The Social Jobs Partnership — an initiative that includes The US Department of Labor, the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), DirectEmployers Association, the National Association of State Workforce Agencies, and Facebook — is launching a new Social Jobs Application today, where recruiters can share job listings with the Facebook community.
At launch, the application includes 1.7 million listings from BranchOut, DirectEmployers, Work4Labs, Jobvite, and Monster.com, which can be sorted based on industry, location, and skills.
The blog post announcing the new app emphasizes the important role that Facebook already plays in the hiring process. It cites NACE data showing that half of employers are using Facebook for hiring, with 54 percent of those companies saying that Facebook will become an even more important part of the process in the near future.
So is this the rumored Facebook job board that the Wall Street Journal was writing about over the summer? Basically, yes. The Journal certainly had most of the details down, including the partner sites that would be part of the launch.
At the same time, one of the big questions at the time was whether this represented a move by Facebook to take on LinkedIn in the job listings market. Now that the app is actually being launched, it definitely isn’t being pitched as a Facebook initiative, but rather as the next step in the broader partnership, as you can see in this quote from US Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis:
Nearly a year ago, the U.S. Department of Labor joined the Social Jobs Partnership to explore better ways to connect people with job information through social media. Today, we’re taking an important next step with the announcement of this valuable new application. Through the expertise of our partners and the foundation of an industry-supported open source job posting schema, the Social Jobs Partnership is helping get America back to work.
Still, even if this isn’t going to turn Facebook and LinkedIn into archrivals, it could still be pretty significant (and useful) to have a single app on Facebook where you can find listings from multiple services. In fact, Work4Labs CEO Stephane Le Viet (whose company helps businesses create custom career sites on Facebook) told us that this could represent “a tipping point” for the social recruiting industry, because it helps people “realize that Facebook isn’t just about pictures and friends, it’s about social connections you can use to find your next job or hire someone.” He also argued that Facebook presents an opportunity to reach a more blue collar audience than LinkedIn.
You can visit the Social Jobs App by checking out the Social Jobs Partnership’s Facebook Page.