05/05/11 Job Seekers Embrace and Fear Social Media, Survey Shows

Nearly one-fourth of job seekers around the world are using social networking in their search for work, but many of them are worried about personal content on sites like Facebook doing harm to their careers, according to a survey by staffing giant Kelly Services.

In the survey of about 97,000 people in 30 countries, 26 percent expressed concern about how personal information on social networking sites might affect their job prospects.

According to the survey, the most popular social networking sites for finding work are Facebook (33 percent) and LinkedIn (32 percent). Ten percent said they use blogs and 3 percent use Twitter. Facebook is favored by Generation Y job seekers, while LinkedIn is favored by job seekers from Generation X and the baby boom generation.

Twenty-six percent of the people surveyed indicated they had turned to online job boards to actually secure their most recent job. At 22 percent, word of mouth was the next most popular method, followed by staffing and recruiting companies (17 percent), direct approaches from employers (17 percent), print advertisements (7 percent) and social media sites (1 percent).

The survey was conducted from October 2010 through January 2011.

Twenty-eight percent of the people surveyed said it’s essential to be active on social media to advance their careers. However, only 13 percent of those surveyed spent at least an hour a day using social media. Sixty-eight percent spent up to an hour a day on social media sites, while 19 percent spent no time on such sites at all.

Results of a survey released in June 2010 highlight the increased emphasis on the role of social networking in career development.

Jobvite’s Social Recruiting Survey found 83 percent of employers surveyed were using or planned to start using social networking in their recruitment efforts. LinkedIn (78 percent), Facebook (55 percent) and Twitter (45 percent) were cited as the most popular social recruiting channels.

Dan Finnigan, president and CEO of Jobvite, said: “Job boards launched a revolution in recruiting more than 15 years ago. And now, social networks are doing the same – but in a targeted way. Through social recruiting, companies are learning they can find the best talent efficiently, without making a major investment.”

By John Egan, Technorati
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