Recruitment and Online Dating: what’s the difference?

Recruitment and online dating – it’s kind of the same thing, right? It seems that some recruiters think so! We came across an article that claims that recruiters, when struggling to get hold of candidates by email or on the phone, have turned to dating apps to look for their next hire.

If you think about it, there are a lot of similarities between recruitment and dating. Most of the time, both parties are interested in finding “the one,” whether we’re referring to their dream job or life partner. In these cases, the strategy is fairly easy – either you like each other or you don’t; either you’re interested in the job or you’re not. There are of course times, however, when someone already has a job (or a partner) and they just want to passively see what else is out there. In those cases, one person is always the chaser, constantly messaging or calling to get the other person’s attention and get them interested in what they have to say. In dating, the chaser is trying to paint a good picture of themselves in order to win a date; in recruitment, the recruiter is trying to paint a good picture of their client and specific role in order to place the candidate.

There is also that same secretive element to both dating and recruitment – you don’t want your boss to know you’re looking for a new job, in the same way that people generally don’t broadcast that they have turned to the cyber world in the hope of meeting their significant other. Both therefore need to be approached with a certain strategy.

The app referred to in this article is not Tinder, on which users swipe left or right depending on their physical attraction to another user’s profile photo, but a different, slightly newer app called Happn, which only allows users to interact with people they have already crossed paths with, based on their geographical location – quite a scary thought really.

In a small place like Hong Kong, it’s not uncommon for people to come across friends or colleagues on dating apps. Although I’m sure there are many success stories, the fact that it really is such a small world here does often put people off using dating apps for anything serious. So perhaps they would serve a better purpose as a new kind of recruitment technology. Is there much difference between contacting someone you’ve never met through Happn, or through LinkedIn?

The world of recruitment is ever-evolving. I wonder what they’ll think of next!

If dating apps aren’t your thing and you’d prefer to speak to us the more traditional way (as indeed we would too!) please get in touch and let us take your career to the next level!