The Role of Social Media in the Recruitment Process essay


TheRole of Social Media in the Recruitment Process


Recruitingin important function in any organization and that is fully under thehuman resource management department. The process covers thesourcing, selecting as well on boarding workers to an entity ororganization. Effective recruitment practices are imperative inobtaining and retaining quality talent to contribute positively tothe success of an organization. With the increasing competition inthe jobs market, employers need to apply efficient recruitmentpractices. Internal practices involve promoting existing employees ormaking use of employee referrals. Internal recruitment may not alwaysproduce the number or quality of employees need thus externalpractices are considered. Externally, employers utilize walk-inapplications, advertising on periodicals and social media platformsand using audio-visual sources (Rodionova, 2015). Other employersmake use of third party recruitment agencies to acquire personnel.

However,the use of social media platforms such as Facebook, Google+, Twitter,LinkedIn, Myspace and blog sites continue to be the main sources ofpersonnel. The use of ‘social recruitment is gaining popularity itthe US where the use of Social Networking Sites (SNS) is becomingwidespread (Rodionova, 2015). For instance, the number oforganizations that reported the use of SNS in their recruitmentincreased from 21% to 44 % between 2004 and 2008 in the US. Of thetotal firms surveyed, 34% used SNS for marketing while 13% used themfor employee screening purposes. In the UK, 3% of businesses activelyuse social media as their recruitment channel. Despite the lowprevalence of SNS use, their utilization is on the rise withcompanies making use of SNS in various stages of recruitment (Murphy&amp Gawthorpe, 2013). Therefore, the use of social media in therecruitment process presents a topic worth studying.


Recruitingis an interesting topic and more enthusiastic when social media isinvolved. The reasons why this area of study is of interest for astudent may include the following. First, it is a fact that almostall students would like to have a job after graduation and tounderstand the recruitment practices utilized by employers would beof great assistance. According to a survey by Acas (2016), studentsin the US and the UK and other countries place themselves in the bestposition possible to obtain a job. On the other hand, colleges anduniversities prepare the students well to cope with the competitionin the job market. 72 % of the graduates in the US and 71 % in the UKparticipated in internships and apprentices. In addition, 80 % of thegraduates in the US and 77 % in the UK believe that their academicshave prepared them sufficiently for the job market. These studentsalso expect some employers to offer job training hence the level ofcompetition for such vacancies is high. In this view, it isimperative to understand the employment practices utilized byemployers to position oneself for job vacancies.

Second,in the process of learning and understanding employment practicesutilized by organizations, one benefits from advice from trainedexperts and professional. The experts provide information oncompanies that train their employees and offer better benefitspackages. According to Meagher (2015), while 84 % of graduates in theUK and 77% in the US expected formal training from their employers,only 72 % and 53% respectively received the training. Salaryexpectation is also a concern where 85% of the graduates expected asalary of more than $ 125,000 per annum in the US while 84% of thegraduates in the UK expected a pay of more than £19,000 (Murphy &ampGawthorpe, 2013). By interacting with professionals who have been inthe job market, one is able it can identify organizations that mightmeet a graduate’s expectations. These interactions are alsoimportant as one creates networks with professionals that later canbe used as referees. More so, the graduate gets the opportunity tojoin professional bodies or organizations that later turn beneficialin their career growth and development.

Third,the study of this topic contributes immensely to understanding therole of social media in the recruitment process. Murphy &ampGawthorpe (2013) argue that social media and social networking sitesare revolutionizing private and work communication methods. Thetremendous growth and robust increase in the number of employersrecruiting through social media are highly noticeable. Someemployers are increasingly using social media as their mainrecruitment tools where advertising and recruitment are done online.For instance, Jobvite revealed that 40% of employers in the UK arebusy recruiting via social media while 33 % expect to raise theirinvestment in social recruiting (Rodionova, 2015). Additionally, 64 %of the graduates in the US searched or applied for jobs throughsocial media, via either a mobile app or the web, in 2015. Companiessuch as Deloitte have customized their websites to suit theirrecruitments where job applications for all categories take placeonline. Singh &amp Sharma (2014) posit that Facebook continues to bethe favorite job advertising channel in the US and globally. The siteboasts of 75 % recruiters while Twitter and LinkedIn follow at 57%and 38 % respectively. Employers are also attentive to the content onthe applicant’s profile where 61 % consider a hiring decision basedon the profile (Cocuľová, 2011). With these considerations, it isnecessary to look further into the role of social media in hiringprocess.

Finally,the need to comprehend the challenges facing the SNS recruiting byorganizations is a motivation to wards this topic. Although the useof SNS has provided the employers an opportunity to market themselvesand vice versa, it is faced with ethical challenges. First, SNS isfacing the issue of the extent to which employers may seek privateinformation of applicants. For instance, Meagher (2015) found outthat 35% of employers in the US found information on SNS that stoppedemployers from hiring some candidates. Second, employers face chargesof discrimination based on applicant’s social profiles. Thereliance on SNS also leaves out those who do not have access to theinternet although they have access to other channels.


Thisobjective of this study is to establish the different recruitmentpractices employed by various organizations. Organizations adoptdifferent recruiting techniques depending on internal and externalfactors. Internal factors include the size, recruitment policy andjob image. External factors include demographic, labor market,unemployment conditions, labor laws and legal considerations(Cocuľová, 2011). The mode of hiring also depends on the type ofthe organization. Government institutions adapt to different and morerigid methods as compared to flexible techniques utilized by privatesectors.The advances in technology are changing the approaches inhiring process. Hence, there is a need to understand the currentmethods and the emerging trends owing to technology. Althoughoutsourcing and raiding are becoming more popular, E-Recruitment istaking over the trends. To understand the various recruitmentpractices, a comparison of three organizations will be utilized toevaluate their similarities or differences before drawing anyconclusions.

SNSpresent many opportunities to employers as well as the job seekers.Rodionova (2015) notes that social media provides speed, efficiency,and the capacity to target and attract specific and especiallyappropriate applicants. It also offers additional data on probablejob seekers such as personal and level of the profession, which mightnot be produced for recruitment. This way, recruiters obtainadditional information about the applicant. On the other hand,applicants get multiple sources of employer information as well asthe possibility to contact the employer and get more insights about ajob. In addition, online recruitment presents cost-saving methods totraditional approaches. For example, a study by Singh &amp Sharma(2014) found out that traditional advertising cost entities $ 3,295while web-based adverts cost approximately $ 37 in the US. A similarstudy noted that hiring a senior post using traditional methods costRS Components £7,500 while web-based adverts cost £714 for the samepost. The use of Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter provide recruitmentdata and foster representative job prospects among potential workers.Potential employees gain a lot of information concerning probableemployers from their websites and social media pages (Rodionova,2015). Social media also helps to improve external communication,which proves beneficial to institutions.

&quotIfyou had to choose between an enormous pdf file full of Counciljargon, and a brief blog post providing you the fundamentals, amajority of the people will choose the blog post that talks to you asI am doing now. What we are doing is the elimination of the notionthat a person is more professional he talks to you in jargons. We canbe more credible by our works, but more so be sociable and amicable.Social media has assisted people to break down the barriers between‘them’ and ‘us’.”

Despitethese benefits, some disadvantages are associated with the use ofsocial media. Financial costs arising from this channel remainnon-quantified. The use of software for monitoring requiresinvestments concerning equipment and trained staff to run it. Theaccuracy of social media information is also a challenge thatemployers face. Verifying this information is sometimes difficultwithout face-to-face interaction. Employers might seek informationabout third parties about applicants, but this data is alsounverifiable. The platform also provides an avenue for criticizingand posting negative remarks about a company. As Singh &amp Sharma(2014) explains, SNS is a new technique whose implications arelegally untested. Therefore, Potential employees have ground tochallenge the practice.

Inconclusion, time is an important aspect in any research (Vandenberg,2007). This study is manageable within the given period owing tovarious sources of information available. The use of internet in datamining offers an opportunity to collect the required information fastand efficiently. More so, the group is made of dedicated students whoare determined to achieve the fete within the given period. However,the study is based on establishing different recruiting practicesutilized by firms. Hence, there is no guarantee that a specificpractice is identifiable.


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Singh,K. &amp Sharma, S. (2014). Effectiveuse of social media for talent acquisition and recruitment.IJIIM, Vol. 4(4). Doi: 10.1504/IJIIM.2014.067932

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