Facebook has more job seeking volume overall in US

A new national survey from Jobvite reveals more than 22 million Americans used social networks to find their most recent job opportunity – up 7.7 million from last year’s survey. One in six members of the workforce say an online social network was one of the sources they used to find a job, and those with more contacts get better results. With the national unemployment rate at 9.0% in October, fierce competition has 54% of all job seekers using Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter in their hunt for work.

Jobvite’s Social Job Seeker Survey 2011 polled more than 1,200 members of the workforce in a national online survey. More than two-thirds (69%) are job seekers – people either actively looking for work or employed but open to a new job. The survey provides the first in-depth look at which networks get the most job hunting activity, how the power of being social can lead to employment and which job seekers make the most of social networking.

Facebook Has More Job Seeking Volume Overall, LinkedIn and Twitter See Higher Engagement Rate for Job Hunting

Nearly nine out of 10 job seekers (86%) have a social media profile. Facebook has the majority with 84% of job seekers, followed by 39% using Twitter and 35% using LinkedIn. Nearly 1/3 of job seekers (31%) have a profile on all three networks.

Facebook has the highest volume of job seeking activity overall, with more people receiving job referrals, updating profiles and making new professional connections. But more than 1/3 of job seekers that have a Facebook profile don’t use it in any way to look for work. On the other hand, nearly all job seekers with a profile on LinkedIn and almost ¾ of those on Twitter leverage their networks for job hunting.

Job Seeking on Facebook:

  • The Jobvite app makes job referral part of daily activity on Facebook.
  • When using Facebook, employees automatically see notifications about friends who match open jobs based on the professional and educational information in their profiles.
  • They can search their networks for matches to jobs at their companies, invite friends to apply, refer friends and automatically get credit for referrals.

Jobseekers can find referrals for jobs

  • 48% of all job seekers (63% of those with a profile) have done at least one social job hunting activity on Facebook in the last year.
  • One in five job seekers added professional information to their Facebook profile in the past year.
  • 16% received a job referral from a Facebook friend.
  • 18.4 Million Americans credit Facebook as a source that led to their current job.
  • 56% of Facebook-using job seekers are male, 64% are under the age of 40, 36% earn more than $75,000 and 42% are college graduates.

Job Seeking on LinkedIn:

  • 26% of all job seekers (88% of those with a profile) have used LinkedIn to hunt for work in the past year.
  • 15% have updated LinkedIn with professional information.
  • 9% received a job referral from a LinkedIn contact.
  • 10.2 Million Americans credit LinkedIn as a source that led to their current job.
  • 69% of LinkedIn-using job seekers are male, 53% are under the age of 40, 54% earn more than $75,000 and 58% are college graduates.

Job Seeking on Twitter:

  • 23% of all job seekers (71% of those with a profile) have leveraged Twitter in their job hunt.
  • 8% have updated Twitter with professional information.
  • 6% received a job referral through Twitter.
  • 8 Million Americans credit Twitter as a source that led to their current job
  • 65% of Twitter-using job seekers are male, 69% are under the age of 40, 48% earn more than $75,000 and 49% are college graduates.

“Super Social” Job Seekers with More Contacts Get Better Results

Jobvite’s Social Job Seeker Survey 2011 found a marked difference in job hunting activities and success when job seekers were “super social” – having more than 150 contacts on any single network. More than four out of 10 job seekers (41%) are super social on at least one network (mainly Facebook), and they do more social job hunting and get better results than their less social counterparts. More than ¼ (28%) of these super social job seekers found a job through online social networking.

  • 37% of all job seekers are “super social” on Facebook, 10% on LinkedIn and 11% on Twitter.
  • 58% of LinkedIn’s super social job seekers updated their profiles with professional information, 35% of Facebook’s and 35% of Twitter’s.
  • 43% of LinkedIn’s super social job seekers received a job referral on the network, 32% of Twitter’s and 25% of Facebook’s.
  • 51% of all super socials are male, 62% are under the age of 40, 42% earn more than $75,000 annually and 40% have a college degree.

Other significant online social network activity differences:

Activity in the last 12 monthsSuper Social Job Seekers on specified networkAll Job Seekers on specified network
Updated Facebook profile with professional information32%20%
Had contact with a recruiter on LinkedIn45%9%
Searched for jobs on Twitter48%11%

“Our new national survey shows that socially savvy job seekers have an advantage over their fellow job hunters and it’s paying off,” said Dan Finnigan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Jobvite. “While referrals are still the top source of new jobs, online social networks play an increasingly important role in job hunting today. The job referrals happening on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter benefit employers, job seekers and the economy overall.”

The polling company™, inc./WomanTrend conducted this nationwide online omnibus survey of 2,049 adults (aged 18+) on behalf of Jobvite. Fielded October 24-27, the survey included questions on current employment status (1,205 respondents were part of the American workforce) and the use of social networks to find job opportunities. Respondents for this survey were selected from an opt-in panel, and had expressed prior consent to participate in online surveys such as this. The demographics of this audience closely match the nationwide population of adults (age 18+) with respect to gender, age, and region, and race and ethnicity.

See the Jobvite Social Job Seeker Survey 2011 for complete results.

Source: Jobvite press release

About Jacco Valkenburg

Jacco Valkenburg is an international recruitment expert, trainer and author (5 books). He has more than 20 years experience in global recruitment strategies and execution spanning numerous countries for leading companies. As founder of Recruiter University and Recruit2 he provides companies with recruitment training and consultancy. His mission is helping companies ‘from good to great staffing’.


  1. Dem

    This is one another good-for-nothing jobvite survey. There’s no reason and truth about people getting jobs using facebook. There’s not even a real way how candidates can search jobs in Facebook.

    You can tell me to use linkedin & Facebook’s apps, place it on my jobboard and thanks to that people will share more and all that stuff. You can tell me to use RSS to feed my page. You can tell me that my page will rank more en google. Whatever you can tell, i won’t believe it, because people like me that have a deeper knowledge of social networks, recruitment and jobboards, really knows that this kind of surveys is just another “theory” boom.

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