allows employees to company’s open jobs and sends targeted invitations to referral of employees through social networking sites like Facebook. 7 out of 10 employers have successfully hired a candidate through social media. Unsurprisingly. indicates that 92 percent of U. Twitter and LinkedIn. d) BranchOut: BranchOut makes it easy to connect with prospective employees in other Social networking accounts and find out the personal experience with potential candidates. and it highlights how the social media sites are now beginning to compete for ‘employer branding’ space. Checking a candidate’s credentials through his or her profile on social media sites is a global trend. Talent Pro finds a match among candidates according to the job specifications and role. It also has a Twitter-like "What Makes You Unique" feature. and recruiters are tapping their own private Facebook and LinkedIn networks to reach out to prospective candidates. 80% of companies use social media for recruiting and 95% of those companies are using LinkedIn for that purpose (research conducted by lewishowes. Recruitment experts agree that it’s now much easier for employers to gather data about potential candidates through social media sites. Linkedin is followed by Facebook and then Twitter. Tools for recruitment through Social networking: With the advent of social media and cloud In 2010. . as some experts suggest. Linkedin or Twitter and the tool will track the candidate’s postings. Organizations are creating their own profile pages on LinkedIn. The infographic. These tools vary from automated applicant responses to upgraded versions of old recruitment standbys.S. 83% of employers were using or planning to use social networks for hiring. The tool also matches prospective candidates with job listings based on matches found in their social profiles. companies have used social media networks in 2012 as part of their recruitment efforts. where applicants describe. 46% planned to spend more on social recruiting and 36% spent less on job boards (Jobvite. This. Account holders can get up to 15 notifications per day. This is of course very similar to Facebook’s ‘like’ button. This enables it to get a sense of the candidate's personality. Additionally. BranchOut can help reveal helpful contacts in social networks and lead employers to potential candidates. with YouTube and Google+ also on the radar. Facebook and Twitter. Candidate searches are based on job-related keywords can yield targeted results. creates a more diverse applicant pool in a very costeffective way. c) LinkedIn Talent Pro: This can be used by all who has a LinkedIn account. The tops tools used are given below: a) Resumator: is a social networking tool that helps hiring managers to know about job listings and who are viewing the postings.’ which is based upon statistics from the Jobvite 2012 Social Recruitment Survey. during and after the interview. ‘Social Media and the Effect on Employee Recruitment. Once referrals get into the recruitment process. professional relationships have been democratized. 2010). b) Jobvite: Jobvite is a SaaS platform that delivers a seamless and social recruiting process before. after all.• • Twitter (39%) Professional or association sites (29%) According to the new infographic report from Intricate. providing a way to find qualified "passive" candidates whom necessarily are not looking for a change. LinkedIn tops the charts (it is. what sets them apart in 150 characters or less. LinkedIn recently announced its new enhanced Company Pages function that allows users to ‘recommend’ the company to their followers. The infographic also takes a look at the top social media sites for recruitment over time. With the arrival of social media. the referring employee can track the interview process. and one which is shared by SMEs and multinational companies and across all levels of employees. It also sends automated email replies when resumes are received and when a candidate must be declined. designed for business networking). more employers are using social media to find talent and potential employees than ever before. Resumes can be posted through Facebook.

There is no doubt that social media has improved the recruitment process by making it more open and democratic. g) Twitter: Twitter has created a dedicated “Careers” Twitter account to showcase available positions in organizations along with details of company culture. Employers are instead realizing that they need to work more closely with the experts in order to get their hiring right first time – not making the mistake of investing a significant amount of time and resource into social media and not getting a return on their investment. social recruiting is not without problems. Alternatively. Having an intimate knowledge of . Smaller companies that have neither the volume of employment opportunities nor the resources to maintain an extra channel or feed. That means they need professionals internally to increase employee engagement. review skills. Nowhere is this truer than in the broad field of human resources. Facebook offers the option to run a jobs RSS feed. Social media also gives easy access to prospective candidates faster at the same time enable the company to attract talent versus competitors. social channels offer diverse results and recruiters are able to filter by a wide range of demographics and career level to match their needs. recruiting through the social media is likely to attract them at least for the entry level positions. One of the advantages is that candidates can be searched geographically and found with higher accuracy than before improving recruiting effectiveness. HR departments are stepping up their use of technology in order to find talent and manage the talent they have. Twitter and others. Unlike individuals. linking the job seeker back to their website’s Careers section. Open positions will be seen and read by a larger number of qualified candidates. previous job profiles and professional references for credibility to ensure that the hire is a good move. The social media sites also recognize this. Conclusion As more firms begin to step into social media networks. increasing the visible talent pool from which to engage and recruit. Benefits of recruitment through social networking sites: There are several benefits associated with social media recruitment. This enables the right person to be at the right time at the right place. The site offers a 140 character job description and certainly allows for a job title and a link to the position description to attract candidates. Hence companies must follow a rigorous process of assessing people for qualities relevant to on the job performance. businesses have been slow to embrace social media as an organizational practice. Moreover a person who communicates to friends on Facebook is not the recommended way to assess their business communication skills. Social media also offers diversity. Only a few years ago.e) InternMatch: InternMatch is a recruiting service solely focused on part-time or unpaid internships. and those who work externally to hunt down the right job candidates. Social recruiting also improves Referral Improvement by helping HR manger’s to review a candidate’s resume. Information can also be inaccurate. scores of employers hired personnel who were active users of social media. At the same time. available jobs can be filled quicker. co-worker recommendation. But the last decade has proven the punch of platforms like Facebook. f) Face book: Facebook profiles enable companies to create separate “Career Center” Facebook profiles. lowering vacancy rates. One of the problems is the lack of complete information or no guarantee for the available information. Because of social media’s high usage rate and immediate response time. different employers will find the best practice methods of recruiting for their particular field. Moreover since a majority of the people who use the social media are tech savvy and the generation that is predicted to provide a new dimension to the way businesses function. creating a great way to attract fresh talent for entry level positions. Moreover. InternMatch provides lots of free advice and templates that can help organizations to be more successful in recruiting and managing a college intern effectively. and new tools are becoming available all of the time that allow recruiters and employers to work together to take advantage of social media hiring. as well. Social media recruitment has a low cost with high Returns on investment (ROI). Another advantage is that the users are mostly college students. nothing more than fun and games and making friends. Social media was once just a personal thing. can integrate their jobs via a standalone page. Social media also Increases the employer’s brand visibility online and establishes a leading-edge image for the brand. providing a dedicated resource for job seekers.

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