Social Media vs. Job Boards - The Future of Recruiting

Posted by Kristen Monsey on February 11, 2015


Social Media vs. Job Boards - The Future of Recruiting

Since Social Media first started allowing businesses to create their own accounts, there has been more and more discussion of how Social Media is "the future of marketing," "the answer to customer and employee engagement," and yes, "the key to recruiting in the 21st century." The question for recruiters, then, is whether or not they should be focusing their efforts on social media rather than the traditional job boards. To answer this, let's first take a look at a few stats.

During a recent poll we conducted on the Social Networks used by our recruiting audience, we found that 61.5% use LinkedIn, 30.7% use Facebook, 23.1% use Twitter, and only 7.7% are using only job boards. From these statistics, it's clear that the more professional features and job board functionality make LinkedIn the more preferred choice for social recruiting. Although it is very similar to a standard job board, it still has to be considered one of the social networks, however, because it provides more insight on a candidate's interests and views based on groups they join, articles they read, or even articles they may write.

According to a survey conducted by Jobvite, 73% of recruiters have hired candidates from social media, and 79% of those candidates came from LinkedIn. In this same study, 93% of recruiters said they review a candidate's social profile before making a decision to hire. So what does this mean for the future of recruiting? Clearly, social media plays an important role in the way recruiters are adapting their methods. Social recruiting delivers concrete and quality results, which is why more and more companies are investing in it.

According to the graph below from a an article by HR Technology review company, Software Advice, "The Best Job Boards for 2015," recruiters found that LinkedIn provided the highest quality of applicants.

Social Media vs Job Boards The Future of Recruiting

Studies also show that since implementing social recruiting, the following metrics have improved:

  • Quality of candidates - 44%
  • Quantity of candidates - 44%
  • Time-to-Hire - 34%
  • Employee referrals - 30%

If these statistics aren't enough to convince you that you should be using social media for recruiting, then nothing will, and sadly you will begin to fall farther and farther behind your competition. However, does this mean that social recruiting is the only way to go? Certainly not. While it has certainly changed the way we recruit, we can't do away with the traditional job boards just yet.

Job boards such as CareerBuilder, Indeed and Monster are still a huge part of a successful recruiting strategy. According to Software Advice's study, the highest quality candidates in entry level positions come first from Indeed, then CareerBuilder, and surprisingly in third place is Craigslist. For more senior level positions, LinkedIn and Indeed are the most prominent sources for high quality candidates, with CareerBuilder and Monster following closely behind.

So what this means for your recruiting strategy is that you can't simply choose one way over another. It should be a healthy mix of both depending on the types of roles you are hiring for, or even the industry that you are in. While these studies provide benchmarks on what works for the majority of the market, it may differ for your organization because of factors unique to your needs. The best solution is to keep track where you are spending your budget, which sources are providing the most candidates, the best candidates, etc. These metrics should lay the foundation for your recruiting strategy going forward. Once again, it's all about the metrics!

Click here for the full webinar on Social Media vs. Job Boards, presented by HRsmart's Zach Scruggs.