A new report from the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) has urged for recruitment agencies to take a careful approach to sourcing job candidates from social networking platform LinkedIn. Experts indicated that profiles were often out of date or heavily exaggerated, with recruiters needing to use a fine eye for detail and a certain amount of scepticism when finding candidates.

Revealing the details collated in a new report, it was shown that at least 9% of people had embellished their profile on LinkedIn in some way. Meanwhile, recruiters should pay no attention to network size, as 30% of users admitted that they did not know everyone that they were connected to. In addition, 10% of people had received a recommendation from an acquaintance only because they said they would return the favour, whilst 7% admitted to being asked to exaggerate or write flattering recommendations.

Of the 2,208 people surveyed, 22% of respondents said they use, or had used, the website, though 46% said that their profile was out of date.

The REC’s Tom Hadley, director of policy and professional services, said that it was important for recruitment agencies not to take LinkedIn profiles at face value. “The work of any recruiter, whether in-house or in an agency, is to dig beneath the CV to find out who the person is and what makes them tick. A LinkedIn page is something you can use to source candidates but, ultimately, you need to test and not rely completely on everything that is on these sorts of pages,” he warned.

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