Coming Soon to Your HR Department’s Inbox: Your Social Network Resume

If you haven't updated your resume on the likes of Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn recently, you may want to stop playing Farmville and do so now. A leading software management firm just announced a massive campaign to provide 300 of the world's biggest companies with "skills maps" of their employees. The headline is where they are getting that data - a fact likely to surprise, and remind, you to take your social media seriously.

If you haven’t updated your resume on the likes of Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn recently, you may want to stop playing Farmville and do so now. A leading software management firm just announced a massive campaign to provide 300 of the world’s biggest companies with “skills maps” of their employees. The headline is where they are getting that data – a fact likely to surprise, and remind, you to take your social media seriously.

The dossiers on employees that software firm Zapoint has announced it will deliver to the human resources (HR) departments of 300 of a select group of Fortune-size companies will come solely from what is freely available on the Internet, from social media to every other type of employee-published data you can imagine.

“Like It Or Not, We’re Going to Profile You,” blares the headline announcing the ambitious project on the Cambridge, Mass.-based company’s website.

“Employee data is often out of date, shallow and difficult to attain. The fact is that the information companies require about their employees does exist, but just not inside their internal systems. That’s about to change!,” the site goes on to explain.

Zapoint is using its patented SkillsMapperâ„¢ talent management software to show companies and HR professionals everywhere that the company, using the Web, can tell them more about their employees than the information they have in their own human resources files.

Over the next 12 months, Zapoint will compile reports on each company’s employees by combing the Internet, particularly social networks.

The company will then use its SkillsMapper tool to crunch the data from the Web and present the results in a graphical format, i.e. skills maps, to the HR departments of the 300 targeted companies.

The 300 project, as it is being called, won’t have access to internal records, so it will only analyze publicly available information, meaning the report will include everything from person’s “recommendations” on LinkedIn to the “skills” they list on Facebook.

And that also means employees of the 300 profiled companies won’t have a way to hide in their cubicle, or avoid having their skill sets, resume and experience compared to their colleagues, and competitors.

If it’s any comfort to nervous employees, Zapoint says its launching the 300 project solely as a wake up call to companies to open their minds to new approaches to managing their employees, not as a hit against wired, Web 2.0 workers.

“Today employees are actively leveraging social networking platforms for career management, while internal HR systems get left behind,” said Chris Tywman, Founder and CEO of Zapoint. “Companies that lack current talent management data are at a distinct disadvantage, but until now, HR departments had no easy way to leverage that external information within their internal systems.”

By using social networks to compile employee profiles Zapoint is, essentially, demonstrating to companies how much more information about a worker is available than a company has in its records in this 21st century, wired world.

Calling the 300 project, “LinkedIn on speed,” Twyman also told CNET, “The social nets are marching in. You’ve got to embrace them.”

Zapoint is also giving fair warning to the companies, and employees, it will target. The company has posted the 300 companies, along with the dates when the skills mapping will be completed.

Of temporary comfort to employees is that Zapoint is not releasing individual reports and names, for now, but showing the companies only information in the aggregate.

But that is likely to change as Zapoint hopes the companies will grab the carrot they’ve dangled and pay the firm for the names attached to the data.