The Facebook Job Board Debate 15 Comments


The topic of Facebook launching a job board this summer has received a lot of attention the past couple of weeks.  From stating a Facebook job board could kill LinkedIn’s momentum – to quoting 92% of recruiters are using social media to recruit talent.

Have recruiters hired people through Facebook or have job seekers found a job through Facebook? Sure. The irony is all of the experts I’ve seen commentary from stating this is a great idea also said the last 10 attempts at social recruiting would change the world.

Before jumping on the “Facebook job board” bandwagon, consider the following:

Job Postings On Facebook
You can continue to point to example after example of where recruiting on Facebook has had little impact on social recruiting.  So what about “job postings”? Facebook already launched job postings, with little impact. Remember? It was called the  social jobs partnership. Facebook, the U.S. Department of Labor, the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), DirectEmployers Association (DE), and the National Association of State Workforce Agencies (NASWA) created the the aggregation page in 2011 – all in an effort to put people back to work. How’d that work out?

For the most part BranchOut led the pack in pioneering the professional network concept on Facebook.  A few months ago they received an additional $25 million in funding and launched a mobile app.  As a result, usage went way up.  Fast forward to today – AppData shows a massive decline in both monthly users (from 4.8 million to 2.3 million) and weekly users (800,000 to 430,000).

A couple of weeks ago BeKnown celebrated its’ 1 year anniversary.  Do you think there was cake and champagne to celebrate? Just 2 months ago ERE had an article announcing Monster was adding social connections to their job postings. In the article, Tom Chevalier, Monster’s director of product management was quoted with BeKnown’s “growth trajectory will be pretty dramatic” as a result of the social connections addition. John Zappe, the author of the article shared, “Because joining the BeKnown network from Monster takes hardly any effort, he’s probably right”. So what are the results? According to AppData, it shows that the app averages between 60,000 – 80,000 weekly users.  Coming from a site that has millions of Resume’s and users, this doesn’t seem dramatic.

Social Recruiting Is A Big Deal
92% of Recruiters use social networking to recruit and hire talent? Yes, they do.. If you consider LinkedIn a social network and not a professional network. In a webinar poll I recently conducted 64% of attendees stated they had not hired 1 person from Facebook. A majority of recruiting leaders I’ve spoken with attribute 1%-3% of their hires from Facebook, according to source tracking data.


Another point of view
Joel Cheesman recently published his views on an article titled “Facebook Shouldn’t Launch a Job Site (But Probably Will)”.  In the article, Cheesman went on record stating that this is a terrible idea, regardless of what form it could take. He elaborated sharing that big destination sites getting into the classifieds game has a long history of mediocrity. Cheesman also pointed to the bevy of job search apps that are more-or-less ghost towns or have since been buried, including ones by, Simply Hired and CareerBuilder.

Company Pages
What about the tens of thousands of Company pages that have been created on Facebook, all aggregated with job postings?

You have to consider those looking for a job (a job posting), compared to those you can target, source, and recruit.  What percentage of Facebook users have complete professional profile information with company name, job titles, or professional accomplishments?

Aggregating jobs from third party sources or launching a job board on Facebook will have little impact on social recruiting – just as it has up until now and it won’t kill LinkedIn’s momentum. Companies and recruiters can continue talking about social recruiting to sound current and innovative, or they can focus on the real issues that exist.


About Jason Buss

Talent HQ’s creator and editor is Recruiting & Diversity Leader, Jason Buss. Talent HQ is a premier online news and information channel for the Recruiting and Human Resources community.

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  • Posted on: Wednesday, July 11th, 2012