Tufts University Study: Your Facebook Friends Widen Connections In Your Job Hunt


What if the friend connections one has in Facebook can influence employment? For job-seekers, this can be something to look into.

A research done by Tufts University indicates that, when looking for a job, one's social network can be the best place to start. It all depends on the ties a user has.

In the research, the study uses anonymous Facebook profile information such as tagging a friend, how many mutual friends a connection has, and regular posting on another friend's wall. They call this the friendship strength number.

The research looks into the strong and weak ties and its impact in job hunting. The research is based on anonymous Facebook data involving close to 17 million social connections, coming from 55 counties, as reported by Science Daily.

The study determines that the role of both weak and strong ties in searching for jobs is important globally. However, the conclusion of the study reveals that the value of one single strong tie is more important for job seekers but it is more emphasized in countries with income inequality.

Countries with pronounced income inequality come from South Africa, Haiti and Nicaragua. In these places, one single strong connection is important for job hunters. It is the opposite for countries like Sweden, Slovenia and the Netherlands where these places have greater socio-economic equality so the data displays weaker ties.

The study is published in the Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, as reported by Tufts. Laura Gee, one of the co-authors on the study, says that the results vary from country to country but the study confirms that weaker ties are helpful in the United States for example.

Gee basically says that the study finds that people in a country with inequality, job hunters are better off choosing quality of friends over quantity through proper networking.

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