Recruitment Trend Shifts in South Africa

The recruitment industry in South Africa looks like it is on the rise for the first time in two and a half years. Human Resources South Africa reported “employment grew by 5.6% during March.”

As business slowly starts to find its feet again after a rough few years in the global economy recruiters are looking for good people to take their companies forward. “The aim and challenges of recruitment in South Africa is to put the right person, at the right place, at the right time in the organisation. By doing this the company should hopefully improve their organisational performance and increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the company ” (Human Resources South Africa)

Social Media RecruitmentWhat are the trends being used that are shifting the way the recruitment industry works? There are two obvious and high impact trends that have risen out of social media and online technology that are worth looking at:

Move Towards Headhunting

Wall Street Journal makes an interesting observation that social media has made headhunting easier and cheaper. Networking websites like Linkedin have opened the door to finding people based on expertise, experience and CV. We are able to see immediate recommendations of people we are thinking about hiring and can make more comprehensive decisions about people before starting the interview process.

On a global scale we see business looking to decrease their job board subscriptions and move towards using social technology like Facebook and Linkedin to find great employees. The general consensus being that jobs boards create too many unqualified leads that waste HR time. Social Media channels however, allow recruiter to check out potential candidates before the invitation is sent. Leaving the power of selection in the hands of the recruiter and not with the job seeker.

Search Tools vs Career Portals

Search based jobs websites

Google has successfully created a search culture. When we need something we search for it – usually in Google. The same happens in recruitment. We find that candidates will turn to Google before they turn to job and career portals, simply because thats what they know.

Search works differently to portals. Portals let people browse though positions and candidates available in the network. Search allows you to scour the internet for exactly what you are looking for without bias to a particular website. This is where Indeed comes in. A South African Jobs Search Engine that searches all job sites, classified and any other source it can find to produce a search result for exactly the job you are looking for, allowing you to apply for the position of your dreams quickly and easily.

The impact of search based tools vs directory tools online to find employment may very well change the way we promote our job openings. An easy example would be that we need to start considering our the Search Engine Optimisation of every single job post and there may even be opportunity in using advertising vehicles like Google Adwords to promote top positions.

Career Portals need to integrate with social technology have recently started using the Linkedin API allowing candidates to update their profiles directly from their Linkedin Profile. They have also opened up the possibility “or its members to register, search for jobs, create job alerts, see who’s hiring and find useful career advice all directly from the Facebook page.” (Bizcommunity) All of this social media integration is simply in aid of making it simpler and easier to recruiters to find candidates.

This level of social media integration is the only way, I believe, that Jobs and Career portals can remain relevant in the recruitment industry. Although we are not seeing these portals opening up headhunting opportunities like Linkedin, this is still a step in the right direction.



3 thoughts on “Recruitment Trend Shifts in South Africa”

  1. Charles says:

    It’s interesting that you say headhunting on LinkedIn is such a big thing. For many desirable executives, this platform is a way for them to communicate with their own network, I’m not sure how valuable it will be for recruiters – unless the executive is openly looking for a new job. This is often not the case. Plus, a lot of these executives don’t have a LinkedIn profile. It will be interesting to see how this develops over time. Thought provoking post – thanks!

  2. Hi Charles,

    Thanks for your comment. Your point is valid, and like in most things, LinkedIn is obviously being used for a number of purposes by different people depending on what their needs are. We are however seeing a trend towards headhunting on LinkedIn and will also continue to watch this trend closely.


  3. Samantha says:

    People on LinkedIn are to be approached through passive sourcing.

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