I’m not sure I should admit this but LinkedIn is my favourite social media. I tweet daily and catch up with friends on Facebook most evenings but it’s LinkedIn that has proved most profitable for my business. But what makes it work as a business tool?
To start with there are no games, no embarrassing pictures (well okay, a few of those profile pics – you know who you are) and your company and personal profile are very much business focused.
Recruiters have been successfully mining the 135m members (8m in the UK) for candidates for several years. And with 2 new members signing up every second there is unlikely to be a shortage of talent any time soon. But what does LinkedIn do next?
The universal CV and beyond…
LinkedIn wants to be the place that your career develops. It is your CV (and you can now use your profile to apply for jobs – see the realityhouse mobile recruitment sites) and if someone searches for you by name on Google, your LinkedIn profile is likely to top the results.
According to LinkedIn the next step is to further enhance the individual skills sections on profiles as LinkedIn wants to be the place that you search for a “commercial lawyer with franchising expertise” or “a recruiter with accountancy knowledge” widening its scope to be a business resource.
Plus LinkedIn will be further refining ‘Insights’ – its news services; the goal is to deliver key news and information to your profile and your inbox based on your key interests and expertise.
LinkedIn Company Profiles
One weakness in LinkedIn in until recently was company profiles. But these are changing – particularly with the introduction of product and services tabs and the inclusion of company testimonials. And of course the vacancy tab enables jobs to be posted.
It is the move into corporate recruitment that potentially offers the biggest shake up as the cost/hire of direct recruitment using LinkedIn can really produce savings as evidenced by Invensys, Boots and ITV at the recent Enhance Media conference. And this despite the frankly eye-wateringly expensive LinkedIn corporate packages.
So is LinkedIn the future of recruitment?
LinkedIn is clearly going to play a key part in recruitment over the next 5 years. It’s ability to help attract passive candidates (rather than the active jobseekers reach by job boards) offers huge potential. The best people have so many options and LinkedIn can help to build a relationship ahead of the need for the employee.
In other words LinkedIn is moving into the arena of talent management and relationship building. You engage with prospects and when they’re ready for a move they will come to you. Top recruitment consultants are already heavily using this technique and in our view this is where the future of recruitment lies.
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