Recruiters Find Facebook a Great Place to Poke Potential Hires

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It's beginning to look as if companies are willing to go to the ends of the (virtual) earth to find the right employees.


We just blogged about the British intelligence agency that apparently is trying to find some tech-savvy spies of the future by embedding recruitment pitches in video games such as "Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Double Agent."


A number of companies are conducting job interviews in Second Life and scouring networking sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn for leads on potential hires.


In fact, according to a recent survey conducted by the Association of Technology Staffing Companies , 58 percent of respondents from the United Kingdom's top staffing companies find sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn more useful for recruitment than print advertisements. Forty-nine percent also say they are more useful than online banner ads.


An ITPro story about the survey says that 83 percent of the recruiters use such sites. The staffing association's chief executive says the sites offer "a dynamic, two-way dialogue between recruiter and candidate, which is a very efficient form of communication." Unlike print ads, they also make it easier to zero in on specific desired skills, she tells ITPro.


Candidates tend to reveal more of themselves on networking sites than in traditional resumes, although thisisn't always a good thing.


Despite their increasing appeal, the sites still trail job boards, named by 69 percent of respondents as the best method to find employees, and cold-calling (22 percent). And their lead is significant; networking sites got the top vote from just 9 percent of the survey respondents.


Still, with the contention of some experts that CIOs are not doing enough to find tech talent, the sites should probably become part of an exec's regular Web browsing.