Can You Hear Facebook coming LinkedIn?

This is old news but – last week Facebook announced that Facebook Jobs is coming! You can almost hear the Jaws theme music playing in the background, can’t you!?  CareerBuilder, Dice, LinkedIn, etc. – all the job boards – you can bet are taking note.  900 Million users – everyone from your Grandma to your Mom to your cousin Mary – from Brain Surgeons to Alligator Wrestlers – Facebook has got them.

My good friend Lance Haun wrote about his over at TLNT last week – What Is Facebook Thinking? Do We Really Need Another Job Board? From Lance’s post:

“The strength is obvious: imagine you’re applying for a job at XYZ company and you find out that a friend’s family member works there. Or what if some sort of robust search capability were added to the site? Or what if Facebook could recommend certain career options based on your activity beyond career-related postings?

The problem is that it would also come at the expense of privacy and the sort of digital wall that many people have put up to differentiate between their Facebook life and their LinkedIn life. Yet, the sheer numbers potential is attractive in it’s own right.”

This is the argument that LinkedIn has been hoping you will buy!  And so far you have been! LinkedIn is for Professional, Facebook is for Personal.  It’s a 2008 argument.  Most people don’t want to live two lives – they would prefer to live one, but they feel they can’t be themselves professionally – they need to be this watered down version of themselves – at least when not at a conference – then anything goes.  Let’s get real for a second – everyone is on Facebook – Your Mom, Your co-workers, Your boss, the owner of your company, your HR Manager, your ex-boyfriends, your current boyfriend – everyone.  Your not hiding anything – even with your ‘privacy’ settings.  It’s time to stop living the double life and be yourself.

Here’s what is really exciting about Facebook Jobs – We finally get access to everyone!  Well, almost everyone – at least 7 times more than LinkedIn – and all those ‘Passive’ candidates!  Even if Facebook only goes for the quick cash grab and does postings for a fee – it’s still better than just posting on a Job Board or LinkedIn.  People like to look, lurk and see what’s open – it’s human nature.  Facebook is the perfect place for this.  Just like when LinkedIn started and HR Pros were actually encouraging their employees to get on, to ‘network’ (don’t we look stupid now!) – no one will consider a person on Facebook to necessarily be job hunting.  It’s the perfect safe environment for this to happen.  Plus, it easily allows people to engage their personal networks when they see something interesting that someone in their personal network would have interest in.

LinkedIn should be nervous – good talent is already leaving or ignoring them at this point – recruiters have taken it over – it’s become spammy.  Facebook is an open frontier – the best recruiters are already finding ways within Facebook to network and source.  Facebook Jobs – or whatever they decide to do – could be a big game changer for recruiters.

3 thoughts on “Can You Hear Facebook coming LinkedIn?

  1. Another great article Tim, i also completely agree with @Paul Herbert, i think fb has grown way to quickly. in this day and age people are looking for specialist sites to job search. i simple don’t think that high demand areas, especially financial or creative, will recruit though fb, from my experience they need tasteful exposure. NOT something fb will provide in my opinion

  2. It will indeed be interesting to see how all this plays out. I have to agree with the point Paul brings up about being “profersonal.” I’m all for dichotomy here.

  3. I waited to see if anyone else jumped in but I think you may be a bit off on this prediction.

    Current stats say that while “older” folks are getting on FB – the teens/tweens are getting off FB and onto twitter. The “youngsters” never saw FB as a “site” it was simply a way to communicate with a group – and they are doing it with twitter now. Remember how fast they ran from Myspace? It will happen with FB and a whole generation of job seekers won’t even be on FB. Uniques on FB are down 5% over the past 6 months.

    Also, anecdotally, while FB is still growing – many of the most engaged are trimming their friends lists because it is getting too spammy and too commercialized.

    And there are more and more folks I’m connecting with who are not buying the “profersonal” approach. Too much risk regardless of what social media gurus say about needing to authentic.

    All of that said… you could be right – I’m the guy who once said to Prodigy (precursor to AOL for you “utes”) “who’s gonna want to sit around looking at their computer all night?”

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