6 Reasons LinkedIn Will Never Replace Traditional Recruiting

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Photo credit: Esther Vargas (Flickr)

Photo credit: Esther Vargas (Flickr)

As a former researcher, I can remember a time when there wasn’t a LinkedIn and, also, a time when LinkedIn wasn’t as popular as it is now. I can also remember sitting at a Researcher’s Roundtable a few years ago during the time when people in the recruitment industry really started to use LinkedIn. Most had mixed feelings about it. Some people loved it, others weren’t sure, and others had never really used it. But what I found remarkable is that nearly everyone thought that, at some point, LinkedIn was going to replace or drastically change traditional recruiting.

Honestly, I couldn’t disagree more. It is an incredibly useful tool that shouldn’t be ingnored, but LinkedIn will never replace traditional recruiting. Here’s why.

LinkedIn can’t do everything

It can’t do things like give reporting structures, build personal relationships, etc. And these things are very important in world of recruiting. It’s really more of a starting point or something that’s used with other tools.

Everyone is the world is not on LinkedIn

You also can’t assume that everyone is on LinkedIn. While we encourage it, the fact is, everyone isn’t. There are plenty of people that see LinkedIn the same way they see social media and they just aren’t into it.

Creating doesn’t equal actitivy

Even if a person took the time to make a profile, that doesn’t mean they actually use it. Anyone can create a profile at any time. And then they can also just leave the profile there, never to be looked at ever again.

Just because a profile exists, that doesn’t mean it’s updated

In my time as a researcher, I came across plenty of profiles that weren’t updated. People left jobs or didn’t update promotions. There’s just no guarantee that their info is 100% accurate and up to date. So you still need to have a chat with someone to confirm their current information.

Recruitment is more than just finding a candidate

There is the need to screen, interview, etc. to be sure the candidate is the right person for the job. These things simply can’t be done with LinkedIn. You still need a recruiter with the skills and ability to turn a potential into a candidate and to actually place them in the position.

You can’t rely on job postings to “recruit” people

Candidates aren’t always looking for jobs and some of them don’t even pay attention to advertisements and such on LinkedIn when they are content in their current position.  And while it’s true that a person still might not be interested in a job change even when a recruiter calls them, there is still an opportunity for networking.

Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t an article to discourage anyone from using LinkedIn. I want to stress that it’s a great tool and highly useful for recruiting. I recommend anyone and everyone in the recruiting world use it (actually anyone and everyone in the world should use it). It’s just that we don’t have to consider it a one stop shop. We don’t really need to anyway. It can exist and so can traditional recruiting. In fact, LinkedIn will work with traditional recruiting to help make the process a bit better and more efficient. Which, when you think about it, is pretty awesome.

What do you think? Will LinkedIn replace recruiting?