Twitter is becoming the new job board. It is also becoming the new résumé. Fed up with traditional recruiting sites and floods of irrelevant résumés, some recruiters are turning to the social network to post jobs, hunt for candidates and research applicants.
Some recruiters say Twitter has transformed their prospecting and hiring, helping them identify candidates they wouldn’t have found otherwise, but others say the messaging platform has some way to go before it can replace LinkedIn, Facebook or other job-hunting tools. Lauren Weber reports.
Job seekers, in turn, are trying to summarize their CVs in 140 characters or six-second videos. Twitter, which was founded in 2006, isn't yet revolutionizing recruiting, but some employers are already using it to great advantage, citing quick, direct contact with candidates and access to broad networks. The appeal will grow as the site develops, says Josh Bersin, principal and founder of Bersin by Deloitte, a human resources research firm owned by Deloitte Consulting LLP. "Companies see its potential and they know that over time it'll get more sophisticated," allowing recruiters to target the right individuals with both sponsored tweets—essentially, jobs ads—and regular tweets, he said. Others remain skeptical.
For one, the rules of recruiting on Twitter are still unclear: Should job seekers only post on professional matters, or are personal updates fair game? Should recruiters respond to Twitter dialogues initiated by candidates? And how does one write a 140-character résumé—a single tweet summarizing one's experience and unique attributes—anyway? In February, Enterasys, a Boston network-infrastructure firm, decided to exclusively recruit for a social media marketing position using Twitter. The firm promoted the position via tweets and only accepted candidates who tweeted their interest using the hashtag #socialCV. Among the requirements for candidates: More than 1,000 active Twitter followers.
Having narrowed the field down to about 15 finalists, Vala Afshar, Enterasys' chief marketing officer, says he's convinced Twitter recruiting is the way to go.
"I am fairly certain I am going to abandon the résumé process," he says. "The Web is your CV and social networks are your references." Jocelyn Lai, a talent acquisition manager for advertising firm GSD&M in Austin, Texas, says she regularly uses Twitter to get a sense of a candidate. "I watch people interact, learn what their positions are, who their best friends on Twitter are, whether they have a sense of humor. From that you can get a pretty good picture," she says. Still, most HR executives and recruiters haven't embraced Twitter for filling jobs, finding other social-media sites like LinkedIn more effective. Moreover, they aren't sure their audience is using it for job-seeking purposes. In March, HR consulting firm CareerXroads found that of 37 large U.S. companies, none was using Twitter extensively for posting jobs or for identifying candidates. But the survey did show that recruiters expect to use the platform more in the future, especially for getting the word out about openings. More Tips and the Complete WSJ Article