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Lead Time for Job Applications  by Channel - Bullhorn Reach, May 2011
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Lead Time for Job Applications by Channel - Bullhorn Reach, May 2011

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By Joe Zeff …

By Joe Zeff

"How long should it take to start getting applications through social (media) recruiting?"

It's one of the most common questions we're hearing from Bullhorn Reach users, closely followed by "How does lead time for applications through social media compare to traditional channels (like job board aggregators, search engines and email)?

Above you'll find the answer, calculated by finding the median of lead times that our users are experiencing. While our findings may seem surprising, here are a handful of thoughts that help make sense of it all.

Traditional Channels

Job board aggregators are quick to get traction among job seekers because their audience is, first of all, enormous and, secondly, comprised of active seekers hungry for a new job.
“Email” sources of applications largely consist in notes from job search agents and updates from social network feeds. The former is used by active seekers, and the latter contains jobs that LinkedIn users won't see until the next time they log in.
Search engines unearth older job listings, driving up the median of how long it takes to receive the full extent of job applications to a given listing.

Social Media Channels

On Twitter, a big chunk of traffic is likely coming from searching, which can unearth old jobs (as said above). Unlike LinkedIn and Facebook, Twitter's search of users' updates is extremely powerful, aided by built-in search language -- namely, hashtags.
People just aren’t following LinkedIn updates as frequently as they are on either Facebook or Twitter. Though it's the channel most known for being a "professional network," it's also the social media channel on which users are least engaged.
On Facebook, people are applying based on what they see in their feeds, not by searching (as they do on Twitter). As a result, Facebook updates tend to be buried under the pile of social pablum we've come to know and love. So, chances are that any job applications you receive through Facebook are driven by relatively recent postings.

Words of Advice:

Patience is a virtue. Be patient for responses from social (media) recruiting. Given that responses are going to come from within your network, they are much more likely to be of a higher quality. Social media-driven inquiries from known contacts, referrals and/or passive candidates are likely going to take a longer. But, it's worth the wait.
Use Facebook more. Leaning more heavily on Facebook as a professional channel will pay dividends. Some may respond that they think of Facebook as a personal channel. While true (for now), the tides are quickly turning, and it's better to be the first than the last one on the boat.

Thanks for reading, and please feel free to share the info with others.

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  • 1. JOB APPLICATION LEAD TIME BY CHANNEL (DAYS) 3 6 9 12 15 powered by your friends at TM www.bullhornreach.com @bullhornreach http://bullhornreach.tumblr.com