In a continuing effort to improve candidate experience, companies are looking for ways to please the modern (aka millennial) jobseeker. That means making the application process simpler, more convenient and mobile-friendly. Enter Facebook, which recently launched a feature that allows users to apply for jobs directly through the social media giant.
Here’s how it works: Candidates see a post that looks similar to a typical Facebook ad, click on the “Apply Now” button, and are then directed to the application. Once there, they can fill out their experience and write a couple sentences on why they are qualified for the job. Click submit – and done. Sounds easy, right? (The process is actually very similar to the SkyRecruit opportunities we at Cielo love to incorporate into social media posts and email campaigns.)
This appears to fit in quite well in appealing to the millennial jobseeker. They want to be engaged, they crave authenticity and the reassurance that they’re doing something that matters. And they’re going to stick with the job search until they find what they want. According to Glassdoor’s HR and Recruiting Statistics for 2017, this year’s hiring focus for most companies will be on millennials, as they take up one-quarter of the U.S. population. This same report also says that for every 1.4 candidates, there is 1 open job, compared to 2009 when there were 6.6 candidates for every 1 job. This means that jobseekers currently have the upper hand and can afford to hold out for that perfect position that fits their needs.
Whether many of them find it through Facebook remains to be seen, but as the application process is currently set up, there appear to be some details Facebook perhaps did not consider. For instance, once candidates click submit, their applications are sent directly to that page’s messages. The prospective employer will also have a direct link to the candidate’s own Facebook page, which could give some candidates pause. After all, how would you rather represent yourself – through your professional, well-thought-out LinkedIn profile or via the Facebook page that you use to send silly memes to your friends or receive unsolicited (possibly offensive) posts on your wall from your weird uncle? Beyond that, the job descriptions are short and vague, and the application itself only covers basic information and questions. There is not much opportunity for candidates to differentiate themselves, to the point that recruiters might not receive enough information to even determine whether the person is qualified. The potential for a lot of wasted time here is huge.
Of course, you’re probably lying to yourself if you think employers don’t already have access to all of your social profiles. Think about it: we live in a world where you can now make a career out of Instagram posts. It’s almost impossible for our personal lives not to bleed into our professional lives. Facebook might actually be on to something, considering that 62% of jobseekers use social media to learn more about an employer before applying, and 1 billion people visit Facebook pages every day. Most people aren’t on LinkedIn unless they’re actively searching for opportunities, but everyone is on Facebook. If the average person is all about efficiency, this update is exactly what we all wanted.
Will Facebook steal the recruitment spotlight from LinkedIn? It seems doubtful, unless Facebook can make some changes. Nonetheless, job applications are undoubtedly moving in a new direction. Now that we live in a world of passive candidates, companies must try harder to attract them and recruiters need a marketing-driven mind and a strong employer brand behind them. There is a new standard for simplicity, convenience and engagement in online job applications and today’s jobseeker will accept nothing less.