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16
April
2012

Social Technology: A New Value Proposition

Social Technology: A New Value Proposition

I have ranted before about the hype around the use of social media technology in recruiting. There has been so much written about it, you start wondering if it’s about to jump the shark. Based on the number of new social media related tools entering the market, it is definitely clear that this won’t be a fad.

But even though we have been flooded with new products and everyone seems to be doing Social Media, we are still just scratching the surface of the opportunity. Because before we can fully leverage the promise of this new technology, we need to adopt an entirely new value proposition.

For the last twenty years innovation and technology has been all about increasing productivity. We have been on a strict diet of doing more with less, and the systems and software applications have enabled us to do just that. Sure there might be other benefits, but the main thrust has been automation of manual tasks to save valuable time.

Most companies are using this new technology to address the same productivity based problems from the past. Social media is primarily being used to advertise jobs, and finding candidates. It might be segmented into several different micro sites, portals, and sometimes comes in blasts of 140 characters or less. But the goal is the same: fill jobs faster. And because technology has always made us more productive, we have an expectation that we can manage this with very few people.

But the value proposition of social media has much less to do with productivity and is more about interactivity, making connections, and sharing information. It is about getting to know people, not just finding them. You might argue that Linked-in or Facebook enables you to connect with a lot more people – but there is still a limit as to how well you can get to know them.

Just think about how many close personal friends you have among your 1,000+ Linked-in contacts? How many of them do you actually exchange information with on a monthly basis (spamming does not count)? It’s probably somewhere in the 30-40 range. That is our capacity as humans.

Here is the fundamental shift. In order to get the value from social media, which is gained by interacting and sharing knowledge, you will need to engage more people from your team, not less. It takes a lot more to build a community than a few marketing specialists on loan to HR department, or a couple of Sourcers who know how to tweet.

It might help you post jobs faster, but when it comes to social recruiting, less is definitely not more.

Categories: Social Recruiting

About the Author

Ed Newman

Ed Newman

Chief Analyst

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