Facebook jobs service spreading to more countries

Facebook on Wednesday announced that its year-old job-hunting service is expanding to dozens more countries, aiming to connect members with local work.

Facebook vice president Alex Himel described the move into more than 40 countries as a "new stage of the diversification of the social network."

Since adding a local jobs posting feature early last year in Canada and the US, Facebook has enhanced it to handle tasks such as managing applications, scheduling interviews, and getting alerts when desired types of positions are listed.

"We do feel really good about how that's worked out in the US, with room for improvement of course," Himel said.

Jobs can be listed, or applied for, at a "dashboard" devoted to the purpose in Facebook applications.

Use of the basic service is free, but businesses can pay to "boost" posts and more strongly target candidates, according to the Silicon Valley-based social network.

Job posts appear in several locations at the social network, including business pages, Marketplace, and in News Feed.

Speaking with AFP on the sidelines of a presentation in New York, Himel declined to specify how many job postings were listed with Facebook.

He said an internal study revealed that one-in-four Facebook members in the US had used the social network to seek jobs.

According to Statistic.com, the Facebook audience in the US tallied about 214 million people, meaning that roughly 53 million people there sought jobs at the social network.

With more than two billion users around the world, Facebook promises strong potential for connecting people seeking work with jobs in need of filling, especially medium- or low-skill jobs in local enterprises.

"A lot of these businesses who aren't able to fill their positions elsewhere, they're seeing success on Facebook," Himel said.

Facebook's job service wades into the terrain of career-focused social network LinkedIn, which Microsoft bought two years ago in a deal valued at $26 billion.

But LinkedIn is seen as an online venue for professionals to cultivate connections and opportunities whereas Facebook's job service appeared crafted for positions requiring less schooling or specialized training.

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