On February 15th, Facebook rolled out its new Jobs feature—businesses in the US and Canada can now post job listings natively to their Facebook pages, and users can see those jobs in their newsfeed or find them on Facebook’s new Jobs bookmark. Companies have long used Facebook as a recruitment tool to engage with job seekers. Will the new Facebook Jobs tool be an opportunity for companies to have unfettered access to Facebook’s over 200 million active users?
There are several pros to this new feature. It’s easy for businesses to use. It takes minutes to write a post promoting the job opportunity and then broadcast it to the business’s Facebook followers. And it’s cost efficient for businesses to boost their posts to targeted audiences outside of their follower base.
For a potential candidate, it’s as convenient as clicking the “Apply Now” button—Facebook serves up a pre-populated form, with information pulled from the user’s profile. Candidates can fill in the form with information about their experience, and the applications are sent through Facebook’s Messenger app. The process is straightforward, and communicating directly through the Messenger App makes it more personal and immediate. Compared to applying through a traditional applicant tracking system, there are fewer roadblocks to apply and less communicating with hiring managers, which could mean an improved candidate experience and less fall-off between clicking to apply and a complete application.
The biggest con? It’s a tool designed for small to mid-sized businesses that have a handful of opportunities and do not handle large hiring volumes. The very same process that enables one-to-one communication via Messenger becomes an administrative nightmare, when you consider recruiting hundreds or even thousands of candidates. The application process is completely independent of an Applicant Tracking System, which means companies that require candidates to apply through an ATS before recruiters can speak with them would have to let every applicant know to complete an application through the ATS, doubling the work for each candidate and potentially souring the candidate experience. Even if companies want to use this new Jobs functionality to capture candidate leads, the process does not currently connect to a CRM, which means recruiters and hiring managers would have to find a way to get the information from Facebook Messenger into their CRM. That’s a lot of labor for a tool that is meant to “take the work out of hiring.”
Facebook understands its user base, and users want speed, convenience and connection in everything, even job searches. But what Facebook doesn’t quite understand is that the recruitment process for most companies, despite technological advances, is still a painfully cumbersome process. Until they can find ways to address the “employer experience” as well, the Facebook Jobs tool can only be useful to a limited segment of the recruitment market.