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Job Searching with Triadic Closure

With the increase of social networking sites like Facebook and LinkedIn it is much easier to expand and stay in touch with ones network. Not only are sites like these useful for keeping in touch with your social network but it is becoming increasingly popular use them to find professional jobs. This article analyzes a survey of 59,133 people over three years and found that 41% of people found jobs through networking while only 8% found a new position through direct approach. Other successful approaches that people took were online job boards, job agencies and advertisements. However, the largest percentage of people by far found a new position through their network.

This follows the principle of triadic closure: “if two people in a social network have a friend in common, then there is an increased likelihood that they will become friends themselves at some point in the future.” (p. 44 in book). In this case, one person has a friend who is looking for a job and a friend who is in a position to hire. Through this mutual friend, the person looking for a job is able to become connected to the person looking to hire. If the person looking to hire and the person looking for a job did not have this mutual friend then it would have been very unlikely that they would have met each other.

Most of these types of connections can also be examples of the strong triadic closure property. Usually the mutual friend has a strong connection with the person looking to hire if he is able to ask him to help a friend get a job. He also usually has a strong connection with the person looking for a job if he is willing to help him find a job. Through these two strong connections, the job seeker and job seekee are able to meet and form a relationship.


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