Layoffs, hybrid jobs, exodus from Twitter… Can LinkedIn benefit from this?
Does the wave of layoffs facing the tech sector represent an opportunity for LinkedIn? A CNN article, published on Sunday, January 8, is surprising. It should be said that the “technology and information services” sector is the most represented in the professional social network, which forms a large base of its users (almost 11% of subscribers in 2017).
In a troubled tech sector, the figures LinkedIn is showing are out of place. The mobile application of the professional social network, which now has 875 million subscribers, was downloaded 58.4 million times worldwide in 2022 on Google Play and the Apple store, an increase of 10% compared to the previous year, according to the US research firm Sensor Tower. The company’s revenue also increased by 17% year-on-year in 2022, according to the results published by Microsoft at the end of October.
Pandemic and economic crisis involved
The increase in LinkedIn use is thought to be partially related to the pandemic, according to Jennifer Grygiel, associate professor and social media specialist at Syracuse University, who told CNN: “Social distancing has to be done, we are in quarantine and people are working remotely so there has been a change in real life networking opportunities.”
But it may also be related to increased job search. The number of LinkedIn posts mentioning “job opening” increased 22% in November compared to the same period last year, according to data provided by the company.
LinkedIn also said it saw a steady increase in the connection rate of its users in 2022 compared to 2021, a sign that they are more active on the platform. Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, even spoke about a “recording commitment“together with”an acceleration of growth, especially in international markets”in a conference call to announce the October results.
It is true that with the thousands of layoffs that have occurred in recent times, users have had more reasons to use the platform, which is increasingly popular for job searching and creating professional communities. Xiaomi said in December that it wanted to reduce its workforce by 10%, Meta laid off 13% of its employees, Amazon and Salesforce both announced massive restructuring plans earlier this year, as did of HP, which plans to lay off between 4,000 and 6,000 employees by 2025…
Global crisis for Twitter
The opportunity for LinkedIn also lies in the downfall of Twitter, whose rating has continued to decline since Elon Musk took control. According to the Standard Media Index (SMI) report published in November 2022, Twitter’s ad spending decreased by 46% from the previous year.
SMI also found that marketers who booked ads on the platform for the last two months of 2022 backed out of their commitments. The platform has also been criticized for being a potential haven for its most extreme users, and for the proliferation of spam. In the absence of a clear and easy-to-use alternative (no offense to Mastodon), LinkedIn therefore has a card to play.
Top career concerns
Still according to Jennifer Grygiel, “it’s likely that many people working in media or academia are now looking for a place other than Twitter to build and interact with professional communities.” A group of former Twitter employees created a spreadsheet listing the company’s layoffs and recruiters who were hiring and used LinkedIn to facilitate sign-ups.
Another group has set up a system to match job seekers with recruitment professionals willing to provide volunteer CV and interview assistance services, which they are promoting… on LinkedIn.
“Disturbance creates opportunity”
“While we can’t guarantee where your next opportunity will be or when it will come, we can offer advice, so you’re ready to seize that opportunity when it comes.Darnell Gilet, a former Twitter senior technical recruiter who helped coordinate the effort, said in a LinkedIn post.
“Chaos creates opportunity for someone, right? People were laid off and there was this recession… From there, who would have a greater opportunity for growth than a career-focused platform like LinkedIn? This is completely logical“, he insisted.
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