If you're craving something different than what LinkedIn offers, you might want to check out a San Francisco-based start up called BranchOut. The professional social network was specifically designed to help recruiters and hiring managers source job candidates on Facebook.
There are many reasons why turning to Facebook for career help might be beneficial, but the BranchOut team -- backed by Accel Partners, Redpoint Ventures, Norwest Venture Partners, Floodgate Fund and angel investors -- puts it like this: On average, a network of 300 Facebook friends translates to 30,000 professional connections.
Facebook has 750+ million users. That's a huge well to draw from.
The issue now, of course, is how to surface the right people for the right jobs as quickly as possible. Enter RecruiterConnect. Fresh from the oven, the BranchOut team is calling this new feature the first enterprise software product available for the Facebook platform. RecruiterConnect helps users source job candidates on Facebook and build private talent networks by providing the work history, education and recent professional activity of potential candidates.
“RecruiterConnect fills a major void for companies that have wanted to recruit on Facebook in a way that is safe, secure and private,” said Rick Marini, CEO and founder of BranchOut. “This is an industry game changer because it not only allows recruiters and HR professionals to leverage Facebook’s network of 800 million users to find more relevant candidates quickly, but also to identify higher quality candidates by matching jobs to individuals in their employees’ extended networks.”
To Facebook and Beyond
Considering LinkedIn's popularity, an enterprise move on Facebook could be considered by some to be rather gutsy. But BranchOut has climbed from 10 thousand users in January to today's 3 million.
"They've gone hyper viral," said venture capitalist and Mayfield Managing Director Tim Chang. "LinkedIn covers like 10 percent of the population. BranchOut covers the other 90 percent."
And they're not stopping. The company also recently partnered with CareerBuilder, one of the largest job networks on the Web.
“BranchOut is dedicated to helping people leverage the power of their professional network to find fulfilling jobs,” said Marini. “In today’s work environment, surfacing inside connections at potential workplaces is essential for job seekers, and leveraging CareerBuilder’s reach and resources with our leadership as a professional network is a natural fit that delivers tremendous value to the labor community.”