In recent years, social media has assumed an increasingly important role for recruiters, in a trend that parallels the growing prominence of these platforms in everyday life. It seems as if everything we do these days is filtered through our social media accounts, so it makes sense that a lot of job hunting takes place there as well. That’s why modern applicant tracking systems like Exelare come with social media integration.

Recently, Facebook implemented a new feature that promises to enhance the hiring process for recruiters and job hunters alike. As a recruiter, you need to know about this feature and what it can do for you—so let’s take a look.

Social mediaThe Basics

Recruiters have been using Facebook for years to contact candidates, but, unlike LinkedIn, the platform was not designed for this purpose and it lacked the kind of online features that would accommodate this activity. That has now changed.

In February 2017, Facebook officially unveiled its jobs feature. This enhancement, which has already gone live, allows businesses to use their Page to post job ads and receive applications from candidates. These ads appear on both the business’s dedicated Page, as well as the new searchable jobs section.

To respond to these opportunities, candidates simply have to click the Apply Now button to access a form with prepopulated data culled from their profiles.

All of these features are entirely free of charge. Businesses may post as many job ads as they like, and candidates are not limited in the number of responses they may send.

A Game Changer?

So why is this a big deal? In the past, Facebook’s utility as a resource for recruiters was limited, largely for reasons we have already mentioned. It simply couldn’t compete on this level with LinkedIn and similar sites. However, there’s more to Facebook’s new feature than the introduction of a dedicated jobs section and a handful of supporting tools.

FacebookFacebook’s weakness as a job hunting resource—it wasn’t designed for that purpose—is paradoxically also its strength. Let’s explain. As the most popular social media hub, Facebook attracts a lot of casual users who simply want to chat with friends and read news items. This makes Facebook a potential goldmine of passive candidates—people who aren’t actively searching for a job but who may be interested in a good opportunity if one should appear.

Facebook has a huge following—1.8 billion people use it every month. By contrast, LinkedIn has only 467 million total users. It’s certainly possible that Facebook will siphon off a significant portion of LinkedIn’s value as a recruiting tool. In any event, recruiters should take the time to familiarize themselves with this promising innovation from Facebook.