What the Microsoft acquisition of LinkedIn could mean for recruiters

What the Microsoft acquisition of LinkedIn could mean for recruiters

In June, Microsoft announced the acquisition of LinkedIn in a deal worth $26.2bn (£20.6bn).

The acquisition was made in the hopes that Microsoft can open new opportunities for its Office suite and LinkedIn.

According to TechCrunch, Microsoft plans to integrate professional profile data from LinkedIn into Office 365. LinkedIn’s network ranges to over 433 million users, but Microsoft reports that there are over a billion office users, so combining both will increase data visibility.

Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft said of the acquisition: “Along with the new growth in our Office 365 commercial and Dynamics businesses this deal is key to our bold ambition to reinvent productivity and business processes. Think about it: How people find jobs, build skills, sell, market and get work done and ultimately find success requires a connected professional world. It requires a vibrant network that brings together a professional’s information in LinkedIn’s public network with the information in Office 365 and Dynamic.”

As LinkedIn is a platform heavily utilised in recruitment, the changes to the site will be big news to the industry.

In an article posted on LinkedIn, Chris Kendrick, Sales Director at Mercury xRM, shared his three expectations that the acquisition will bring.

1. Transform the effectiveness of recruiters’ time

Kendrick says that recruiters spend 23% of their time each week dealing with admin, so the merge of the technology and Big Data from LinkedIn and Microsoft could increase productivity for recruiters.

“For example, Microsoft is making big strides in its machine learning, using Cortana – a digital assistant similar to Apple’s Siri – as the face and voice of its artificial intelligence. Using data from both your recruitment software and LinkedIn connections, we want to see technology doing much more of the heavy lifting when it comes to scheduling calls, activities and meetings with clients and candidates, based on their availability and the likelihood to want to do business.

“And given that Cortana works with your voice, we expect to see a digital assistant that can truly manage your workload and record activities while you’re away from your desk and on the road.”

2. Re-balance the client/recruiter relationship

Kendrick predicts that the new platform could present recruiters with special insight around trends in their clients’ markets.

He gives an example: “Instead of vaguely describing the trends in the market, you go to a client meeting armed with statistics highlighting your client’s current IT skill shortfall versus their competitors. And you then go on to highlight that your clients’ Java development team leave the company an average 11 months sooner than their nearest competitor.

“This unique insight frames the discussion at a much more strategic level than simply gathering a client’s latest staffing requirement.”

3. Build relevant skills for tomorrow

“According to the World Economic Forum, technology will displace five million of today’s jobs by 2020. More startling, 78% of CFO’s believe that technology will replace up to a quarter of today’s jobs in that same period.

“With this shift, we want to see LinkedIn and Microsoft work towards equipping recruiters with those new skills they’ll need so they can continue to add value. There’s no doubt that data scientists will be in increasing demand. But for recruiters there will be skills needed in interpreting data too.”

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