When it comes to hiring, LinkedIn did a mighty fine job of marketing itself as the go-to platform. Don’t have a LinkedIn profile? OMG! OMG! Have you been living under a rock? Dude, just get one like RIGHT NOW!
Now, there are some decent use cases of using LinkedIn to further your career, but the (paid) job posting isn’t one of them. Let’s examine an example to see how.
I came across a job posting this morning. It was a company in Dubai looking for a Digital Marketing person. How many applicants do you think it got? 20? 50? 100? Well, here’s how many:
I’ll let that sink in.
Seriously, just when did a digital marketing job requiring 3-5 years of experience become so hot?
Anyway, imagine if you’re the recruiter and posted this job. How do you even begin sifting through 371 responses? Keep in mind that your assessment is going to be handicapped by these constraints:
- The LinkedIn recommendation system is a plain lie. I can recommend my friends, and get recommended by other friends. In fact, even employers and clients have an incentive to say only good things about you. Ever seen a bad LinkedIn recommendation? If not, what use are these glowing tributes to one’s hard work and sincerity? And how will a recruiter differentiate?
- Portfolios are another big lie. I can claim to have worked on the key accounts in all my last employments, and as long as I can spin good stories, there’s no way you can verify my performance on it. Most skill-based people have got their portfolios created by freelancers and even outsource work at cheap rates when they’re in a job. How will a portfolio help you as a recruiter?
- And don’t even get me started on the “skills” system. Any idiot can endorse any other idiot for any skills. As a recruiter, do you think you can trust such a broken system?
The job posting in question was from Dubai. I doubt it would have elicited the same response if it was from, say, Manila. After all, the Middle East is where even a driver can make a killing. Perhaps this explains the sheer rush?
In any case, the fundamental problem in hiring remains: finding people who are quick learners, honest, and enthusiastic. Everything else is bullshit. No platform has tried to sincerely solve this problem (perhaps it’s not even solvable), and LinkedIn has turned out to be just another job portal with a faux social network bolted on top.