Customer Experience, Work4 Exploits Facebook's Graph Search - Who's Next?
Think the only person that can solicit you on Facebook is a friend or friend of a friend? Think again.

Today, Work4, a Facebook recruiting solution, is unveiling Graph Search Recruiter, a service which gives companies the ability to search for and contact potential job candidates from across Facebook’s entire membership. Except those whose privacy settings prevent it, that is.

From a recruiter’s perspective, this seems to be as sexy as sexy gets. Access to highly personalized, user generated content produced by 1.25 billion people on a fairly regular basis. The info is fresh, a personal network is attached to every profile, and ever-evolving skill sets and records of accomplishment are current and likely to be verifiable; after all, you’re unlikely to lie, or even stretch the truth, before your entire community of family, friends and coworkers.

Tapping into Semantic Search

For those unfamiliar with Facebook’s Graph Search, it’s a semantic search engine; users can use it to run queries such as “Show me restaurants my friends like to eat at” or “Show me restaurants in Washington D.C. that my friends like to eat at.” Facebook delivers the results to you pronto. Cool, right? 

What Work4’s Graph Search Recruiter does is use Facebook’s Big Data stores (1.25 billion users and more than 50 million corporate brands) to create algorithms and serve recruiters answers to queries like, “Show me software engineers who work for Google and live in Menlo Park” or “Show me Data Scientists who work in New York, who went to Carnegie Mellon, and like advertising.”

A recent demo using the first question yielded more than 1000 results. Not all of the individuals in the result pool were friends, or even friends of friends, of Work4 CEO Stéphane Le Viet who conducted the search. But, not only were they viewable by us, but we could also contact them instantly on Facebook via Work4’s Graph Search Recruiter tool.

Contacting friends and “friends of friends” is free, according to La Viet; contacting people you don’t have any connection to costs as little as a dollar, all of which goes to Facebook. Work4 makes its money by charging for the service.

And direct contact isn't the only way that Work4 users can get the attention of its target audience, ads can be served as well. And whether a desired recruit pays attention to the ad or not, a seed will have been planted; the next time the worker gets into a brawl with his cubemate or boss, he’ll know exactly who to call.

In Search of Future Applications

Hopefully it’s unnecessary to say that the point of this article isn't to tell you how employers will be leveraging Facebook Graph Search and Work4’s Graph Search Recruiter to win the attention of highly desirable job candidates.

Instead, we’re using Work4’s innovation as an example of what Facebook’s massive database and its Graph Search tool makes possible. The applications are endless.

By the way, if you want to be found by recruiters via Facebook, complete your profile. Where do you/have you worked, what conferences do you attend, what made your last project miraculous, what and who do you “like” and so on.

How might other industries leverage Facebook’s Graph search?

Title image courtesy of Christos Gheorghiou (Shutterstock)