CERN Sees Surge in Job Applicants After Going Social

The Geneva-based nuclear research facility says it has seen the number of applicants for typical jobs grow from 30 to 50 to over 500 during the last 12 months.

CERN sees surge in job applicants after turning to social mediaFrom

CERN, the research facility and location of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), has become the newest symbol of the huge impact of social media in recruitment, hiring and Human Resources administration.

After turning to social media for put the word out for openings, the Geneva-based nuclear research organization saw a tenfold surge in applications for difficult-to-fill positions such as “technicians, engineers, accountants, lawyers and firefighters.”

The social approach seems to have paid off. In the past, the organization used its high-profile brand to attract suitable candidates for the 200 permanent staff needed each year.

Instead of one-off ads in specialty magazines, CERN transformed recruitment to include online job posts on Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms. This shift from manual job post placements has save huge amounts of HR staff time with substantially lower administration costs.

In another tactic for saving on hiring costs, CERN began relying more on video interviews. Meeting with qualified candidates remotely over cloud-based services has saved money over traditional methods, said James Purvis, CERN head of talent acquisition.

“We have carried out 1,500 interviews using Sonru (the cloud video service). We can reduce the number of candidates we need to interview in Geneva and have seen at least a 20% saving in recruitment costs,” said Purvis.

The HR department at CERN is also creating recruitment videos for YouTube and Facebook, and posting jobs on Twitter feeds.

Since CERN is a government organization, a sophisticated HR system is required to deal with employee issues such as relocation and assistance to employees moving into the area.

“Technology has allowed us to deliver more with the same resources. It has allowed us to better meet the needs of the organization, particularly in areas we were not managing to do a few years ago,” said Purvis.

The original article—CERN Sees Surge In Job Applicants After Turning To Social Media—can be found at


Published by @philammann

Put. That coffee. Down. Writer/editor/whatever it takes. @margaretj13 is my (much) better half. Website: Email: Twitter: @PhilAmmann

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