Finding work used to be about writing your CV, printing it off (or in the years before that, typing dozens of individual copies using a typewriter) and diligently handing them out to prospective employers or manually posting them off to the HR section of hundreds of businesses. It could take weeks, perhaps even months, to hear anything back and in the meantime, you would struggle to make ends meet.
Technology has now reached a peak whereby it is possible to make meaningful connections with people all over the world using chat programs such as Skype and MSN Messenger and social media websites such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. The way we communicate with one another has changed, and therefore the way we now search for jobs has also changed. Facebook and the other aforementioned sites give users the ability to keep an ever-changing and easily updateable CV on the internet for any prospective employers to see.
Often employers and businesses find it easier to pool suitable candidates online as they are able to set their own specific search parameters. This enables them to filter out anyone who does not meet their requirements for the job instantly. Social media has taken the whole world by storm, and both employers along with potential candidates are aware of this; finding a professional profile online often suggests the applicant's knowledge of modern technology and also their realisation that embracing this new technology helps to bring their aspirations to the fore.
So how is using social media for recruitment easier than handing out your CV? Firstly, it takes out a large chunk of the legwork. You are able to contact companies directly through their own Facebook or Twitter profiles and often get an almost immediate response. This is a huge plus for people looking for work. It used to be that you would hand out dozens of CVs to many people without even knowing if they would ever be looked at, let alone if you would ever get a call back for an interview. Now that the internet has developed social media sites as the primary way of communicating with your friends, it would seem almost a waste of such an important technological advancement not to use it for more essential things, like finding a job.
For instance, perhaps you have aspirations of working in another country such as the powerhouse that is modern Hong Kong. Years ago, this would have incited a paper trail miles long, and would often require many expensive trips without the surety of definite employment. However as an example of using social media for recruitment, an applicant can make the entire feat much less daunting. A personal profile online allows the employer abroad to see who you are, emailing your CV allows them to see your work history and the interview could even be conducted on Skype. There are so many opportunities in the world of work that have only become available with the invention of not just the internet itself, but social media sites. This interesting article from the Undercover Recruiter gives examples of just how much has changed in the way people look for employment and it will surprise you to see just how many employers put their faith in using social media for recruitment.
Connecting with the world is easier than it ever has been. The ability to show yourself off to the masses allows for so many more people to see who you are and why you would be beneficial to their business, whether it be in the next town or the furthest continent. You can change your position at work and in the world as easily as clicking 'Search'.