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As hiring demands at US companies increase, many budget-constrained HR professionals and recruiting teams are turning to online social networks and social media platforms to reach potential job candidates in more cost-effective and efficient ways than they have in the past, according to a recent survey and report from corporate staffing consulting firm JCSI.

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Recruiters and hiring managers are now routinely using social media tools such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter to bypass traditional recruiting media – job boards, advertisements and agencies – to connect with people qualified for their open positions, the study found.

According to the study, the top ways in which recruiters plan to use social media in recruiting in 2010 including building the employment brand, posting open positions, and finding passive job candidates:

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Finding Candidates Most Difficult

Respondents to the survey indicated that even with the high volume of candidates in the marketplace, their biggest concern is the ability to find qualified candidates, JCSI said. While budgets remain tight, recruiters are focused on making quality hires as quickly as possible. Time-to-fill an open requisition was ranked as the most important success metric, above cost per hire:

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“There is a shift in recruitment best practices occurring right now,” said Jim Sullivan, JCSI’s founder and president. “Companies are finding that it is far more productive to reach high quality candidates with online research and social media networking. This requires recruiting teams to develop new skills to communicate with potential candidates in their own online communities.”

Sullivan noted that finding qualified candidates is only half the battle for HR professionals.? The other big challenge is getting them interested in the open positions.

A recent report from Borrell Associates predicted a decline in online recruitment advertising for 2009, but forecasted a 20% increase for 2010 despite what the research firm is describing as a “jobless recovery.”

About the research: JCSI surveyed more than 100 HR executives and recruiters in a variety of industries to determine how they plan to find and attract the best talent in 2010.? The study was conducted in November and December of 2009. The free report (eBook) is available for download.


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