Why referrals and social networks are bargains in today’s economy
HR software vendors have been innovating away lately. I’ve got several backed up posts I need to get out on them. The first one is on Jobvite.
I spoke with Dan Finnigan, CEO of Jobvite, recently to understand what that they’ve been working on lately as well as to get a read on how the economy is influencing the HR space. Dan and I discussed how critical referrals are in getting positions filled with quality personnel but now, in this economy, referrals are an exceptional value as they cost almost nothing.
In a down economy, HR leaders must manage down the costs paid to job boards, recruiters, etc. while still filling (a reduced number of) job openings. Granted, HR leaders should negotiate hard with all of their service providers and hammer out bulk discounts, improved service levels, minimal guarantees, lower costs, etc. However, all of those activities assume that HR personnel will still use the same methods and practices to fill new openings. That may not necessarily be the case as some HR leaders will want to re-think the recruiting/sourcing approach of their HR organization.
Referrals are a superior source of job candidates. Referrals come from existing employees and colleagues. Referred candidates often possess similar qualities, work ethic, skills, etc. as existing employees. The quality of these personnel is often better and the cost of acquiring them can be low if an organization can tap into the referral networks of its employees.
Jobvite does this via e-vites that are sent by employees via e-mail. But as of today, the company now supports the transmission/posting of e-vites on three massive social networks/media: LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. For LinkedIn, 1st degree contacts can receive (and forward on) e-vites. Applicants can even respond to an e-vite via a submission of their LinkedIn profile. On Twitter, employees can post the e-vite to selected recipients or via a broadcast mode. On Facebook, employees can post e-vites to the selected friends, the wall or via a status update.
The value proposition on this new group of innovations is that very low cost, highly qualified candidates can be sourced via e-vites. In a tough economy, what HR or recruiting manager wants to spend scarce budget monies on expensive advertising or sourcing services only to be inundated with a record number of resumes/responses to pour through? In process engineering circles, this is a way to engineer quality in from the start.