Influence of social networking website on human resource performance

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1.0 Introduction  

Increased global competition for skilled talent workers has reduced the efficacy of business organizations recruiting efforts. As competition increases, recruiting talented workers becomes more difficult for business organizations. In this paper we explored the benefits social networking can bring to improve employee recruiting efficacy. Some case studies illustrates that social networking can improve efficacy in employee recruiting initiatives. Global competition can have a negative impact on business organizations recruiting strategies. This negative impact leads to inefficient recruiting methods for skilled talent workers. Use of social networking in recruiting can help business organizations compete in a global environment and improve the recruiting effectiveness of the organization.

1) To examine the benefits of social networking in improving business organization's recruitment efficacy---flora

2) To explore the relationship between social media network and employee productivity--susan

3) To evaluate the advantages of social networking in organizational interactions--fakhruddin

4) To assess usage of social networking services in promoting skill management and educational value in organization---arad

2.0 literature review/Background   15, 3-4pages per person

2.1 the benefits of social networking in improving business organization's recruitment efficacy

Organizational Development Challenges

Business organizations face a variety of organizational development challenges that include use of technology, staffing gaps, insufficient candidate pool and ineffective recruiting strategies, all of which have an effect upon employee recruitment (Gakovik and Yardley 2007). It is Hoffman's (2008) belief that successful business organizations overcome organizational development challenges by utilizing efficient recruiting methods, and continually strive to pinpoint in the recruiting process to find the person-job and person-organization fit.

As the competition for talent workers has escalated, successful business organizations have found innovative ways to recruit the talent they need by improving existing recruiting methods and expanding their recruiting strategies (Chhabra and Aparna 2008). An aging workforce is something that every company is inevitably effected by. They note business organizations need to improve their recruiting efficacy since the Bureau of Labor Statistics has forecasted a labor shortage of six million workers by the end of 2008 and it will continue to increase until 2015 and 2025. Therefore, it is important for organizations to develop adequate and appropriate plans to put in additional efforts to attract the best pool of available candidates.

As a result, organizations are forced to find alternative recruiting strategies such as social networking, E-Recruiting, and executive search firms to meet their staffing needs (Aldrich and Ruef 2006).

Social networking benefits

As competition for talent workers expands, new recruitment strategies need to be formulated to better enable business organizations to find talent for open positions (Harder 2008). Technology has afforded business organizations the opportunity find talent and increased its recruitment base (Sachitanand and Bhattacharya 2008). As business organizations implement social networking the candidate pool increases and likelihood of finding potential talent workers also increases (Gittlen 2008). Use of social networking provides business organizations with better quality candidates with their available candidate pool (Hoffman 2008). Social networking technologies such as MySpace, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Ryze allow HR and staffing professionals the ability to connect with available talent workers with whom the business organization would otherwise not reach. The following quote by Rutledge validates the previous point, "Around the world, hundreds of millions of people use social networking sites in a single month. Their ages range and include all spectrums of society - job seekers, students, recruiters, executives, and small business owners". The key success to using social networking lies in the ability of the business organization to embrace a new way of interacting (Rutledge 2008). Use of social networking is critical to connect with current and future job seekers. Expanding an existing recruiting network permits a business organization's to target and reach candidates they would not otherwise. The use of social networks allows for professional connections to be made, and using professional connections to reach candidates through alternative methods is known as knowledge mapping (Liebowitz 2007). Knowledge mapping, according to the research, represents who knows whom, who knows what, who knows how, and who knows why. As illustrated in Figure 1, when using social networking through knowledge mapping connections, business organizations can rapidly expand by reaching candidates through other avenues.

Figure 1: Knowledge Mapping (Liebowitz 2007).

Social networks enable recruiters to target exceptional, rather than average, candidates by targeting specific candidates who possess the skill sets for a position by using keywords (Cross and Parker 2004). Business organizations that have effectively used social networking to target specific candidates employed a strategic framework to develop and implement the most efficacious social networking platform for the organization (Bernhoff and Li 2008). According to Burkholder and Preston (2004), four performance objectives must be met when recruiting and hiring candidates. These four performance objective include: (a) hire the best possible candidate, (b) establish a candidate pool pipeline, (c) improve the existing recruiting process, and (d) cost-to-hire.

The first performance objective is to hire the best possible candidate for the position. Social networking increases candidate pools of qualified and desirable applicants enabling HR and staffing professionals to hire a viable candidate. The second performance objective is having a candidate pipeline that helps fill in the "just-in-time" job opening. A candidate pipeline is an established pool of candidates that can be easily contacted in time of need. The third performance objective for hiring efficiency is improving the recruitment and hiring process. Implementing a social networking system will help aid the recruiting efficiency allowing business organizations to search by key words and/or qualifications. The final performance objective for hiring and recruiting efficiency is to limit the cost-to-hire. The cost of using social networking platforms pales in comparison to advertising and social networking enables the business organization to find and attract candidates while decreasing the man hours to fill open positions.

According to Rutledge (2008), social networking sites are amongst the most frequently visited Web sites. Use of social networking as a recruitment tool is a nascent activity among larger business organizations; however, with so many professionals using these sites to seek jobs or to connect with employers, organizations can incorporate social networking into their recruitment strategies. At the end of 2007, LinkedInâ„¢, a premier social networking site for professionals, particularly in the United States, had more than 19 million professional profiles, including 145,000 CEO profiles. Whereas, traditional recruiting methods of running advertisements in newspapers, periodicals, and journals is expensive and time consuming with no guarantee of finding the needed talent worker, social networking enables the business organization to reduce the time spent recruiting and improving the ability to find the talent worker needed to fill job openings (Zeidner 2009). Business organizations that are successful using social networking as a recruitment tool incorporate four best practices, (a) understand the social networking community and how the site works, (b) be sure the social networking sites is best suited for the business organization, (c) get friendly and (d) go for the wow factor.

Another attribute of social networking with respect to recruitment is the ability to research the candidate before an employment offer is extended. The use of social networking as a research tool allows HR and staffing professionals to find information that can lead to or not to making an employment offer (Sampath 2007). The changing demographics, acute recruiting strategies and shifting attitudes towards large employers will keep online recruitment popular for the foreseeable future (Sanders and Riemsdijk 2008).




3.0 Issue/ Promblem/ Challenges 5 pages, 1-2pages per person

3.1 Recruiting Challenges

One challenge is the cost associated with recruiting human capital. The hidden costs of recruiting have a negative impact on the business organization if the wrong hiring decision is made. Hidden costs include training new employees, lack of productivity, morale, and turnover. The cost, traditional recruiting with the use of print advertisement on average is $3,295 compared to Web advertising at $377. Web advertising costs are lower because the process is essentially paperless. Jobs can be posted and resume information can be retrieved directly from a database. Applicants who match specific hiring criteria can be readily identified through the social networking platform (Zeidner 2009). The Web has revolutionized the job and candidate search process by providing employers with robust databases of potential employees, lowering their cost-per-hire and time-to-fill statistics, and improving the quality of candidates who reach their desks (Gittlen 2008).

Social networking provides the business organization with an ability to recruit faster and cheaper than traditional recruiting strategies. Moreover, use of print media advertisements produces a limited space, forcing the business organization to limit information. Recruiting with the use of social networking and various other Web sites provides unlimited space; creates engaging and informative job postings and the ability to reach a mass of candidates (Carr and Kariyawasam 2008). In addition, social networking site advertisements can be viewed 24 hours a day and stay posted for as long as the business organization wants. Social networking, according to Cross and Parker (2004), speeds up the recruiting process compared to print advertisement in three basic stages (a) faster posting of jobs, (b) faster application response and (c) faster processing of resumes. When using print advertisement, a time lag exists between the submission of information and its appearance in print. Using social networking provides immediate appearance and is available as long as the business organization wants. Faster application response enables jobs that are posted on a social networking site have the ability to receive response the same day, thus increasing the candidate pool. Faster processing of resumes allows any applicant that posts a resume electronically to be immediately screened and the business organization can have immediate information on the talent worker.

Another challenge facing business organizations is the increase in global competition for talent. In the face of increasing global competition, the ability to attract, hire and develop talent is a challenge for any affective organization (Walsh 2008). The problem in meeting the global competition challenge has become increasingly difficult, brought on by an aging workforce, a diluted pool of younger workers and a mismatch between the required technological skills in the labor market and that which is available within the labor force (Gittlen 2008). Chhabra and Aparna (2008) point out that the upcoming generation provides hope, they live online and social networking provides any business organization the opportunity to reach them and expand their recruiting processes globally to better deal with the difficulties to recruit and hire talent workers.




4.0 Discussion      4 pages, 1-2 pages per person

4.1 the benefits of social networking in improving business organization's recruitment efficacy

Nowadays, the majority of recruiting is being done using online job boards, a business organizations career section on the company website and job fairs. Since 2006 social networking sites are being used more frequently now as an HR tool. For example, in 2006, only 12 percent of the business organizations were using social networking sites on a seldom basis; in 2008, 18 percent of business organizations surveyed are utilizing social networking to recruit. Furthermore, 79 percent of the business organizations in 2006 never used social networking; in 2008 that percentage dropped to 56 percent. The drop of 23 percent shows that more business organizations are becoming cognizant of the increased ability social networking provides for increasing efficacy in recruiting practices.

Also, Deloitte LLP (2009) shows 23% company utilizes social networking for recruiting purposes, see following bar chart.

Social networking also has reduced the amount of time spent on recruiting. Over half of the business organizations responded that they spend zero-to-two hours per week recruiting, when they would normally spend ten hours a week without social networking sites. As business organizations are looking to gain an advantage over their competitors for talent, social networking platforms provide it. Forty-five percent of the business organizations surveyed said they rarely used social networking and did not plan to in the foreseeable future. The ability to incorporate social networking and gain an advantage is very possible. Thirty-four percent of the business organizations in the survey currently use social networking sites to recruit and will continue to do so. Many of the business organizations in the Christopher Petropulos ( 2009)'s case study primarily used social networking to recruit and search for the passive applicant. Findings of the case study include a majority of business organizations are using social networking to recruit qualified talent workers. When social networking is used, over half of the business organizations reported that it is an effective component in the recruitment of candidates. Of those business organizations that incorporate social networking, 69 percent are able to recruit passive applicants which might not otherwise apply or be contacted, 40 percent are able to target a specific job level to recruit, and 38 percent can target applicants with a very specific set of skills. A majority of senior executives in the case study believe that improved efficacy in recruitment strategies can be obtained after social networking is integrated with existing recruiting methods.

According to Fegley (2007), E-Recruiting consists of utilizing Internet technology to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the recruiting process. The focus for many of the HR and staffing professionals is not to just attract a suitable number of candidates, but to attract high-quality candidates from which to better choose talent workers. Forty-five percent of the respondents use some form of social networking to identify and recruit available talent workers. As social networking continues to grow in popularity, many of the respondents, 29 percent, use social networking sties to view personal information about a candidate. Of those 29 percent, 37 percent eliminated a job candidate based on the information obtained through the social networking sites. Passive job seekers, as previously mentioned, provided business organizations with the highest quality of candidates. Forty-one percent of the respondents used social networking sites to discover passive job candidates.

The case study conducted by SHRM demonstrated that the use of social networking is a vital part in improving recruiting efficiencies. One note that the use of social networking alone will not improve the overall recruiting efficiency of a business organization but, incorporating social networking with current recruiting methods will help to improve the efficiency of recruiting. The case study also indicated as more candidates with specialized skills become available the need of the business organization to integrate technologies should be foremost. Application of social networking enables HR and staffing professionals to perform detailed searches for specific skills thus, increasing the quality of candidates, improving the job match to lead to a more effective recruiting process.

Filling staffing gaps in today's global competition for talent will require HR and staffing professionals to utilize additional recruiting strategies. Improving current recruiting strategies will enable the business organization to recruit talent workers more efficiently (Chhabra and Aparna 2008). Social networking enables a business organization to construct changes in recruiting and the social relationships with job seekers (Shirky 2008). As a result of Christopher Petropulos (2009)'s study, the author proposes that business organizations should consider incorporating social networking into their recruitment process, in order to better their efficiency, increase the applicant pool, and compete with global competitors for talent workers.

Another thing organization need to pay more attention is, using social networking sites to screen employment candidates is not without risk. Recruiters and employers utilizing these sites should have written policies that treat candidates in a fair and non-discriminatory manner (Rosen, 2008). Employers must craft appropriate policies and procedures regarding their use of social networking media, and apply these policies in a consistent and nondiscriminatory way (Jackson, 2010). In addition, employers could have a third party or HR expert conduct internet background checks. They could then forward the relevant information to the people ultimately making the final decision (Kochman, 2009). Table 1 summarizes the legal and ethical issues for employers using social networking sites.

Table 1 Legal and Ethical Considerations for Employers using Social Networking Websites




Finding prohibited information


User agreements with websites


Potential future laws


Finding private information not intended for employers


Bias creep


Finding incorrect information about candidate


Not providing the job candidate access to the employer's personal information

Source: Chris Jones, Susan Behling (2010)




5.0 Conclusion/Implication/ Recommendation      2 pages

5.1 the benefits of social networking in improving business organization's recruitment efficacy

Global competition has increased the desire of business organizations to make recruiting more efficient. A business organizations success hinges on the ability of HR and staffing professionals to acquire high quality talent. To survive and prosper, business organizations will be forced to address where and how they find talent workers. Business organizations that incorporate social networking, have the ability to improve recruiting efficiency since they are better equipped to recruit against competitors by recruiting candidates that would not otherwise apply or be contacted by the business organization, and to target candidates that posses specific skills to fill staffing gaps and shortages. This is not implying that social networking candidates are better or worse than candidates found outside of social networking; otherwise, providing information that will help to make recruiting in a business organization more efficient. Social networking is another recruiting method that will help business organization to best choose the candidate that is the ideal fit for their organization. According to Barbara Elmore (2009), eventually, more companies will combine social networking with traditional recruitment methods. Both are important tools to engage and recruit talent. Social networking can help attract a larger, more diverse talent pool, but cannot replace traditional face-to-face interactions.