The Reality Behind LinkedIn Recruiter: Recruiter Experiences Unveiled

DECEMBER 20, 2023 4 min read

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In the dynamic universe of talent acquisition, recruiters have found a digital sanctuary in the form of LinkedIn—an addiction that unfolds with each job posting, click, and connection. Yet, amidst the ease that LinkedIn may promise, there's a paradox between usage and effectiveness. It's a story where recruiters find comfort in the platform's routine, but behind the scenes, an absurd cost looms large.

For years, LinkedIn offered recruiters an almost therapeutic ease, where profiles unfold seamlessly, and networking over InMails becomes second nature. However, as the addiction to LinkedIn's simplicity deepened, so does the realization that simplicity doesn't always equate to effectiveness.

In this tale of recruiter addiction, the ease of LinkedIn comes at a price—literally. The platform's costs, at times, seem absurd, raising questions about the return on investment and the true value it brings.

Over the years, recruitment industry practitioners are finally opening up about their struggles with LinkedIn Recruiter.

Here’s what they had to say.

Issues Searching for Candidates on LinkedIn

More often than not, recruiters have used LinkedIn to post jobs and hope that the right candidates apply.

However, there's a growing acknowledgment that traditional job boards, including LinkedIn, might not be the ultimate solution. The sentiment is summed up by Michael Goldberg, Director of TA at U.S. Renal Care saying: "These are job boards, and while yes, job boards generally bring in the most candidates, ask yourself what percentage of them are quality candidates — that is, people who meet your requirements. Two percent. Maybe three."

Sometimes the best way to see the quality issues with one platform is to compare it to another platform.

Danny Cahill, a senior partner at Hobson Associates, adds “From a senior partner, set in her ways, a LinkedIn user on a cult level, who said she didn’t need another tool… ‘when I ran the same search in hireEZ that I ran on LinkedIn I get 25% more potential candidates… I hate being wrong.’”

Problems Engaging Candidates on LinkedIn

As we know, it’s one thing to find candidates… but it’s another to successfully engage them. For some recruiters, InMails were their go-to method for engaging candidates for potential opportunities.

However, in recent years, one TeamHealth recruiter shared a sentiment that many recruiters can relate to: "I’m not crazy about LinkedIn anymore because we’re limited to their database. It’s becoming spam central, and a lot of people don’t even open their InMails anymore." The shift from LinkedIn as a go-to solution to becoming a source of frustration is palpable.

Deanna O’Connell from Red Kite Recruiting echoed similar sentiments about LinkedIn's response rates compared to hireEZ: "Our response rate on LinkedIn never surpassed 22%, but some of our hireEZ campaigns have reached 100%." The significant increase in engagement is prompting recruiters to explore alternatives that can offer a more effective and efficient recruitment process.

Rising Costs of LinkedIn Recruiter

The rising costs of LinkedIn Recruiter are also a cause for concern among recruiters. “Why does LinkedIn have to go up 30% every year?” former recruiter, Shannon Pritchett, asked. "I don’t think people realize that jobs are eliminated because of LinkedIn [Recruiter]. It’s part of the cost. When your license takes up a fourth of your salary, it’s not right." Recruiters are beginning to question whether the benefits of LinkedIn Recruiter justify its escalating costs.

David Felker from The Carter Group emphasized the appeal of alternative platforms, like hireEZ, stating, "It is more user-friendly than LinkedIn, has a wider reach than LinkedIn (LinkedIn is just one of its candidate pools), and is less expensive than LinkedIn – what’s not to like about that!" The call for user-friendly platforms with a broader reach and cost-effectiveness suggests that recruiters are seeking solutions that align with their evolving needs.

The Issues Around Change Management

As we know, changing behavior is not easy.

In fact, Michael Goldberg described a situation that’s likely familiar to many recruiters who’ve take on a new tool.

"I am confused. After taking the time to demo the tool, getting it approved in the budget, and implementing it, now you don’t have time to learn it? What the what?! That is lazy thinking to its core." This highlights the importance of continuous learning and adaptation in the fast-paced world of recruitment.

Sr. Director of Customer Success and Innovation at WilsonHCG spoke about the adoption of a new platform saying, “It was tough at first - because of the whole fear of ‘I’m on [this platform] every day, and you’re telling me I can’t search and message there’ - that it took a little bit of time to adopt hireEZ. But once people started using it and saw success it was like a fire that spread slowly.”

In conclusion, recruiters are increasingly vocal about their dissatisfaction with LinkedIn Recruiter. As the recruitment landscape evolves, recruiters are exploring alternative platforms that offer better results, user-friendliness, and cost-effectiveness. The time may be ripe for a paradigm shift in the way recruiters approach sourcing and hiring, with emerging tools gaining prominence over once-dominant platforms. Yet, once they adopt those platforms - they need to make good use of them too.


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