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Why the Very Best Candidates Might NOT be on LinkedIn

by | Mar 18, 2013 | Recruiter Training, Top Echelon Blog

Of all the social media and networking tools that exist, LinkedIn is definitely the one that recruiters use the most.  After all, it’s touted as the “professional social media network,” and tens of millions of job seekers are registered with the site. Many recruiters view LinkedIn as a “self-cleaning” database of talent, because users are constantly updating their information in hopes of landing a new job. But what if the talent that’s in LinkedIn isn’t necessarily the best talent?  Blasphemy, you say?  Well, according to recruiting industry trainer Doug Beabout of The Douglas Howard Group, some of the very best job seekers—including passive candidates—are de-activating their accounts on LinkedIn. “There’s been a huge change in LinkedIn’s population during the past two years,” said Beabout.  “It’s changed from a group of professionals, most of them employed and seeking networking opportunities, to a watering hole for the unemployed.  I’ve had at least a dozen candidates tell me that they’re not on LinkedIn anymore.” And why are these candidates no longer on LinkedIn? “They’re being attacked by recruiters on a daily basis,” said Beabout.  “They’re being contacted by as many as 12 to 15 recruiters a day, and they just got tired of dealing with that.” According to Beabout, recruiters who rely too much on social media sites like LinkedIn may be creating an imbalance on their recruiting desk, one that could negatively impact their overall production. “If you’re going to use social media, you do it at the risk of neglecting what’s going on in the rest of society,” said Beabout.  “Smart phones are great things.  I have an iPhone, but it doesn’t make me any money… unless I use it as a phone.  But if I’m just tweeting and IM-ing all day, that’s not going to get me anywhere.” What are your thoughts?  Have you spoken with candidates who have taken themselves off LinkedIn?  How much time do you spend recruiting with LinkedIn during a typical day?  Do you think recruiters are using social media too much?  And how much is too much?

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