As David Fincher’s The Social Network seizes both the US and UK box office charts, it brings to light the importance of online social networking within society today. The film, which depicts a somewhat over-dramatised (though very entertaining) story of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerburg and his fellow Harvard colleagues, hails back to 2004 and a pre-Facebook world. A lot has changed in the past 6 years and it certainly feels as though the days before Facebook are a distant memory, as I’m sure 500 million users worldwide would agree.
In the business world, social media has been established for some time now and it is vastly becoming the go-to for any business development, marketing and networking needs. LinkedIn, launched a year before Facebook, provides a unique, business-focussed, social networking experience and now has more than 75 million users across 200 countries. On the graduate team, we are seeing more and more of our candidates using LinkedIn as a recruitment tool; a way to advertise their profile, experience and academics almost like a professional Facebook page aimed at potential employers. We also highly recommend candidates using it as a device for interview preparation, a great way to research the company’s history.
And yet despite the increasingly popularity of social networking sites like LinkedIn and Twitter, it still appears that social media within business has a long way to go. According to an article published on Monday on Entrepreneur Country (another networking site for entrepreneurs), 64% of the world’s largest company CEOs are not social online. At a time when it seems like everyone has a Facebook profile, and the majority of your colleagues have LinkedIn, it’s hard to imagine that over half of some of the biggest business names are not participating in online networking. In fact, the likes of LinkedIn and other business blogs or online communities have only scratched the surface of the possibilities of online social media, leaving room for a wave of new possibilities. And leading the way in this are companies such as our very own FreshNetworks, rapidly proving the importance of online social media within business and dragging that 64% of CEOs into the modern world – online.
Elsie Rutterford is on the Graduate Team at FreshMinds Talent