48% of job seekers have used Facebook to look for work

Facebook is increasingly being used as a job hunting tool. In fact, 18.4 million Americans credit Facebook as a source that led to their current job.
Written by Emil Protalinski, Contributor

More than 22 million Americans have used social networks to find their most recent job opportunity according to a survey conducted by the polling company on behalf of the social recruiting company Jobvite. That's a 53 percent increase over last year's number of 14.4 million.

48 percent of all job seekers have performed at least one social job hunting activity on Facebook in the last year. If we exclude individuals without a Facebook account, the number jumps to 63 percent.

The study, which surveyed 2,049 adults (aged 18+) between October 24 and October 27, included questions on current employment status (1,205 respondents were part of the workforce in the US) and the use of social networks to find job opportunities. Respondents for this survey were selected from an opt-in panel, and had expressed prior consent to participate in online surveys such as this. The company claims the demographics of this audience closely match the nationwide population of adults with respect to gender, age, and region, and race and ethnicity.

86 percent of job seekers have a social media profile. Facebook has the majority with 84 percent of job seekers, followed by 39 percent using Twitter and 35 percent using LinkedIn. 31 percent of job seekers have a profile on all three networks. One in six members of the workforce say an online social network was one of the sources they used to find a job. Unsurprisingly, those with more contacts had better results.

Facebook has the highest volume of job seeking activity overall, with more people receiving job referrals, updating profiles, and making new professional connections. That being said, more than one third of job seekers with a Facebook profile don't use it in any way to look for work. Here are some other findings from the survey:

  • One in five job seekers added professional information to their Facebook profile in the past year.
  • 16 percent received a job referral from a Facebook friend.
  • 18.4 million Americans credit Facebook as a source that led to their current job.
  • 56 percent of Facebook-using job seekers are male, 64 percent are under the age of 40, 36 percent earn more than $75,000 and 42 percent are college graduates.

"Our new national survey shows that socially savvy job seekers have an advantage over their fellow job hunters and it's paying off," Dan Finnigan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Jobvite, said in a statement. "While referrals are still the top source of new jobs, online social networks play an increasingly important role in job hunting today. The job referrals happening on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter benefit employers, job seekers and the economy overall."

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