LinkedIn announced Feb. 28 that it will acquire Oribi, an Israel-based marketing analytics company — signaling that virtual spaces in recruitment may not be going away anytime soon.
In the blog post explaining the announcement, Tomer Cohen, chief product officer of LinkedIn, noted that its marketing solutions business revenue had grown 43% year over year, pushing the company to buy Oribi for an amount between $80 million and $90 million, according to TechCrunch. Cohen also mentioned the growing presence of brand building on LinkedIn's company profile sites, Pages, where 24,000 virtual events being made each week.
Virtual hiring has taken off due to restrictions put in place by the coronavirus pandemic, but its popularity and use may last beyond simple necessity, sources previously told HR Dive.
Job fairs are one example of a deeply in-person event going online — but they're also an example of how virtual events widen the net for recruiters strapped for hires in ways physical events couldn't. For example, at a virtual event, a job seeker can schedule specific times to meet employers rather than wait in lines for extended periods, a seemingly minor change that opens the doors to more Black, Latinx and neurodivergent talent, sources said.
LinkedIn's own data backs up the potential longevity of virtual hiring, Penry Price, vice president of LinkedIn Marketing Solutions, told HR Dive in an email. "We are seeing our customers lean more on virtual solutions to help them drive their business goals forward, including virtual selling and events," Price said. As of January 2022, the company saw a 150% year-over-year jump in annual virtual event creation and a 231% year-over-year jump in virtual event attendees.
"Oribi's technology is going to allow us to help our customers, including recruiters, understand their job search campaigns better so they can make smarter decisions and adjust their strategies accordingly," Price said.
The pandemic has also spotlighted the importance of employer branding. A Modern Hire report from March 2021 asserted that the hiring process is a brand experience, meaning employers have to take care to craft communications and processes that treat job seekers with dignity and respect. But many job seekers are already engaging with an employer's brand months before they apply, Price said. That means employers must have a virtual presence worth writing home about — literally, in some cases.
"The way a company shows up with their brand matters, and the strength of your brand will be critical in attracting talent," Price said. "To successfully recruit in a post-pandemic world, you must create memorable links between your brand and the candidates to drive long-term awareness."