We have openings for the position of a content writer. The candidate must be a graduate and have passion for reading and writing in English. He/she must also be a Facebook member with at least 25 friends.
Above is a job listing on a popular job portal. Zapped? Don’t be. Several companies these days are on the lookout for youngsters with active social networking profiles. In fact, having a specified number of fans, friends or followers on these sites is now a hiring criterion. These ‘active netizens’ are hired by companies which wish to use social networks, online communities and other online mediums for marketing, sales and public relations.
Narayan Kumar, 25, who was looking for a job as a content writer, uploaded his CV on several job portals. “Most demanded active social networking. One even asked for details of my account to verify if I was active enough,” he says.
Explains headhunter Nancy D’Cruz, who has placed 25 youngsters in such companies, “People go on Orkut or Facebook during office hours. Instead of complaining, companies are now using it to their benefit. This way, the employer gets visibility and the employee gets paid for ‘working’ online.”
Dimple Shah, 25, was approached by a lifestyle company to create a buzz online. She says, “Since I am active online, they asked me to discreetly drop product names in my conversations and offered me Rs 15,000 for it. I refused.”
Face the facts
According to a 2009 Harris Interactive survey of 2,667 HR professionals: 45per cent visit social networking sites to research job candidates.11per cent plan to do so soon in the future. 35per cent of employers decided not to hire a candidate due to content found on their social networking page.