Influence rank: the shape of recruitment to come

If your job embraces community building and engagement across the social web, does your ranking on an online influence-measurement service like Klout matter?

For some companies and recruiters, it certainly does.

A case in point – Salesforce.com has a job ad for a community manager where the list of desired skills includes this:

Klout score of 35 or higher

According to Klout, the Klout Score or ranking “measures influence based on your ability to drive action. Every time you create content or engage you influence others.”

It uses data from social networks to measure True Reach (“how many people you influence”),
Amplification (“how much you influence them”) and Network Impact (“the influence of your network”).

The job Salesforce is hiring for requires skills including 2-3 years of community management experience and building a following in social media. Especially regarding the latter skill, some kind of ranking could help a candidate stand out from the crowd.

I can imagine a situation where three candidates, say, for the job each has impressive credentials for the role, with clear evidence of all the required skills. The differentiator might be in the desired skills, where one candidate has a higher Klout score than the others, and so gets the job.

We’ve already seen this notion of your online reputation ranking starting to come into the world of hiring – US retailer Best Buy set the bar back in 2009 with a job ad that stated “250 plus followers” on Twitter as a preferred qualification – and it seems definite that it will be a feature of recruiting for some types of roles.

An insightful feature in Forbes.com in May offers an indicator of what’s coming with an assessment of the role of social media in recruiting, with this clear signal:

[…] forward-thinking companies and employers recognize that social media is the platform of the future. Whether or not you work in an industry where building your online influence matters (i.e. public relations, marketing or sales), over the next decade you will be hired and promoted based upon your reputation capital.

It looks as though paying attention to your ranking by services such as Klout as well as competitors like PeerIndex and Kred would be a smart idea when you’re considering your career – which probably should be all the time these days.

Welcome to the future process of your next job.

(Via Simon Caine)

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Neville Hobson

Social Strategist, Communicator, Writer, and Podcaster with a curiosity for tech and how people use it. Believer in an Internet for everyone. Early adopter (and leaver) and experimenter with social media. Occasional test pilot of shiny new objects. Avid tea drinker.

  1. twitter_CloudNineRec

    Really interesting stuff Neville – and I fear this sort of stuff, being relevant all too soon in the UK – despite it’s widespread disdain.

    Fortunately this stuff hasn’t hit the UK shores too much – but it’s a growing trend in the US – and Salesforce are amongst the most potent adopters of klout ratings.

    I have specialised in recruiting social media & digital comms people for 3 years, and have been specifically asked for a Klout score only once, and that was for someone to amplify a social media event through twitter etc, and that request was for 50+. It’s not being requested as a fundamental criteria yet – and I did a LinkedIn poll recently on the subject – and less than 10% said they would even consider it.

    However, as we know – what people publically say they do, and what they actually do within their social media opportunities – is another thing. So yes, your advice to consider how your social media presence represents you, is wise – particularly in the case of community management. Sadly, we have to consider Klout score in that – but be heartened that it doesn’t take much `work`, to get a score of 35.

    • Neville Hobson

      Great assessment, thanks. I do believe online reputation will become a significant element in recruiting with this example being an indicator of that. Not happening in the UK,l yet, as you note, but inevitable imo.

      I wonder when this will evolve from the fixation on a score or rank to the meaning of such a metric. A rank itself is pretty meaningless, imo, it’s the context of it that’s interesting.

  2. Robinsh

    No doubt the social media manger should have the twitter followers, facebook fans and mass conversation with the peoples over there at any place he or she stays to communicate and then only any company will ask to hire them.

    I’m also looking for a social media manager for my businesses online and hence looking for something similar qualities into the applicants.

  3. Will Klout ever let you go?

    […] matters like recruiters specifying a certain Klout score as a desired attribute, something Salesforce.com did recently; and taking this recruiting notion a stage further to look at the context of someone’s score […]

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