Last summer I wrote a couple of articles and blog posts about companies <strong>using social channels like Facebook and Twitter to find and recruit job candidates</strong>. One of the folks I interviewed, Shafiq Lokhandwala, CEO of human resources software provider NuView Systems, was critical of the idea, saying, "There's a mix of social and professional information that can be counterproductive to recruiting."
That's one of the possible shortfalls of social channels like Facebook and even LinkedIn that Dice.com is trying to address with the Dice Talent Network, a service that launches today after six months in beta. It's an extension of the existing Dice environment that allows job seekers to integrate profiles from other social networks into their Dice profiles to offer employers "a more complete view of the candidate," said Tom Silver, SVP for North America at Dice. At least 20,000 candidates have already added information to their Dice.com profiles this way.
Other social features include real-time chat or instant messaging. "These additional methods of interaction allow employers and candidates to build relationships in ways that weren't possible in traditional job board environments," said Silver.
While some employers already use social channels in their recruitment efforts, Silver said they'll have a better chance of connecting with folks actually interested in job opportunities on the Dice Talent Network. More than half of Dice users are employed but interested in new career opportunities. He told me:
There's a difference between a passive candidate that's career minded and a candidate that puts their career profile on other sites because they are interested in jobs but also in connecting with old friends and other things. That can be frustrating for recruiters and candidates. We're trying to eliminate frustration on both sides by having individuals that want to hear from employers connect with employers that want to hear from them.
The service is free to job seekers. Unlike traditional job boards, the Dice Talent Network will allow folks to express interest in specific companies or even specific recruiters within companies by following them. They can do so anonymously so current employers will be unaware of their interests. Employers can communicate with individual candidates and issue network-wide announcements about opportunities at their companies.