Traditionally, job applications have been a time consuming and often tedious process for employers and applicants alike. The process can be somewhat streamlined, however with LinkedIn’s newest innovation.

With their latest application, employers can now feature the ‘Apply with LinkedIn’ button alongside their job advertisements, allowing candidates to apply using their LinkedIn profile.

The ‘Apply with LinkedIn’ button is particularly attractive to employers, as it offers the opportunity to determine auto-rejection criteria, perhaps based on qualifications or location. Furthermore, it also allows them to customise application questions or add the requirement for a covering letter.

This function facilitates a recruitment process that is more time and cost effective, making the selection process much easier. Particularly for small companies, this application removes the need to invest time in sorting through applications from candidates who do not reach the minimum entry criteria.

Candidates can now also revel in the idea of job applications without the need for alterations to their CV, and seemingly endless application forms. The system also means that they can ask for recommendations for the role from their LinkedIn professional connections.

Where candidates have contacts at the company to which they are applying, they can also highlight this and ask for specific introductions.

Perhaps the most pertinent criticism with which the application has been met is that it neglects candidates of the opportunity to portray their personality. In certain roles especially, it may be argued that qualifications and work experience are not the most important attribute.

This application is a natural progression from the previous system which allowed LinkedIn members to apply using their profiles and recommendations for jobs which were posted on the site. The concept now applies to any site which chooses to feature the ‘Apply with LinkedIn’ button, using the LinkedIn plugin.

As the primary professional social networking site, this development is perhaps not the most surprising. With recruitment services representing 45% of revenue generated by LinkedIn, it is arguable that this may be just the beginning.