Can LinkedIn’s “Apply” button help you find better candidates?

February 24th, 2012

LinkedIn launched its “Apply with LinkedIn” button in July 2011, stating that their goal was to “help every professional put their best foot forward, anywhere across the web, when they take that leap to apply for a new position, a dream job.”

They said they wanted to make it easy for people to submit their profiles for any job application on the web with one simple click.

And in February 2012, LinkedIn added a mobile component. Instead of losing candidates who had seen a job posting via their smartphone but had no easy way to apply until they got to a computer, the LinkedIn Apply button lets mobile candidates apply with one click – or one touch

The Downside?

Using a LinkedIn profile to apply for a job is not as flexible as using a resume.

Jobseekers have long been told they should tailor their resume to the job description. But they can’t tailor their LinkedIn profile—and the job search process is not conducive to a one-profile-fits-all solution. So recruiters may find themselves screening too many profiles that have them scratching their heads, wondering why this person applied for a certain job. Their LinkedIn profile may not make it entirely clear whether they’re an appropriate candidate.

Also, the Apply with LinkedIn button puts the emphasis on getting an application in quickly—as opposed to LinkedIn’s founding philosophy that making good contacts and cultivating relationships requires effort and patience.

Finally, it may be making applying for a job TOO easy—in that it will help job seekers who apply for every job, apply for yours that much more quickly, without having to think about it. Employers are finding themselves sorting through more and more irrelevant applications.

It’s a Start

LinkedIn will most likely adapt as their “Apply” button picks up steam. Maybe LinkedIn will allow members to maintain multiple profiles, each tailored to a specific purpose.

Maybe they’ll add more questions that will require job seekers to put a little more thought into whether they should be applying for this job.

Let’s face it: working your network and getting referrals is still the best way to find good employees. But LinkedIn’s button makes the process a lot less painful for job seekers, which may mean that the great candidate you don’t know will push the button to connect with you.

For more information on attracting, finding and hiring the best candidates for your open reqs, why not contact Olympic Staffing?