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Australia Lags Behind In Recruitment-Based Social Networking

Australia Lags Behind In Recruitment-Based Social Networking

AUSTRALIA – Australia lags behind some European countries in recruitment-based social networking, according to a survey conducted by Aquent, the leading global staffing firm specialising in marketing, communications and creative talent.

The Aquent Orange Book 2008-2009, a salary survey and industry monitor of key Asia Pacific and European markets, revealed a minimal uptake of social networking websites in Australia by candidates and employers for recruitment purposes.

“There has been a lot of noise about social networking as a recruitment tool in Australia during the last year,” said Aquent International CEO, Greg Savage.

“However, our research now suggests that some employers in Europe are ahead of their Australian counterparts in extracting value from social networking recruitment tactics.”

In Germany (39 percent), France (34 percent), Poland (30 percent), and the Netherlands (23 percent), candidates rated social networking sites as a preferred method of job seeking, as did 13 to 18 percent of employers as a tool for approaching talent.

Meanwhile, no higher than seven percent of employers and candidates surveyed across Australia employed social networking sites as a sourcing technique.

But Savage warns that using social networking sites is not without risk.

“As a new tool for talent acquisition, social media has yet to be fully tested or quantified in Australia – and almost all feedback is anecdotal,” he said.

“For employers, it remains hugely labour intensive, can be frustrating, and poses very real risks of brand damage and internal misuse.

“Candidates, on the other hand, expose themselves to potential discrimination and can also damage their employment prospects because their online footprint may not come across very favorably at all.”

However, Savage believes that despite its flaws, social media may prove helpful in the ongoing access to quality talent, a factor critical to the competitiveness of Australian companies.

“The next wave of technology that supports talent acquisition is worth exploration and investment, especially as avenues like job boards and print media are becoming less effective and more expensive,” he said.

“I suspect employers, both recruiters and corporate, who can blend social networking into a fully integrated recruitment plan, will be the ultimate winners.”

About Aquent

Aquent is the leading global staffing firm specialising in helping companies find marketing, communications and creative talent. With 73 offices in 18 countries, they have an unmatched network of professionals that enables them to deliver the right solution for any client need and provide exceptional career opportunities for their talent. Today Aquent has over 11,000 professionals working at over 3,000 companies. Over the course of its history, Aquent has made over half a million matches of professionals to our clients on an individual, team or through an onsite or offsite managed service basis. The company’s Asia-Pacific headquarters are in Sydney.

About the Aquent Orange Book

Now in its fourth year, The Aquent Orange Book is an industry reference document on salaries and hiring trends published in two editions – Asia Pacific and Europe. Internationally, the Aquent Orange Book covers the following categories, among others: marketing, market research, creative, design, digital, advertising, MICE, publishing, editorial, media, PR and communications, and is targeted towards senior managers.

The survey provides salary information, detailed statistics on staff turnover, retention strategies, talent sourcing strategies, salary increase percentages and forecasts on permanent and contract hiring trends.

For more information on the Aquent Orange Book, please contact Carolyn Hyams, Asia Pacific Marketing Strategy Manager on +61 2 8288 8288 or


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