The Impact of Social Media on Human Resources

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It is no longer uncommon for one to start their day off by checking their Facebook newsfeed or updating their status on Twitter. With that mentioned, it is without doubt that social media has turned into a part and parcel of our everyday life; making a huge impact on most of us. In a recent statistic report, it is stated by Daniells (2012) that on the average, there are 3.5 billion pieces of information being shared on popular social media Facebook every single month (para. 3). It demonstrates how frequently used are social media and how powerful social media is as a tool. In addition to affecting individuals, a recent research stated that among the fortune 500 companies, it is indicated that 58% have active corporate Facebook account and 62% having a Twitter account (Daniells, 2012, para. 3). Affecting almost everything that revolves around us, it is certain that social media would too have an impact on Human Resources, where human capitals are powered. Social media now plays a major role in the hiring process. Citing a recent research by Society for Human Resources (SHRM), Doyle (2011) stated that companies using social networking site to hire showed a steady increase from 34% in the year 2008 to 56% 2011 (para. 1). This comes to show how much impact social media have on one of the key functions of human resources, the hiring process. Many might now question, so how major social media help in the hiring process?

First and foremost, social media is able to reach out to the masses thus serving as a tool for major or minor companies to connect with the mass and hire. In a recent study conducted by Titlow (2011), it is reported that a whopping 89% of the companies in just America itself uses social media as a tool in reaching out to the mass to hire (para. 2). This comes to show how rampant and fast moving it is for companies using social media to aid the major function of hiring. Among all the social media available, LinkedIn is the most popular source used in the hiring process.

So what is LinkedIn? LinkedIn is the leading online professional directory of individuals and companies (Doyle, n.d., para. 1). In addition to connecting people in the business world, LinkedIn is also a platform that allows employers to post the various jobs available in the company. Prospective employees that are interested in the various jobs can apply through LinkedIn in a simple click of a button. Besides advertising the jobs available, LinkedIn provides detailed information of various companies for both applicants and business partners in the various industries which empowers and enhances communications in different businesses.

Apart from using social media to reach out to the masses to hire, social media is too a popular platform for employers to screen employees prior to hiring each individual. Third party companies are engaged to screen potential hires before employing them and coast is not all clear after one is being accepted into companies, companies will continue to run from time to time to check on their employees. Employers would also not hesitate to fire employees if information provided on social media were found to be not satisfactory.

Based on a recent report, Dobrin (2011) stated that among the employers that uses social media as a pre-employment screening, 18% of the employers found content on various social media that helped a potential employee in clinching the job. On the contrary, 35% of the employers had found information on social media that influenced them not to hire a candidate (para.2). In the same report, it stated the various content that lead to prospective employers hiring a candidate while doing pre-employment screening. Based on the candidate’s profile, a few crucial factors that lead to hiring candidates include: Being able to get a good feel of the candidate, candidate being truthful in their qualifications and various personality traits such as creativity, outstanding social communication skills...
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