Hiring the right employees could be determined these days by an online networking effort. Websites such as LinkedIn could provide information about a potential employee like an actual career assessment (to learn more about career assessment and job suitability testing, read this post from Harrison Assessment). All the testing in the world might not reveal an individual capacity to get along with others and build a network of relationships. A strong network could provide future sales for a sales position. If a potential employee has a large network, it also speaks volumes for their ability to develop strong, lasting relationships with other people. The social media connections for prospective employees reveal who they are and how they relate to other people.
Social media networks also provide a rich background of work history where resumes often are brief. A profile might include aspirations and career goals that were not included in a basic resume. Many individuals use their social media pages to build their own “brand.” An employer could also potentially find a candidate who isn’t applying or isn’t even looking for a job at the moment.
The social media profile could answer many questions about a candidate. In this era, social media is the way many job seekers build a network of like minded professionals and colleagues. The potential employee has a list of built in references available via that social media outlet. For example, LinkedIn illuminates the connections an individual has. The colleagues can then endorse that particular person for a specific skill correlating to their industry. This offers an employer the opportunity to get feedback about that particular candidate without having to make ten calls to their references. If a candidate is in the same city as the position, there is a good chance the potential employer knows someone in the network of a particular candidate. The employer could then call or get a reference from an individual not on the resume of the candidate.
Social media sites also generally provide an opportunity for a written endorsement or reference. This allows the employer to get a glimpse of the candidate in the words of those who have utilized their skills or been around them in a working capacity.
How a particular person uses social media is also something a potential employer could weigh. If a candidate is posting derogatory comments about their previous employer, it could be a red flag. Perhaps a potential employee is involved in heated religious, political or other debates. An employer could also determine if the candidate would be a good fit among the current employees. Potential employers could also look to see if the candidate has good judgment by what he or she is posting on a daily or weekly basis to social media.
Social media is also a very good way to post an open position. Spreading the word about a job opening is often relayed quicker and to the correct people via social media. What happens is a position is posted and relayed because an online network often realizes a person who might be a good candidate. That allows the potential employer the opportunity to find many other candidates who might fit the position but who would have otherwise not realized it was open.
Overall, social media and online networking allows the employer to research employees and their network more thoroughly. It’s a tool many companies are using today to get more relevant information about a possible employee.