Yesterday morning I stumbled on this blog post by Abby Gilmore a young Bostonian, transplanted to Tempe Arizona where she used social media to land herself a job as an SEO specialist by using social media and personal initiative.
In a down market, it was nice to see. I’ve written a lot about social media as a recruiting tool. In Twitterville, I wrote about Sodexo who uses social media to recruit chefs and food service managers and save hundreds of thousands of dollars each year in recruiting costs.
But Abby’s was the flip side. She was an applicant, not a recruiter. She was at the beginning of a career, not yet a Candidate for executive recruitment.
I wondered if there were other stories like hers and so, about 24 hours ago I asked on Twitter and got mixed results. I heard from two other young women, both with good stories about how social media helped land them jobs. One would let me use her name, but not the company that hired her until the company launched next month. The other said I could use her company name, but not hers, because her boss said he didn’t want her to get too much glory.
Both those responses do not exactly depict the sort of openness and transparency that too me is at the essence of how social media works.
I did find one new entry-level success story in Josh Freeman, a reporter for Town Crier newspapers, part of Multimedia Nova Corp. , who was recruited by Canadian Social Media honcho Eden Spodek. Josh started as an intern, then was retained fulltime after graduation from journalism school.
The story was supposed to be about people just entering the workforce and I was about to spike the entire story, when I heard from a couple of social media friends.
Ryan Kuder May be the first “twofer.” He landed his last two jobs through social media. A while back Dan Green, an executive recruiter connected with him on Twitter through mutual followship. He recruited Ryan for VP Marketing at Biz360, a business intelligence firm. But Biz360 was soon acquired and Ryan’s job eliminated. But another social media friend sent Ryan a Twitter message alerting him to a new job as VP Marketing for Bizzy, a Silicon Valley startup.
Up in Canada, Dave Fleet got into social media when he worked for the Ontario government a few years back. He maintains two blogs, one on his passion for running and the other on PR & social media. The latter drew the interest of several people at Canada’s most social media-focused PR agency, Thornley Fallis. They became more conversational with each other on Twitter, where co-founder Joe Thornley eventually offered him a job. Fleet joined and was eventually promoted to vice president.
I intentionally limited this sampling to just 24 hours. What I found was no avalanche of evidence that recruitment is moving from tradional venues onto social media.
But it does show you that there are a growing number of people who are taking the initiative in a tough job market and are finding success.
There is one other example. I am one of a great many social media consultants. As a fulltime focus I am relatively new at it. Fully half my referrals have come through people I know in social media, people whom I have never met in real life.
I think social media is destined to become one huge jobs marketplace. In B2B SAP lets its customers post job listings in its SAP Community Network. It abstains from recruiting there themselves. But I am told quite a few companies and employees have found each other very effortlessly that way.