LinkedIn Enters China: Has the “Wolf” Arrived?
The world’s biggest professional networking site announced a few days ago that it will officially enter the Chinese market.
According to corresponding media estimates, LinkedIn has over 300 million users worldwide. Although they are only now announcing their official entry into China, the site already boasts approximately 4 million Chinese users. Many high-level headhunters use LinkedIn as a primary tool for locating candidates. Called Lingying in Chinese, will this local version tear through the headhunting industry like a wolf through a flock of sheep, or will it be another fierce competitor for websites like Liepin.com, Zhaopin.com, and Dajie.com?
The appearance of the Chinese version of LinkedIn means more people seeking jobs in the Chinese market will pay attention to it and upload their own professional information. Increasing the number of users is LinkedIn’s primary goal for its debut in the China. From this perspective, its services are similar to that of job sites like Zhaopin.com. The main domestic networking sites are distinguished by how they divide and sift users, as well as how they guarantee the quality of users and the accuracy of searches. For the headhunting industry, the cooperation between LinkedIn and companies will have a certain effect; the core value of headhunters, however, isn’t in their monopoly on human resources, but rather their careful selection of suitable candidates and their coordination and communication support during the hiring process. From this perspective, the appearance of a Chinese version of LinkedIn will help headhunters increase their search for human talent, and undoubtedly be of great benefit to the industry. As the amount of information swells, however, so will the difficulty of managing it to effectively search for candidates.
As headhunting consultants, we need not worry that LinkedIn will have a devastating effect on the industry. Instead, we should reflect on the many possible ways to harness networking tools like LinkedIn to develop our social web and resources.